Among the ever-growing list of award winning King West restaurants in Toronto, you’ll find some of the best eateries the city has to offer.
Not only do King West restaurants provide an eclectic variety of cuisines and mouth-watering menus, but they are also known for their impressive style and winning ambience.
Whether you’re visiting downtown Toronto or a local foodie, there are plenty of King West restaurants worth tasting your way through.
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King Street West Toronto
One of the oldest streets in the city, King Street West was once the heart of Toronto’s textile industry and lined with industrial buildings and warehouses. Known today as the Fashion District, the ever-changing area has a steady hustle and bustle, both day and night.
King Street West is everything west of Yonge Street. It passes through the Entertainment District in the heart of downtown Toronto and is one of the most visited neighbourhoods by locals and tourists alike.
Stretching from Spadina Avenue to Bathurst Street, King West Village is a trendy neighbourhood, which is home to so much more than its flashy King West restaurants. The area has a reputation for its popular bars and clubs, stylish fashion and lifestyle retailers, esteemed creative agencies, chic residential condo buildings as well as a number of important venues, including the TIFF Bell Lightbox, the Royal Alexandra Theatre, the Princess of Wales Theatre and Roy Thomson Hall.
King West Village Restaurants
On King Street West, you can satisfy a craving for any meal, any time of the day. From low-key comfort foods to contemporary fine-dining, there are many King West restaurants that have emerged as favourites among Toronto foodies.
One of the earliest spots to help garner King West restaurants’ reputation would undoubtedly be Chef Susur Lee’s Asian and French-influenced Lee. Over fifteen years since its opening, this culinary pioneer continues to fill up every night of the week.
Among the many King West restaurants to also receive a ton of accolades, Chef Michael Caballo and Tobey Nemeth’s Edulis. This cozy, small space packs a big punch (of Southern Europe flavours, that is) and for years has earned its rightful spot on countless top restaurant lists.
King Street West is also royal territory for the kings of Toronto’s dining scene, Charles Khabouth and Hanif Harji’s flourishing empire. Their restaurant renaissance includes Toronto hot spots like Patria, Mira and Byblos. And yes, as you’re quickly discovering, there is an astonishing number of King West restaurants for one to choose from!
Best King West Restaurants
As a proud resident of the King Street West neighbourhood, I often boast to friends and family how fortunate I am to have such an abundance of tasty establishments just a short walk from home.
However, those bragging rights also come with an ongoing commitment to constantly sampling King West restaurants, both new and long-time favourites alike. As such, please rest assured that we’ll be updating this story regularly.
The two most popular signature dishes at Gusto 501 are the Cavolo Nero Inslata and Mafalde ai Funghi pasta.
485 King St W, 416-363-8388
Matty Tsoumaris and Brandon Farmer first launched Baro on King Street West in the Fall of 2016.
The name Baro derives from the Spanish term “Barrio,” meaning neighbourhood. Baro serves as just that, a hub of the King West community where people gather to celebrate.
The Baro patio spans the entire fourth floor rooftop of the building, overlooking lively King West Village. The rooftop has the ability to be full enclosed in the colder months or on rainy days so you can enjoy drinks up here year round!
The Baro Rooftop Patio in downtown Toronto is inspired by the lush environment of Central and South America, filled with bright colours, optimal sunlight, and tons of greenery.
Baro’s cuisine is “Neuvo Latino,” offering traditional flavours with a bold modern twist. The dishes are designed to be shared. The Baro Rooftop has its own unique menu, with many dishes that come straight off the chef’s custom charcoal grill, inspired by traditional South American BBQ.
If you’re looking for a fun night out on a Toronto rooftop patio Baro has DJs spinning 3-5 nights a week. There’s also a popular rooftop brunch served on Saturday and Sunday during the summer.
l find twinkling string lights and a romantic fireplace. It’s one of the best Rooftop Patios in Toronto to enjoy a romantic meal with a jaw dropping view.
- Chayote Slaw: chayote, carrot, peppers, red cabbage, red onion, cucumber, mango, yuzu cilantro, mint, chulpes, chiles
- Atun Nikkei Ceviche: yellowfin tuna, yuzu kosho ponzu, watermelon, cucumber, avocado, edamame, wasabi peas, cilantro, chili, lotus root chips, spicy sesame
- Camarones Gigantes: grilled jumbo shrimps, cilantro sauce presilla, lemon, annatto oil
- Street Corn: grilled corn, chipotle crema, cotija, paprika tajin, scallion, chile, cilantro
80 Blue Jays Way, 437-800-5938
Located on the 44th floor of the swanky Bisha Hotel in the heart of TIFF-town, Kōst is an award winning restaurant and rooftop patio in downtown Toronto.
Kōst translates to “coast,” a vibe which is expressed in the restaurant’s decor and Baja-inspired menu. Designed by Studio Munge, Kōst is a reimagined coastal paradise. “Every detail was carefully curated to offer a modern oasis among the cityscape, from the bar made of interlocked marbles in shades of tropical peach, ivory and green, to the custom Canadian oak trellises across the ceiling and woven ivory banquettes in the main dining space,” said a spokesperson for Kōst.
The concept by INK Entertainment (who also run the neighbourhoods popular Weslodge and Patria) can seat 160 people. The spacious south-facing rooftop patio offers panoramic views of Lake Ontario, Rogers Centre and CN Tower. The terrace also offers a covered section with large umbrellas for those who need a respite from the sun.
Another unique design element is the NanaWall surrounding the restaurant, which allows for a seamless extension of the indoor dining space to the Toronto rooftop patio in the warmer months, and, of course, Kōst’s signature rooftop pool which is available for guests to enjoy in the summer.
Chef Frank Martin’s rooftop menu showcases the fresh flavours of Baja cuisine. Locals love Chef Martin’s Coconut Pancakes, Tuna Tartare, Gambas & Olives, Lamb Barbacoa, Smoked Short Rib and Burrata Salad.
The Kōst rooftop patio is known for its lively atmosphere, with a DJ spinning on Thursday, Friday and Saturday evenings, as well as during their epic brunch on Saturday and Sunday.
- Burrata: plum mostarda, roasted beets, truffle vinaigrette
- Ricotta Agnolotti: basil pesto, confit tomatoes, pine nuts, spinach, parmesan
- Smoked Short Rib: guajillo glaze, spiced sesame, pickle, boston bibb
550 Wellington St W, 416-601-3593
Casa Madera first opened its doors on King West in April, 2022.
Located on the main floor of 1 Hotel Toronto, Casa Madera is the first Canadian outpost for hospitality group Noble 33.
Co-founded by Tosh Berman and Mikey Tanha, Casa Madera is heavily inspired by Mexican coastal cuisine, in particular, the Mayan Riviera. The restaurant’s name directly translates to wood house, which comes from Tosh’s interest in creating a dining experience that transports guests to a coastal oasis.
Skip inside Casa Madera and you’ll find a lush green interior featuring a main dining room, lounge, private dining room and Garden Pavillion, a private outdoor space.
Like the hotel, natural textures, greenery, and ample vibrant lighting are incorporated throughout the restaurant. Continuing with the coastal theme, Casa Madera also incorporates wooden elements into the space, created by Just be Woodsy – a local woodworking studio that uses repurposed wood from fallen trees in Ontario.
Casa Madera’s Executive Chef Olivier Le Calvez shared, “My culinary inspirations and experience span multiple cultures, which is reflected in my approach to food. Earlier in my career, I received training from Parisian institutions and spent many years travelling throughout Mexico, which is why many of the dishes at Casa Madera feature elements from both backgrounds. Alongside my French and Mexican influences, I often take inspiration from Japanese and Peruvian cuisine to create dishes that feel unique and borderless.”
Flip through the trendy cocktail menu and you’ll each drink organized by the four elements: earth, air, fire and water. Many of the craft cocktails offer eye-popping presentations and feel like sippable performance art.
