Toronto Historic Distillery District


by Judi “Scoop” McWilliams

We’ve been to the Toronto Historic Distillery District a number of times.

It’s an amazing attraction for both Torontonians and visitors, alike.

The District is located in the heart of downtown Toronto.

What’s great about the Distillery District is that it is a “pedestrian only” area.

It has so many great shops and restaurants!

It also is the home of a number of wonderful events.

Actually, the main reason we visited the District was to attend Artfest Toronto.

Artfest Toronto is organized by Lory MacDonald and is normally held twice a year (spring and fall)

A little history about the Distillery District (excerpt from Wikipedia) ~ The Gooderham and Worts Distillery was founded in 1832. Once providing over 2 million US gallons (7,600,000 L) of whisky, mostly for export on the world market, the company was bought out in later years by rival Hiram Walker Co., another large Canadian distiller.

Its location on the side of the Canadian National Railway mainline and its proximity to the mouth of the original route of the Don River outlet into Lake Ontario created a hard edge which separated the district from neighbouring communities.

The Distillery District was designated as a National Historic Site, and has been protected under the Ontario Heritage Act since 1976.

To more present times (excerpt from ~ Nearly 20 years ago a small group of visionary developers had a dream for Toronto.

They looked at a derelict collection of Victorian Industrial buildings that had been pronounced a national historic site and imagined transforming it.

Not into another “historic district” or “pioneer village” but into something exciting and unique.

Something the city would be proud of. They wanted to create a place that would excite and inspire the senses.

Where people could experience new ideas, new foods, new designs and new ways of living and working.

As you walk through this fascinating complex, you can feel the “dream” that the developers had envisaged.

Everything seems to echo the historic feeling!

The “cobble stone” walkways.

The historic buildings…

The hidden alcoves…

All match the “spirit” of the District!

It is clear to me, why the Toronto Historic Distillery District is so popular.

A destination for visitors to Toronto

And a place for Torontonians to “reflect on its past“…

… and to “look forward to its future“!