Toronto Restaurants

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Nathan V.
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Toronto Restaurants

#1 Post by Nathan V. » February 11th, 2019, 1:16 pm

Search didn't turn up much, so I thought I'd start a new thread.

Looking to head to Toronto for a long weekend and don't know much about what to expect. Would love to find out about any places that have particularly good wine lists without sacrificing on food.

Given the diversity of the city, we'd be interested in any culinary expression of that diversity even if wine isn't a key component.

TIA.
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C. Mc Cart
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Re: Toronto Restaurants

#2 Post by C. Mc Cart » February 11th, 2019, 2:12 pm

High-end? Mid?
Chris

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Re: Toronto Restaurants

#3 Post by Nathan V. » February 11th, 2019, 4:30 pm

C. Mc Cart wrote:
February 11th, 2019, 2:12 pm
High-end? Mid?
We run the gamut and are willing to pay freight if it's warranted. We're maybe not expensive steak house with expensive Napa and Bordeaux people, but we'd go to a steak house if they had Rayas on the list that had never been marked up...
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Re: Toronto Restaurants

#4 Post by Tom G l a s g o w » February 11th, 2019, 5:18 pm

Bar Raval with its Gaudi like interior is nice, but it’s a bar. Good food and sherry.
Locals will have Chinese recommendations.

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Re: Toronto Restaurants

#5 Post by C. Mc Cart » February 11th, 2019, 5:29 pm

on the list that had never been marked up...

That and Toronto are super rare if not impossible. Expect almost everywhere to be minimum 2-3x. Sometimes you'll find ally great stuff at less. Especially the older cellars

Not impossible to find something interesting especially with US dollars, but bargains will be few & far between although more likely at the older places like Barberians or Bardi's.
Best lists with good food would include Barberians ($$$$ steak house), Paris Paris has interesting off-beat selections, but not old ($$-$$$ bistro), Opus ($$$$), Terroni, Italian obscure ($-$$), Enoteca Sociale ($$-$$$). Bardi's is a tiny old school steak house with a deep cellar as well.
If you can swing it, a table at Alo or Edulis are worth the effort (or sit at the bar), but both require serious advance planning.
Toronto is actually a great restaurant town. My list above are the stand-by's. Places like Ascari Enoteca, Campagnolo, George, Bar Isabel are all good meals/ nights out.

Hopefully a few guys will add on.
Chris

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Re: Toronto Restaurants

#6 Post by C. Mc Cart » February 11th, 2019, 5:34 pm

Tom mentions Chinese. Place along Dundas St. just across from the Art Gallery (AGO) in the middle of (the downtown) Chinatown named Asian Legend. Amazing food, and if you're in the city and don't want to drive an hour to Markham (the largest suburban Chinatown) is close enough to cab or Uber to.
They have $10 corkage. Well worth bringing a nice bottle or two of Champagne or red Burgundy for. Bring stems and a corkscrew though - otherwise you're drinking out of libby glasses.
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Peter Muto
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Re: Toronto Restaurants

#7 Post by Peter Muto » February 11th, 2019, 6:08 pm

The short answer is that as an American you will be disgusted by every wine list in this city. Bring your own or drink beer, we have some of the best craft breweries in North America.

As for restaurants, I think you just missed Alo, they use Tock and take two months of reservations so through to April is fully booked. Edulis is a little easier but need a month or so. Both are highly recommended.
If you like new nordic ala Canadian Atinolite is fantastic. I think they keep getting better as they mature.
I hear nothing but great things about Brothers, and DaiLo which is a great restaurant emblematic of Toronto, Chinese-French fusion.
I love Buca, they are still doing great things. Dandylion is a great experience, simple decor, stripped down but extremely thought out dishes.
It's hard to beat the view at Canoe which is a classic serving progressive Canadian cuisine.

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Re: Toronto Restaurants

#8 Post by RichardFlack » February 11th, 2019, 6:44 pm

Alo has an outpost in Yorkville, I haven’t been but good reports and might be a bit easier to book. It’s regular menu vs tasting menu.
+1 on Edulis.
Actinolit highly regarded by most but I’m personally not a fan, three visits and it lacked the “magic”. (Which Edulis certainly has).
Ascari has an interesting affordable wine list as well as tasty food in noisy setting (had, i should say, I haven’t been for several monks and their sister restaurant Gare de L’Est wine list at a recent visit has been “streamlined”)
Pukka on St Clair W outstanding Indian , a recent discovery for me.
Scaramouche also excellent high end food and wine but not cheap. Their wine bar is affordable.
Hopefully others will chip in with advice on ethnic cuisines, Toronto has amazing variety but you may not find thecwines you seek.

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Re: Toronto Restaurants

#9 Post by Nathan V. » February 12th, 2019, 6:09 am

Thanks everyone so far, I'll be looking into reservations as soon as we can get child care nailed down.

From folks responses about wine lists, does everyone allow corkage? Should I bring wine with me from the states (conveniently, I have a wine check) or is there plenty to be found in shops there?

Bonus points if someone can recommend good dim sum.
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Re: Toronto Restaurants

#10 Post by C. Mc Cart » February 12th, 2019, 6:20 am

Not all allow corkage. The ones with the best lists typically do not. Best to confirm ahead of time.
I would definitely bring a few bottles.
Chris

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Re: Toronto Restaurants

#11 Post by Nathan V. » February 12th, 2019, 7:24 am

C. Mc Cart wrote:
February 11th, 2019, 5:29 pm
on the list that had never been marked up...

That and Toronto are super rare if not impossible. Expect almost everywhere to be minimum 2-3x. Sometimes you'll find ally great stuff at less. Especially the older cellars

Not impossible to find something interesting especially with US dollars, but bargains will be few & far between although more likely at the older places like Barberians or Bardi's.
Best lists with good food would include Barberians ($$$$ steak house), Paris Paris has interesting off-beat selections, but not old ($$-$$$ bistro), Opus ($$$$), Terroni, Italian obscure ($-$$), Enoteca Sociale ($$-$$$). Bardi's is a tiny old school steak house with a deep cellar as well.
If you can swing it, a table at Alo or Edulis are worth the effort (or sit at the bar), but both require serious advance planning.
Toronto is actually a great restaurant town. My list above are the stand-by's. Places like Ascari Enoteca, Campagnolo, George, Bar Isabel are all good meals/ nights out.

Hopefully a few guys will add on.
So, I started to check out the Bardi's list (http://www.bardis.com/wine-list/) but it doesn't look current. Barberians looks up to date, but you weren't exaggerating about the prices, even with a relatively strong dollar. I suppose there is value at the very top end, but I don't really play there.

My take given this info is that we're better off taking in the diversity of cuisine rather than trying to bargain hunt one of these steak house wine lists which is pretty much what y'all local shave been saying.
ITB-ish.
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Peter Muto
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Re: Toronto Restaurants

#12 Post by Peter Muto » February 12th, 2019, 9:29 am

That would be my suggestion. If you want something a little off the wall, Patois is Jamaican-Chinese, and super yummy though anyone over 40 would stick out there.
For dim sum, I'm not an afficiando, but agree with Chris, Asian Legend is great. Lai Wai Heen is high end dim sum with European service and some ingredients (e.g. foie gras)
This is a pretty good list and I don't take much issues with it
https://torontolife.com/food/restaurant ... staurants/
Quetzal is closed right now, it may re-open by the time you visit. Too bad Boralia is closed that was uniquely Canadian.

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