Black-owned businesses in Toronto you can support right now

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Calls to support Black-owned business in Toronto have risen in recent days, as a wave of anti-racism and anti-police brutality protests have spurred efforts – in Toronto and elsewhere – to uplift Black organizations and community members.

If you’re looking to support a business in your neighbourhood, we’ve put together a (by no means exhaustive) list of Black-owned restaurants and stores located all over the GTA, as well as a number of Toronto businesses that focus their operations primarily online.

Read on for the full list, as well as some broader resources and listings of Black-owned businesses in Toronto. (We’ve also created a list of local Black organizations and fundraising drives you can support now.)

Black-owned businesses in downtown Toronto

  • Adrift Shop: Apparel and skatewear off King West. 116 Spadina, adriftshop.com
  • Allwyn’s: Jerk takeout spot with three locations in the GTA. 404 Queen West, 4750 Yonge, 81 Underhill; facebook.com
  • A Different Booklist: Black-owned bookstore specializing in books from the African Caribbean diaspora. 779 Bathurst, adifferentbooklist.com
  • Blooming Flower Bar: Flower shop offering DIY and custom bouquets plus plants and pots. 559 Parliament, bloomingflowerbar.com
  • Caribbean Corner: Long-running Kensington source for African and Caribbean grocery items. 171 Baldwin
  • Dirty Bird Chicken and Waffles: The name says it all at this Kensington shop from chef Adrian Forte. 79 Kensington, thedirtybird.ca
  • Get Fresh Company: Streetwear and lifestyle brand on Queen West. 498 Queen West, gfctoronto.com
  • Jerk King: Local jerk chain with numerous franchises around the city. 275 Dundas West, 522 Bloor and others, jerkkingfood.com
  • King Rustic: Laid-back King West spot focused on upscale comfort food and craft cocktails. 905 King West, kingrustic.ca
  • One Love Vegetarian: Long-running Annex vegetarian eatery famed for its corn soup. 854 Bathurst, oneloveveg.tel
  • Pat’s Homestyle Jamaican: Beloved Queen and Bathurst roti spot. 558 Queen West, facebook.com
  • Rasta Pasta: Two-in-one Jamaican and Italian restaurant(s) in Kensington with great daily jerk lunch specials. 61 Kensington, eatrastapasta.ca
  • Ragga Beauty Supply: Beauty supply store and salon a stone’s throw from Yonge and Dundas. 135 Dundas East, raggahairandbeautysupply.com
  • True True: Upscale diner fare from Toronto chef Suzanne Barr. 169 King East, truetruediner.com
  • Veggie D’Light: Kensington takeout spot for vegan and non-GMO eats. 160 Baldwin, veggiedlight.com

Black-owned businesses in north Toronto

  • Albert’s Real Jamaican Foods: Albert Wiggan’s legendary spot for jerk on St. Clair. 542 St Clair West, albertsrealjamaican.ca
  • Celebrity Pure Vegetarian: Vegan and vegetarian Caribbean takeout counter. instagram.com/celebritypureveggie
  • Green Jar: A waste-free grocery and personal care store doing local delivery. 1061 St. Clair West, thegreenjarshop.com
  • Mofer Coffee: Ethiopian coffee, roasted in small batches in-store. 1040 St. Clair West, 1577 Danforth, mofercoffee.com
  • Randy’s Take Out: Eglinton’s best patties (now back open for takeout orders)! 1569 Eglinton West, randyspatties.com
  • Rap’s: Late-night jerk spot on the Eglinton strip. 1541 Eglinton West, facebook.com/rapsoneglinton
  • Treajah Isle: Long-running record shop (with a recently added juice bar).
  • Stockyards: Carolina-style BBQ and comfort food on St. Clair. 699 St. Clair West, thestockyards.ca
  • Vegwood: Cozy vegan spot in Oakwood Village with accessibly priced meal combos. 540 Oakwood, vegwood.ca

