The United Bakers
338 SPADINA AVENUE
The United Bakers Dairy Restaurant, now in its 107th year of operation, is considered Toronto’s oldest and most beloved Jewish restaurant. This “institution” now located in Lawrence Plaza (on Bathurst) was once located in Kensington Market and has continuously served traditional dairy dishes like cheese blintzes, pea soup, and latkes throughout its history.
Aaron and Sarah Ladovsky immigrated from Kielce, Poland and opened United Bakers in 1912 at 156 Agnes Street, part of the historic Toronto district known as the Ward. In 1920, the restaurant moved to 338 Spadina Avenue. Typical of many shop owners of the period, the family lived above their restaurant.
Aaron trained as a baker in Poland and Sarah provided original recipes for the restaurant. Their twin sons, Herman and Samuel, worked in the family business delivering bread and buns in the 1920s. United Bakers built a loyal clientele by generously feeding new Jewish immigrants and other members of the community during the Depression era. The restaurant also functioned as a forum for political debate, drawing a diverse clientele from the surrounding industries.
After sixty-plus years of service, the Spadina Avenue location closed in 1986, and the bakery moved to Lawrence Plaza. United Bakers remains an intergenerational family business, as Herman's children, Philip and Ruth, continue to run the family business at their Lawrence Plaza location.