Toronto restaurants that opened and closed this week

The Ace returns to Roncesvalles, Cafe 668 has a for lease sign in the window and Thindi expands


As the year winds down, Toronto restaurants are just trying to hang on. Fortunately, things are looking up as the COVID-19 vaccine starts to roll out in Toronto.

2021 may be a very different year for the industry, in a good way.

It’s been a trying nine months and the restaurants that we lost won’t be forgotten. It seems that as restaurants close, new ones continue popping up to keep Toronto’s food culture alive.

Here is what opened and closed the week of December 9-15.

Toronto restaurants that closed

Conspiracy Pizza

This pizza spot in Leaside shares a building with the controversial Adamson Barbecue. They posted an update on their website stating: “Due to recent events beyond our control, it has become clear that we can no longer guarantee the safety of our staff or customers in the face of a quickly escalating pandemic,” alluding to the media circus around Adamson and its owner’s defying lockdown restrictions. Conspiracy plans to reopen, coming back “better and stronger in a new location.”

Saints Island Pies

The city’s only purveyors of Detroit-style pizza with a Filipino twist temporarily closed this week, but popped up on December 13 at Three Speed Bar while sorting out a problem at their location. As of December 15, they are back home on Dundas West, serving their pizzas with longanisa sausage, fried eggs, citrus dressings, smoked sardines and special sauce.

Cafe 668

This 18-year-old, family-owned vegetarian and vegan restaurant has a for lease sign on its window. It was a go-to spot for vegetarians in Toronto before more trendy veg restaurants cropped up over the years.

New Toronto restaurants

The Ace

On December, owner of beloved Roncesvalles diner, Greg Boggs announced he was stepping away and a new owner would be taking over. One chapter of the restaurant’s 70-year history ends as a new one begins. Boggs says his departure is “in no small part due to COVID-19 and the uncertain situation situation The Ace and all restaurants, bars, and small businesses are currently facing.” The restaurant closed quietly earlier in the pandemic but it’s exciting to know it will be re-opening.

Bake Code Croissanterie

This croissanterie creates some very cool flavours. They recently opened at Yonge and Gloucester and were previously available for online orders. Matcha charcoal, salted egg, yuzu and strawberries and cream are just some of the 17 varieties of croissants they make.

Chef Kareema

Chef Kareema’s catering business recently opened at Dundas and George as a brick and mortar restaurant, open for takeout and delivery. The Caribbean fusion menu includes sautéed portobello mushrooms with cornbread, escovitch snapper, jerk vegan lasagna and more.

J. San Sushi Bar

This new sushi spot on Jarvis is available on all the delivery and pick up apps. On top of all the usual expectations from a sushi restaurant they ahve their signature J. San roll, breaded and fried salmon and tuna with crab and cucumber rolls, topped with salmon tobiko.

Harlem Bodega

Currently popping up in North York near Highway 401, this emulation of a bodega serves all the staples, like the ultimate New York sandwich, a chopped cheese.

Thindi Indian Cafe

World Food Market Indian noodle stall Thindi has expanded with a cafe at 400 College near Kensington Market. The menu includes cardamom chai, mint chai, Madras coffee and rava idili (steamed savoury cakes). Owners Anuja Mehta and Abhilash Achar told NOW earlier this year the cafe will eventually have an even bigger menu than Thindi Express, which is heavy on comfort food snacks, such as butter chicken-flavoured Maggi noodles and chutney grilled cheese.

Buzzy announcements

Jaclyn’s is a Caribbean fusion restaurant that recently opened in Leslieville. Extending a thank you to the new community that has welcomed them with open arms, they’re offering free food to community groups and shelters on December 23.

@kelseyxadams

Brand Voices

One response to “Toronto restaurants that opened and closed this week”

  1. I am a non-Japanese Canadian who ordered from J.San today for the first time and was extremely impressed with the quality of food. I found their pricing to be be very reasonable. I ordered the 12 piece assorted sashimi and the ultimate dragon roll. The variety selection of sushi was way beyond normal. The Dragon roll was unbelievably tasty and large. I am a sushi maven and have been so back in 1966 when Toronto had only 2 sushi restaurants. J. San was awesome and I would rush back there over and over again. My only complaint was that I ordered online for pickup at a specific time and I had to wait for 15 minutes for my order. And yet during Covid they did have 5 people working behind the counter. Mata aimasho. See you again soon.

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