Black-owned businesses in east Toronto

  • Allwood Mrkt: Gallery and lifestyle boutique run by Kevin Allwood. 185 Carlaw, allwoodmrkt.com
  • Boukan: Upper Beaches spot offering “a taste of Haiti in Toronto”. 452 Kingston, boukan.ca
  • Beach Hill Smokehouse: Beaches BBQ joint offering a to-die-for brisket. 172 Main, beachhillsmokehouse.com
  • Caribbean Dutchpot: Small takeout counter for roti, jerk and more near Broadview station. 751 Broadview, facebook.com
  • Fresh Paint TO: Danforth studio dedicated to paint parties and classes. 1849 Danforth, freshpaintstudio.ca
  • Kaspace Cafe: Allwood Mrkt’s sister cafe. 1183 Queen East, kaspacecafe.com
  • Lalibela: A favourite spot (along with its Bloordale counterpart) for bountiful, delicious Ethiopian eats. 1202 Danforth, 869 Bloor West, lalibelaethiopianrestaurant.com
  • Mary’s Brigadeiro: Handcrafted Brazilian-style chocolates and sweets. 1912 Danforth, marysbsweets.com
  • Old’s Cool General Store: East York source for art, books and all manner of other finds. Say it out loud. 250 Westlake, oldscoolgeneralstore.com
  • Real Jerk: Drake and Rihanna-approved east-end jerk spot with two locations. 842 Gerrard East, 1004 Kingston, therealjerk.com
  • Simone’s: This Caribbean spot is an east-end sleeper hit. 596 Danforth, facebook.com
  • SugarKane: Cajun and Caribbean-style eats and cocktails in a chill, loungey space. 699 Danforth, sugarkanerestaurant.ca
  • Tata’s Hot Sauce Emporium: Sure, they have awesome hot sauce – but the sandwiches at this East York spot also deserve a mention. 219 Rexleigh, tatahotse.com
  • Tropical Joe’s: Normally in Gerrard Square, this jerk spot is currently delivery-only. 1000 Gerrard East, facebook.com

Black-owned businesses in west Toronto

  • Ali’s Roti: Ali Algour has operated this roti counter in Parkdale since 1976. 1446 Queen West, alisroti.ca
  • African Palace: Eritrean and Ethiopian food in Bloordale. 977 Bloor, africanpalacetoronto.wordpress.com
  • Aunty Lucy’s Burgers: Brand-new burger counter in Parkdale by Extra Burger and Undisposable. @auntylucysburgers
  • Buna Coffee: The next-door sister cafe to Nunu. 176 Queen West, @bunathesoulofcoffee
  • Caribbean Queen of Patties: From oxtail to jerk to roti, this Caribbean place does so much more than patties.1294 Bloor West.
  • Councillor: Low-key Queen West sportsbar. @councillorqueenwest
  • Heartbreak Chef: Comfort food is what chef Jerome Robinson does best. 1316 Queen West, @theheartbreakchef
  • Loveless: One of the coolest, most low-key bars and cafes on Dundas West. 1430 Dundas West, facebook.com
  • Nunu: This minimalist spot for Ethiopian food has been in business for over a decade. 1178 Queen West, nunuethiopian.com
  • Pam’s Roti: Pam Singh’s Bloordale roti spot is so beloved, the community recently rallied to save it. 1089 Bloor West, facebook.com
  • Roux: Creole and Southern food in the Junction. 2790 Dundas West, rouxstir.ca
  • Selam: The newly-merged Pero and Selam Vegan do some of the best Ethiopian in an area filled with competition. 812 Bloor West, selamtoronto.com
  • T Dot Jerk: Simple spot at the foot of Roncesvalles specializing in jerk. 26 Roncesvalles, tdotjerk.com
  • The Palms Jerk & Grill: Family-style Jamaican and Caribbean spot offering takeout and catering. 2419 St. Clair West, thepalmsjerkandgrill.ca
  • Vena’s: Since 1991, this roti spot has been building up a loyal clientele. 1263 Bloor West, venas.ca
  • Young Animal: Chef Adisa Glasgow serves Trinidadian fare out of Laylow Brewery. 1133 College, facebook.com

