What does it take to go from being a Juno Award-winning Canadian rock singer to launching a successful gourmet vinegar and oil company? If you're Lydia Taylor, two words: talent and passion.
In the early 1980s, Lydia was fronting the eponymous Lydia Taylor Band, belting out her unique brand of bluesy power rock in arenas and clubs across North America. The passion she put into her singing led to her winning a Juno Award in 1983.
By the late 1980s, after many years of non-stop touring, Lydia and her partner Gerry Mischuk decided that a change of life was in order. They packed up and moved from Toronto to rural Ontario farm country. That's where Lydia and Gerry discovered a new passion: growing hydroponic culinary herbs. They quickly found a market for their fresh, home-grown product, selling them to the big box grocery chains.
One challenge they discovered was shelf life: once cut, the essential oils in the herbs quickly dissipated and they lost their potency. Gerry and Lydia’s solution: immerse the herbs in vinegars and oils. The oils and vinegars became infused with the flavours of the ingredients and the end product had a far greater longevity.
Soon Gerry and Lydia were producing over 100 different vinegars and oils for their big box customers. But the chains demanded increasingly lower wholesale pricing, which threatened to compromise the integrity of the product.
This led to the launch of Taste the 4th Sense. They started with a retail location at the popular Fergus Market and response was overwhelming. Additional locations soon followed in St. Jacobs, Port Credit, St. Catherines and the popular Danforth area of downtown Toronto.
Now, in 2021, Lydia and Gerry have shifted their focus to online retailing. Taste the 4th Sense has taken another leap forward with new branding, packaging, retail website and marketing.
In addition to the new online store, the flagship retail location remains open in St. Jacobs, Ontario, where Gerry, Lydia and team still hand-craft every one of their products. Drop by and sample them!
Our philosophy is simple: we’re in the business of making food taste better! How do we do that?
We use the finest ingredients. From our high-quality grapeseed oil to our selection of herbs, peppers and flavourings, we cut no corners. Purity and quality are the cornerstones of our success.
We use no preservatives or artificial flavours. Dried herbs give our oils an extremely long shelf life, and the acetic acid in our vinegars acts as a natural preservative.
Our products are versatile. Have you ever bought a specialty oil, only to discover it many months later, barely used at the back of your pantry? Our products are so versatile, you'll never run out of ways to use them: dressings, glazes, marinades, dipping sauces…
We hand-craft our products in small batches. Every bottle is filled by hand and our products are shipped directly from our store in St. Jacobs to your home. Freshness is guaranteed.
Give us a try and see for yourself what a difference Taste can make!