"The weird stuff always sells first," says Zalia Conde, the live-wire owner of Bountiful Harvest (705-357-2736), explaining the popularity of her yeast-free, wheat-free spelt buttermilk bread ($3). A board member of Organic Advocates, the local group that produces the annual foodie mega-event Feast Of Fields, Conde and a group of area farmers have started a weekly organic market in the rink house in Dufferin Grove Park. It happens every Thursday (except Boxing Day) from 3:30 to 7 pm. More info at http://dufferingrove.tripod.com.
Conde's quite the character and a remarkable baker. She succeeded Susur Lee at Peter Pan, then travelled and cooked around Europe before returning to Sunderland and starting an organic sugarbush. Get there early for her wonderful lattice-crusted strawberry 'n' rhubarb pies, organic veggie lasagna with nutty Jerusalem artichokes -- beef and free-range chicken versions, too -- and fabulous shredded-duck tourtière with dried cranberries (all $10).
"It's stroller hell in here after 5," warns Conde with a laugh.
The business arrangement between College Street restaurateur Philip Nyman -- owner and chef at Dipamo's -- and investors who opened a second rib joint on Eglinton West with the same name last spring has soured. Offshoot is, Nyman no longer owns the name to his fabulous downtown version of the Kansas City-style smoke shack. Partner Gloria Nyman read over the phone the following statement -- interrupted by much laughter -- that lawyers have instructed her to read to anyone who asks:
"Philip Nyman has sold his interest in Dipamo Concept Inc. and the Dipamo Barbecue at 514 Eglinton West and has agreed to identify the old College Street location, which no longer reflects the current Dipamo Barbecue concept. The restaurant at 838 College West (416-532-8161) will now operate under the name Phil's Original BBQ."
"It was an idea that didn't work," sighs Nyman. "It's all very painful, but we'll move forward."