Most of us have a sweet tooth and the occasional craving for a tasty Portuguese treat. Unfortunately, avó isn’t always around to bake our favourite dessert, so we’re here to help give you that sugar high you’re looking for. Here are eight Portuguese bakeries in the Greater Toronto area that you should visit. A panel of three people from a diverse cross section paid a visit to the following bakeries and rated them on their specialty item as well as rating their service and cleanliness.
The race was close for the best pastel de nata, and Brazil Bakery is definitely near the top for this sweet delight. Their flan pudding is also fantastic—definitely worth trying—and their lemon bolas de Berlim are the best.
Service is good and cleanliness is average, but worth the visit.
This is one of the older chains in the GTA and is the go to bakery for many locals. The pasteis de bacalhau (codfish cakes), and the shrimp and beef patties are one of the best in the city. Also, very tasty are the fruit and almond tarts, and their plain croissants. They have a fantastic padas (sourdough buns) and the slider buns are the best.
Service was adequate, and the store was average on their cleanliness.
The best corn bread is at this bakery situated mid-way up Dufferin Street just south of Eglinton. They have a great selection of pastries at this bakery and they are out of this world. Their old school specialty cakes are very tasty.
The loyal customers keep this bakery very busy, so be prepared to wait in line. The bakery was pleasantly neat and very clean.
Golden Wheat has the best tosta mista (grilled ham and cheese) sandwich around—filled with gooey melted cheese. The chocolate & almond croissants can rival those baked at a Parisian pâtisserie They have some unbelievable specialty cakes and in our opinion, the best Portuguese bun in the city.
Service was good, and cleanliness was average.
NOVA ERA 1172 Dundas Street West, Toronto novaera.ca
Nova Era has the best cake squares of all types—from strawberry to pineapple to blueberry. The specialty cakes that they sell rival any top designer bakery in the city. We have to give them an honorary mention on their pastel de nata but what really stood out was a cake they called tamboré—a yummy vanilla base sprinkled with icing sugar and cinnamon.
Service was good—a small wait at times but generally good, however, they could use some help in the cleanliness area as we found the bakery a little run-down.
The Portuguese round pound cake is very moist and a quality purchase. It is sold in a variety of flavours—mocha, apple cinnamon and lemon—which is our favourite. The multi-grain bun and French stick are also quality products which make a great sandwich…or just eat it plain.
The service is very slow, and you can be waiting over 10 minutes just to pay, so be patient when you visit Seara. The bakery was very dirty, and the tables were dirty.
TRIGO BAKERY 289 Dundas Street East, Mississauga
Trigo has the best coconut cookies and pastries around, with a great variety of other Portuguese style cookies. They make a mean Portuguese flan pudding with great texture and unbelievable taste. Another item worth mentioning, are there specialty cakes, which are highly creative.
It is a beautifully clean bakery with very good service and plenty of parking. Worth the drive to Mississauga.
A hidden gem with possibly the best pastel de nata in Toronto. In addition to the original, Venezia also carry four specialty natas which are topped with extra goodness—lemon, pineapple, raspberry and Nutella. The pineapple pound cake is full of natural flavours and worth trying. They make a hardy sandwich if you’re looking to have a quick bite and their chocolate donuts deserve an honorary mention.
Smaller location with fairly quick service and is a very clean bakery.