Summerlicious – PROHIBITION Gastrohouse and Oyster Bar ★★1/2

Price: Over $15+ I went with a group of my foodie friends for a $15 Summerlicious lunch at PROHIBITION Gastrohouse. Decided to try this place out after seeing the popular reviews on Urbanspoon. It was a bit far for me … Continue reading

Sicilian Sidewalk Cafe

Price: Under $10

Known for their ice creams, I recommend this café purely based on my childhood memories. Why you wonder? I actually had ice cream here on and off throughout my childhood. I recall Sicilian Sidewalk Cafe when I was still in junior school, my aunt would treat my cousins and I to their desserts in the summer. We probably visited only a handful of times when I was younger but it makes me reminisce a bit when I pass by the café. It’s still as popular as ever though, especially in the summer time.

They have a patio so customers can relax and enjoy themselves. Unfortunately, I don’t have any pictures since my last visit was before I even started Toronto Foodie! However, I will for sure try to stop by the café should I find the time to venture out to their area again.

Dress code: casual, suitable for everyone…even your boss if you think its appropriate. No dinner but lunches and after work would be a nice time to visit.

Location: 712 College St, Toronto ON M6G 1C3
Telephone:  (416) 531 – 7716
Hours: Monday to Thursday – 9:00 am to 1:00 am, Friday & Saturday: 9:00 am to 3:00 am and Sunday – 11:00 am – 1:00 am

Sicilian Sidewalk Cafe on Urbanspoon

Bloor Street Diner ★★

Price: $20-30+

I was roaming around the area with friends on a weekend and we decided to try this place. I have to admit from the outside it doesn’t look all that great and for some reason when I see “diner” it conjures up the stereotypical image of old diners you see while on a road trip. Haha.

However, thankfully Bloor Street Diner is anything but. The restaurant was pleasantly more upscale than I imagined. It’s split into two sections, bar and dine-in. The bar section has wooden furnishings and smaller tables while the dine-in section is noticeably more upscale with white drapes and booths.

Right when we walked in, I could smell the waft of food being cooked. This could bother certain people, so up to you if you find it a detraction or not to your foodie atmosphere. I just had a drink while my other friends tried the dessert (sorbet & ice cream) for $8.00 and an omelette (which I thought was a bit weird since it was 7-8pm). Haha. Both claimed it was alright though. Service was good too.

I can’t give a concrete rating on food but this restaurant in terms of service and appearance is nice enough. I would visit again.

Dress code: Casual to semi-dressy. Good for dinners and drinks after work with coworkers and friends.

Location: Manulife Centre – 55 Bloor Street West, Toronto, ON M4W 1A5
Telephone: (416) 928 – 3105
Hours: Monday to Thursday – 11:30am to 12am, Friday & Saturday – 11:30am to 2am and Sunday – 11.00am to 12am

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Bloor Street Diner on Urbanspoon

McVeighs Irish Pub ★★ 1/2

Came here to celebrate my first St. Patrick’s Day with some friends! I had a great time at McVeighs, they had live Irish music, dancers and a great festive mood about the pub. There are two floors, the first more suitable for dining and the second for drinks. Both with enough tables and chairs to entertain large groups though.

I didn’t get a chance to eat anything here so my rating is more about the atmosphere and service then actual food. I won’t post a price range either since the menu prices are not listed on website.

Some cons I experienced that day, whether it was just St. Patty’s Day or a reflection on the bar itself was the price for drinks, long line ups and over priced cover. With drinks, I think it was $8 for a glass of Keith beer and $6 for a coke and rum. Similar to prices you would see at a club perhaps? As for getting into McVeighs, that proved to be a hassle itself. I had to wait 2 hours, lined up at 3:30pm and once entering I discovered I needed to pay a $20 cover. Lots of people lining up were surprised by this as well. Still, I did have fun so I guess the experience was worth it. Not sure I would think so if it were any average workday however.

Dress code: Casual. Come with friends and close co-workers. It is not upscale enough for your boss though.

Note – I don’t know if this place is very well known as I actually had to add it on Urbanspoon myself.

Location: 124 Chruch St, Toronto, ON M5C 2G8
Telephone: (416) 364 – 9698
Hours: Daily from 11-2am (according to the pub. I’m not 100% sure even though I called them)

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McVeighs Irish Pub on Urbanspoon

Summerlicious – Azure Restaurant & Bar ★★1/2

Price: $30+

So came here for lunch last year with a fellow foodie lover, we felt like trying something new and this place seemed nice. The restaurant is inside the Intercontinental Hotel.

I had the caprese salad as an appetizer, which was small but enjoyable. My friend commented their appetizer, a baby green salad was a bit too bitter though. As for the main, I ordered the grilled boneless skinless chicken breast with quinoa and pineapple salsa, I felt it was a bit too dry. I would probably only recommend the desserts here, I tried the apple tartin with homemade vanilla ice cream and my friend had the chocolate cake with spiced whip cream. Both were sweet and yummy!

I think I would come here for just drinks and desserts. Something like if you were in the area and wanted a snack after work or during lunch. It is semi-dressy, but a nice shirt/top with dark jeans is fine.

Note: I did notice they offer quite a few vegetarian dishes for the prix fixe menu, which is nice. Also, on a side note – washrooms are not conveniently located nearby, you have to go further into the hotel and make your way down a hall to get there. I got a little lost making my way there. Haha.

Location: 225 Front Street West, Toronto, ON M5V 2X3
Telephone: (416) 597-8142
Hours: Monday to Sunday – 6:30am to 10:00pm.

