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The best Christmas market in North America? Head to Toronto.

A sign over the beer hall at the Toronto Christmas Market asks shoppers if they've been naughty or nice.

TORONTO ­­— How do you define the perfect Christmas market?

Is the ultimate market one that fulfills all of your holiday shopping requirements? Is its perfection characterized by the uniqueness of the vendors and their offerings? Should the ideal Christmas market conjure an imaginary old world Bavarian village with charm and spritzgebäck cookies to spare?

While you mull those questions like a fine bottle of holiday glögg from Ikea, I’m going to jump in and offer my thoughts. The perfect Christmas market is one that warms your heart and scrapes a bit of the “Bah humbug’’ permafrost from your cerebral cortex. I unknowingly entered such a place earlier this month in Toronto.

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