Casa London
Discovering hidden gems in London, ON and more

Food & Desserts: from hot sauces to natural chocolates

Cafes, restaurants, food incubators, and everything delicious in London, ON


food cravers

Nostalgia cafe

Who doesn’t love desserts? Then how about some traditional cuisine? This time we discovered a true gem — meet Polina Shadman and her Nostalgia Cafe. Polina specializes in traditional Iranian desserts. It’s not only her hobby and true love, it’s her cultural identity. And as Polina immigrated long time ago and haven’t visited Iran ever since, her love and nostalgia to the treats and sweets of her childhood led to this business venture.

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So Inviting

Hungry? Good. Because we discovered probably the best pot stickers and dumplings in London. And if you haven’t tried it already, you definitely should. 

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FoodFund veggies and fruits

Food Fund

going back to nature

Divyansh Ojha was on his last year at Western when he wondered where all this food from cafes and restaurants, grocery stores and farms ends up by the end of the day if not bought or used? And the answer was quite bitter. It is just being thrown out into garbage. Speaking about veggies and fruits in particular, all these months of growing from a seed, watering, fertilizing, harvesting, storing, transporting to grocery stores or restaurants. And then as a final destination - a garbage bin. Doesn’t sound right, does it?

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The bread. As it supposed to be

The Whole Grain Hearth Bakery

Do you bake? Or maybe you remember those times when your mom or grandma used to bake everything from the scratch: cakes for family birthdays, muffins to add to your school lunches, cookies for the Christmas morning, and, of course, bread? The magic involved making a starter, watching it grow, evolve and spread in all directions. Then the simple ingredients - water, flour, and salt - gave birth to sourdough. It was then being punched, tossed up, folded, and massaged till it formed an elastic and taut ball. The ancestor of a future bread. The beginning of everything. 

That smell, that coziness and anticipation of a hot, brownish loaf with a dry cracked crust! Mmm... I always was eager to try the crust first while it was still scalding hot, and then it was time for the heart and the very essence of bread - its crumb.

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Chocolate As It Should Be

Habitual Chocolate

It is always good to consider the ingredient list on product packaging. If you cannot pronounce an ingredient name, it is generally best to leave it on the shelf.

Philippe, of Habitual Chocolate, is a Swiss born chocolatier, who has been in since 2008.  He had worked for the company approximately three years when he was given the opportunity to take over the business, in January of 2015, on the very same day as the birth of his son!  Philippe never imagined, after his 5 year apprenticeship in Switzerland, which included baking, pastry and candy-making, that he would end up owner of his very own chocolate shop in Canada.

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Frittersweet Symphony

It’s 1989, you’re wandering through the hazy streets of Amsterdam on a crisp November morning. As you wander past Lieuwma Bakery you get a waft of some incredible authentic Dutch pastries. This was a scene that would have been lived a thousand times. Until in 2001, this particular baker decided he wanted a new challenge. Moving the whole family to St Thomas, Ontario, he carved out a new niche in Canada and laid the foundations for the business that still thrives today. But that is not the story we are here to tell. We are here to talk about the son who spent his childhood making apple fritters and dreaming of how he could do things a little differently. A year after graduating from the business marketing program at Fanshawe he launched Kelvin’s Fritter shop, a thriving little bakery that specialises in fresh, delicious, and hand crafted Dutch fritters.

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Wildflowers Tea

After many years of dabbling with herbalism through making teas, tinctures and salves, Jane decided that she wanted to explore herbalism on a scientific level, to get a true understanding of the benefits of herbal medicine. So four years later, armed with a Clinical Herbalism diploma and love of nature Jane, her husband Chuck, and their three kids all live on the “Wildflowers Farm”, running the business together. From a humble tea store, they have branched out to yoga classes, solstice festivals, harvest dinners, herbalism classes, and Apiary with their own brand of honey!