Some of Casa Madera’s best-known dishes include Chile Pulpo (grilled octopus), Ceviche Blanco (prepared with fresh seasonal white fish) and A La Roca, tender wagyu served on a sizzling stone.
550 Wellington St W, 416-601-3595
1 Hotel Toronto is located in the city’s trendy King West Village neighbourhood in what was formerly the Thompson Hotel.
1 Hotels is a luxury lifestyle hotel brand inspired by nature featuring sustainable design and architecture paired with top drawer service.
Visit the Toronto property and zoom up an elevator to the 16th-floor to enjoy a sip and nibble at Harriet’s Rooftop. It’s the city’s newest all-season rooftop destianton.
Inspired by the refined decadence of a 1920’s supperclub, Harriet’s pairs panoramic views of the Toronto skyline with a craft cocktail program, swanky bottle service, and refined Japanese small plates.
Executive Chef Derek Powers Jr’s Harriet’s Toronto menu can be enjoyed at Sunday brunch or as a late night bite.
Highlights from the Harriet’s Rooftop Patio menu include a Lobster Salad, Miso Eggplant with Ricotta, Octopus Hush Puppies, Chicken Katsu Sando, Miso Pork Chop and Instagram-worthy sushi rolls.
504 Adelaide Street West, 416-777-2800
Campechano Toronto was recently ranked as one of the top restaurants in the city by Toronto Life. Located at Adelaide and Portland, this tiny tanqueria is one of the best Mexican options in King West Village. Campechano in Spanish means no fuss. Expect to enjoy an authentic Mexican meal in a fun atmosphere where taco’s are the star of the show.
Campechano opened its doors in November 2015, taking over the Sadie’s Diner space. Daniel Roe and Raena Fisher oversee the day to day operations while the King West restaurant’s third owner, Javier Flores, operates a number of taco shops in Mexico City.
As a more casual option among King West restaurants, the walls feature eye-catching murals designed by Luke Pollard. During the warmer months of the year, Campechano’s patio is a favourite spot to sip margarita’s and devour guacamole with friends.
The King West restaurant’s talented bartender works in a small nook within the kitchen. There are two or three stools tucked under the bar top, making it a perfect spot if you’re looking to grab a quick bite and have a penchant for people watching. The Campechano bar offers creative craft cocktails like their Spicy Margarita or a personal favourite, the Mexican Old Fashioned, Mexican beer, as well as wine and sweet sangria.
Owner and Chef Daniel Roe has found success by keeping the Campechano menu simple. “We really try to convey a classic taqueria and memories from our childhoods in our grandmothers kitchen or family gatherings. Simple, fresh ingredients used in a way that for us brings us back home and it all starts with a good foundation of our fresh tortilla.”
Campechano’s menu is gluten-free and includes guacamole, ceviche, sope, and a parade of 8-10 tacos. One dessert, Flan de Caramelo, offers those with a sweet tooth a satisfying finish.
- Ceviche: with pico de gallo and nachos
- Sope: thick tortilla with beans, lettuce and cheese.
- Pollo al Pastor Taco: chicken thigh, pineapple, salsa macha.
106 John St, 416-588-3456
Jamil Bhuya opened the first Burgers N’Fries Forever location in Ottawa in August, 2013.
In 2020 the fancy fast food concept opened in Toronto’s west end, quickly becoming a popular Ossington restaurant. It later moved to its current location on John Street in the heart of the Entertainment District.
Located next to one of Toronto’s best ice cream shops (Sweet Jesus, please!) Burgers N’ Fries Forever is the perfect spot to enjoy a burger and poutine feast. After munching through a taste of classic Americana we suggest skipping next door for a soft serve after dinner dessert.
Skip inside Burgers N’ Fries Forever near King West Village and you’ll find a 16 seat outdoor patio and 28 seat dining room. The interior is clean and modern, featuring vintage globe pendants, which emphasize the height of the ceiling.
Bhuya explained, “we wanted the restaurant to look like a modern bar or coffee shop with lots of custom millwork including our custom round 4 top tables, wood slat bar and custom benches.”
The short but sweet menu features classic beef burgers as well as spicy Nashville-inspired hot chicken sandwiches. Sides include hand cut fries, onion rings, sweet potato fries and poutine.
Bhuya added, “I’ve always loved fast food. Growing up it was a treat and something I really looked forward to. After learning how processed and frozen most of the foods were, I wanted to reinvent the experience focusing on fresh, made to order burgers n’ fries. I believe burgers n’ fries are one of the original BFFs so that was the inspiration for the name.”
The King West burger restaurant sources its meat from the Butcher Shoppe, fresh vegetables from Bondi produce, and cheese curds from Maple Dale Cheese.
461 King St W, 416-365-5314
Rabbit! Rabbit! Rabbit! first opened its doors in November, 2021 in the heart of King West Village.
Owned by Distrikt461, a local boutique hospitality group, Rabbit! Rabbit! Rabbit! was originally crafted as a patio pop-up in the summer of 2021. After the overwhelming positive response from local foodies the concept moved into a permanent home at the historic 461 King West building (formerly The Greenwood).
“It’s our take on 1970’s West Texas in style. Rabbit! Rabbit! Rabbit! is a casual hangout spot, with Southwest American-inspired food. With thoughtfully curated menus and an upbeat and unpretentious atmosphere, Rabbit! Rabbit! Rabbit! is the perfect place to pop in and meet a friend or two, have a quick bite or stay long into the night,” said a spokesperson for the restaurant.
So what’s in the name? “Rabbit Rabbit Rabbit” is a superstitious saying. The story goes that you repeat the word “Rabbit” when you wake up at the beginning of every month, you’ll enjoy good luck all month long.
Skip inside the King West Tex Mex Restaurant and you’ll find a eye-popping space inspired by a 70’s Texas scape meets disco fun. Colours of the sunset, vintage record wall, and clementine lounge chairs from Neuvo design.
Ariel Coplan and Sam Paikowsky manage the restaurant’s creative kitchen. “To us, Rabbits! is a dignified approach to Tex-Mex, with flavours that can be best classified as refined nostalgia. The idea behind our offering is utilizing the flavours of the southwest, but refining them in a way that people don’t expect,” said the chefs.
The dining room features a cute cocktail bar serving shaken libations also inspired by the American Southwest. The Rabbit! Margarita is a play on a classic but includes Mezcal and a cordial made of shucked spring peas.
If it’s your first time visiting the restaurant you can opt for a egg-centric brunch or dinner. At night the braised short-rib is consistently a top seller. “We braise it for 24 hours, season it with salsa macha and sesame and garnish with roasted cauliflower, pickled shishito peppers, and hazelnuts,” said the chefs.
522 King St W, 416-703-2800
Myth Restaurant is located in the space that was formerly Brant House and The Citizen in the heart of King West Village.
Siblings and hospitality business partners Matty and Eileen Tsoumaris launched the Mediterranean concept in June, 2021.
John Tsoumaris, the founder and CEO of UNIQ Hospitality Group, first restaurant was called Myth, which he opened on the Danforth in 1994.
“At the time, Greek restaurants in the area were tavern-style and he introduced a more modern take on Mediterranean cuisine and brought life to the neighbourhood with his fusion of mezze dining, music and art. We resurrected the original concept in a fresh new way and new location on King Street,” said Tsoumaris.
The spacious King West Greek restaurant features a 5,000 sq ft dining room, which seats 150 guests indoors and 60 on terrazas.
Oenophiles have the opportunity to choose from an eclectic collection of Greek wines or pair mezze with a cocktail, as Myth will boast a diverse list that features authentic Greek liqueurs like Metaxa, Ouzo, and Mastiha.
Chef Sergio Abrunho’s Myth menu focuses on mezze dining and sharing plates, featuring traditional Greek dishes using modern techniques. Highlights include Salt Crusted Baked Fish, Zucchini Tower and Chicken Souvlaki.
