Wunder-ful cafe opens on Queen

Cafe-meets-art-gallery takes name from Burton film

Inspired by Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland Peter Styrsky decided to name his new café-meets-art gallery, Wunderland.

“We found that it would be kind of cool to call it in the German form, Wunderland, because it’s easier to distinguish it from the many wonderlands that are out there,” he says. “So it was kind of a good play on words for us.”

Styrsky, also known as Reverend Brother Peter Styrsky from the Church of the Universe, has already been living on site at the Queen Street East and Woodbine Avenue location with his family for 15 years, which he says made it affordable and convenient to start up the business.

Although Styrsky says Wunderland is essentially a coffee shop, he says it also doubles as a showroom for the custom furniture he makes from recycled and reclaimed wood.

“I did this all out of a barn so all the floor, everything, is really old wood, like 200 years old,” he says, adding that it adds more warmth
and character than new wood.

In between making cappuccinos and lattes he is currently working on benches for Kew Beach Public School’s new outdoor classroom
and has his own sawmill in the backyard, which he plans on transforming into a patio for the café.

Styrsky says he receives coffee beans weekly from Classic Gourmet Coffee in Concord by John Rufino, who has 30 years of roasting experience, and offers organic and free trade coffee.

“He does this thing called eco-roasting, which means that he doesn’t allow any exhaust out of his factory and if you know anything about roasting there’s toxins that are released from the roast,” he says.

Wunderland introduces new art monthly and Styrsky says he’d like to add more organic and natural menu options and a juicer. He says his main concept is for people to feel warm and comfortable.

“I want them to have the best coffee around, that’s number one and second of all I want them to appreciate that there’s art,” he says.

“We expect our neighbours to be comfortable here as if you’re going to a friends house — but he’s got really good coffee.”

About this article:

By: Ann Ruppenstein
Posted: Oct 20 2011 2:08 pm
Filed in: Business
Edition: Toronto