Black-owned businesses in the GTA

  • All Star Beauty: Black-owned beauty supply store (online sales available). 2406 Eglinton East, Scarborough. allstarbeauty.ca
  • Art of BBQ: Pitmaster Trevor David does BBQ and Southern fare at this Scarborough smokehouse. 2328 Kingston, Scarborough, artofbbq.ca
  • Aunt Elsie’s Caribbean Kitchen: Caribbean grocery store with a popular takeout counter. 2689 Scarborough.
  • Bilal: Somali restaurant in Etobicoke offering takeout and delivery. 321 Rexdale, Etobicoke.
  • Chris Jerk Caribbean Bistro: Jerk chicken and shawarma are a match made in heaven at Chris Taylor’s quick service spot. 2570 Birchmount, Scarborough.
  • Drupati’s: A classic fave for roti and doubles in Scarborough. 35 Woodbine Downs, drupatis.com
  • Ital Vital: This mom and pop joint offers juices, vegan eats and desserts. 741 Pharmacy, Scarborough. italvitaltoronto.ca
  • Istar: 24-hour Somali cuisine in Etobicoke. 235 Dixon, Etobicoke. istarrestaurant.com
  • Jamaica Stamp: Low-key takeout spot with classic Jamaican specialties.1053 Midland
  • Xawaash: Traditional and fusion Somali cuisine with locations in Mississauga and Etobicoke. 130 Queen’s Plate, Etobicoke; 80 Courtneypark East, Mississauga, xawaashrestaurant.com

Toronto Black-owned businesses you can shop online

  • Afrodelik: Funky pop culture tees featuring Black icons (plus a newly-launched graphic novel). afrodelik.com
  • Bellurelle: Natural, vegan and cruelty-free skincare. @bellurelle
  • Broke&Living:  Streetwear line making edgy unisex staples. @brokeandliving
  • Cherry Gardens: Athleisure-inspired women’s loungewear and basics. shopcherrygardens.com
  • Dr. Liza Shoes: Practical-yet-cute boots and pumps designed with ergonomics in mind. drlizashoes.com
  • Enarmoured: Bold, sculptural brass jewelry. etsy.com/shop/enarmoured
  • Essentials By Temi: Mists, oils, scrubs and more skincare products. essentialsbytemi.com
  • Fresh Rejects: Tees, face masks and more. freshrejects.com
  • Greta Constantine: This nationally beloved designer duo has probably dressed your favourite Canadian celeb. gretaconstantine.com
  • Jean-Marie Candle Co.: Handmade soy wax candles with natural scents. @jeanmariecandle.co
  • Kemsi: Vegan, cruelty-free skincare with no parabens or sulfates. @kem_si
  • L’Uomo Strano: Binary-pushing designer Mic. Carter has designed for local icons like Vivek Shraya. luomostrano.com
  • Mike Paul Atelier: Custom formalwear and leather goods. @mikepaulstyles
  • Nykwale: This emerging brand has won several awards at African Fashion Week Toronto. @nykwale
  • Omi Woods: Gorgeous nature-inspired fine jewelry, including wedding bands. omiwoods.com
  • Nerpy’s Hot Sauce: This line of hot sauces, marinades and seasonings has been a TO favourite for years. nerpys.com
  • Perfect Tees: Graphic tees, including a number of BLM slogans. perfectteesonline.com
  • Pseudonym: Secondhand and consignment clothing and accessories. bypseudonym.com
  • Quantum Garden: T-shirts and art by QPOC tattoo artist Tee Fergus. thequantumgarden.bigcartel.com
  • Shop Lost In: Tees devoted to cities, including Toronto and Brooklyn. shoplostin.com
  • Snapback Tiara: Jewelry and queer slogan tees (a sample: “Them Fatale”). snapbacktiara.com
  • Spencer Badu: Minimalist, ungendered activewear by an alum of NOW’s Black Futures Month issue. spencerbadu.com
  • Street Shak: Queen West Caribbean spot offering prepackaged meals during COVID. streetshak.com
  • Summa Vybz Punch: Get rum punch delivered around the GTA. @summapunch
  • Takeupspace: Technically, this company’s based in Hamilton, but their graphic tees were too good to not include. @shoptakeupspace
  • Toni Marlow Co.: Apparel, including TOM (“time-of-month”) boxer briefs, designed with gender neutrality in mind. tonimarlowco.com

Looking for more?

Here are more resources devoted to Black-owned businesses in Toronto and beyond:

Got more suggestions? Let us know in the comments.

@nataliamanzocco

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Natalia came to NOW as the food writer in 2015 before taking over the lifestyle desk in 2019. She has written about food, style, technology, life and travel for the National Post, Sun Media, blogTO and Metro. She enjoys thrift stores and bad puns.

Read more by Natalia Manzocco

June 5, 2020

3:35 PM