Zoe's Bakery Cafe

Location:

548 King Street West, Toronto

Cost: $8.50 average

www.zoesbakerycafe.ca

A great girls get-together should revolve around (I think) good food and drink....if those two components aren't there, it's almost as if one of your girlfriends is washing her hair.

Our plan was to meet at Zoe's for lunch and despite the TTC strike everyone was able to make it out (mostly thanks to my considerate friend and her fancy new wheels).

Zoe's is on King street near Brant; it's hard to miss the giant black signage on the front and side of the cafe.



During the summer climate bright red umbrellas line the sidewalk in front of the cafe, under which enthusiastic patrons munch on enormous gourmet sandwiches and hearty salads.



Being slightly lower than ground level, the interior of Zoe's is dimly lit although there is enough light streaming in through the many windows to make you feel warm and cosy. For a quick bite during the week there are round tables and high chairs in the front room and for longer, leisurely lunches there is additional seating to the right of the counter. Further down the hallway is a giant conference room (not pictured) for lunch meetings as well.



If you're not one to break out in goosebumps at the slight bite of something cold, you'll enjoy biting into the sandwiches at Zoe's. I, for one, prefer my sandwiches toasted. I like toasty bread slices, melting cheese, warm grilled chicken----you get my drift.

Alas, I failed to reveal this to our server when we placed out order, so what I ended up with was a cold Cajun chicken sandwich.

CAJUN CHICKEN sandwich
house-made mango chutney, pea sprouts, citrus aioli & mixed greens on 10-grain



Don't get me wrong, it was quite tasty. The mango chutney was an especially great addition to the sandwich. If only it were hot. But, why didn't you just ask to get it toasted, you ask? Great question! Thanks for asking. I think my problem wasn't just the bread not being toasted...everything was cold. It would have had to have been microwaved (mmm....microwaved bread....) and that didn't seem much more appealing. At least we had warm chicken quesadillas!

CHICKEN QUESADILLAS
filled with Cajun chicken, julienne bell peppers, red onions & cheddar



This was a hit with all of us. I think mainly because it was served hot and the cheddar had melted into a gooey mass over the chicken, pepper and onions.

AVOCADO sandwich
tomatoes, shaved granny smith apples, pesto aioli & mixed greens on 10-grain



There were no complaints from my friend who ordered this although I wouldn't be likely to order it next time as it's very close to what I made myself for lunch yesterday (but toasted, thank you very much).

CHICKEN WRAP
Cajun chicken, roasted peppers, cheddar, pesto aioli, shaved fresh apple & mixed greens



I preferred this over the cuban chicken sandwich...somehow wraps are easier to eat cold than giant sandwiches. Or maybe that's just me?

GRILLED PORTABELLO MUSHROOM sandwich
julienne roasted peppers, herbed chèvre, tomato pesto & mixed greens on 10-grain



My vegetarian friend seemed to enjoy this immensely....and 'roasted' makes me think it was warmer than my sandwich...



Zoe's has Illy coffees, a variety of teas and fresh juices (Good ol' OJ pictured here...in a bottle....which turned out to be great, actually).

For a Saturday, I expected there to be more of a lunch crowd, however the few patrons who trickled in for a sit down lunch had fully emptied out by 3pm. Our server also proved to be quite absent-minded leaving me to trek back and forth with requests for cutlery, water and finally, after she'd disappeared altogether, the bill.

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