Rushing to finish up a meeting downtown, I have to apologize, because I need to get to Woodbridge to pick up some cannoli before they close at 5pm. “Not Big Cannoli” I’m asked. “Yes” I reply, in surprise, to which I’m told, “You better hurry”. It seems that for those who know cannoli, there is only one place to go, and that’s Big Cannoli. A giant cannoli protrudes from the wall, but the display case is empty. Why? Because everything is freshly made-to-order. Regular, marcarpone, lemon, pistachio, coffee, chocolate hazelnut… While I’m lactose intolerant, I happily indulge. There are three sizes of these crunchy Sicilian shells. We snack on small bite-sized cannoli, sip espresso, and remark on the Godfather-penned t-shirts: “Leave the gun. Take the cannoli”.
Dolcini by Joseph
Joseph Montinaro started as an art student. He loved to work with oil paintings. After a time in the fashion industry, he combined his passions, and translated his techniques to make traditional Italian pastries with panache. It’s not about simply being “sweet”; it’s about the wonderful sensation we have when we taste these unique dolcini (little sweets). Essential flavours are from Italy, and Joseph’s ideas are inspired from the passion and enthusiasm he experienced in Rimini, but he makes it all from scratch right here. A slice of Pear Chestnut is a perfect pairing of tart pear and luscious Bavarian cream for a smooth layering with a light vanilla sponge and crisp dough. Peanut Butter Crunch is a slice of chocolate peanut butter mousse sandwiched between chocolate sponge and a velvety smooth vanilla cream with a crisp middle. A little slice of heaven is the lush and delicate confluence of coconut, passion fruit, and white chocolate. It is a dreamy indulgence. In summer, this is the spot for gelato—banana tastes like banana; walnut tastes like a walnut; and lemon is a citric explosion.
Magnotta is a one-stop-shop for all our wine, beer and glassware needs, and it’s right in the heart of Woodbridge. The range and selection of quality wine here is unparalleled for an Ontario winery. Recently we sampled their G. Marquis series. “My dad was always of the opinion that no matter what the price point, you still have to delver on value and quality”, says Joseph Magnotta, “and that is what we’re doing with our G. Marquis line.” Darker than most Ontario pinot noir, it’s just the right amount of oak; very approachable; very drinkable. The fruit doesn’t hide behind the oak. The Sliver Line Chardonnay is a beautiful straw colour; intense and full bodied. The Magnotta bottles are a marriage of wine and art, including the works of well known Canadian and international artists. “There shouldn’t be one person left in this country who hasn’t tried ice wine”, says Rosanna Magnotta. The Magnotta Ice Wine is the number one selling ice wine in Canada. But! Their Iced Apple wine is absolutely ambrosial, and truly reflects the bounty of Ontario apples—a must-try, and an excellent pairing with Thanksgiving dinner. Magnotta aims to find innovative ways to get more Ontarians to try an Ontario product.
Um, d’ya like seafood? Every kind of fish, in every kind of size, is here. The largest shrimp, scallops, calamari, and a host of other seafood at the lowest prices–fresh water fish, salt water fish, caviar, lobster, and exotic fish like bonita, amber jack and grouper. There are over a dozen different kinds of salmon, and a product list that boasts seafood sourced–and imported directly–from around the world. With a commitment to sustainability, and responsibility, and prices that make us do a double-take, this is where those who know where to shop for seafood can be found.