295 Adelaide St W, 647-748-3446
FIGO first opened its doors in November 2015 in the heart of Toronto’s entertainment district. Designed by Studio Munge, the space features an open kitchen and large dining area with eye-catching hand-painted artwork on the high ceiling as well as a large outdoor terrace.
Executive Chef Anna Chen’s menu specializes in thoughtful dishes featuring ingredients familiar to Italian cuisine, but with modern interpretations. Chen started her career at Susur Lee’s restaurant Lee then moved to Scaramouche, where she got her first true taste of Italy. After a few stints at acclaimed restaurants in England she returned to Toronto to work at celebrated Italian kitchens Enoteca Sociale and Buca.
At FIGO Chef Chen makes fresh pasta in-house daily (swoon for Tortelli swimming in sage butter) and uses a traditional wood-fired oven to produce perfectly scorched pizzas. Other menu highlights include a selection of homemade ricottas (a fluffy tuft of heaven), slick cocktails and a handful of classic Italian desserts.
- Arancini: cacio de pepe, lemon aioli
- Zucchini Fritti: lemon crema fresca, honey
- Carbonara Pizza: pancetta, potato, crema fresca, egg, black pepper
- Tortelli: butternut squash, ricotta, butter, sage
188 University Ave, 647-788-8888
Rotate through the revolving doors at the Shangri-La Hotel in Toronto and you’ll immediately find yourself in the city’s most luxurious living room.
Shangri-La Hotel’s Asian roots are obvious as its High Tea program is managed by certified tea sommeliers. Cozy up at one of the Lobby Lounge’s booming fireplaces and enjoy romantic music played on a grand piano while sipping high quality loose leaf.
The Lobby Lounge offers 24 premium teas sourced from around the globe. High Tea is presented to guests in a traditional 3-tiered service. The pastry team produces some of the city’s finest tea cakes, dainty sandwiches and scones.
It’s our favourite high tea in Toronto for a special occasion like Mother’s Day or Valentine’s Day.
552 King St W, 416-792-1878
Wilbur Mexicana is our favourite of the King West restaurants to enjoy enjoy a casual quick service feast.
The popular Mexican restaurant is named after Wilbur Scoville, the famous chemist who created the Scoville scale, which measures the pungency and heat of spicy chili peppers.
Brothers and co-owners Will and Baird Cumberland had designed Wilbur Mexicana’s interior to pay homage to Scoville’s career working in labs. The 60-seat sky-high space features countertops with stools, leather banquettes and apothecary cabinets.
The open concept kitchen allows diners to peep onto the grill while a DIY salsa and hot sauce bar features freshly made sauces to spice up your tacos.
Cocktail fans can pair their So-Cal inspired Mexican dishes with a margarita or paloma. You’ll also find a seasonal wine offering alongside a Mexican beer list featuring Dox XX, Sol, Tecate and Model Especial.
- Mexican Street Corn: charred corn on the cob, chipotle crema, cotija, chili powder
- Kale Salad: spanish onion, pear, roasted walnuts & pecans, cotija cheese, citrus vinaigrette
- Cali Burrito: rice, carne asada, sweet potato, guacamole, jack & oaxaca cheese, salsa suave, sour cream
- Quesadilla: jack & oaxaca cheese, bell peppers & onions, and choice of chicken, carne asada or al pastor
- Fajita: sizzling skillet of bell peppers, onions, asada salsa, melted jack & oaxaca cheese served with guacamole, sour cream, lettuce and six flour tortillas (with chicken, carne asada, al pastor or shrimp)
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Coffee Oysters Champagne Toronto is a French restaurant located directly across from Roy Thomson Hall in Toronto’s theatre district near King West Village.
Coffee Oysters Champagne (also known as COC Toronto) offers a hidden patio, intimate cafe and champagne bar, and a secret French speakeasy dining room.
Coffee Oysters Champagne Toronto is brought to you by tech entrepreneur Sanjay Singhal and Oakville restaurateur Steven Daicos. The concept was inspired by Sanjay and Steven’s three favourite things: coffee, oysters, and champagne.
If you’re standing on the sidewalk in front of 214 King Street West, peer over the banister and you’ll find COC Toronto’s pretty patio. During the warmer months, the patio at Coffee Oysters Champagne Toronto features seating for an intimate group of 8-10 diners. In the evening it’s a truly romantic King West restaurant patio, decorated in glowing lanterns and overhead fairy lights.
Step inside COC and you’ll find a champagne and oyster bar meets cute cafe. In the morning hours, COC Toronto offers French pastries and sustainable single-farm speciality coffee from Colombia. It’s the perfect place to grab a cappuccino and croissant en route to work.
We also love the popular King West restaurant’s sun-soaked interior, embellished with bright white and pretty pink. It’s a perfect bar on King Street West to meet a client for a power lunch.
First time visitors to COC Toronto should be aware that there is far more to the restaurant than its elegant oyster and champagne bar. If you’ve booked yourself a dinner reservation, the smiling hostess will take you on a “champagne tour,” which meanders into a tiny champagne bottle hall of fame. With the flick of her wrist, the walls fall away, exposing a secret French speakeasy restaurant concept.
The dining room, simply called à toi, is inspired by the 1930s French hotel lobby bar. The hostess stand appears like a hotel check in counter. For those checking their coats, you’re given a hotel room key before a bell boy skips through the space to show you to your table. Photographs are strictly forbidden here (sorry Instagram fans). The Coffee Oysters Champagne Toronto owners want food fans to enjoy the magic of the experience for themselves. I can assure you that COC Toronto’s attention to detail in overall guest experience is top drawer!
- Carrot Terrine: swiss chard, orange reduction, fried herbs, endive salad, hazelnuts.
- Steak & Bones: veal marrow, steak tartare, pickled mushrooms, puffed barley.
- Almond and Eve: endive, black oyster mushrooms, green apple, almond gremolata.
- Crab & Caviar: lump crab, chili, lemon, house crackers, fennel cucumber consomme.
600 King St W, 416-862-8226
Anejo is a Mexican restaurant located on King West in Toronto, which first opened its doors in January, 2020.
The Mexican restaurant in Toronto’s trendy King West Village is located in a 1900’s heritage building. The space was formerly the home of Bier Market and before that, the original Amsterdam Brewing location.
Anejo Toronto’s dining room offers seating for 130, while its outdoor patio offers seasonal al fresco opportunities for a hungry crowd of 100.
Jay MacRaild, Brand Manager for Anejo Restaurant explained the Mexican restaurants interior design concept, “Our design was a collaboration with Calgary based Jamie Owen design. We tried to give the room its own personality while keeping some direct connections to our original location, items like the cross wall, movie projector and inlayed tables all mimic Añejo Calgary. We have received a lot of positive feedback on our lamps made from empty Clase Azul tequila bottles. The bottles are such an amazing work of art in and of themselves so for the past 8 years I’ve been saving all of our empties in anticipation of one day using them for an art project.”
The word Añejo means aged in the context of tequila production. Dine at the King West restaurant and you’ll find a menu inspired and influenced by traditional Mexican dishes and flavours.
MacRaild described Anejo’s unique bar program, “We are a one trick pony, agave spirits with tequila in particular is all we talk about. We are definitely a concept led by our bar, every margarita we produce is hand shaken just for you and countless of hours are spent creating our own puree’s and juices to keep that connection to Mexico’s tradition of fresh ingredients.”
With a spicy margarita in hand, wag your finger down the Anejo menu and you’ll find tableside guacamole, creamy Queso Fundido, pork belly and shrimp stuffed tacos and classic crunchy churros.
