Halloween Stuff

It starts with the Pumpkin Fudge that arrives early October. Not only does it taste and smell fantastic, it triggers something - something in the air. Then the Bat Signal really goes out! And before you know it the Mercantile is filled with spooky stuff.

For school treats try our YumEarth peanut free dummies. There's murderously hot mustard, scary Scoville sauces, bloody eyeball candy decorations for creepy cookies, special edition Laura Slack chocolate skull lollies, halloween lights, mugs, bottle openers, tea towels and other seasonally themed decor items.

Of course, there's  also black cat and black bat pasta from Queen's Pasta - spinach and ricotta filled black pasta ravioli made just for Halloween night dinner and available in our freezer at the back of the store.

And adults know we're a grown up trick-or-treater's dream store!

While we're at it, witches hats off to the people in the neighbourhood who make ours one of the most fun parts of the city to stroll at night with their awesome halloween yard displays. If you haven't walked down Grenadier lately......

Oh. And if you come in late and find we're out of treats, please don't TP our window. We're doing our best to make sure there's enough for all you ghouls and goblins.

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It's Hopping around here!


Don't tell the kids but a certain long-eared cotton-tail comes to the Mercantile a little bit earlier than to your house... and drops off a TON of colourful treats for every budget and every taste. We're giving you a heads up to let you know we've seen the bunny tracks and we've got the goods to prove the existence of the Easter Bunny!

Old standbys like Jellybeans, Easter Gummies, Malted Eggs, Chocolate Robin's Eggs, Foil Eggs and special seasonal offerings from friends like Laura Slack, Denman Island, Roger's, Saxon and gummy treats and carrot-cake marshmallows from Tout de Sweet.

PLUS, we've got dishes and egg cups and napkins and tea towels and table charms (including bunnies in a variety of sizes). You can even buy our delightful daisy-eggs right from the window display!
We're open Good Friday and Saturday as normal but closed Easter Sunday and Monday. We'll give you more reminders as we get closer but the goodies tend to go fast so we thought we'd let you know now to give you plenty of time.
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Time for a Heart to Heart

Valentine's Goodies

You know that we love our customers. And we know that our customers know that the Mercantile is the perfect place to provision for LoveDay - that's why they've already put a serious dent in our selection of Valentine's Day cards!

But don't worry, there are still treats galore - whether it's cinnamon hearts to pass out at school, luxurious chocolates from Roger's and Laura Slack, a sweet/tart combo for your sweetheart from Tout de Sweet or heart-shaped spinach and cheese ravioli from Queen's Pasta for a romantic dinner at home. Or all of the above wrapped neatly in a CandyHearts Tea Towel!

That's just a fraction of our Valentine's selection but February 14th is a day that tends to creep up on people so we thought we'd let you know before the rush.

XOXOXOXO from all of us to all of you!

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Egbert & The Yoga Bunnies...

Egbert & the Yoga Bunnies

You're right - that does sound like an awesome band name!

But, in fact, it's merely a suggestion of the wide variety of Easter items currently in stock at the Mercantile.

That's right. Easter! You'd forgotten somehow, hadn't you? It's actually Good Friday THIS COMING FRIDAY. It's easy to lose track with these movable feasts!

There's no way for us to forget in the shop since we're surrounded by some of the finest Easter treats available: chocolates from Roger's and Saxon and Denman Island and, of course, the extraordinary creations of Toronto's own Laura Slack - including the meticulously rendered and handpainted (and entirely edible) chick named Egbert, pictured here in glorious colour (and available in both milk and dark varieties); but also jelly beans and malt eggs and Hershey eggs and marshmallow chicks and bunny treat bags and egg table charms and our famous ceramic Yoga Bunnies, also pictured here - who might arrive for Easter but stay in your home to offer leporine serenity year round.

Once people do twig to Easter, they usually make quick work of our stock so don't leave it too late.
We are CLOSED on Easter Sunday AND Easter Monday, regular hours on Friday and Saturday. Hop on in!


