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Fiesta Farms

e
ER2 Apr 13, 2010 09:55 AM

On Thursday, I plan to go out to visit an old friend who has recently moved into a retirement home on Christie Ave. I gather the home is not that far from Fiesta Farms which I hope to visit on my way home.

This will be my first visit so is there anything special I should be on the look our for? Or is it like any other supermarket which you just browse around and see if there's anything to your liking?

TIA

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Fiesta Farms
200 Christie St, Toronto, ON M6G, CA

  1. z
    zoe3654 Apr 13, 2010 10:40 AM

    Ah, Fiesta Farms, one of my favourite topics. I love it because it's independent, earnest, and a wierdly wonderful blend of Italian specialty, ethnic, staples and health foods. My tips for first time. 1) Turn right when you come in and check out all the deals in cardboard boxes. 2) The produce section has an organics section with good prices. To the right on the shelves I always buy the Spartan Hills olives in a jar. They're $11 but superb and he's always there sampling and gets you hooked. 3) The deli section I'm not so into but they sell the Niagara Pingue Prosciutto which is fantastic. And I hear all the city's chefs stock up at their antipasto bar. 4) Great pasta aisle and sauces; I like the Fiesta Farms sauce to doctor up myself, local tomato sauce. Generally, it's like any other grocery store in terms of layout. Lots of interesting people watching there for some reason too. Enjoy.

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    Fiesta Farms
    200 Christie St, Toronto, ON M6G, CA

    1 Reply
    1. re: zoe3654
      estufarian Apr 13, 2010 11:14 AM

      I got morels there when even the 'premium' grocery stores didn't have them.
      Plus they have the best dairy selection of any 'supermarket'. Still the only place I can regularly find Lactantia salted cultured butter, plus multiple offerings of 'off-beat' items (goat's milk, creme fraiche, etc).
      They used to stock unusual soft drinks, but selection recently has been less interesting.
      And various premium bacons, prosciutto etc.

    2. a
      Arcadiaseeker Apr 13, 2010 11:29 AM

      I like their meat selection -- they have Rowe and some other labels that we consistently pick. The Rowe skirt steak is particularly yummy and tender.

      1. d
        Doopsylalolic Apr 13, 2010 06:50 PM

        The sausages are highly varied and good, and in general the meat counter is above average. I predict you'll end up wanting to browse all the aisles.

        1. m
          missnomer Apr 14, 2010 08:44 AM

          fiesta makes its own fish cakes and sausages which are pretty good.

          also, if you're into gardening the garden center seemed to be open last time i walked by.

          1. mrbozo Apr 14, 2010 01:11 PM

            I concur with the above posts: a unique and friendly shopping experience.

            I buy my tinned Italian tomatoes, San Marzano or not, there, as well as Hewitt dairy products and whatever specials and/or produce catch my eye. The meat seems to be entirely sourced from regional farms rather than the major packers.

            2 Replies
            1. re: mrbozo
              a
              Arcadiaseeker Apr 14, 2010 02:03 PM

              The breads are also great. Good selection. Although I would disagree that it is a "friendly" shopping experience. I love FF but I don't go there for the staff. They tend to be very young and while I wouldn't call them disdainful or openly rude they are pretty disinterested in you and your experience as a customer.

              1. re: Arcadiaseeker
                mrbozo Apr 14, 2010 02:11 PM

                Different experiences re service it seems. I've always found them to be helpful, but then I gravitate toward staff my age.

                The breads are OK but IMO nothing special, but Jesus the cheeses are good and growing.

            2. JamieK Apr 14, 2010 02:00 PM

              I'm sometimes in that area too, for the same reason as the OP. Good to know about the fish cakes and sausages. Do they have any other prepared foods or items I can just throw on the grill or in the oven? Usually I'm out of time or too tired to cook. But mostly I'm lazy.

              2 Replies
              1. re: JamieK
                mrbozo Apr 14, 2010 02:17 PM

                Bison burgers, lovely fresh salmon and other delectables. Go you must.

                1. re: JamieK
                  tbonetak Apr 14, 2010 02:30 PM

                  The Hope Farms pork products, especially the ham steaks, are excellent. I also second their fresh sausage selection. Great variety of regional variations on the standard Italian.

                2. shelleypascual Apr 16, 2010 08:03 PM

                  Honestly, I had high expectations of Fiesta Farms and was slightly disappointed when I finally checked the place out. I mean, it ain't no Trader Joe's (which we unfortunately don't have in Canada yet). The prices at Fiesta Farms aren't very competitive I find. Sigh. Guess it depends on what you're looking for. For health food items, I would still prefer to shop at The Big Carrot (usually only when I'm interested in their sale items) and my go-to health food supermarket, Ambrosia.

                  My favourite finds from Fiesta Farms: their whole wheat croissant! Perfectly portioned and full of flavour. Could've eaten it with my eyes closed and would've never guessed it was whole wheat. Best eaten when heated in the toaster oven. Also, if you're a fan of bagels Fiesta Farms carries Gryfe's soft and fluffy bagels, 3/$1.89 I believe.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: shelleypascual
                    Flexitarian Apr 16, 2010 08:26 PM

                    I think it's a great store and one of the few in the area that are independent and have a really broad selection. I, too, shop at The Big Carrot, even when things are not on sale there. It's my main grocery store now when I don't go to Whole Foods. Summerhill Market is only a block away from me but they have little that is organic and their prices are sky high (but then when you need goat's cheese at 6:55pm on a Saturday night...)

                    I've never heard of Ambrosia before, but will make a trek from downtown to take a look. I always enjoy seeing new independent organic-oriented grocery stores.

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                    Summerhill Market
                    446 Summerhill Ave, Toronto, ON M4W, CA

                    1. re: Flexitarian
                      shelleypascual Apr 16, 2010 08:36 PM

                      There are 2 Ambrosia locations but the one at Yonge St. & Doncaster (just north of Steeles Ave.) is probably closest. Check out their monthly specials before your trek up, perhaps. Might be more worth your while.

                      http://www.ambrosianaturalfoods.com/

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