Victoria “Tori” Vaccher became vegan seven years ago after many years as a vegetarian. As many vegans do, she began playing with recipes that usually have dairy and eggs and modifying family recipes to make them vegan. Recently she decided to share them publicly and turn one of her passions into business by opening a bakery. Tori’s Bakeshop is the newest bakery in the Beaches, offering a selection of vegan, natural baked goods that lack refined sugar, many of which are gluten free. It’a also the first eat-in vegan bakery and café.
Tori takes precautions to avoid cross contamination, such as using different pans and different sinks, and all of the gluten free ingredients are stored away from the non gluten free. Whenever possible ingredients are sourced locally and organically. All products are chemical-free, preservative-free and refined sugar-free.
I visited recently on a warm spring day. Warm days always bring crowds of people to the neighbourhood and on this day there was a constant flow of people. The decor is eco-friendly.
I found a shop that is bright with high ceilings from which Mason jar chandeliers and lights made from industrial whisks hang. Reclaimed stained glass windows separate the bakery from the café. The colourful labels of Royal Rose simple syrup that line shelves behind the coffee bar, and the books that sit on a shelf above the chalkboard menu, pop in contrast to the grey and off-white room. Two big comfy chairs surround a coffee table piled with magazines such as local news, and VegNews.
Coffee is sourced from nearby Merchants of Green with a custom mix of Guatemalan and Ethiopian beans made for the bakery and so when I arrived I ordered an Americano ($2.10). I like my coffee black, but soy, almond, and coconut milk are available.
After my coffee, Tori’s PR rep joined me and we shared a plate that included a cinnamon bun ($4.50), a spelt butter tart (no butter), chocolate cupcake with “cream cheese” frosting ($3) and the peanut butter cup, which was melty & delicious and was the highlight for me. I bought a couple of gluten-free “cheddar” and chive biscuits ($4) and a couple of “Morning Glory” muffins ($3.50) to take home. Other offerings include doughnuts, biscuits and banana bread in addition to the multiple varieties of scones and muffins. I regret not trying the “Oh Henry!”-style chocolate bars.
Vaccher plans to expand her offerings to include soups, sandwiches, cashew-based ice creams and fruit sorbets.
Wednesday to Saturday: 8am to 8pm
Sunday: 8am to 6pm
Monday and Tuesday: Closed