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Alize Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Arepa Cafe ★★ 1/2

Price: Under $15

Was in the area and decided to try this place for lunch with a friend. Its a nice place eat, they have a projector playing silent movie clips on the wall and nice lighting fixtures. Very simple and clean.

I think I had the grilled chicken breast at $8.50, chicken was wrapped in cornmeal bread with tomatoes and lettuce inside. You are given 3 sauce options to add as well. If in the area, its worth trying out. Service is nice if a bit slow sometimes.

Best for casual lunches with coworkers and friends.

Location: 490 Queen Street West, Toronto, ON M5V 2B3
Telephone: (416) 362 – 4111
Monday to Wednesday – 10am to 10pm, Thursday to Saturday – 10am to 11pm, Sunday – 11am to 8pm.
Reservations for groups more than 6

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Arepa Cafe on Urbanspoon

Bier Market – The Esplanade ★ 1/2

Price: $15-30+ depending on meal

Two words: BAD SERVICE! In my TOP 5 WORST Service Experiences.

Came here with friends for a holiday get together. We made reservations for 14 people and confirmed this with the restaurant. Knowing this, they gave us a table that can fit 8-10 max and to figure out how to sit the remaining people ourselves. We couldn’t even get chairs! Waitress was so unhelpful, all I heard was “no i, sorry…unfortunately, no..” … you get my drift. I would provide a name but she wasn’t wearing a tag and actually, everyone was basically unhelpful. I managed to get 1 extra chair after asking repeatedly. I inquired to the waitress AGAIN, a staff member (who said she would find someone to help but never did) and finally a hostess (who must have sensed I was getting frustrated and might have asked for a manager if I didn’t get my chairs).

Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed the company, food and music. Just not the service. I know we were a big group but I think the tip would have made up for the hassle? Also, there were so many extra chairs lying around I just wanted to grab one myself. I guess they were just trying to save them to fit in as many paying customers as possible. Though some of the chairs were still empty when I left the place. Anyway, whats more frustrating is that they wanted us to coat check too, charging $3 per coat and $5 if you place it together with someone. Sorry but this seemed like a rip off to me, its not a club but a restaurant & bar. I would assume that would be complimentary and if not, at least given as an option. Not basically forced to do it so we can have enough room to sit.

I am not totally writing this place off because everything else isn’t bad. The food, beer and band are okay. Band played later then expected though, started around 10:15pm instead of 9pm. I had the Market Poutine $13 and Fruli Strawberry Wheat Ale $6.42. Both which I liked and would try again. The poutine was very filling and the ale was almost sweet as juice. If I ever do come back, I might try the Delirium Tremens Ale $7.74. I recommend trying this place only if you are in the area and in the mood for pub food. However, come with very low expectations! Perhaps you will have better luck then I.

It gets really noisy and crowded later though, so not ideal for any romantic dates or meetings. Dress Code: No hoodies but a sweater and jean outfit should be fine.

Location: 58 The Esplanade, Toronto, ON M5E 1A6
Telephone: (416) 862 – 7575
Hours: Sunday to Wednesday – 11am to 1am, Thursday to Saturday – 11am to 2am

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Bier Markt - Esplanade on Urbanspoon

The Bohemian Gastropub ★★ 1/2 (CLOSED!)

Price: $15+

Went here with some friends for drinks while in the area. Service was okay, they are nice but when it got really busy, I waited a long time to just get the bill. I had chicken and mashed potatoes, which were delish! The chicken was so soft! However, it did come to me luke warm. Also I think they did an overhaul of the menu now so its not available.

Still I recommend trying this place out if you are in the area. Nice place to relax with friends. It gets really noisy later though, so not ideal for any romantic dates or meetings.

Location: 571 Queen St West, Toronto, ON M5V 2B6
Telephone: (416) 531-3800
Hours: Monday to Sunday – 11am to 12am

NOTE – Restaurant is now closed. According to its being replaced by Lucid Cocktail & Kitchen.

The Bohemian Gastropub on Urbanspoon

La Societe Bistro ★★★

Price: $20-30+ depending on what you order.

I ate here a while ago with a friend for dinner and just never had the chance to review it till now. Came across this place as I usually do, impulsively and conveniently, haha. Anyways, ended up ordering the 8oz. Hamburger for $16 (included fries, cheese is $2 extra). The hamburger was good and fries were okay. Just not sure its worth basically $20.

I have to say, I found this place pricey for what it serves. As I mentioned before, they charge $2 to put on a slice of cheese for your burger. Um, okaaayyy… Moving on, service is alright but slow (understandable when I went because it was for an event and really crowded). Won’t decide about service until I probably visit another time.

Appearance wise, it is nice. Stained glass ceiling in dining area with low lighting and comfy booths. I was eating in the bar & lounge area, which has a few booths and a lot of high table seating. Good for dinner dates and meals with friends or family, generally an older set crowd dines here. Dress code: semi-casual? Jeans are okay.

Just found out this place has oysters for $1.00 on Thursdays after 5pm in the bar and lounge. So I will probably come again sometime in the future. If anyone tries this, let me know. Also curious if the oysters are from Oyster Boy or not.

Address: 131 Bloor Street West. Unit 211. Toronto, ON M5S 1R1
Telephone: (416) 551 – 9929
Monday to Thursday: 11:30am-11pm, Friday: 11:30am-12am, Saturday: 11am-12am, Sunday:11am-11pm.

La Société Bistro on Urbanspoon