If the name hasn’t already piqued your interest, just trust us and keep reading. Dr. Augusta’s Samitorium is Toronto’s newest player in the gourmet sammy market (in Kensington Market, no less) and we’re happy it’s arrived.
Owned by Chris Bobbitt and Vlad Vujovic, who met while working together at Canoe, this spot has an old-school feel and offers fresh, new flavours. Besides the fact that the pair’s creations are delicious, they make homemade sodas that, to our delight, can be made into an ice cream float – inducing thoughts of Archie’s favourite hangout, Pop’s Chock’lit Shoppe.
It took us a good 10 minutes to decide which sandwich we wanted, and in the end we settled on the breakfast biscuit ($7.65). Now, before you judge us for getting a breakfast sammy for dinner, let us say two things: 1. Breakfast is good any time of day, and 2. The breakfast biscuit consists of braised pork belly in a soy ginger glaze with a fried egg, all topped with aged cheddar between two homemade flaky buttermilk biscuits. So breakfast for dinner is sounding pretty good now, isn’t it?
As for the sodas ($2.75 or $5.75 for a float), we sampled cream soda and root beer, and only need one word to sum it up: YUM. These are no “Italian sodas” that you get in chain coffee shops. No, these are the real deal. The Samitorium uses a century-old recipe for their syrup-based concoctions. Root beer was spicy and sweet at the same time, while the (not pink!) cream soda made us imagine we were in a 1950′s soda shop. Other flavours include lemon, ginger and grape.
We’ll definitely be back for the lobster roll, the po’boy (which is now a menu staple after moonlighting as a special), roasted pork sandwich and homemade soups. What makes this place even better is that they source almost everything they use locally; it doesn’t get fresher than baked bread from Blackbird Baking Co. and meat from Sanagan’s Meat Locker. We only wish it was closer to the fourth floor!
Dr. Augusta’s Samitorium is located at 602 Dundas St. W. (corner of Dundas and Augusta) and is open Tuesday to Sunday from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Follow them on Twitter at @DoctorAugusta or visit them on Facebook.