Convenience | Kindness | Community
The Old’s Cool General Store recently popped-up on the NW corner of Westlake & Lumsden, deep in the heart of East York. Formerly D & K’s (originally a butcher shop in the ’50s owned by Greek brothers Demetri & Kostas, followed by a long run as a convenience store), this place is a whole new take on the mom & pop.
Owners Zahra Dhanani and Mariko Nguyen Dhanani are a couple of the sweetest people you’ll ever meet. They pride themselves on convenience, kindness and community. They managed to wrangle the spot away from builders who wanted to tear it down and put up a stack of townhouses.
In the store, they have displayed some of the original relics that date back to the butchery: a butcher block, cash register and old china cabinet. Their logo is a horse, a play on the fact that Westlake Ave used to be a race track.
They’ve gone and packed the place to the gills with anything & everything one could possibly need: groceries, lottery, ATM, housewares, hot & cold drinks, baked goods, gift cards, art, books, games, newspapers, ice, wood, notary, soap… and the list goes on.
Their shelves are stocked full of locally-produced gems… including Augusta’s Jerk Sauces, Tiffinday Curries (made at Udupi Palace), P.U. Soaps, aromatic drip coffee and freshly-baked treats (the peanut butter cookies stand out).
Perhaps the best part of the whole thing is the community feel. I get introduced or meet someone new each visit. Bikes strewn outside, local kids now have a candy shop. Pet-friendly, there’s also lots of room as an event space.
General store is the name, kitsch is (part of) the game. I really, really like what they have done with the place. So do my wife & daughter. Old’s Cool is a much-needed addition to the ‘hood. So glad we’re neighbors.