La Bicicletta's place in the Canadian cycling world and beyond, dates back to the early 80’s when Guiseppi Cramerotti moved from Italy to Canada and opened the first store in Vancouver. After selling the Vancouver location, he moved La Bicicletta to Bloor West Village in Toronto. It is here that Henry Erlichman appeared on the scene. At the time it was difficult to find road bikes in Toronto and so Henry an avid cyclist, spent his free moments at La Bicicletta. When Guiseppi indicated he was interested in selling the Toronto store, Henry jumped at the opportunity. That was over twenty years ago!
In 2001 the store relocated to a spacious spot on Castlefield Avenue, where it has flourished ever since. The Italian influence remains strong and is supported by lines such as Pinarello, Bianchi, Colnago, DeRosa, Basso and Willier. Erlichmans’ thrill of sourcing out the newest and best in cycling has ensured that the shop is well stocked with the best of bikes, cycling gear and accessories. Over the years La Bicicletta has become known as the mecca for road bikes in Toronto. La Bicicletta also boasts The Assos of Switzerland Pro Shop. The La Bicicletta Track team is quickly expanding and as such one can find a large selection of track bikes along with everything needed to get started on the track and to stay on track. All things fine and exciting related to cycling, eventually find a home at La Bicicletta.
It is no wonder that all the staff at La Bicicletta share an enthusiasm for the sport of cycling and everything that goes with it. With our collective years of experience, we are here to support our customers both in-store and on-line. We never want anyone to walk in the store and feel intimidated. Whether new to the sport or experienced cyclists, we are here to listen to customers needs and to assist accordingly. As well as helping customers choose the most appropriate bike, gear and accessories, we provide a full range of services, ranging from bike fitting and bike maintenance. In short, we are here to look after our customers.
We also try to engage the community by offering workshops and hosting a variety of lively events. We offer opportunities for group rides, with our club rides in warm weather and our rides on Zwift in the cooler weather. We sponsor youth teams as well as several charity rides and events. We love what we do here at La Bicicletta and are here to share our experience and joy of cycling with you.
Henry has been doing this a long time! His passion is and always has been cycling. After all these years, he still says that his work at the shop is not like work at all. He never raced, but rather took on the challenges of long-distance randonneuring. In 1991, he completed the gruelling 90-hour Paris-Brest-Paris. He keeps saying he wants to do it again – if only he could find the time. Henry has always taken great pleasure in sourcing out new and exciting products for the store. He works hard to ensure that the store is always stocked with the latest cycling equipment, gear and clothing so that customers have an abundance of choices. La Bicicletta is a reflection of Henry's love of cycling for over 20 years.
- 2016 Bianchi Specialissima
We are thrilled to have Davide Frattini as a member of our staff! Born in Varese, Italy, Davide has raced for some of the top teams in the world. He spent the last five years of his career racing for the US-based team UnitedHealthcare. Besides his two-decade-long racing career, he has built community-based cycling programs and has extensive product knowledge. His goal is to share his passion for cycling with everyone who comes into the store. He specializes in professional bike fits and takes great care to ensure that each customer receives the ultimate fit. On top of everything, Davide is a certified Barista! He's down to earth with a great sense of humour, which puts everyone at ease. Davide brings a true feeling of Italy to La Bicicletta!
Alex is now entering his third season with La Bicicletta. With ten years of experience working in the cycling industry, Alex has fixed everything from Dutch cargo trikes to rusty student beaters to high-end wunderbikes. Alex is an avid gravel cyclist, an all-weather commuter, and a steel and titanium bike aficionado. Alex is currently in his first year of a master’s of planning at York University, with an emphasis on public transit and active transportation planning. You’ll find Alex at the shop on Sundays doing whatever needs to be done.
- Gravel special
Cows’ milk protein may be the single most significant chemical carcinogen to which humans are exposed. — T. Colin Campbell
Harry is a fixture at La Bicicletta. The only person who has been around longer than Harry is Henry. Harry took up cycling, almost 30 years ago after an injury caused him to hang up his running shoes. He never looked back. Harry rides to work every day, in all kinds of weather. On weekends, he cycles with the same group that he's been with since he first took up the sport. In the store, he helps with our shipping, receiving and inventory. We couldn’t keep track of everything without the help of Harry!
- Harry's bike
For almost 30 years, bikes have been an integral part of Matt the Mechanic’s life. When customers have problems with their bikes, Matt expertly diagnoses and follows through with clean, efficient fixes. Matt is passionate about track racing, and so when he's not in the shop, he can usually be found at the Mattamy National Cycling Centre's velodrome in Milton. Matt has won numerous medals for his performances on the track. These include gold in both the O-Cup and Provincial categories and silver in the National Masters. He has been instrumental in bringing our La Bicicletta track team to life through his support for the entire program, welcoming newcomers - young and old, and ensuring that everyone gets off to a good start.
- Track bike
Richard is our “Cuban solution”, as we like to refer to him, and he’s been fixing bikes his entire life. He explains that there are no bike mechanics in Cuba and so he had to learn at a young age. He brings much experience and expertise to our mechanics shop and can find a solution for almost any bike build and repair. Richard has had great success as a track racer. Over the years, he has won upwards of 80 medals. These include several National, Provincial, O-Cup and Pan American medals. He had the Canadian record for the 200-metre qualifying sprint. In the future, Richard would like to take customers on cycling trips to Cuba and hopes that many of you will join him!
- Fuji Track elite One
Donny has spent better part of his life wrapped up in computers and bicycles. He spent over a decade helping the growth of city bicycles in new markets in North America. As a key role in a startup, he learned the process of importing and manufacturing of bicycles. Donny is a 'man of many talents' and actually made his own touring bike. During winter you'll find him at one of the local ice rinks playing shinny, and braving the cold out on one of his many cycles. We are excited to have Donny with us, bringing his vast knowledge of web dev and bike knowledge.
- Lemond Versailles
Sarah mostly works behind the scenes helping plan, organize and facilitate. She cycled for years on what she refers to as her “little red bike” equipped with four gears, fat tires and a coaster brake. It was when she started training to do the Ride to Conquer Cancer nine years ago that Henry set her up on her first road bike. Being new to the sport, Sarah enjoys helping others who are just starting out, because she knows it can be rather intimidating. One of her greatest pleasures is cycling the roads of Haliburton, Ontario. In the spring of 2016, she organized a cycling weekend at a local camp in Haliburton. Sarah plans to host this event annually and hopes to grow its rider participation in the years to come.
- Basso Lagum