King West


Critic’s pick

NNNNN Brunchalicious

NNNN Eggs ‘traordinary

NNN Quiche me quick


$ Under $15 per person (minus alcohol)

$$ $15 to $20 per person (minus alcohol)

$$$ Over $20 per person (minus alcohol)


Le Select

432 Wellington W, at Spadina, 416-596-6405. Relocated from its original Queen West digs, much of Jean-Jacques Quinsac and Frederic Geisweller’s venerable Parisian-style brasserie’s original flavour – zinc-covered bar, art nouveau posters, gas-burning fireplace – remains intact. Best: salads of frisée with lardons and avocado in sweet sherry vinaigrette seared scallops dressed with hollandaise sided with spring asparagus spears foie gras terrine with wine pairings farmer’s sausage with eggs and rosti Morrocan-inspired lamb burgers with frites braised cabbage choucroute with ham, pork hock and sausage Mulard duck confit with potato gratin. Open Saturday and Sunday 11:30 am to 4 pm. Reservations accepted. Licensed. Access: one step at door, washrooms in basement. Rating: NNNN $$$

Niagara Street Café

169 Niagara, at Wellington, 416-703-4222. Now under the direction of chef Nick Liu, Anton Potvin’s intimate west-side eatery continues to focus on locally sourced and naturally raised ingredients. Friendly servers plus Elvis Costello and the Strokes on the CD player help things go down smoothly, too. Best: start with crisp potato rosti dolloped with bacon jam and crème fraîche warm house-baked apple raisin bread follow with Breakfast Tartlettes of puff pastry layered with chorizo-laced scrambled eggs, caramelized onion and creamy goat cheese sided with organic greens eggs Benedict over biscuits topped with peameal, arugula and lemony hollandaise soft-boiled eggs with maple-cured bacon and baguette soldiers. Open Sunday 10:30 am to 3 pm. Reservations accepted for 10:30 am only. Licensed. Access: two short steps at door, small washrooms on same floor. Rating: NNN $$


504 Adelaide W, at Portland, 416-777-2343. Decked out with kitschy cow creamers and a wall of Pez dispensers, this earnest eco-conscious vegetarian café mixes organics with a classic greasy spoon card. Best: huevos rancheros layered over crisp corn tortillas, over-easy eggs, chunky house guacamole, lightly pickled salsa, bland refried pintos and shredded cheddar vegan breakfast burrito with scrambled tofu and soy cheese first-rate veggie burgers piled with lettuce, tomato, pickle and mayo, sided with fab fries organic squeezed-to-order juices like carrot with beet and pomegranate. Open Monday and Tuesday 7:30 am to 5 pm, Wednesday to Friday 7:30 am to 4 pm, Saturday and Sunday 9 am to 4 pm. Unlicensed. Access: one step at door, another to washrooms. Rating: NNN $$

Also in the area…

Bite Me!

609 King W, at Portland, 416-603-2777. Though his new Liberty Village atelier gets all the traction these days, chef Marc Thuet’s recently rebranded bistro has a similar menu, more space to spread out and slightly shorter lineups. Open Sunday 11 am to 2 pm. Reservations accepted. Licensed. Access: 11 steps at door, washrooms on same floor. $$$

Wheat Sheaf

667 King W, at Bathurst, 416-504-9912. Opened in 1849 – yes, 160 years ago – the Wheat Sheaf is Toronto’s oldest bar. Hell, it’s almost the oldest anything! Open Saturday and Sunday 11 am to 4 pm. Reservations accepted. Licensed. Access: two steps at door, washrooms in basement. $

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