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Nov 21, 2008 05:25 PM

Good Egg Cookbook shop

I found a quaint little shop in Kensington Market that just opened. It's called Good Egg and it is such a sweet place that stocks Le Creuset creamers and sugar pots, Japanese bento boxes for children, aluminum water bottles from Japan and a bounty of food books and cookbooks. I managed to buy a lovely gift for a foodie from Good Egg.

I'm so tired of getting into long line ups at the mall. I was just so happy to be in a store where the owner knows books and has the time to chat with you about Kensington Market. This store will make you feel happy that such a place exists.

Good Egg
267 Augusta Ave, Toronto, ON M5T, CA

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  1. I had read about Good Egg, and finally checked it out a few weeks ago. The owner definitely has a knack for retail - I love how she has incorporated related non-food items on her bookshelves too. I told her I would be happy if I was locked in her store all weekend! I found a great cookbook whose sole subject is marshmallows - I never knew it existed (I went on a marshmallow making binge last Christmas and gave them as gifts). The store is almost a bit too slick for Kensington - it could easily be on Queen East or West, the Danforth etc.

    1. Yes! This is a great spot and I'm planning to do all my Xmas shopping there. I heard a rumour she might be doing cooking classes, but I just love the amazing variety of foodie books she has. IMHO it puts the cook book shop to shame (sorry, is that blasphemy?)

      8 Replies
      1. re: likescrab

        Not blasphemous as far as I'm concerned. I've found the staff at the Cookbook Store to be pretentious, condescending and rude.

        1. re: JamieK

          Thanks to all for the kind words! You're, ahem, good eggs. Indeed we will run a variety of demos and workshops starting in early 2009. Details will listed on the soon to be launched site. Chow.

          1. re: mika b.

            Yeah, looking forward to it! Will check your website early and often!

          2. re: JamieK

            See, that's what I always thought...

            1. re: JamieK

              I know that folks love one stop shopping but making sure that little business thrive is a necessity. I've never been inside the Cookbook Store and maybe I'm missing an experience but perhaps not given some of these comments.

              Just wanted to report back on the recipient of the birthday prezzie. She loved the cookbook and the giftware that I got from Good Egg. I already have another friend at work who was salivating when I told her that there were neat items from Japan in the shop.

              1. re: JamieK

                Well, I'm glad that there's someone else who feels that same way about the staff at the Cookbook Store! I don't know how that place has stayed in business so long (must be a snooty Yorkville thing).

                1. re: GuyNamedBen

                  Right, ok, we are united in our dislike of the cook book store. and the prices! bought a bday pressie for my six year old daughter this week, not a book. the store has a great gift section as well as a sensational book selection. guess where i'm doing my christmas shopping this year!

                  1. re: GuyNamedBen

                    The Cookbook Store is, essentially, a hobby business owned by an optician, Josh Josephson, who is reputed to be quite the epicure. His home kitchens (yes, plural) were shown on TV and would make many restaurant chefs jealous. They certainly made me jealous.

                    Before the advent of Amazon, Chapters, et al (who, to be fair, drove out of business most independent booksellers who needed to earn a living), the Cookbook Store was a great resource. They had, or would order, books you couldn't find anywhere else.

                    They are less essential today, but you pay the same (list) price at a Chapters/Indigo retail location as you would pay at the Cookbook Store. At least the Cookbook Store staff has some expertise about the books they sell. Frankly, given the removal of most seating from Chapters/Indigo and the banning of unpurchased books from their cafes, I can't see why anyone would buy a book there when cookbooks (and, indeed, most expensive books) average at least 34% cheaper, with free shipping, on their own website.

                    I never found Alyson, the Cookbook Store manager, pretentious, condescending, or rude, but I haven't necessarily experienced all the other people who currently work there.

                    I admit I haven't bought anything there in years, as any book I've wanted was available on the internet for much less money. Still, I miss the many independent bookstores that aren't with us any longer.

              2. Ya, this place rocks. I knew it when I zeroed in on a copy of Baudelaire's "On Wine and Hashish" on the shelves...

                1. I really enjoyed shopping there for presents. The atmosphere and staff are great. The selection, which is limited by necessity, is very well chosen and interesting. A mix of things that I've seen before and some I haven't.

                  My only quibble is the pricing of things that don't have a Canadian msrp listed (which most books, of course, usually do.) The markup on these items, at least to me, tends to be a bit excessive. Couple of examples I noticed:

                  Dim Sum: A Pocket Guide To Chinese Brunch - lists at Indigo for $10.50, although there's no C$ price marked on the book anywhere (sells for $9.98) selling at the Good Egg for $12.

                  The Macrophenomenal Pro Basketball Almanac - lists at Indigo for $25 with no price whatsoever marked on it (sells for $16.50) selling at the Good Egg for $32.

                  Don't get me wrong. I am happy to pay more to support smaller, independent businesses. In fact, I think we all should far more often than we do. And I certainly don't expect The Good Egg to match the deep discounts of Indigo's actually selling prices. And, yes, I'm picking nits perhaps on the $1.50 more for the dim sum book. It's really just pocket change, but also a 14% markup over list. And the basketball book is a special order at Indigo and they have multiple copies at the Good Egg, so you're paying for a bit of convenience. But I don't know if it merits a 28% markup over list.

                  So I'm happy the Good Egg is there. Its' a great little store. It's just a little pricey, which tempers my enthusiasm ever so slightly. I'll still definitely shop there.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: tbonetak

                    FWIW - I was in the good egg today and there are LOTS of things on sale. Not books, at least not the ones I looked at; but lots of cooking "things" are on sale there, from linens to gadgets. Also, all the Le Creuset is on sale, 20% for in-stock items (and 10% for special orders).

                    I *adore* this store. It actually kind of breaks my heart to go in there, as there are so many things I love and could use and want there, and I ... don't have unlimited cash!