Review: Fika

Fika is another of the handful of cafes that exist along the narrow streets of Kensington Market.  This cafe is something special, though.  Most of the Toronto cafe scene is pretty grungy.  Exposed brick walls, dark wood, low lighting, and baristas with faded skinny jeans.  Fika provides a unique and bright alternative to what has become the Toronto status quo.

Fika is a light space, decorated to have a Nordic feel.  It’s kind of like ikea, only all the furniture was made out of something that holds up a little better than cardboard.  Lining the walls are antlers, and an old fire place, and pictures of galloping horses. We made our visit just before closing, but the kind barista didn’t push us out.  That was a good first impression. Amy thought the barista was ‘cute and friendly’.

Out of all the cafes we’ve visited in Toronto this is Amy’s favorite.  I think this may have something to do with the homemade cinnamon buns.  All the goodness of the classic recipe, but infused with cardamon. In fact, cardamon seems to be a trend in this place.  Along with the standard cafe fair, Fika offers a couple of really interesting drinks including an iced coffee infused with fresh mint and cardamon, and a hot cardamon latte.  We opted for the latter – and it was great.  While I am usually a purist, the simple blend of espresso, milk and cardamon worked, especially on a frosty night.

I ordered the ol’ classic latte.  It was good, but unremarkable for the most part.  I had been to The Grind House previously, and things seemed to be a little more fine tuned there.  I actually forgot to ask about the coffee beans at the last couple places, so I will make sure I remember for our next review.

I think Fika will do well in Toronto because it offers an alternative to many of the grimy places around town.  It looks like safe place for parents to bring their  kids, or people who love goat antlers.  We’ll definitely be back sometime soon.

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