As many Torontonians are aware, Mark McEwan has branched out from the confining clutches of running three restaurants and starring in his own TV show, The Heat. In the middle of a recession, McEwan has opened McEwan.

Yes, I've been to McEwan. It opened on the Friday and then I went on the Saturday evening. I did this in an effort to write a timely review about the new upscale grocery store.

I just keep putting it off so it's not timely anymore.

The shopping carts are black.

There is an impressive and gourmet antipasti section, a vast array of olives, nice variety of terrific-looking fish. The olive oil and balsamic vinegar section is pretentiously large given the size of the store. What else? In the cut fruit section, there is berry salad of blackberries, blueberries and raspberries where a regular grocery store would have melon. That didn't excite me; I expected that.

I am always pleased by handmade gourmet soups. They sell the house Chicken Noodle from One restaurant by the liter.

Now, I understand the practical application of supply and demand after working at Rahier Patisserie for about a year. In a bakery, you bake to sell. No merchandise is kept at the end of the day. I used to come home with my arms full of Parisian pastries, cakes and bread. (It was heavenly.)

I digress.

My point is that you are best managing your costs in a bakery when you are selling everything you bake. It's pretty simple. The same is true for a grocery store in terms of purchasing product. You don't want to waste stock and have to throw out rotten food.

All this being said, I knew why McEwan was sparse, but it didn't stop if from feeling like a less well-stocked Whole Foods. I'll check back in a couple of months and see how that goes.

1090 Don Mills Road
Toronto, ON

Mon-Fri 10:00 AM - 9:00 PM
Sat 9:30 AM - 9:00 PM
Sun 11:00 AM - 6:00 PM


  1. Jess, I've been waiting patiently to check out McEwan since the Shops at Don Mills opened. I missed his presentation during their opening weekend events.

    Thanks for sharing your experience. I may wait a couple weeks.


  2. Hi Eden,

    Thanks for your comment. I think grocery stores must be a tricky venture to embark upon. I'm going to go back and visit once things have settled down a bit and see if the stock looks more plentiful. It's nice to have another fine food option for Toronto in any case and I think McEwan offers a unique food perspective as a restauranteur.

  3. Hmm... I always think grocers toe the line between stocking too much food and waste. From the reviews I've seen on McEwan he really is going for the community feel while promoting local growers. It will interesting to see what happens when all the hype dies down. Looking forward to your second review Jess.