There have been a whack-load (whack-ton?) of sexcellent new Toronto restaurants popping up around town that have totally moistened our brows, elevated our heart rates, and caused our pants to tighten (read that however you like). Here are some of the more noteworthy openings and why we simply need to haul ass over to ’em A-to-the-S-A-P!
Let’s begin our rundown with one of the most-talked about joints in town: Fat Pasha. The Israeli-meets-European Jewish comfort food joint, launched by the always on-point Anthony Rose, finally gives us a real reason to head to the Dupont Street strip on the regular. Who’d have thought that hummus would become the a la mode hot draw on menus in Toronto…? Not us, but thanks to the Anthony Rose Midas Touch we’re totally not surprised.
Chinatown is starting to boom with more, shall we say, approachable cuisine. Case in point: People’s Eatery. The fact that it’s brought to us by the team behind 416 Snack Bar is simply icing on the proverbial cake. The fact that Dustin Gallagher’s at the helm of the kitchen… well that actually scares us a bit. Not that he isn’t talented, but his track record as of late hasn’t been the best. (Riverside Public House, Acadia, and Grace have all shuttered in one way or another, all not too long after Dustin’s flown the coup. Just sayin’!)
This new refined sort-of-pub on Bloor West has dishes that pop with colour (Toronto Life‘s gallery is basically food erotica). We want to head in because the cocktails are well-priced and the dishes are shareable, but also look large enough to dine archaically – a.k.a. eating the one dish you actually ordered and not sharing.
While not technically a stand-alone restaurant, this kitchen takeover of Dundas West hotspot Churchill has seen a slew of social media shout-outs thanks to the holier-than-thou glory of the crispiness on their birds. This is fried chicken from the heavens… and we want to get down on our knees and praise it.
From the daring dudes who opened minds and twisted palates with Farmhouse Tavern comes Farmer’s Daughter. Also in the Junction, this new resto is definitely a bit more approachable for all the ladies out there. Lighter fare (thanks to a heavy focus on pescatarian dishes) and some feminine accoutrements in the space make Farmer’s Daughter the coolest country gal in the big city.
Market Street Catch
Another seafood-centric resto, Market Street Catch is an off-shoot of Buster’s Sea Cove. We love that all the food looks like classic sea shanty eats – sometimes all the bells and whistles and foams and gastriques can do little to quell our hunger when we’re craving some side-splitting comfort grub. Naturally, everything looks a bit more finessed than Buster’s St. Lawrence Market food stall or its travelin’ food truck… and that’s why we’re dying to pop by!
There are also (shocking!) a ton of restaurants on the horizon for summer 2014. We’re pumped to see what Montecito (yeah… Ivan Reitman’s a co-owner) brings to the table; same goes for the third Rock Lobster outpost in Leslieville. Wilbur, though Mexican, was named for the dude who invented the Scoville Scale (you know… the pepper intensity rating) and thus we’re hoping it kicks us in the face with slow burn. The Food Dudes keep growing: they’ve recently opened The Pantry on Carlaw, but we’re more excited for Junk Bar (slated to open early fall) and Rasa in Harbord Village (opening date unknown).