yitzs deli toronto

Yitz's Deli is back in Toronto but in a totally new way

Yitz's Deli is once again available in Toronto with a twist, after their original shop had to shut down.

Boutique grocery store Summerhill Market will now be offering old Yitz's favourites as a line of prepared foods.

As of Nov. 25, the supermarket sells Yitz's matzah ball soup ($13.99), beef brisket ($29.99/lb), coleslaw ($6.99) and latkes ($7.99 for two).

Yitz's was a Jewish deli that has a reputation stretching back almost 50 years in Toronto, opened back in 1972 at the corner of Avenue and Eglinton. Summerhill has a strong reputation of its own as one of Toronto's best gourmet food stores, and has always been known for selling high quality local products.

It was owner Barry Silver's (who bought the deli from Yitz Penicer in 2000) wish for Summerhill to carry on the traditions of Yitz's. Silver passed away in November 2020 almost exactly one year after Yitz's closed.

"When we read about Yitz's closing we had just embarked on our construction on our Eglinton store," Summerhill company president Brad McMullen tells blogTO.

"For something as iconic as Yitz's in the neighbourhood we decided to reach out to Barry Silver to see if there was any interest in continuing their brand within our stores, simply a conversation."

McMullen and his father Bob met with Barry Silver and his wife Gail, and they expressed interest in Summerhill carrying a line of their products.

"We all shared a commonality of working in a family-run business for many years," says McMullen.

"Our produce buyer Marshall Cohen knew the Silver family and we chatted over many months. Unfortunately Barry's health had been met with a diagnosis when we met him and he has since passed on, but we came to an agreement to purchase the brand and recipes with Gail."

Summerhill Market inherited the old handwritten recipes used at Yitz's, and has hired longtime cook Sharon Rattigan.

"Sharon worked very closely with the Summerhill chefs to ensure proper ingredients were being sourced and all original cooking methods were being used," says McMullen.

"We also had Sharon and the Silver family taste test each product before them hitting the shelves."

Lead photo by

Tanja Tiziana

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