Best of Toronto:

A Venice, Italy and Venice, California mash-up? A hidden cocktail bar/art gallery? Yes and yes. When it comes to food and drink, there is no shortage of options in Toronto, Canada’s largest and most cosmopolitan city. Hot new openings and even a few sudden closures happen weekly, keeping foodies and cocktail aficionados on their toes. Here is a round up of the addresses that visitors and locals alike should try to snag a table at in the big smoke.

           —By Lauren Walker-Lee

*Please refer to each individual establishment’s website/social media concerning their hours of operation as businesses begin to gradually re-open.

toronto bars

Photo Credit: Robin Sassi

la palma

849 Dundas St W 2nd floor

Inspired by both Venice, California and Venice, Italy, La Palma provides a light and airy space with Instagram worthy murals by artist Madison van Rijn. Have a lazy lunch, get some take away, or have an epic evening meal with sexy cocktails. 



toronto bars

Photo Credit: Leanne Neufeld


472 Queen St W

There are cocktail bars and then there’s BarChef. The dimly lit, intimate hangout offers very creative cocktails, with over 5000 house-made bitters. This is a premier spot for well-crafted drinks executed perfectly by master mixologists.



toronto restaurant

 el rey

2a Kensington Ave

A no reservations spot in Kensington Market serving Mexican small plates and, of course, amazing Mezcal’s and Tequilas. For some authentic dishes and Mexican Mezcal and Tequila, El Rey is perfect for a night out with friends.


toronto bar


1166 Queen St W

An all-natural wine bar with chic minimalist decor, Après serves some of the best and rare natural wines in the city. Their food includes a changing menu of sharing plates.


alo bar

162 Cumberland St

Restaurant and cocktail bar from the team behind ALO (the #1 restaurant on Canada’s 100 Best list), Alo Bar serves an à la carte menu in the upscale Yorkville neighbourhood.



mahjong bar

1276 Dundas St W

Hidden by a small storefront, this bar serving great cocktails and Chinese small plates has a speakeasy feel, but it’s big enough to host a bigger gathering for a great weekend dinner.


cry baby

1468 Dundas St W

A hidden cocktail and oyster bar in the hip Dundas West area of Toronto, enter through the well-lit white art gallery to reach the dimly lit secret space for incredible food and cocktails.


Click here to discover the hottest new spots in your city.


Written on: June 20, 2020