Today I was ‘inspired’ to have the ‘world famous’ peameal bacon sandwich at the Carousel Bakery & Sandwich Bar, which is located inside the historic St. Lawrence Market. My inspiration came from the fact that today it was -20 degrees, with the wind chill factor and the St. Lawrence Market is only a 5 minute walk from my home…
These sandwiches are as Toronto as you can get and they are loved by the locals, bus loads of tourists, and famous celebrities such as the chef Emeril Lagasse and Catherine Zeta Jones, etc. The walls infront of the sandwich bar are covered with thank you letters from countless celebs who just love these yummy sandwiches….that are only $5.30 +tax.
The owners are 2 brothers Maurice and Robert. Robert was not in, but I spoke to Maurice for a while and he is one of those warm and friendly guys, with a great sense of humour, that after 5 minutes of talking to, you feel like you have known him forever.
Just look at Maurice’s smile No wonder his place of business is so popular and his food tastes do good… You can tell he cooks his food with lots of ‘love’
I struck up a conversation with two nice guys, who were enjoying their peameal sandwich.
We started talking about great food in the city and they gave me a suggestion of a South American (Uruguay) restaurant in the city. I asked how were their empanadas, because I love them, and he said they are amazing. So I will be making a visit there very soon.
As I sat and ate my sandwich I heard the most soul stirring saxaphone music coming from around the corner. When he finished playing I put a few dollars in his sax case and told him he plays beautifully and introduced myself, and asked him how his day was.
His answer to me was this… ”sometimes people dont understand that someone could be smiling on the outside but crying on the inside” I asked him what was wrong and he told me his brother passed away in Jamaica and he will be going to his funeral this week. I offered my condolences. Then I pulled up a chair and just listened for as long as he wanted me too.
He told me about his 50+ year international music career starting as a little boy in Jamaica, when he attended the well known “Alpha Boys” music school, playing with the world famous “Skatalites” and touring the world, to working with the legendary recording studio & label “Studio One” nicknamed the “Motown of Jamaica”. He said it was always ‘just about the music’ and that he just played for the love of the music & for the people. I learned lessons about life & love from this amazing 73 year old talented musician.
I went to the market expecting to spend $5.30 to fill my hungry stomach….never expecting that having a conversation with this amazing stranger, would fill my soul….PRICELESS! Thank you Karl. We will continue our conversation when you return from Jamaica….
And now I would like to introuduce you to baritone saxaphone player…. Karl Bryan aka Karl “CannonBall” Bryan.
Below is a short youtube clip of him playing in Toronto this summer… ENJOY!
Karl \”CannonBall\” Bryan Playing for the People of the World