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La Bicicletta

Posted by Derek Flack / Posted on July 6, 2014

La Bicicletta TorontoLa Bicicletta is one of Toronto's most established high-end bike shops, having occupied its spot on Castlefied Avenue for over 15 years. While the store carries a small selection of commuter and mountain bikes, the speciality here is very much road bikes, which make up the vast majority of its stock. You'll also find tri and time trial bikes to cater to local racers, of whom the store enjoys a wide following. Naturally, the fit services are top quality, headed up mostly by Heath, one of the more knowledgeable sales staff.

La BiciclettaAside from the bikes (which I'll get to in a second), one of the main draws to La Bicicletta is its stock of both Assos and Rapha clothing. It's not as difficult to find the Swiss-made Assos line of apparel these days, but it's still confined to speciality stores (Racer Sportif and Sporting Life Bikes have decent offerings), few of whom offer quite the wide selection you'll find here. The UK-based Rapha, which makes fashionable courier-style clothing, is actually quite rare in Toronto. It's some of the nicest urban cycling wear around, though. My padded Rapha knickers are great for tooling around in the summer when I don't want to don the whole spandex getup.

La BiciclettaOn the bike side of things, La Bicicletta is yet another Toronto retailer with strong ties to Specialized. No complaints here, as I own one of these, but it's also nice to see more Euro offerings in the form of Bianchi and BMC. Price-wise, the sky is pretty much the limit, but the majority of bikes come in between $3,000 and $5,000. Yup, it's that kinda place, as noted by the silver Volvos and Audis adorned with Thule roof racks in the parking lot.

La BiciclettaWheels and accessories are similarly race-approved. Here you'll find the full range of Zipp offerings, alongside lightweight stuff from Campagnolo, Shimano and Mavic. I buy my Fizik bar tape here and snagged my last Giro helmet on an end-of-summer blowout. One of the things that attracts me to La Bicicletta is that the prices listed online are sometimes a littler lower than what's tagged in the shop. In these instances, they've always honoured the online price for me, which has saved me decent dough in the past. Perhaps I just got lucky, but keep an eye out for this phenomenon.

If you're in the market for a high end bike or wheelset, this is one of the city's better options.

La BiciclettaTHE SKINNY

Who the stores caters to: Local racers, spandex enthusiasts, rich folks who like the nicest toys

Bike price range: $1,500 to $10,000+

Service options: Professional service for road and tri bikes

The tuneup: $45 gets you a basic gear and brake adjustment along with an inspection, $90 adds hub and wheel adjustment to the mix, and $250 buys you a full overhaul where the bike is stripped and re-assembled.

La BiciclettaPhotos by Jesse Milns

Discussion

9 Comments

Attention Seeking Red Light Running Hipster / July 6, 2014 at 09:21 am
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How much would a tune up for my single speed, ultra wide handled commuter cycle be? The wicker basket I attached to the front is really out of line, and the plastic flowers I've adorned it with aren't arranged properly for maximum attention grabbing factor I don't think. Also do you sell any really loud and annoying horns so that when I blow through red lights and nearly run down pedestrians I can at least startle them at the last second before I yell at them to get off my sidewalk?
James S. / July 6, 2014 at 01:18 pm
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Last I saw. There wasn't a single piece of Rapha in the store. They seem knee deep in Assos though. Safe to say they don't offer Rapha.
Spec replying to a comment from James S. / July 6, 2014 at 03:32 pm
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I was in there recently and they had Rapha apparel.

As an FYI to the writer though I was told they are no longer a Specialized dealer.
Jimmy john / July 6, 2014 at 07:43 pm
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Also, Heath is no longer at bici.
Mike / July 6, 2014 at 08:13 pm
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Anyone been to them for a bike fitting? I've been told that they do a great job (Heath especially) and they'll work with your current bike too, which is where'd I'd fall under.
cdn rookie / July 6, 2014 at 09:10 pm
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Heath is no longer there
Dorph replying to a comment from Attention Seeking Red Light Running Hipster / July 6, 2014 at 09:16 pm
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I think a tune-up like that would cost about 30 to 40 dollars - that is if you are so completely useless with simple hand tools you literally can't tighten a screw. Good on you for the plastic flowers on your bike - "attention seeking" is key for bicycle safety. Also, there are certainly loud and annoying horns for sale - even a compressed carbon dioxide air horn that is as loud as, well, an air horn. They are my particular favourite for correcting self-righteous people - although they aren't legal. Bells are the only option.
Thor / July 7, 2014 at 01:30 pm
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when did heath leave? i saw him there a week or so ago!??
Mike / July 30, 2014 at 03:47 pm
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For anyone interested, I just called and Heath isn't there. According to the very friendly person I spoke with, Heath took the summer off to figure out what he wants to do. He's not at a different bike store, he just needed a little break.

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