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Little Sisters Chicken

Chicken Farming From The Whole Family

Outside London, towards Lake Huron lies a farm family with big ideas. Little Sisters Chicken is owned and operated by Tony & Mandy Willemse, and their two daughters Hannah & Lyla. They set out this year with a bold mission statement,

“To raise the most nutritiously dense chicken, while giving them a higher quality of life and being as environmentally conscientious as we can”

Armed with a strong belief in locally produced, holistic food, and a willing family of helpers, Tony and Mandy are ready to bring their chicken to London and beyond!

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Get a taste of Ontario

What do you do with a love of people, wine, and the hospitality industry? Well Kristine thinks she has it cracked with her new venture Vineyard At Home! You get to take part in a wine tasting, from the comfort of your own home, exploring wines from several wineries across Ontario. If you love wine, or just want to do something a little different for your next night in, then Vineyard at Home could be exactly what you are looking for!

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Cherry On Top

Baking For The Soul

Elisabeta Pop and her husband moved from Romania in the late 90s and had two kids (a son and a daughter), ultimately spending 15 years living and working in Dublin and then County Meath, Ireland. Then after the recession hit Ireland in 2007 they looked to the great white north for better job prospects! With her husband running a trucking business in Ontario, now Elisabeta has decided to try and turn her love of baking into a full-time business. With a passion for using fresh fruit flavors, and no artificial coloring (where possible), the cakes are not only stunning to look at, they are delicious as well!

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Photo by  Alieska Robles

Kintore Coffee Co.

Kintore Coffee Co. is a small business that specializes in roasting coffee from all over the world.
They have traveled around the globe to discover fresh and delicious coffee, and now they are ready to share this powerful gift with you.
Try heir best blends: “The Rustic Blend” (medium roast) with great smooth flavor and "The Dark Country Roast" (dark roast) that is strong, very flavorful, and probably one of the best coffees you have ever tried.

Helping you getting back into good coffees one cup at a time!


Photo by Slim's Pepper Co.

Photo by Slim's Pepper Co.

Slim’s Pepper Co.

Slim’s Pepper Co. is driven by a passion for making high quality small batched, hand crafted hot sauces and spicy food products that are all natural and preservative and salt free.
Looking for something hot? Try Slim’s Blazin’ Reaper Sauce (extra hot) made with Smokin’ Ed’s Carolina Reaper, the hottest known pepper in the world, or Slim’s Blazin’ Ghost (hot) made with Ghost peppers. Their hit - Slim’s Smokin’ Habanero (medium), a delicious sauce made with applewood smoked habanero peppers.
Recent collaboration with Forked River Brewing Company has led to Forkn’ Hot sauce, featuring, Habanero, Honey, and Forked River’s Riptide Rye Pale Ale.
Want something more? How about Slim’s Blazin’ Reaper beef jerky or Slim’s Blazin’ Reaper Chocolate?
You can buy all the products online or find a distributor here:

What Can’t You Do With Maple?

Kinehdn Maple Sugar Co.

Bill and Pat Reath have been in the maple business in one capacity or another for half a century. From having to scrub the sticky walls of their house after making their first batch of maple syrup, to running Kinehdn Maple Sugar Company, they have watched the maple business grow and evolve over the years. We sat down with Pat and Bill to hear a little bit about their life in the maple world, and the story of Kinehdn Maple Sugar Co.

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A Piece of Cake

The Original Cakerie has found sweet success in the agricultural heartland of Southwestern Ontario and London’s proximity to raw materials.

Keeping more than 1,300 cows and 56,000 chickens employed every year is literally a piece of cake for The Original Cakerie - a leading manufacturer of premium frozen desserts for retail and foodservice customers across North America.

 The sweet success of The Original Cakerie lies in its commitment to innovative, new product developments in response to consumer trends and retailer/customer demand. As people become more health conscious and mindful of locally sourced ingredients, food processors need to respond to their demands for natural flavours, no artificial trans fat and high standards of food safety.

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