Wafels & More
Wafels & More is Kensington Market's location for the most epic authentic Belgian waffles in a variety of customizable combination. The name isn't a typo: it's the Flemish way to spell waffles, appropriate seeing as this place is owned and operated by a native Belgian.
What makes the waffles here so authentically Belgian? Their Liege style waffle (named for a city in Belgium) is made with a dough (not a batter) that uses pearl sugar imported from Belgium, and their waffle irons are from Belgium too. Each item is made to order right in front of your eyes.
The interior is almost surprisingly spacious and airy for a Kensington spot, most of which are typically more cramped. The huge open air cafe kitchen with waffle irons and espresso machine is at the front.
I like the sweet waffles made with the Liege dough the best, landing somewhere between a donut and a funnel cake with a dense, rich sweetness that changes the waffle game in Toronto for me. The Dame Blanche ($7.99) is a liege waffle topped with simple Breyer's vanilla ice cream and an imported Belgian chocolate drizzle that hardens upon contact with the cool ice cream.
The Crazy Marshmallow ($6.99) is a little less epic and perhaps more kid-friendly, eschewing any ice cream or whipped cream at all in favour of more basic mini marshmallows and rainbow sprinkles. Eat it while it's hot so the sticky, gooey marshmallows melt and blend with the sweet waffle.
My favourite is the Speculoos Bomb ($7.99) made with the Belgian treat Speculoos butter, kind of like Nutella but made with crushed up Speculoos cookies, the creation of a Belgian housewife. The spread is gingery and sweet, and it melts to perfection on top of this hot waffle, creating a pleasing play with the cold vanilla ice cream. Speculoos crumble adds texture and extra Speculoos flavour.
The savoury waffles are better off on their plainer Brussels waffles, which are light and fresh but not as unique to me as the liege. That said, they have great savoury waffle options that would be good for a lunch or snack, like the Italian ($8.50) with prosciutto, juicy cherry tomatoes, basil and lovely crumbly mozzarella.
The shop opens up to contain seating with a banquette and cute lamps on one side. Walls are adorned with various Belgian icons, like portraits of the King and Queen of Belgium the owner says anyone from his country would recognize from their classroom wall growing up, and native Belgian Audrey Hepburn.
Photos by Hector Vasquez