Got a sweet tooth? If you do, Mount Pleasant is the place for you. Since the 1940’s, chocolate shops, candy stores, and convenience stores boasting ice cream, sodas, and other treats have lined both sides of the street.
One such store was Jenny Lind Candies, located at 559 Mount Pleasant Road. If you’re a fan of Gordon Lightfoot, the name Jenny Lind may be familiar. She is name dropped in his 1986 song, A Lesson in Love.
Remember when Mr. Barnum
Presented Jenny Lind
They named a candy after her
This store was just one of thirty-four in the Greater Toronto Area. Known for their distinctive green and gold boxes, Jenny Lind candies were popular gifts for hostesses and were also given out at holidays.
For shoppers who preferred pastries to bonbons, all they had to do was walk a few blocks north to a Dutch bakery, located at 767 Mount Pleasant Road. The bakery was well-recognizable by the piles of cookies and rolls in their big front window. Shoppers may not have made it all the way there, having been tempted instead to stop into the many convenience stores that sold sweets. Their windows were filled with signs advertising ice cream and soda floats. School children and grocery shoppers alike were known to stop in and get a treat.
These sweet shops were beneficial for both shoppers and employees. In the 1950’s, chocolate and candy stores preferred to hire women. With part-time hours and their enjoyable atmospheres, these stores were ideal for students and housewives who needed work. Ads placed in the newspaper by these stores offered roles like chocolate-dippers, candy-sellers, and shopgirls, all promising “the finest working conditions”. These jobs allowed women to pursue work outside of the home and gain further financial independence.
For the 2023 shopper craving something sweet after shopping (or window shopping, we have a few modern suggestions for you. Grab a cookie at Foxies Bakeshop, a croissant at Jules or Thobors, handmade chocolates at Ambiance Chocolat, or a cannoli at Sweetcultura!
As a bonus…
From our other article that showcases the Regent Theatre, we can also see another shop focused on Sweets: Blue Bird Sweets.
It must have been nice to stop by before one of their movies.
Once you’re here… check out the Regent Theatre article.