Hello Darlings, If you are like me and perpetually wondering where to go, this is my current Top 5 list of restaurants and social places in Toronto. All five have great patios, fantastic food and a relaxing atmosphere.
This is my favourite restaurant for a lazy Saturday afternoon date lunch. It’s in the heart of the upscale Yorkville shopping area, at the corner of Yorkville Avenue and Bellair Street. The menu is Italian and my all-time favourite is the mushroom pasta. The prices are reasonable, with most main courses costing less than $20. The restaurant is in an old house, with numerous dining rooms and patios in different locations. My favourite is the patio upstairs with a great view over Bellair Street. For a special romantic occasion, Cafe Nervosa has a super cute table just for 2 on a private patio overlooking Yorkville Avenue – worth checking out!
This is my favourite patio for socializing in the summer. They have one of the best rooftop patios in the city, with a bar and large dining area on the 5th floor of the building, which is located in the heart of the King Street West entertainment district at the corner of Portland Street. Bartender Joe is always fun and makes a wicked mojito or chocolate martini. The crowd is also usually great since The Spoke Club was conceived as a social gathering place for people with an interest in media, entertainment and the arts. It is a private members club, so access may be a challenge unless you know someone who is a member. But they do have regular parties that are often lots of fun – such as their RockStar Party last Saturday night as part of the Much Music Video Award celebrations. It’s also possible to book private parties, last summer I had my birthday party on the rooftop patio for 10 friends at their “Harvest Table”.
This is my favourite place for Sunday brunch. Mildred’s is just south of King Street in Liberty Village, which is about 5 miles west of downtown Toronto so it’s a bit of a trek. But there is something about the place that I love – which may have a lot to do with the monstrous blueberry buttermilk pancakes!
Almost directly across from The Spoke Club and near the corner of King and Portland Streets is my favourite restaurant Lee, which is owned by famous international chef Susur Lee. The atmosphere is fun and lively, and the restaurant is in the heart of the King Street West entertainment district. Susur Lee is recognized as one of the best chefs in Toronto, and the french / asian inspired menu is excellent. My personal favourite is the Singaporean-Style Slaw, which is a monstrous salad for two which has something like 30 different ingredients. Definitely worth checking out for either a date night or a girls night out.
A new favourite on my list is The Oxley in the upscale Yorkville neighbourhood. Opened in spring 2012, The Oxley is a restaurant and bar in a beautifully renovated old Victorian house located at the intersection of Yorkville Avenue and Hazelton Avenue. My favourite location is the front patio, which is wonder for people watching. I’ve also discovered courtesy of The Oxley my new favourite summertime drink “Pimms Cup”, which goes really well with a big dish of their mussels.
What’s on your list of top places to hang out this summer???