- Pineapple Jicama Carpaccio: grilled pineapple, roasted vegetables, jicama, cilantro
- Ginger Coconut Prawns: black tiger prawns, tamarind sauce
- Fundido Traditional: oaxaca cheese, pico de gallo, chorizo, sautéed mushrooms, tortillas
- Chili Relleno: goat cheese stuffed publano, cornmeal crust, spiced tomato sauce, mexican rice, manchego crisp
- Steak Tacos: lime marinated sirloin, mushrooms, oaxaca cheese, pickled jicama
Petty Cash first opened its doors in the heart of King West Village in 2018. The casual bar and restaurant concept is brought to you by Brandon Farmer and Matty Tsoumaris of Honeycomb Hospitality (also featured in this list via their popular Baro concept).
Petty Cash is one of the best King West restaurants to enjoy a late night feast as the kitchen is open until 2am daily. Enjoy classic bar food elevated to new heights paired with a cold pint or cocktail.
During the warmer months of the year we suggest grabbing a seat on the newly renovated outdoor patio, where half priced wine bottles are offered on the daily.
Sports fans can watch the game on indoor and outdoor TVs or you can dance to live music Thursday and Friday, with a DJ spinning later in the evening.
Petty Cash is the perfect fun date night spot in King West Village thanks to its pool tables and arcade games. The indoor space is separated in half by a garage style door, which opens up on weekends to hold over 300 people!
If it’s your first time dining at Petty Cash be sure to order a few of their pretty pizzas. Other menu highlights include nachos smothered in cheese sauce, honey lime wings, and Boston Peach Salad.
101 Portland Street, 416-504-9669
Since opening its doors in February 2012, Gusto 101 continues to be one of the many King West restaurants that people rave about. There are a few reasons why Gusto 101 makes our list of notable King West restaurants.
Visually the spot is stunning, an old abandoned auto shop has been turned into an urban restaurant space designed by Munge Leung. It is industrial, yet warm and romantic. The menu features everyone’s favourite classic Italiandishes, which are prepared well and at a reasonable price. Just remember that they don’t take reservations, so make sure to plan for an early dinner if you don’t want to loiter in line.
In addition to great craft cocktails, Gusto 101 offers Peroni for the beer lovers and an extensive wine list. You’ll find some of the best and most affordable wines here. Gusto 101’s affordable house wine is ingeniously served on tap, from a wine cask behind the bar. Winemaker Alejandra de Miguel from Vintage One has created a tasty Bianco (Pinot Grigio) and Rosso (Cabernet Sauvignon & Malbec) served at just $1 an ounce.
Gusto (pronounced Goo-sto) means ‘taste’ in Italian and undeniably, this King West restaurant’s menu lives up to the name. Gusto 101 offers up some bold and delicious tastes across the modern takes on classic dishes from Southern Italy.
- Burrata: roasted tomatoes, buffalo milk, calabrian honey, fennel pollen, olive oil.
- Cavolo Caesar: organic purple kale, shaved parmigiano, garlic croutons, crispy salami, avocado.
- Bucatini Amatriciana: house made guanciale, tomato sauce, black pepper, pecorino.
- Prosciutto e Rucola Pizza: tomato sauce, mozzarella, prosciutto, organic baby arugula, parmigiano.
601 King Street West, 416-504-7867
Lee Restaurant Toronto is undoubtedly one of the most respected among King West restaurants. It is a self titled joint from celebrity chef Susur Lee. In Toronto, the name Lee has become synonymous with creative Asian cuisine and you will never hear anything but rave reviews from the countless foodies who flock here and notoriously chirp, “share the slaw.”
In terms of design, Lee Restaurant is definitely unique among its peers of King West restaurants. With its large neon sign greeting guests from the street, stunning bar at the front centre of the interior, and everything in between, the environment at Lee Restaurant is visually stimulating and colourfully comfortable.
Lee Restaurant Toronto offers an unparalleled wine list along with fresh to order cocktails prepared with handcrafted ingredients. The King West restaurant’s signature cocktail is the Lee Lemonade, a Belvedere vodka-based cocktail made with fresh lemon, lemon mousse, rosemary and ginger, and garnished with a candied lemon wheel.
The menu at Lee Restaurant Toronto is truly an adventure in culinary art. Like a few other King West restaurants, the food here is meant to be shared among guests. Rather than order one or two mains, your group should plan to sample a wide range of smaller dishes to experience as much of the menu as possible.
- Singaporean-style slaw: 19 vegan & gluten-free ingredients, salted plum dressing, peanuts.
- French and Chinese Tong Yuen: warm sweet rice dumpling, chocolate nougat, indian pastry, strawberry, creme brulee, apricot & rosewater (contains nuts).
- Cheeseburger Spring Roll: crispy lettuce cup with fresh herbs & pickled veg, smoked chili mayo.
- Luckee Shrimp Cheung Fun: zucchini, myoga & scallion pesto, superior soya broth, Thai basil.
455 King Street West, 416-979-2660
Recently added to the ever-growing list of King West restaurants is one of Toronto’s newest steakhouses, MARBL. Located at the corner of King Street West and Spadina Avenue, MARBL Toronto dazzles with sophistication.
Owner Peter Girges (the brains behind West Oak restaurant in Vancouver) wanted to infuse a chic Yorkville vibe into one of his own restaurants while attracting the Bay Street crowd. No matter who you are, MARBL Toronto is the perfect stop off for an after-work cocktail or to indulge in extravagant steakhouse classics.
At the heart of MARBL Toronto, you’ll spot a floor to ceiling glass wine cellar, featuring rare wines from the U.S., Italy, and France. The in-house cocktail program at MARBL Toronto focuses on familiar sippers with an elevated twist.
If you’re coming to MARBL Toronto for just a drink, you’ll be warmly welcomed at the bar. Actually, we recommend it. Although this may be one of the best steakhouses among King West restaurants, you will be blown away by the cocktail quality and wine selection.
Led by Executive Chef Ryan Morrison, guests to MARBL can expect a fine-dining atmosphere with steakhouse classics. The menu is split into four different sections: starters, entrees, grill a la carte and sides. To experience the menu, in its entirety – we suggest ordering one dish from each section of the menu.
- Beets: whipped goat cheese, frisée, pistachio, pomegranate molasses
- Veal Chop “Parm”: burrata, tomato, basil
- 20oz Bone-In Ribeye: comes paired with housemade A2 Steak Sauce and Chimichurri
- Roasted Brussels Sprouts: bacon, chillies, grana padano
- Giant Chocolate Chip Cookie: vanilla ice cream
633 King Street West, 416-944-1932
Oretta opened in 2017 and distinguishes itself among other Italian King West restaurants as an authentic, yet modern-day Italian culinary experience. Oretta, meaning “about an hour,” features a sun-soaked dining room with central horseshoe bar, which is flanked by retro chic design-candy.
The 220-seat Art Deco-inspired restaurant by Salvatore Mele took a year and a half to build. When you enter Oretta’s main dining area you’ll find soaring arches that marry historic Italian architecture with stylish décor for a chic-casual dining environment that’s grounded in tradition.
Accessed from the pedestrian walkway next to the restaurant, the Oretta Toronto Cafe features Italian-style espresso coffees, homemade artisanal baked goods, pizzette and of course, their own, in-house focaccia. Because of its chic-casual atmosphere available seven days a week, the Oretta Toronto Cafe is a popular coffee shop for Torontonians who are looking to catch up with friends.
The exclusively Italian menu at Oretta Toronto is made up of a variety of authentic classics representing a number of regions across Italy. Like any Italian restaurant, Oretta Toronto uses only the finest ingredients, all prepared with modern-day flare.
Chef Christian Fontolan’s menu features a slew of classic Italian staples such as plump burrata, a collection of creative pizza’s (topped with the likes of orange preserves, pistachios, caramelized pear and n’duja), plenty of pasta from traditional tagliatelle tossed in ragu to the more inventive risotto which arrives on the plate as a square cake topped with duck, asparagus and sweet peas.
- Burrata Pugliese: vine tomato, cucumber, roasted pepper, pickled celery, charred pearl onion, arugula.
- Capricciosa Pizza: tomato, fior di latte, prosciutto cotto, mushrooms, artichoke, basil.
