The HamilTEN

The top ten things to “taco” bout this month

What’s the scuttlebutt? The word on the street? Living in a city like Hamilton that is both growing but still small enough to recognize several familiar faces as you walk down the street lends itself to lots of talkin’ around town. As you enjoy a #tacodemayo in one of the many amazing restaurants (pg. 10&11) that offer them, here are some of the things I’ve been hearing about lately.

01. spring launch

May always seems like the kick-off of a busy event season in the city. With Sew Hungry on Ottawa Street (May 5), Bump, Baby & Toddler Marketplace (May 5-6), and the Christie Antique and Vintage Show (May 26) its time to put on those walking shoes and enjoy the much needed warmer weather.

02. Gritty Gridlock

Downtown traffic is one of those bittersweet things – a sign of growth as the city becomes busier and more populated with people and businesses, but MAN is it annoying! Rush hour downtown now feels slightly like Toronto and meeting people is often preceded by a “Crazy traffic – running late!” text. There are certainly worse things, but it’s a change I’ve noticed this past year in Hamilton.

03. The Dessert Room

Every recent great party or dinner guest has featured amazing treats from the Dessert Room. This bakery in Westdale creates truly spectacular and (almost) too-pretty-to-eat desserts that are not only Instagram-worthy but uniquely delicious. Try the pomegranate macaron and try not to love it. Check out their Instagram @thedessertroom.

04. Things I Always Taco Bout

The things I’m always talking about are nothing new, but I still can’t let them go. I still love pokeh, still can’t understand why people litter, still wish we had a great bagel place in town, still haven’t visited any waterfalls (ridiculous, I know!), and still love the Drive Thru sandwich at Saint James. Don’t ever change, Hamilton, except definitely the littering thing.

05. Bad Fonts

Speaking of stuff I can’t get over, the prevalence of terrible fonts is so shocking to me. A strong font or even a not-awful font is the easiest and cheapest way to make something look modern or fresh. And yet, so many businesses look like they put no thought into it at all. I’m not going to call any place out in particular, but look around, I’m sure you’ll see who I mean. #comicsans

06. Waterfront Redevelopment – 4 Proposals

The West Harbour Key Project – Pier 8 Development search is underway. There are 4 proposals under review and I keep hearing a lot about them. They all have exciting features and there’s nothing I love more than a beautiful artist’s rendering. Check them out at www.hamilton.ca and let’s throw our support behind the selected vision.

07. To Market, To Market

I have found that in my 30s, I talk a lot about real estate, property taxes and other topics that 20-year old me would have found crushingly dull. After last year’s insane market, I’ve heard things have slowed down, but really, it’s just a more balanced market between selling and buying, which evens things out a bit and gives people time to make rational real estate decisions. So really, a cooling off period is just a reasonable period, which is A-Ok with me.

08. Arkells

Everyone and their brother is talking about the mega Arkells concert on June 23 at Tim Hortons Field. It’s a great way to kick off the summer and make use of the stadium. Plus, money from every ticket sold for the event will be donated to the Refuge Hamilton Centre for Newcomer Health.

09. Barton Street – Emerald/Hello Baked

People are always talking about Barton Street and the growth, then wane, then more growth. The newest kids on the block are Hello Baked and Emerald Co. joining The Heather and Motel. I know gentrification in this area can be a hot topic, so there’s always lots to taco ‘bout. Whichever side you sit on, supporting Barton Street in any way you do, is a good thing.

10. Button Shortage

Speaking of Barton Street, 541 Eatery & Exchange, a truly good and helpful place in Hamilton is low on buttons. The restaurant serves great food at super reasonable costs and encourages people to donate $1 per button to help out those less fortunate. Their button jar is low – go have a delicious breakfast there and help out. Or consider volunteering – it feels so good. Follow their incredible Instagram @541barton.

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