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St Lawrence Market

evandyk

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Back in March 2020 when there were random grocery shortages at No Frills, I started going to the market every Friday. Eventually I just put it in my outlook calendar, and all my colleagues know I'm not available 11-12 on Fridays because I go to the market. But that's a luxury I know many people would never have! And while Sunday hours wouldn't make much difference to me right now, they will when I'm back in the office most of the time.
 

CityPainter

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Back in March 2020 when there were random grocery shortages at No Frills, I started going to the market every Friday. Eventually I just put it in my outlook calendar, and all my colleagues know I'm not available 11-12 on Fridays because I go to the market. But that's a luxury I know many people would never have! And while Sunday hours wouldn't make much difference to me right now, they will when I'm back in the office most of the time.
Before the pandemic, Friday evenings between about 6 and 7pm used to be our regular market visit time. Everything was fully stocked and pristine and ready to go for the Saturday mobs, but the place would be pretty much empty. My wife and I could divide and conquer and half half a dozen stalls in 10 or 15 minutes and be on our way home. Saturdays were always to be avoided.
 

Rufus8

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Back in March 2020 when there were random grocery shortages at No Frills, I started going to the market every Friday. Eventually I just put it in my outlook calendar, and all my colleagues know I'm not available 11-12 on Fridays because I go to the market. But that's a luxury I know many people would never have! And while Sunday hours wouldn't make much difference to me right now, they will when I'm back in the office most of the time.
I can only afford No Frills now, even Loblaws is a no-no unless I can get 50% off. There used to be more parking for visitors. They are already a very niche market so extending the hours might not be the solution. It's good that the city supports the stall holders but they are too expensive for me.
 

evandyk

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It is true that it can be expensive, though many things are actually similar or comparable to the grocery stores, and because you can buy by the piece instead of being forced to buy a whole package (e.g. when they put like six jalapenos in styrofoam and wrap it, when all you need is one) you can find some efficiencies. There are also some bulk stores where you can buy a small scoop of white pepper instead of a whole bag from No Frills. But no doubt, there is some big ticket stuff you can spend a lot of money on.

I mostly view it as that our restaurant-going/entertainment budget has been diverted half to takeout and half to the market. We used to spend money going to stuff like movies, shows and museums. Now I go to the market and cook nice stuff on the weekend.
 

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I can only afford No Frills now, even Loblaws is a no-no unless I can get 50% off. There used to be more parking for visitors. They are already a very niche market so extending the hours might not be the solution. It's good that the city supports the stall holders but they are too expensive for me.

With respect to regular market vendors (and some perpetual farmer's market vendors); there is generally an opportunity to drop the price, especially with time and/or volume.

That may not bring things to a point where they are workable for you, but I just thought I'd offer that as an option.

My maternal grandmother, was, at one point very tight for cash as a divorcee at time when that was not widely accepted. She had a house, in a then not high-end area (the Beach); and took in boarders to make
ends meet.

As part of that, she went down to St. Lawrence Market regularly, and established a relationship {commercial, not romantic, LOL) with one of the butchers, and came to regularly buy a 1/2 a cow;
and whole chickens. To be clear, she didn't get these things in one piece, not even the chickens, they were butchered for her; but she bought that amount of product, vac-packed, and then froze most of it; some of it going into large
cooking projects like Chili or Bolognese.

At any rate, the end result was a price far cheaper than what a supermarket would charge.

If you have or can/would purchase a dedicated freezer, its an option worth considering.

She would do likewise with fresh veg that wasn't root veg, by buying in bulk and then treating as appropriate and freezing. Example, she bought corn in season, by the dozen ears; or more, then spent a day shaving it off the cob, boiling it for a few minutes, then spreading it to cool, bagging it in various portion sizes and freezing it.
 

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With respect to regular market vendors (and some perpetual farmer's market vendors); there is generally an opportunity to drop the price, especially with time and/or volume.
I find it really depends on what you're buying and from what vendor. We mostly stopped going to the Saturday farmer's market because so many of the stalls seemed to be operating on the assumption that city slickers are stupid enough to pay anything for half-rotted food terminal produce.

In the South Market, any of the vendors aimed primarily at tourists are extremely expensive. Similarly, if you're buying imported specialty or organic items, you will pay a premium.