- Cavatelli e Cime di Rapa: pork sausage, rapini puree, braised rapini, parmigiano.
190 University Ave, 647-253-8000
Momofuku Noodle Bar Toronto is Chef David Chang’s culinary mecca in Canada.
Ranked as one of the best ramen restaurants in Toronto, Momofuku Noodle Bar specializes in Japanese noodle soup, steamed buns and family-style fried chicken feasts.
Momofuku Noodle Bar Toronto is not a fine dining restaurant. Chef Chang has created an open concept restaurant where strangers grab chopsticks together and share their slurping and smiles at communal tables. Noodle Bars in Japan and Korea are most often situated in busy train stations where people can grab a quick bite before rushing home.
Momofuku Noodle Bar Toronto has created a perfect spot for those downtown to grab a quick dinner before the ballet or a late night bite before heading out in the Entertainment District.
I am certain Momofuku Noodle Bar in downtown Toronto will become an institution in the city. A perfect spot to grab a quick yet nourishing bite with friends. Chef Chang has been recognized around the world for celebrating and innovating Japanese and Korean flavours and textures on his menus. Momofuku Noodle Bar elevates the ramen experience and Toronto is better for it.
133 Richmond St W, 416-907-0650
Rosalinda opened its doors in May 2018 in the heart of the city’s Entertainment District. The restaurant sits perched over Richmond Street West, a stones throw from the Sheraton Hotel, Four Seasons Performing Arts Centre and Toronto City Hall.
Rosalinda is Toronto’s first vegan Mexican concept, the brainchild of restaurateurs Jamie Cook (Pizzeria Libretto), Max Rimaldi (Enoteca Sociale) and Grant van Gameren (Bar Isabel, Bar Raval, El Rey, PrettyUgly, Tennessee Tavern).
Skip through Rosalinda’s front doors and you’ll discover a design-tastic 138-seat restaurant. The interior feels like a chic industrial garden, where sun splashes through overhead windows and lush plants offer a lively green accent. The fresh vibe makes it one of the most popular vegan restaurants in Toronto.
The interiors at Rosalinda Toronto were designed by Brenda Bent and Karen Gable. The eight-foot vintage stained-glass church doors offer a sense of history to the contemporary dining room. Adding a hat tip to old meets new. The instagram-worthy custom overhead greenhouse structure gives visitors the magical feeling that they are dining al fresco.
Ask a vegetarian in Toronto and they’ll without a doubt chirp “Rosalinda is the best Mexican restaurant in Toronto.” The restaurant’s menu was created by Executive Chefs Kate Chomyshyn and Julio Guajardo. You can also find the duo working their culinary magic at Grant van Gameren’s El Rey and Quetzal. Their vegan Mexican menu celebrates the best of Mexico and Baja California, featuring big and bold flavours.
- Jicama and Citrus Salad: avocado pistachio crema, pepitas and pickled onion
- Young Coconut Ceviche: apple, celery, pickled shallot and herb leche de tigre
- Mushroom Pozole: pasilla, hominy, napa cabbage and raw onion
- Roasted Cauliflower Tostada: sikil pak, almonds, herb salsa verde and pickled chilies
145 John St, 437-239-1515
Fans of the vintage bowling alley looking for a good time, thirst quenching cocktails and a cold beer find happiness at The Ballroom.
The spacious entertainment venue features 10-pin bowling, dozens of TVs, a rooftop patio and pub fare made fancy.
The Ballroom isn’t you’re old school neighbourhood bowling alley. People dress up here as the neighbourhood is decidedly trendy and it’s a popular spot for guys to meet up to enjoy a game or couples to flirt on a weekend date night.
The bar servers a slew of creative cocktails while the kitchen prepares fancy bowling alley snacks like gourmet pizzas, juicy burgers and spicy chicken sandwiches.
478 King Street West, 416-367-0505
One of the King West restaurants under the ownership of ICONINK, helmed by business partners Hanif Harji and Charles Khabouth, is the stunning Patria Toronto. When the duo opened the restaurant in October 2012, Harji and Khabouth strived to create an exceptional and unique experience with a menu inspired by the authentic tastes and flavours of Spain.
Designed by Commute Home, Patria Toronto is an authentic tapas bar that reflects the paradigm found in Spanish food and culture; a delicate balance between simplicity and sophistication curated with one-of-a-kind handcrafted light fixtures and design installations. Patria restaurant spans two floors for a total of 4,200 square feet and is divided into an elegantly modern dining room and an inviting lounge. Seated capacity is 120, with an additional 60 that can be seated on the patio. Private dining is also available on the second level and can accommodate 16.
One of the most impressive features of this King West restaurant is its bar, which proudly displays house-baked breads, cured meats and imported cheeses alongside a variety of wines and beers. As you would imagine, Patria Toronto’s wine menu features an extensive list of Spanish labels from different regions. In fact, well over 75% of the wines are imported directly from Spain.
In true Spanish fashion, the menu at Patria Toronto features a number of tapas plates meant to be shared at the table. “We were inspired by Spain’s uncomplicated approach to fresh, seasonal and honest food,” says Ben Heaton, Executive Chef, ICONINK. “We prepare each item with a commitment to the authenticity and traditional cooking methods of Spain.”
- Dátiles: dates, house bacon, manchego, guindillas.
- Paella Patria: shrimp, mussels, calamari, fish, snap peas, clams, saffron.
- Bombas con Salsa Brava: house chorizo, aioli, spicy piquillo sauce.
98 Portland Street, 416-985-5721
Sara was recently ranked as one of the top 10 best new restaurants in the city by Toronto Life. It’s quickly shooting to the top of everyones King West restaurants must-try lists. It’s the Food Dudes’ more refined sister restaurant to their grittier Rasa concept. Located in a two-story Victorian house, the 2400 sq ft space was totally gutted and transformed into a bright and airy dining experience.
My two favourite service moments offer a hat tip to Sara Toronto’s Japanese-inspired menu. After drinks are served, a ceremonial rolled oshibori towel is placed at the table. The sweetly scented, steaming hot towel offers a refreshing cleanse on a cold winters day. When nature calls, step downstairs and you’ll find a choir of bathrooms outfitted with classy Japanese toilets.
Sara’s drinks menu shares a distinct preference for vodka and gin. Four signature cocktails are described by their aromas and flavours and offer suggested pairings with top shelf vodka and gin bottles. You’ll also find a petite list of bottled craft beers and upscale consignment wines. If you’re looking to enjoy an impromptu King West restaurants dinner and the place happens to be packed, hop up on one of the bars soft pink stools. Bartenders are chatty and it’s a perfect perch to people watch.
Executive Chef Davin Shearer and Chef de Cuisine Mary Dinh have crafted a globally inspired small plates menu, which sing a sweet song to Japan. The luxe priced menu is organized by small dishes, dumplings, and Japanese charcoal grilling.
Several of Sara Toronto’s dishes offer a quick bite to be shared among a couple people. If you’re looking for a light tasting we’d suggest ordering four dishes between a party of two. If you’re starving, then you’ll likely want to order four dishes per person as plate portions are petite.
- Squash Latkes: salmon roe, chive cream, kombu syrup.
- Wagyu Reuben: gruyere, truffle mustard, sauerkraut.
- Snap Pea Slaw: asian pear, umeboshi, shio kombu.
- Shanghai Pork Dumplings: chili vinegar, scallion.
- Momo Yakitori: cherry umeboshi, mocha, sumac honey.
30 Mercer St, 416-883-3431
Tucked away on Toronto’s Mercer Street, just south of trendy King Street West, Le Germain Hotel Toronto recently unveiled an extensive top to bottom makeover at Victor Restaurant. Remodelled by the award winning DesignAgency, Victor’s fresh interior offers a contemporary interpretation of the classic meets comfortable American-style brasserie.