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Love in a non-heart-shaped Box

Valentine's in a Box

Pop quiz:
What day is coming up soon when you should let that special someone know just how you feel and express your affection and appreciation?

Ummm.... the correct answer is "tomorrow" and the day after that and the day after that and the day after that. Trick question.

However, since the calendar specifically designates a particular day for these expressions and we know people will be coming into the store looking for the right vehicles for that expression on that day, we wanted to let you know that we are prepared - not as on-the-nose as a heart-shaped box and not as lewd as Samberg/Timberlake's other thing in a box but a box nonetheless!

Remember, it's not so much about the stuff as it's about the experience and this box is all about experiences and sensations:

  • Sprucewood Fresh raspberry Shortbread Cookies
  • Pukka LOVE tea (organic rose, chamomile & lavender)
  • Really Great Goods, lavender & lime epsom salts
  • Fenwick Organic Coconut wax candle, Lavender & Eucalyptus
  • Laura Slack Raspberry Ganache Valentine Dark Chocolate Bar
  • all wrapped in a white Flour Sack Tea Towel

All for $49.95

Of course, you'll find all kinds of Valentine-themed choices around the store - from cards to chocolates to adorable gifts - but this right here is love in a box, Prêt à Aimer!

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'Ween 17

Halloween 17

A walk around the neighbourhood shows that lots of people take Halloween in the right...shall we say.... spirit. Decorations range from the rustic to the elaborate - from the macabre to the hilarious and no doubt the tricks and the treats will be just as diverse (though, please - no toothbrushes!).

In store we have just as much variety - whether you want to make a gourmet nod to the dark side, take your themed decorations down to the finest details or just have a little fun:

Plates, platters and pumpkins plush or permanent; mugs, candleholders, hot sauces, and many of our seasonal favourites - including bat-shaped ricotta ravioli from Queen's Pasta, dulce-de-leche-filled-copper-painted chocolate skulls from Laura Slack and the very last batch of the famous pumpkin fudge from Stratford's Nudge Nudge Fudge.

And, of course, candy in all its forms from health-conscious to luxurious, kid-friendly to grown up. Stock up for a weekend party or provision for the parade of ghouls and goblins, Wonder Women and Pennywises - as the spirit moves you.

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Apples for Teacher?

Apple for Teacher

Traditionally, apples were given to teachers at the beginning of the school year. It was meant to both literally and figuratively feed the person responsible for educating the children of the community. As the school year comes to a close, a newer tradition has sprung up to offer a little gift as a thank you for the care and attention the teacher has brought to his or her students since last September. I suppose some people might offer an apple - or, for that matter, an Apple iPad - but we had something a little more modest in mind.

We have all kinds of great gifts suitable for the occasion - including a special price on Laura Slack's famous chocolate potted flowers. But we know that teachers and their tastes are as diverse as their students so we have a special offer for readers of this newsletter:

This week and next, come in and find whatever you think is appropriate for your kid's teacher and pick out a tea-towel to wrap it in and we'll give you 10% off the bundle. Just mention that you saw it in our newsletter or on our website or social media feeds. And by all means encourage your friends and neighbours to subscribe to our newsletter too so they can take advantage of this offer! We'll even throw in an apple, since you're taking the kids back for summer!


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Make Mom's Day

Laura Slack's chocolate flowers

The modern Mother's Day was founded in 1908 in West Virginia by Anna Jarvis to honour her own mother, who had been a peace activist who cared for wounded soldiers on both sides of the American Civil War. Later in life, Jarvis protested the commercialization of the day she had founded and the various fundraising activities that linked themselves to the holiday. 

So first - in keeping with Jarvis' original spirit (or, for that matter, the festivals recognizing the power and influence of motherhood in many cultures dating back thousands of years!) - let us encourage you to think this Sunday about how to acknowledge your own mother or the mother figures in your life in your own words or music or art or action.

