Advertisement
Food

9 Of Our Favourite Canadian Kitchen Shops

From Vancouver to Moncton, it’s easy to get lost in these dreamy indie-owned specialty stores.
A photo collage showing interiors of various kitchen stores plus a woman who works at a knife store holding a knife. From left: Ottawa's Pot & Pantry, a Knifewear employee show off its wares, a tablescape created by June Home Supply.

There is something about independently owned kitchen stores that spark an immediate sense of childlike wonder for food lovers. Unlike big-box stores, these community-minded hybrid shops double up as cooking schools, in–house cafés, gourmet food purveyors and cookbook stockists, making it exceptionally easy for shoppers to get lost for hours. Here are nine cross-Canada cookware shops we love.

Advertisement

One visit to a dreamy cookbook store in Toronto was all it took to inspire Gail Norton and her mother, Jean, to open a specialty store of their own in 1984. Alongside its impressive cookbook collection, the Calgary institution and self-described culinary hub also offers a cooking school, kitchenware and well-curated local foodstuffs, including Vresh Food’s O.G. Ghee, Daddy C’s Jamaican Jerk Sauce and Highwood Crossing organic flours and grains. “All of the products on our shelves, we believe in,” says Norton. “Not only do we carry [them] but we know how to use [them].”

Winnipeg residents Joël and Danielle Cyr started June Home Supply in 2014 to curate a collection of gorgeous, functional and timeless homewares thoughtfully sourced from top artisans, manufacturers and suppliers across the globe. Use its easy-to-navigate website to search for inspired kitchen finds like rustic ceramic kettles, 100 percent linen tea towels and stunning brass pepper mills.

Knifewear, various cities

With chef-turned-entrepreneur Kevin Kent at the helm, Knifewear has been the restaurant industry's go-to for all things sharp since 2008. Customers can try out knives in-store at four locations (Calgary, Edmonton, Ottawa and Vancouver) while learning the backstories of the blacksmiths behind them. Standouts include Japanese-style knives from two Canadian makers, including 17-year-old third-generation steelworker Kensea Aaron, who is based in Camrose, Alta.

Advertisement

Established in 1956, this family-owned business started out as a hardware store for immigrant Italians, complete with a firearm counter for avid hunters. It eventually morphed into a neighbourhood general store, shifting its focus to kitchenware and foodstuffs including electric meat grinders, a solid selection of pasta machines and Italian pantry items including L’Acropoli di Puglia Mosto olive oil.

Pot & Pantry, Ottawa, Ont.

While many small businesses downsized their square footage during the pandemic, Pot & Pantry founder Robin Coull tripled hers. The space is relaxed and inviting, with shelves stocked with everyday baking and cooking utensils, slightly harder-to-find gourmet foods (think squid ink and preserved lemons) and ready-to-eat frozen meals sourced from The Daily Dumpling Wonton Co., Stush Jamaican Patties and other small Ontario-based caterers. After hours, the store transforms into a cooking school where local chefs and bartenders take turns teaching new skills.

Yes Chef, Abbotsford, B.C.

Yes Chef (formerly Cobblestone Kitchenware) is an airy 3,000-square-foot shop in the heart of Abbotsford’s historic downtown core. This shop aims to make cooking accessible whether you’re an inspired newbie or as well-seasoned as a cast-iron pan. Find high-quality, tried-and-true brands like Smeg, Le Creuset and Kinto, along with Canadian-made pantry items ranging from Amola Salt to Wildly Delicious and The Preservatory.

Deux Pépins, Moncton, N.B.

Nausika Breau’s growing collection of New Brunswick and Maritime-made goods quickly sparked the idea for Deux Pépins. The shop—located inside the Apple Art Gallery, which Breau also founded—is the place for one-of-a-kind kitchenware, including artisan-made knives, stunning pottery and the chicest garlic keeper we've ever seen.

Good Egg, Toronto

With a focus on well-tested cookbooks—it even boasts its own in-house publishing arm—and gorgeous, quirky kitchenware, this Kensington Market-based shop is an easy place to find inspiration. In the process, you'd likely leave with a pastel-coloured Dutch oven or Nova Scotia-made Larch Wood chopping board. There’s even a sweet little vinyl collection in-store because, as founder Mika Bareket says, "dinner is better with music.”

Ming Wo, Vancouver

Advertisement

After serving Vancouver’s Chinatown district for more than a century, Ming Wo closed its iconic flagship store in 2020. Fortunately, a Kitsilano location is going strong. Whether you're on the hunt for an offset spatula or a set of reasonably priced, made-to-last bowls, you’ll find it at Ming Wo. (It’s also where much of the area's chef and restaurant community shops.)

GET CHATELAINE IN YOUR INBOX!

Subscribe to our newsletters for our very best stories, recipes, style and shopping tips, horoscopes and special offers.

By signing up, you agree to our terms of use and privacy policy. You may unsubscribe at any time.

Advertisement
Advertisement