The newly expanded Victor seats 60, featuring a sun-soaked open air space with a glass-walled dining room that soars two-storeys high. First time visitors can’t help but jaw-drop at the restaurants eye-catching 700 sq ft twisted gold metal light fixture which romantically dangles above Italian leather wrapped banquettes. Throughout the dining room historic homages are displayed via antique-bronze accents, frosted amber mirrors, whimsical concrete tiling and soft Salisbury-green table tops.
The reimagined restaurant is also home to two new distinct spaces: Victor Cafe and Victor Bar. Those on their morning rush to work will fall head over heels for the white wood paneling and pastel colours which decorate the cafe. The bustling eatery serves classic hot beverages alongside house-made pastry treats such as lemon tart, dark chocolate cake and flaky croissants which are prepared by the hotel’s award winning pastry chef Martin Gouthro.
Craft cocktail fans will find happiness at the hotel’s new lobby bar which offers a sophisticated and intimate vibe. Cozy up at Victor Bar and you’ll find a curated wine list and lovely libations which offer a playful spin on your favourite shaken and muddled classics.
If you’re visiting for a fine feast plop yourself down in the dining room and nibble through Chef Lanny MacLeod’s new menu featuring a festive seafood tower, decadent 36-oz Tomahawk steak, and a series of fresh salads and inspiring small plates.
- Seafood Platter: shrimp, oysters, crab claws, scallops, lobster tail
- French Bean Salad: almonds, raisins, prosciutto, bleu benedictine
- Heirloom Tomato and Fresh Mozzarella Cheese
- 32 oz Tomahawk Steak: Bernaise and Peppercorn Sauce
326 Adelaide St W, 647-490-5040
Toronto’s Thai food fans have been eagerly waiting in anticipation for Chef Nuit Regular’s next culinary concept. In late May Chef Nuit and her partner in crime Jeff Regular opened their sixth restaurant which will introduce the city to a Thai fine dining concept which is certain to be a smash hit.
Everything Chef Nuit touches seems to turn to gold. From her first foray into Toronto’s restaurant scene at shabby chic Sukothai, authentic Loas loving at Sabai Sabai and her always buzzing Pai which specializes in dishes from Thailand’s far north.
The couples newest restaurant Kiin (which means “eat” in Thai) will introduce Torontonians to a yet to be discovered side of Thai cuisine. Chef Regular explains the concept, “Kiin is where Thailanders can get a taste of what they’ve been missing from home and Torontonians can try traditional dishes that they haven’t likely seen before but are favourites of ours. Our family of restaurants have had a Northern Thai focus, but Kiin will introduce traditional dishes from all over Thailand. The menu draws from the experiences I’ve had growing up in and traveling across Thailand, where sharing food is such an important part of the culture. Kiin will be like how meals are experienced back home.”
The restaurant is located on Adelaide at a location Chef Nuit is already familiar. They’ve completed gutted the former Khao San Road (where her Pad Thai and Khao Soi were so popular) and have reimagined a more refined space that is now barely recognizable. The long, narrow dining room was once rather dark, and has now been brightened up by sun-soaked windows flanked by shutters that offer a hat tip to colonial royal houses in Thailand.
The menu at Kiin is full of surprises, destined to be a hotspot for Toronto’s foodie community who are always keen to sip and nibble something new. For those who have traveled to Thailand, Kiin will offer a breath of fresh air as local delicacies forgotten on Toronto’s Thai menus appear here with pomp and panache.
- Royal Thai Platter: mha hor, chor ladda, rhoom, thoong thong
- Yum Tua Plu: wing beans, chilli shrimp paste, toasted coconut, peanut, soft boiled egg
- Khao Yum: jasmine rice, white turmeric, long beans, lemongrass, sawtooth coriander, kaffir lime leaves, cucumber, toasted coconut, pomelo, fried chilli, sunflower sprouts, edible flowers, tamarind, soy bean sauce
- Khao Tung Nah Tang: shrimp, crab, peanut, tamarind, and coconut spread with rice crackers
18 Duncan St, 416-901-4724
Pai is the Entertainment District’s busiest Thai restaurant. Located a hop, skip and a jump from Roy Thomson Hall, it’s the sister restaurant to Chef Regular’s Kiin.
The interior of Pai Restaurant showcases an honest Thai aesthetic featuring road signs scribbled in Thai, traditional indigenous wood carvings, art imports, a royal portrait and stacks of the South East Asian countries signature Singha. In front of the kitchen a massive bowl overflowing with ripe mangos had me licking my lips while whimsical spider man swooped in the air above beloved bartender.
Chef Nuit has her own legion of groupies, all of which, just like me, are willing to wait in line for her authentic taste of Thailand. I was happy to see the menu here only features a few of her past dishes, so folks looking to find new inspiration have the opportunity to adventure through a new parade of plates. Chef Nuit classics you can find here include pad thai (well of course) and deep fried squash fritters (that munch and crunch).
- Beef Salad: grilled beef, lemongrass, min, coriander, kaffir lime leaf, shallot, tangly lime sauce
- Tom Yum Kung Mor Fai: savoury, spicy and sour shrimp soup, lemongrass, coriander, green onions and rice
- Gaeng Kiaw Wan: fish green curry with bamboo shoots, kaffir lime leaf, basil, green pepper, coconut milk served in a coconut
- Khao Pad Saparot: stir fried jasmine rice, fresh pineapple, egg, green onion, oyster sauce, served in a pineapple
420A Wellington St W, 647-951-3331
Mira is a Peruvian restaurant in Toronto located between Wellington Avenue and King Street West. The elegant restaurant in Toronto’s trendy King West neighbourhood first opened its doors in February, 2019. The restaurant’s interior used to be home to F-Stop nightclub, and the hidden, alleyway entrance offers a secret speakeasy vibe.
Step inside Mira restaurant and you’ll find an intimate space, inspired by the artistic Miraflores neighbourhood in Lima, Peru. The interior design offers an homage to Lima’s creative cool. Circle around the dining room and you’ll find artfully designed furniture, bold and colourful murals, mirrored surfaces, traditional tattoo art, pinup girls, tentacles and a neon llama leading to the bathroom downstairs.
Looking for a romantic cocktail bar on King Street West? Mira Toronto’s beverage menu offers a well curated wine-by-the-glass offering, plenty of sake, and premium craft beer. We suggest pairing one of the bartenders pretty pisco cocktails with Chef Janet Hoediono’s menu, offering classic Peruvian dishes with a contemporary twist.
- Yucca Fries: lime huancaina, jalapeno huacatay
- Mira Ceviche: fluke, sweet potato, leche de tigre, criollo, cancha corn
- Salmon Teriyaki: ginger, green onion, yuzu kosho, soy beurre blanc
- Cerdo: suckling pig, quinoa fried rice, ramen glaze, rocoto jam
- Con Setas: wild mushrooms, truffle, huitlacoche, artichokes
115 Bathurst St, 416-540-4030
Northern Maverick Brewing opened its doors in King West Village just in time for TIFF in September 2017.
The massive 11,000 sq. ft. space features a 10-hectolitre brewhouse with eight 20-hl fermenters, petite retail shop, and two-story restaurant complete with open concept dining room, eye-catching beer bar, and private dining suite.
The 400-seat King West restaurant boasts an expansive street-front patio as well as spectacular city views from a second floor beer school and library. Beer-lovers can go from amateur to expert as the school offers courses in beer and food pairings; the fine art of home brewing, beer tasting and recipe development.
Brewmaster Andrew Crowder manages the tanks at Northern Maverick after spending five years at Muskoka Brewery. Northern Maverick’s signature is its Vienna-style lager but also features four other mainstays including Sessions American Pale Ale, a White IPA, First Day IPA and Gose.
Executive Chef Mark Cutrara (formerly Cowbell and Bar Hop) brings his passion for sustainably-sourced food to the Northern Maverick menu, offering a collection of dishes perfect for a pint pairing. Chef Cutrara’s culinary team smoke their own cheese and age their own charcuterie, offering snack lovers a perfect mix and match board option where ooey gooey fromage and smokey meat are paired with candied nuts, grainy mustard and pickled vegetables.