But the regular fruit and veg sellers just inside the northeast door on the upper level are very reasonably priced, especially for stuff that's in season. Much of it is as cheap if not cheaper than No Frills and of higher quality (No Frills often seems to get the ugly, unripe or almost-expired produce, I notice.) Also, as Northern Light maybe alluded to, if you frequent the same vendors over time and they get to know you, sometimes they'll give you a freebie or a little informal discount as a thanks for being a regular. That's definitely never happened to me at No Frills.

For take away, Churrasco's (the Portuguese chicken place in the upper northwest corner) is extremely good and you can get a ton of food for a very low price there.
 

evandyk

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In many cases, you are also getting a qualitatively different thing. A jar of Kozlik's mustard costs $6, and you can buy a squeeze jar of French's for $2.99 at the grocery store. But the Kozlik's will last you twice as long because it has a lot more flavour, and will just make you happy when you put it on something.

For basic staples, the market is never going to compete on price with No Frills, any more than a neighbourhood stationary store will compete with Shoppers Drug Mart on Christmas cards.
 

evandyk

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She would do likewise with fresh veg that wasn't root veg, by buying in bulk and then treating as appropriate and freezing. Example, she bought corn in season, by the dozen ears; or more, then spent a day shaving it off the cob, boiling it for a few minutes, then spreading it to cool, bagging it in various portion sizes and freezing it.
This is like my childhood, only we grew the vegetables ourselves in the garden and spent huge amounts of time freezing and canning things in September and October.
 

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I find it really depends on what you're buying and from what vendor. We mostly stopped going to the Saturday farmer's market because so many of the stalls seemed to be operating on the assumption that city slickers are stupid enough to pay anything for half-rotted food terminal produce.

In the South Market, any of the vendors aimed primarily at tourists are extremely expensive. Similarly, if you're buying imported specialty or organic items, you will pay a premium.

But the regular fruit and veg sellers just inside the northeast door on the upper level are very reasonably priced, especially for stuff that's in season. Much of it is as cheap if not cheaper than No Frills and of higher quality (No Frills often seems to get the ugly, unripe or almost-expired produce, I notice.) Also, as Northern Light maybe alluded to, if you frequent the same vendors over time and they get to know you, sometimes they'll give you a freebie or a little informal discount as a thanks for being a regular. That's definitely never happened to me at No Frills.

For take away, Churrasco's (the Portuguese chicken place in the upper northwest corner) is extremely good and you can get a ton of food for a very low price there.
Yes, no doubt some Market vendors are more expensive than a 'regular' supermarket but, as you note, regular customers often get discounts and in general food is FAR fresher.
 

Northern Light

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In many cases, you are also getting a qualitatively different thing. A jar of Kozlik's mustard costs $6, and you can buy a squeeze jar of French's for $2.99 at the grocery store. But the Kozlik's will last you twice as long because it has a lot more flavour, and will just make you happy when you put it on something.

For basic staples, the market is never going to compete on price with No Frills, any more than a neighbourhood stationary store will compete with Shoppers Drug Mart on Christmas cards.

Love Kozlik's.

The XXX hot is exactly what it says is, more than a thin spread and you'll be snorting up your insides! LOL

Also some really nice flavour combos that allow you take a sandwich or dish in a different direction. Sweet and Smokey is one I quite like.
 
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Andy_in_Toronto

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Great to follow this discussion. I’m going to the market almost daily and have most prices memorised compared to grocery stores. Overall the closure of steak restaurants led to awesome offers at the market. 50% discount is not unheard of. Also if it comes to fish. A nice big trout over 1.5kg for $20. The fish market vendor gave free shrimp sauce on top, because I also bought shrimp. Cheese prices came way down. Before $40 per kg was cheap. Now we see $20 to $30 per kg for Emmentaler at the market or Metro.

If I am on a budget I m going late to the market and buying the left overs. Bread for $1.50. Saturday south Market a basket of apples for $2. Left over 400gr. sausage and 600gr. bacon combo - best quality- price $15. And so on. Endless opportunities to safe money. Takes some time and learning to spot opportunities, but it’s also fun and worth it!
 
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evandyk

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Also some really nice flavour combos that allow you take a sandwich or dish in a different direction. Sweet and Smokey is one I quite like.

Green peppercorn is probably my favourite, though I rarely buy the same one twice. I like the Black Harp one, and all of the super spicy ones are great. Right now in my fridge I have the Daily Dijon, and the lime & honey (which is pretty mild, so the toddler likes it).
 

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Hullmark have acquired a (partial) stake in 109 George Street, between Adelaide and Richmond St E.

No speculation of any additional plans with the building at this time.



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