But second - admitting that we live in a culture that frequently expresses itself through gifts and tokens and that the Mercantile prides itself on featuring products of great quality made by the loving hands of people we know - if you are planning on getting a little something for the Mom in your life as a token of your appreciation, we have all kinds of delights in store (if you haven't already blown your budget at the Toronto Flower Market that launches its season tomorrow on the grounds of CAMH!).

Of course we've got cards and cookies and gifts and chocolates of all sorts but once again we feel compelled to talk about our friend Laura Slack - the Toronto chocolatier who continues to excel with her artful creations made using the very finest chocolate. Pick up a box of her latest truffle assortment OR how about  getting the best of both worlds with these hand painted chocolate flowers!?!? (though it is debatable which - between real flowers from the market or Laura's chocolate variety - would last longer in the house!)

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Easter is Upon Us

Happy Easter from The Mercantile!

Well, it was inevitable.
Sean Rooney's remarkable balloon bunnies in our display windows have been shrinking before our eyes. Come to think of it, they seemed to diminish at almost the same pace as our stock of Easter goodies inside the shop!

But don't worry, there's still lots left - from super cute salt and pepper shakers, egg cups, platters and table charms to the usual suspects of chocolate bunnies and eggs, brightly coloured gummies, jellybeans, malted eggs and much more. Our very real Murray Farms eggs are collected from a variety of heritage hens on the farm near Stratford so they're already a variety of colours - no painting necessary! You'll find them in the fridge at the back of the store.

And, of course, it wouldn't be Easter without Egbert - Laura Slack's utterly extraordinary  handpainted (but entirely edible) sculpted chocolate chick (among her wider collection of Easter specialties).

Just don't wait too long.
We're open Thursday and Friday 10:30am-8:00pm and Saturday 10:30-7:00. But we're CLOSED Sunday and Monday. So let your hunt for the best in Easter treats start at the Mercantile today!

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The Laura Slack Collection

Chocolate, it seems, is as essential a part of the holiday season as anything from mistletoe to menorahs. And naturally we have a huge range of chocolate from classic to fancy, Xmas-themed to potato-chip filled, super sweet to super spicy and everything in between. But at the risk of repeating ourselves, we'd like to point once more to the whole collection from Toronto chocolatier Laura Slack. Her work is truly impeccable and even her most basic bar - wrapped in chiyogami paper from the Japanese Paper Place - feels like an extra special gift no matter what time of the year you give or receive it.

At Christmas-time, Laura really goes all out and adds a whole host of additional items to her offering - including handpainted chocolate snowflake lollies, chocolate bacon-toffee-almonds and truffles - not to mention her dulce-de-leche-filled chocolate skulls (for the badass on your list) and her sublime Drink of the Gods hot chocolate mix.

So as you get in your last minute shopping and top up your supply of stocking stuffers, don't forget to have a closer look at the Slack collection that really is as special to give as it is to receive. You'll find it all to the right of the checkout counter.

A reminder that we are open until 8:00pm tonight (Friday) and 10:00am to 4:00pm on Christmas Eve.
We will be closed Christmas Day and Boxing Day.

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Spooky Specialties

Spooky Specialties

Once you've exhausted your supply of SurfSweets Organic Gummies for the trick-or-treaters and blown the candle out in your pumpkin, it's time to treat yourself. We recommend the bat-shaped black ravioli from Queen's Pasta, which you'll find in our freezer (perhaps accompanied by a Sangre del Toro red wine) and, for dessert, one of Laura Slack's famous handpainted dulce-de-leche-filled chocolate skulls.
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Bunnies and Chicks Abound!

Bunnies and Chicks Abound!

For Easter, we've got beautiful foil-wrapped chocolates from Roger's, classic candy-coated chocolate eggs, malt eggs, chocolate bunnies and eggs in a variety of sizes and styles from top quality chocolatiers but there's no doubt which chocolate birds rule the roost...once again it's got to be Laura Slack's Egbert.

Easter hours:
Good Friday 10:30am-8:00pm, Saturday 10:30am-7:00pm.
Closed Sunday and Monday
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