- Beer & Cheese Chowder: bacon, smoked cheese and croutons
- Ricotta Squash Cakes: summer squash pancake, buffalo ricotta, grana padano, gremolata, pine nuts
- Vegan Truffled Mushroom Risotto: barley, vegetable broth, gremolata
- Buttermilk Fried Chicken: house-made cornbread, slaw, mango habanero sauce
- Porchetta Bao: roasted pork, hoisin sauce, pickled carrot, steamed buns
230 Adelaide St W, 647-748-3211
Copacabana is the city’s best Brazilian Steakhouse. The popular Brazilian restaurant specializes in traditional rodizio churrascaria. On weekend guests are entertained with traditional Brazilian music and dance.
Traditional Brazilian steakhouses offer an all you can eat experience, which Copacabana Toronto stays true to. Most rodizio courses are traditionally served right off the cooking spit and are sliced at the table. Guests become chummy with handsome servers who slice perfected charred meat onto your plate.
The social atmosphere at the table makes the dining experience a humorous one, perfect for a group of friends looking to enjoy a Caipirinha cocktail sloshed evening or families keen on introducing their little ones to a playful feast.
Copacabana Brazilian restaurant in Toronto comes alive on Friday and Saturday nights, offering hungry guests live entertainment throughout the evening which includes Samba Dancers, Aerial Silk Artists and Brazilian Drummers.
In preparation for Copacabana’s opening, owner and executive chef Michael Rudan set off to Porto Alegre to train in Brazil’s most celebrated rodizio restaurants. Today, Chef Michael aims to bring a North American twist to the Brazilian steakhouse experience and currently offers more than 20 cuts of grilled meats and traditional sides, which are on offer at a self serve galleria.
At Copacabana restaurant servers visit your table with a diverse selection of premium meats, which are carved before your very eyes. You’ll be offered a selection of barbecue beef cuts, chicken, lamb, and seafood.
Once seated at your table, guests at Copacabana Brazilian Steakhouse skip into line and to enjoy a self serve Galleria. The Brazilian buffet offers plenty of options for vegetarians and meat lovers. You’ll find a diverse selection of fresh salads, pasta, bread, and charcuterie.
46 Blue Jays Way, 416-489-8922
Wahlburgers Toronto officially launched in the middle of November with a star studded, razzle dazzle soiree.
Blue Jays Way was closed off to traffic outside of the Soho Metropolitan Hotel and a massive crowd of Wahlberg fans and media stood shivering in the cold as guests arrived along the green carpet. The crowd went wild when New Kids on the Block throwback Donnie Wahlberg arrived with his blond bombshell Jenny McCarthy.
Wahlburgers restaurant in Toronto received the most buzz via its A&E Emmy-nominated reality show which offers viewers a behind-the-scenes look at the titled restaurant owned by chef Paul Wahlberg and his brothers, actors Mark and Donnie.
If you’re looking for a more intimate experience the tables and banquets on the main floor of Wahlburgers offer an opportunity to enjoy a casual feast thanks to an army smiling servers. The windows double as doors and will swing open in the summer, offering new thrills to patio loving beer and burger aficionado’s in the downtown core. If you walk to the back of the restaurant they’ve set up a quick service space for those looking for speedy fast food or takeout.
Wahlburgers offers a breath of fresh air to the city’s competitive gourmet burger space. While the brand is based in Boston chef Paul has made a point of ensuring local ingredients are celebrated at his first Canadian outpost. The kitchen grinds its own 100% Canadian Beef (tres bon) and the brewmasters at Mill Street Brewery in Toronto’s own Distillery District have crafted a hoppy IPA just for the restaurant which they cutely call the Walbrewski North.
While I am definitely a beef burger fan, it was the Thanksgiving Burger (Mark’s favourite) that truly wooed me. Fresh ground seasoned turkey is layered with holiday stuffing, orange cranberry sauce, roasted butternut squash and mayonnaise. Holy cow literally screaming in your mouth. Fans of the fish will also enjoy the crispy crunch of the Haddock Sandwich while the Spinach Salad adorned with sweet gala apples, creamy gorgonzola and smokey bacon offers an “almost healthy” alternative for those trying to make good decisions in the worst place possible.
11 Duncan St, 647-660-0909
Executive Chef Stuart Cameron has been inspiring King Street West with his culinary skills for years.
When I first visited Weslodge Saloon it was the decorum and campy taxidermy aesthetic of the space that left the strongest impression. Patria, his follow-up project next door offered jaw dropping interiors and an authentic Spanish dining experience which had folks bustling for brunch.
When I visited Byblos for dinner it seemed as though Chef Cameron has perfected his craft, offering a sun-soaked dining experience where authentic Mediterranean sips and nibbles inspire. And with Charles Kabouth, an import from Lebanon, running the show it has a personality driven seal of approval with sweet whispers from his home sweet home.
Byblos offers a breath of fresh air, a muddling of aromas, textures and flavours inspired by the Middle East, which for the first time are being showcased in Toronto’s Entertainment District. The cocktail program here is stellar and with a lengthy menu of tapas style plates, the perfect spot to enjoy after work drinks and a light bite. The dining room also offers comfy booths, an ideal spot to enjoy a lengthy celebratory feast, a Lebanese inspired bacchanal.
- Basturma Egg: mozzarella, brik pastry, bieber chili aioli, schug
- Cheese Acharuli: quail egg, brioche, za’atar
- Duck Kibbeh: dried fig, date molasses, tahini
- Turkish Manti Dumplings: smoky eggplant, yogurt sauce, molasses
364 Adelaide St W, 416-597-8839
Tutti Matti serves quality food and wine that pays tribute to the culinary history of Tuscany. It is the fulfillment of a dream of chef Alida Solomon, who sought to bring both Tuscan food and culture to Toronto.
“I fell in love with Italy on our very first trip,” says Solomon, who joined a good friend who was travelling to Siena, on a University of Toronto exchange program.
Solomon continued to soak up all things Mediterranean, visiting frequently in the years that followed and living in Italy from the end of 1995 until 2000. During that time, she worked at Osteria di Porta al Cassero in Montalcino, where, under the tutelage of the owner Piero, she mastered everything from tiramisu from scratch to deboning a wild boar.
It was also here that Solomon realized just how vast the gulf could be between authentic Italian food and the dishes in Canada.
Visit Tutti Matti in the Entertainment District and you’ll find an evolving menu that never strays too far from original Tuscan concepts. Enjoy bowls filled with chewy pici, rustic boar ragu and peppery radicchio salad.
609 King St W, 416-703-7775
Sitting perched over King West, WVRST is a German Beer Hall famous for serving gourmet sausages, Belgian frites and Toronto craft beer.
Owner Aldo Lanzillotta opened the second-floor German sausage restaurant in 2011. WVRST is inspired by rowdy Bavarian beerhalls. Toronto’s version of the beer and sausage concept has left the rowdy polka dancing in Munich.
Skip inside WVRST restaurant and you’ll find a parade of communal tables, dangling Edison bulbs and red subway-tiled walls. On the right hand side of the dining room you’ll find one of Toronto’s best craft beer bars. Straight ahead guests line up to order from a selection of artisanal sausages.
- Duck Fat Fries: served with a selection of dips or covered in melted raclette or smoked gouda cheese
- Dirty Fries: frites topped with peppers, jalapenos, onions and curry WVRST sauce
- Pretzel: served with mustard or cheese sauce
- Fermented and Pickled Vegetables: kimchi, sauerkraut, beets, green beans, turnip and cauliflower
- Sausages: typically 30 on offer with our favourites being Bison blueberry maple and Berkshire pork honey garlic
488 Wellington St W, 416-979-1990
Marben restaurant is located in King West Village at Wellington and Portland. The long-standing fine dining favourite is constantly evolving, reinventing itself every few years.
