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Toronto's retro malt shop is shutting down

Say goodbye to the soda jerk hats and one of the best milkshakes in the city: Bean and Baker Malt Shop has announced it's closing its doors for good. 

Harbord Village's retro mom-and-pop malt shop will be no more by December 24, according to its owners. 

To our Customers, Friends, and Members of the Community, It is with a heavy heart that we announce the closing of Bean and Baker Malt Shop. Our last day of operation will be December 24, 2019. Over the past 5 years we have had the joy of being a part of the Harbord Village and Bickford Park neighbourhood. Firstly, We would like to thank everyone that has visited and supported our small family business. We thank our customers, our friends and family for being part of this magical place. We are thankful for the kind words of the bloggers, influencers, Toronto Star, Blog TO, Toronto Life, Now Magazine, and being featured on the Food Network. As a small family business we understand the importance of sustaining a positive family-to-work balance. Our employees can attest that we promote a ‘family comes first’ perspective when it comes to their needs, as well as, ours. With the untimely passing of a close and beloved family member in early November, we have come to realize that it is a monumental task of maintaining our business, managing the remaining affairs of our departed family member, and providing a nurturing environment to our small child. The decision to close was not easy to make, however, it is the wisest choice for us at this time to ensure that what is most important to us remains a top priority. Family will always come first. It was our mission to create a place where our patrons can create wonderful memories for themselves and that mission was achieved with many of you. We have watched children grow, first dates blossom into marriage proposals, heartwarming birthday celebrations, adorable little league teams, visits from local celebrities, professional athletes, and members of the royal family. Our customers have earned us 5 star ratings and serving each and every one of you has been a joy. For those that we did not have a chance to thank in person and say farewell to, please know that we will forever hold our time in the neighbourhood in a special place in our hearts. Thank you for welcoming us into the community and enjoying the atmosphere, and the delicious treats we created. Sincerely, Brennan & Liezel Bean and Baker

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Citing personal reasons (a sudden passing in the family and raising their kid), Brennan and Liezal Anderson will be closing Bean and Baker after five years running their business. 

"The decision to close was not easy to make, however, it is the wisest choice for us at this time to ensure that what is most important to us remains a top priority," they wrote. "Family will always come first."

According to the Andersons, the shop—with its black-and-white checkered floors and squeaky red seats—has seen first dates that eventually led to marriage proposals, and even warranted a visit from members of the royal family. 

The little diner has attracted retro enthusiasts and pie lovers alike with its homemade slices topped with ice cream and artisanal sodas, and it will be missed: it's the only spot in the city right now that feels remotely close to being in an Archie comic at all. 

Lead photo by

Jesse Milns

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