Golden Gecko Coffee – Toronto
Golden Gecko Coffee isn’t a coffee shop. Well, it’s not just a coffee shop.
Like the sign reads inside, it’s a place of comfort, happiness, and community, which is obvious before you even step in the door. As I walked up Jane Street, I spotted them: bikes, both big and small, unlocked and casually leaning against the brick exterior of the cafe, which to me has always been a sign that what’s inside feels like a home away from home.
When you walk into Golden Gecko Coffee, you might be greeted, as I was, with a friendly, Australian hello from the owner, Jake. If anyone that entered the coffee shop that morning wasn’t a regular, it was hard to tell, because everyone was greeted with the same warm welcome, as if he already knew their order.
Presentation, Quality, and Taste
My brunch at Golden Gecko Coffee started, like all good brunches do, with a cup of coffee. At Golden Gecko, theirs is roasted in-house and available to buy for your home brews. They’re also known for their Golden Latte: a cold-pressed shot of turmeric and ginger warmed with your choice of milk. To start, I had a yogurt parfait that made me want to start making yogurt parfaits again. It was sweet and refreshing, topped with blueberries, strawberries, honey, a lemony zest, and a just-right amount of crunchy granola.
For some, this might have been enough to start their day, but I continued with an omelette and a side of toast. The meal was delivered on a tray that took me back to high school, but luckily the food itself wasn’t like anything I was served during those years. For $5.50, the Northern Star omelette hit the savoury spot, combining eggs, mushrooms, cheese, and bacon topped with an Australian seasoning and salsa, which left me feeling satisfied but not stuffed.
Good thing, too, because I had yet to indulge in my favourite part: the ice cream. Ice cream? You may be asking. Isn’t this a brunch spot? Yes, but in my opinion, ice cream is for all meals, times, and ages. After Jake listed all of their very tempting flavours, I opted for the Blueberry Bliss, which was sweet and creamy with vanilla yogurt bites–or was that white chocolate?–throughout. Either way, it was delicious.
I’d say the one thing I missed out on during my visit was their selection of Australian snacks and sweet treats. Next time, I’ll be picking up one of their Aussie pies and some of their baked goods, most of which they make in-house or are sourced from local bakeries. Checking their Instagram after my visit had me feeling some major regret after seeing the pictures of their donuts!
The Bottom Line: 4/5 Brookie Stars
Golden Gecko Coffee was opened to offer more than just coffee and food; it was built to connect the community and become a neighbourhood go-to for anyone and everyone, which you can tell they’ve accomplished by more than just the bikes left leaning outside. They regularly host community events, from live music to essential oil classes to yes, BooknBrunch events! Add in the books and board games scattered around and it’s obvious that this special little shop was designed for you to stay awhile–and enjoy every moment.
Wondering what venue we’ll be at next? Check out our list of upcoming events to see when–and where–we’ll be coming to a space near you!
Shannon Hodgen is a lifelong writer, DIY enthusiast, and homebody. She satisfies her need to put pen to paper–or, more accurately, fingertips to keyboard–as an agency copywriter, blog contributor, and freelance editor in Toronto.
Favourite Book: The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
Favourite Brunch Spot: Dirty Food Eatery in The Junction