One of Toronto’s original farm-to-table restaurants, Marben features a front patio, two floors of dining rooms and an underground speakeasy.
The trendy King West restaurants interior features exposed brick and is furnished with tinted leather banquettes, distressed woods and thrift-store artwork.
Marben’s menu focuses on showcasing whatever is fresh and in season in Ontario and across Canada. The chef’s inventive dishes pair perfectly with the bartenders choir of craft cocktails.
- Ontario Shrimp: cucumber relish, compressed cucumber, kombucha apples, habanero labneh, cilantro, lemon balm
- Ricotta & Tomato Curd: house ricotta, tomato curd, heirloom tomatoes, chives, green tomato pickles, green onion, cold pressed rapeseed oil
- Pea Miso Glazed Nantes Carrot: eggplant purée, cauliflower crisps, kelp, cabbage ketchup
- Sirloin Steak: braised cippolinis, nantes carrot & chicken garum purée, buttered radishes, herb salad
- Fogo Island Cod: pan seared, PEI mussels, ontario shrimp sauce, lovage, fermented mushrooms, red shiso, warm lettuces
432 Wellington St W, 416-596-6405
Located next door to Marben on Wellington Street, Le Select is one of Toronto’s best French cafes and restaurants.
The Parisian restaurant offers a spacious front patio, cute cafe and elegant dining room featured pressed ceiling tiles and zinc bar.
Chef Laura Maxwell’s dinner menu showcases a complete repertoire of French bistro classics from duck confit to the restaurant’s signature, choucroute garnie.
On weekends Le Select serves one of the best brunch menus in Toronto. The casual cafe out front if perfect if you’re looking to catch up with a friend over a cappuccino and croissant. In the main dining room, rich chocolate and creamy hollandaise are dolloped on dishes with generosity.
- Salade Frisee Lardons: frisee lettuce, pork lardons, avocado, tomato, jerez vinaigrette, poached egg
- Parfait de Foies de Canard: duck liver parfait, pistachios and berries
- Choucroute Garnie: cabbage braised in white wine, with pork hock, lardons, strasbourg & smoked montbéliard sausage
- Boeuf Bourguignon: braised beef, red wine sauce, crispy pork lardons, pommes fourchette
- Cassoulet: braised white lingot beans with lamb, pork belly, toulouse sausage and duck confit
461 King St W, 416-599-7746
If you’re looking for a truly weird dining experience on King Street West, enjoy after work dinner and drinks at SPiN Toronto.
Owner Ryan Fisher opened Toronto’s version of the New York club (attached to Academy Award winner Susan Sarandon) in 2011.
The 12,000 sq ft ping pong social club boasts 2 licensed bars, 12 ping pong tables, cocktail and food menu, lounge and private party room. While memberships can be bought by locals who are ping pong obsessed, those looking for an after work snack and game time will also find happiness here.
SPiN is the perfect spot in King West Village to socialize after work or on a rainy day. Beginners can practice their paddle skills while friends loiter over bottles of Toronto craft beer and sweet finger-licking-good snacks.
- Steak Taquito: hanger steak, radish pico, cotija, hot sauce, iceberg, sour cream, corn tortilla
- Cheesy Garlic Sticks: confit garlic, mozzarella, grana padano, donair sauce
- Crunch Wrap Supreme and Slaw: chicken adobo, refried black beans, tomato, avocado, cashew queso
- Crispy Pork Lettuce Wrap: pork knuckle, garlic fried rice, pickled red onion, bean sprout, Filipino gravy
- Currywurst and Fries: house-made bratwurst, mayo, German ketchup
5 Mercer St, 416-850-2855
Milagro Cantina is located in the heart of the Entertainment District a short skip down the street from King West.
The popular Mexican restaurant first opened its doors in 2006. It was the OG Mexican restaurant in the neighbourhood, long before Campechano, Wilbur and Anejo opened their doors.
Milagro Cantina is located in the heart of the theatre district. You’ll find it bustling with the theatre crowd moments before the next Mirvish show dazzles the city.
The spacious dining room offers a casual vibe and friendly servers are really knowledgeable about the chefs regional Mexican dishes and quality tequilas.
- Ceviche Tropical: snapper, mango, serrano, tomato, red onion, cilantro
- Cochinita Pibil: roasted pulled pork in achiote, refrito beans, pickled habanero onions, corn tortillas
- Pollo en Mole: pulled roast chicken, house mole poblano sauce, Mexican rice
- Tacos Rosarito: sauteed shrimp, refritos, cream, salsa, warm corn tortillas
169 Niagara Street, 416-703-4222
In April 2012, Edulis Toronto was opened by Michael Caballo and Tobey Nemeth in the former Niagara Street Cafe space. Caballo had been the chef at Niagara Street Cafe several years before and the two had always dreamt of it as their ideal location. After four years of travelling and cooking in Italy, Spain, Panama, Haida Gwaii, and Vancouver, the culinary pair were ready and excited to return to Toronto to open Edulis.
Located on a more intimate side street away from the bustle of other King West restaurants, Edulis Toronto feels especially romantic and serene. The restaurant is filled with the couple’s personal treasures, including an antique duck press (which they use for preparing the famous Canard a la Bresse), copper pots collected over the years, and most significantly, framed menus from the many meals in their travels which they claim have influenced them the most.
As one might expect from a Southern European restaurant, Edulis Toronto focuses on wine rather than cocktails. The King West restaurant’s wine list is primarily old world with a particular emphasis on, surprise: Spain and France! They also make all their own sodas and love recommending old fashioned aperitifs for guests before they begin their meal. Examples include Floc de Gascogne, Lillet, and White Port.
Unlike most King West restaurant, the Edulis Toronto menu changes every day. In fact, they don’t even print out a menu and instead encourage their guest to put their taste buds in the chefs hands. The Edulis Toronto menu is based primarily on seafood. The chefs write a new menu each day based on whatever their suppliers have available that day.
330 King St W, 647-288-4710
Looking for the best King West Restaurants to enjoy a casual and affordable meal at TIFF?
O&B Canteen is located on the main floor of Festival Tower, the home of the Toronto International Film Festival.
In September when the city fills with red carpets and paparazzi, O&B Canteen gets packed with visiting producers, film makers and publicists. It’s location within the festival makes it the easiest restaurant to grab a quick breakfast, lunch or dinner.
Managed by the award-winning restaurant group Oliver & Bonacini, O&B Canteen’s menu features comfort food Italian dishes like pizza, pasta and fresh salads.
350 King Street West, 647-288-4715
Luma is located on the 2nd floor of the TIFF Bell Lightbox. It’s the perfect fine dining experience for those looking to tuck into a pre-cinema meal during the Toronto International Film Festival.
The romantic restaurant is known for serving elevated Canadian fare. Like O&B Canteen on the main floor of the building, Luma is also managed by celebrated restaurant group Oliver & Bonacini.
If you’re looking for the best happy hour in Toronto, Luma’s cocktail bar overlooking King Street West is our favourite perch to sip craft cocktails.
In the afternoon many of the cocktails, beer and wine are offered at a discount for happy hour so it’s a great spot to meet friends before seeing a show in the theatre district or on a romantic date night.
Chef Michael Wilson’s menu showcases a diverse range of fresh fish and seafood, quality meats, and seasonal vegetables. Warm and inviting, the dining room and bar are designed with rich woods, leather and stone, and the cozy lounge is filled with plush sofas and eye-catching artwork.
- Grilled Octopus: capers, anchovy, tomato, olives, spinach, sourdough, brown butter
- Atlantic Cod Tagine: couscous, tomato, sweet peppers, fennel, harissa, lemon
- Miso Maitake Mushroom Risotto: dashi, mixed mushrooms, mustard greens, black truffle
- Grilled Beef Striploin: roasted marble potato, truffle béchamel, root vegetables, red wine jus
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