Best For Cocktails

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  • 1

    Drake Hotel

    1150 Queen W, Toronto, Ontario M6J 1J3

    The Drake, with its timeless appeal and sheer scale, has arguably done more to promote quality cocktails than any other local company. Home to skilled cocktail bartenders like Sandy De Almeida and packed industry events like Ivy Knight’s 86’d Mondays, it’s been a cultural hub for over a decade. Its lavish sister spot in Suitsville, Drake 150 (150 York, 416-363-6150,drakeonefifty.ca), has its own killer list of drinks, and Drake Devonshire (24 Wharf, Wellington, 613-399-3338, drakedevonshire.ca) recently brought cocktails to Prince Edward County. Continuous kudos.

    Access A few stairs at the main entrance, washrooms on ground floor.

    Lounge Hours Monday to Friday 11 am to 2 am, Saturday and Sunday 10 am to 2 am. 

  • 2

    Toronto Temperance Society

    577A College, Toronto, Ontario M6G 1B2

    Sadly, many Torontonians haven’t had the pleasure of cozying up to one of the city’s top cocktail bars. Calling this one a speakeasy, a term tossed around with such flippancy it’s now synonymous with uninspired, would be downright unjust. Let’s just say it’s a members-only joint hidden above co-owned Sidecar. Go for a trial run and you’ll be hooked. Dues ($25 monthly) are a small price to pay for flawless cocktails, unmatchable hospitality and one of the best spirits selections in the city.

    Access Stairs to the second floor, washroom on the same floor.

    Hours Daily 6 pm to 2 am

  • 3
    geraldine.jpg

    David Laurence

    Geraldine – closed

    1564 Queen Street West, Toronto, Ontario M6R 1A6

    Thirst for well-mixed cocktails inevitably leads to restaurant bars – that’s just the lay of the land in Toronto. Parkdale’s Geraldine, with its elegant Parisienne aesthetic, has a top-notch drinks list dreamed up by bar manager Michael Mooney. Try the The Courtesan (Indian five spice-infused Dickel rye, tamarind, fresh lime, mango purée and Angostura bitters, $14) and the crazy good Parisienne Milk Punch (Calvados, rum, absinthe, pineapple, lemon with spices and milk), served by the glass ($12) and tea pot ($45). After oysters, absinthe and a couple of cocktails, you should probably spring for dinner cooked by chef Alex Molitz. Weekend brunch (with brunch cocktails) is a brand new addition.

    Access No barrier at entrance, washrooms on main floor.

    Hours Tuesday to Friday 5 to 11 pm, Saturday and Sunday brunch 11 am to 3 pm, oysters and cocktails 3 to 5 pm, dinner 5 to 11 pm. Bar and oysters until late.

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