Toronto restaurants that opened and closed this week
The Lakeview gets a temporary makeover, a Cabbagetown sushi spot says goodbye and more Korean fried chicken comes to town
The province released a three-step reopening plan last Thursday, which bodes well for Toronto restaurants.
If things go swimmingly, patios could be back by mid-June. Step One is set to begin on June 14 and would allow tables of four to sit together on restaurant and bar patios for outdoor dining.
As restaurants try to stick out and make it to patio season, more spots continue to shutter. On the other hand, every week even more restaurants are opening. In a great comeback story, a vegan cafe that closed in December has reopened by partnering with another local restaurant.
Read on to learn which local favourites closed and which new spots opened up the week of May 18-25.
Toronto restaurants that closed
True Flavours Organic Foods
This Leslieville “ghost kitchen” serving vegan eats opened in March but quickly ran into trouble when guests repeatedly wanted to enter the premises for pick-up rather than delivery. They’re a small team of two and were unable to handle the front-of-house service required to offer pick-ups. It was an unfortunately short-lived venture and they are selling off all the company assets.
This Cabbagetown sushi spot closed on May 24 after almost 10 years of business. Owner Jennifer Park thanked the neighbourhood for their support over the years in a Facebook post: “I want to thank everyone in this community for nothing but 10 years of love and support. You will all forever be in my hearts and I’m sorry that this is happening.”
New Toronto restaurants
The first Canadian location of this Korean fried chicken chain just opened in Scarborough. They have over 100 locations internationally and plan to expand to Vancouver and London, Ontario. Fried, saucy chicken in waffle bowls is something you might not find anywhere just yet.
3250 Midland, Unit G106, chickenpluscanada.ca
Nature Healing Bakery
This bakery, established in 1996, just opened up a new location in Parkdale. From croissants stuffed with frsh cream and strawberries to blueberry mousse cakes, the neighbourhood is in for a new treat.
1416 Queen West, nhbakery.ca
Southern Crown Caribbean Smokehouse
Specializing in Southern American and Caribbean food, this smokehouse operating out of Lob Toronto is making salivating jerk chicken, smoked beef, pulled pork, curry goat and more. They recently added a chickpea curry for all the vegetarians. To quench your thirst they’ve Jamaican sodas like got Ting and Kola Champagne and local craft beers.
100 Broadview Ave #101, instagram.com/southern_crown_smokehouse
The Cold Pressery
We reported on this Mississauga vegan cafe’s permanently closure after five years last December. The restaurant posted an update on its website stating, “Although this chapter of the Cold Pressery will be closed, new beginnings and opportunities await. We will be taking some time to refocus our efforts for the future.” It looks like those new beginnings are here. The Cold Pressery has popped up inside the Port Credit location of Eva’s Original Chimneys, serving their smoothies, vegan lattes and açai bowls.
53 Lakeshore East, Mississauga, thecoldpressery.com
Grape Crush, one of the spots on our list of Toronto’s best new bottle shops, has launched a frosé just in time for picnic season. The frozen rosé is made with wine from local Ontario winery GreenLane.
Pauper’s Pub in the Annex is pushing for a midnight last call. They’ve been collecting signatures all month to appeal to the province. The letter stresses that a 9 pm last call during the stay-at-home order makes it very difficult for restaurants and bars to remain in business even when patios are allowed to re-open.
Dundas and Ossington stalwart The Lakeview is currently home to a film set, hence the change of signage last week. If you’ve walked by recently and seen the name change to The Red Carriage worry not – it’s not a sign of new ownership or closure (a very valid COVID fear). The Lakeview clarified the situation with an Instagram post.
Toronto History Museums’s annual Hungry for Comfort series is back. The program focuses on exploring different cultural food histories and stories from across the city. For Asian Heritage Month, the spotlight is on Chinese communities and their contributions to the city’s diverse food culture. Themes include From Chop Suey to Peking Duck: Chinese Food up to the 1970s, Culinary Journey through Toronto’s Chinatown, Authenticity of Chinese Food and Global and Local Perspectives on Chinese Food.