Toronto is all about pies, pizzas and burgers as more comfort food joints open, while favourites Tala and the Green Wood bid adieu
Toronto restaurants and bars are officially open for patio service again.
However, not everyone was happy last Friday when Ontario modified the rules for grey lockdown zones. Many restaurants have been operating with skeleton staff while relying on takeout and delivery orders and needed more than 24 hours notice to get up and running for full-scale service.
There’s also the question of safety considering Ontario just entered a third wave and daily case counts are trending upward.
When the announcement was first made, restaurant workers were not included in Phase 2 of the vaccine rollout. There’s been an uproar about the risks of contracting COVID-19 due to the public-facing nature of their jobs. While the premier said this week vaccine supply isn’t high enough to expand eligibility, provincial officials appeared to confirm to CTV News on Monday that they will be part of Phase 2.
Some restaurants, like Banu, who aren’t yet set up for patio service are offering picnic packs for people to take away and still enjoy the outdoors.
The city’s popular CaféTO initiative is expected to return in May, so the current rules only apply to restaurants and bars that already have patio space on their properties.
Meanwhile, a whole crop of restaurants opened this week, mostly for delivery and takeout. Read on to discover the local favourites that will be sorely missed and the exciting new Toronto restaurants that opened between March 16-23.
The last B.Good location in Canada closed and has been taken over by Monkey Sushi. In December, the location at Queen and Portland was locked out by the landlord. Now, the final Toronto location of the healthy, hearty food chain on Eglinton East, is gone.
The Filipino restaurant near Dundas and McCaul announced in February that March 22 would its last day. The building was sold to condo developers and they plan on relocating somewhere else soon. For now, the kamayan pizza box kits that made them popular are available at sister restaurant Tinuno.
The sustainable eatery took to Instagram to announce the Leslieville and King West locations will be closing. They’re not saying goodbye forever but are taking a break to rethink next steps for the business.
House-made, old school deli eats are the name of the game at Dave’s. The St. Clair West restaurant has schnitzel, brisket and pastrami sandwiches, matzo ball soup and more. Owner Dave Isen has been executive chef at restaurants like Brickworks Ciderhouse and Mill Street Brewpub.
The pop-up food truck market is back again this weekend in Etobicoke. Vendors include the Funky Patacon, Mustache Burger, Alijandro’s Kitchen and Gourmet Guyz.
This new izakaya on College and Dovercourt specializes in donburi, teppan noodle and okonomiyaki dishes. They’re open for takeout and delivery.
Hottie’s is a new joint in Etobicoke for classic smashburgers, loaded hotdogs and cheese fries. The burgers come four ways (The Hottie, Hottie Toddie, Chili Cheeseburger and Impossible) and can be “blessed” with bacon.
Mascot’s patios at their King Street and Etobicoke locations are currently under construction and their beer gardens are set to open soon. The Etobicoke location will also include a bottle shop. Keep an eye on their Instagram.
The Scarborough spot for any cravings (post-sesh or otherwise) has landed at the Yonge and Dundas World Food Market. Their over-the-top sandwiches, burgers, mac and cheese, and desserts are now available to the downtown crowd.
This Indian street food eatery in Mississauga serves tawa parathas, Kolkota-style kati rolls and curries like chana masala, butter chicken and dal tadka.
This new restaurant on Sheppard serves Vietnamese and Thai cuisine. They’ve got pho every way imaginable and a range of other noodle and rice dishes. They’re offering 15 per cent off walk-in orders during the grand opening event (ending April 3).
Bringing British pie culture to Toronto since 2017, Sharman’s just opened a second location in Kensigton Market earlier this month. They have a delivery subscription service but their chicken pot, steak and kidney, and haddock and potato pies can also be picked up in person at the Danforth and now Kensington locations.
If exciting new Toronto restaurants open in your hood or one of your faves is saying goodbye, please send tips to food [at] nowtoronto.com.