Photo from StartupIstanbul

Simit & Chai, A Unique Cafe In Our Area

Life | Written on October 28, 2016

There’s a world of deliciousness waiting to be discovered in our area and it begins with freshly baked, encrusted, doughy goodness. If you haven’t yet dined at Simit & Chai on King West, it’s our immense pleasure to introduce you to this incredibly mouth-watering and unique café. If you already know about Simit & Chai, there’ll still be lots to learn from this blog as we delve into the delicious origins behind some of their popular offerings.

Photo from CrystalConcepts

Photo from CrystalConcepts

Simit & Chai isn’t just a cool name for a trendy local café. The name is also a nod to the café’s main menu items. Traditional simit, and modern variations of simit, are known and enjoyed in many countries the world over. From Turkey and Greece to Iraq, Egypt and Saudi Arabia, simits are typically eaten as a breakfast item, for supper or as a snack item. At first glance, they may resemble bagels and, in many ways, they’re deliciously similar.  A simit is made using flour, water, yeast, salt, molasses and sesame seeds. Several varieties of simit now exist with slightly different exteriors. For example, it isn’t uncommon to enjoy a simit that is encrusted with sunflower, flax, poppy and other seeds, in place of sesame seeds. Yum! Simits are freshly baked to chewy or crunchy perfection before being served with any combination of toppings, spreads of fillings. They really are to die for!

Simit - Photo from Pexels

And, as for the other half of the other half of the Simit & Chai name? In several languages, chai means tea and, in the case of the Simit & Chai location that is the subject of this blog, we might also equate it with the words: comforting, soothing and yummy!

Photo from TheOtherTour

Photo from TheOtherTour

So now that we’ve unpacked the Simit & Chai name, here’s a bit more about this standout place to eat in our area. Simit & Chai is a Turkish café that opened their doors at 787 King Street West in February, 2016. They are owned and run by husband and wife team, John and Dee, and they pride themselves on being the only location in Toronto that offers the range of delicious Turkish menu items that they sell. While simits are the go-to item for many who visit their café, they also have a host of sandwiches, muffins and other breakfast, lunch and snack options. And for people with dietary restrictions or food allergies, you need not shy away from Simit & Chai. From vegan muffins, gluten free energy bars and their vegan simit to vegetarian and vegan sandwiches, patrons will definitely have their choice of healthy, allergen-free deliciousness to enjoy at Simit & Chai. And that isn’t nearly the end of their incredible offerings! No Turkish café would be complete without Turkish coffee. In addition to their great selection of sandwiches, simits and teas, patrons can also sit back in Simit & Chai’s relaxed and open café atmosphere and enjoy a freshly brewed coffee. And you really haven’t lived until you’ve tasted Turkish coffee! It’s rich, smooth and simply exquisite. It could become your new drink of choice. It’s just that good!

Simit - Photo from Pexels II

Simit & Chai is for anyone and everyone who appreciates good, fresh food and delicious beverages. You can imagine how excited we were to learn that you can also enjoy their delectable offerings outside of their café. Yes, folks! Simit & Chai offers catering for all types of events! With their range of menu and sandwich options, being able to have their delicious items catered for your event is undoubtedly a match made of convenience and pure awesomeness! They really are a great choice for catered events! If you’re looking for something great, light and that won’t create a lot of mess for a business lunch, you won’t go wrong with Simit & Chai’s sandwiches or, if you’re having friends over for an event and you want to avoid the clean-up that comes with cooking, again, Simit & Chai would prove to be a great option.

Simit & Chai is open daily from 9:00am to 6:00pm so stop by for a morning, midday or afternoon treat. Most of their menu items range from $2.00 to $5.00 so you also won’t ever have to break the bank to be able to enjoy a meal at their great café. When asked what makes Simit & Chai so special, owner John Ulgen says, “Everything is made in house, from scratch, with love.” We can taste the love, John and it’s simply delicious!


Written by L. D. Moore