Parallel Toronto Restaurant: Middle Eastern Brunch on Geary Avenue

Parallel Toronto is considered one of the best Middle Eastern restaurants in Toronto. The restaurant on Geary Avenue is famous for its weekend brunch, flavourful vegetarian dishes and freshly made tahini.

Parallel Toronto

As if Toronto didn’t already have a plethora of delicious foodie neighbourhoods to chose from, Geary Avenue springs up and surprises us all. The up-and-coming culinary scene along this 1.5km stretch can be found between Dovercourt and Dufferin, just north of Dupont.

Most Torontonians have never heard of Geary Ave until now as it has historically been a manufacturing zone. In recent years the street has welcomed a pizzeria, pasta factory, craft brewery, honey boutique and Parallel Restaurant.

Parallel Toronto brings together the culinary experience and background of the three Ozery brothers, Alon, Guy, and Aharon. Alon and Guy founded and built Ozery Bakery in 1996. Since then, they have been inventing alternatives to traditional bread products that are made from hearty whole grains, fruits, and seeds.

The duo explain the restaurants central ingredient, “We grew up in a home where sesame butter was consumed regularly alongside flavourful Mediterranean cuisine. Parallel restaurant was born from our history and love for tahini. It’s part of our culture and upbringing, and we want to share that with you.”

The dining room at Parallel Toronto.
The dining room at Parallel Toronto.

Step Inside Parallel Toronto

The Middle Eastern restaurant is most popular during the weekends as it’s ranked as having one of the best brunch menus in Toronto. On Saturday and Sunday the industrial building turned tahini factory and restaurant gets packed with breakfast fans. Families, couples and groups of foodie loving friends arrive in droves to tuck into a fresh and flavourful menu inspired by the Levant. It’s one of the best restaurants in Toronto to sample the flavours of Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, Jordan and Dubai.

Skip to the back of the restaurant’s dining room and you’ll find the star of the show. Two large slabs of volcanic basalt stones from Syria which mill Ethiopian sesame seeds into a creamy sesame butter. March up to the second floor dining room and you’ll notice Parallel’s innovative use of the space above its bathrooms, a lush herb garden primed for plucking!

Parallel Toronto's signature Truffle Hummus.
Parallel Toronto’s signature Truffle Hummus.

Parallel Toronto Bar

If you’re having brunch at Parallel restaurant be sure to enjoy a fresh smoothie or signature sesame butter latte. During the lunch and dinner hours we suggest sipping through the bartenders Middle Eastern-inspired craft cocktail list.

  • Arak Cocktail: arak, lemonade, mint
  • The Last Waltz: bulldog gin, aperol, luxardo bitter, white lies sour foam
  • Steel Magnolias: bulldog gin, pernod, sauvignon blanc reduction, lemon, egg white, orange blossom water
  • Wailing Wall Fizz: campari, pisco, luxardo bitter, lemon, strawberry, egg white, simple syrup
  • Coupe de Grace: espolon reposado, sombra mezcal, averna green chartreuse, cardamom, bitter, lemon
  • Parallel Old Fashioned: wild turkey bourbon, arak, simple syrup, house bitter, cedar bitters, orange
  • The Dead Poet: el dorado 12 year rum, spiced syrup, lime juice, prosecco
  • Parallel Espresso Martini: ketel one vodka, el dorado rum, spiced simple syrup, espresso, lemon, havla
Toronto's best falafel at Parallel Toronto.
Toronto’s best falafel.

Parallel Toronto Menu

The restaurants Tahini machine isn’t just the focal point of the dining room, you’ll find the fresh sesame butter celebrated throughout the menu.

You can enjoy the restaurant’s freshly ground tahini in a myriad of ways: enjoyed simply dipped with freshly baked pita, doused over the kitchen’s delicious savoury dishes, twirled into a fruit smoothie, transformed into sweet halva, or as take home jars labelled pure, beet, or smoked sesame butter.

Parallel Toronto Appetizers

  • Labaneh: grated tomato, confit garlic, israeli za’atar, olive oil
  • Hummus: chickpeas, tahini, parsley, olive oil, schug
  • House Olives: thyme, grapefruit lemon marinade
  • Herb Falafel: beet tahini
  • Truffle Hummus: house made hummus, soy button mushrooms, chickpeas, lemon garlic dressing, truffle tahini, schug, pine nuts
  • Eggplant Siniya: fire roasted eggplant, warm tahini, herbs, warm challah
  • Mushroom Mix on Crispy Za’atar Pita: five kinds of mushrooms sauteed with garlic lemon, thyme, truffle oil, arugula
Lamb and beef kebab filled pita with yam, tahini and spicy tomato salad.
Lamb and beef kebab filled pita with yam, tahini and spicy tomato salad.

Parallel Toronto Salads

  • Parallel Salad: kale, sweet potato, black lentils, goat cheese, scallion, mint, walnuts, lemon and honey vinaigrette, beet tahini
  • Fattoush Salad: tomato, cucumber, red onion, mint, scallion, parsley smoked tahini, crispy za’atar pita croutons, sumac
  • Grilled Asparagus: labaneh and smoked eggplant creme, smoked roasted sliced almonds
  • Tuna Tartar: green apple, red beets, walnuts, radish, shallots, mango cream, black diamond salt, home made labaneh

Parallel Toronto Entrees

  • Branzino Bandora: garlic roasted cherry tomatoes, iliada olive oil, garlic, oregano, chilli, herb crumble, sesame butter
  • Cauliflower: fried cauliflower, fresh herbs, walnuts, turmeric aioli, beet tahini
  • Fishawarma: grouper, yogurt tahini, fresh tomato salsa, turmeric, aioli, sumac
  • Arais: crispy lamb and beef filled kofta, house made tahini
  • Labaneh and Polenta Shawarma: lamb shank shawarma, brussel sprouts, smoked paprika, mushrooms, lamb stock
Housemade Halva at Parallel Toronto.
Housemade Halva at Parallel Toronto.

Brunch Menu at Parallel Toronto

Many of the restaurants Middle Eastern dinner dishes are available at brunch. You’ll have to visit on Saturday or Sunday morning to enjoy these delicious dishes and drinks.

  • Green Smoothie: kale, green apple, avocado, mint, honey, peach, ginger
  • Tahini Smoothie: banana, dates, tahini, honey, walnuts
  • Hammshuka: shakshuka on homemade hummus
  • Masabacha: warm hummus, warm chickpeas, organic hard boiled egg, lemon garlic chilli dressing
  • Black Sabbath: two organic poached eggs on walnut rye, avocado, tomato, black tahini, side salad
  • E-ja: iraqi herb omellet, red chillies, tahini, side salad
  • Shakshuka: ripe tomato sauce, two organic poached eggs, side salad, pita

Parallel Toronto Hours

Monday and Tuesday: closed

Wednesday to Friday: 11am-4pm and 5-10:30pm

Saturday: 10am-4pm and 5-11:30pm

Sunday: 10am-4pm and 5-10pm

Parallel Toronto Reservations

217 Geary Avenue, 416-516-7765

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