With umbrellas tucked away and patio season in full swing, June is the perfect time to explore Toronto’s burgeoning dining scene.
Here’s our curated list of what not to miss by View the Vibe’s own Libby Roach.
Dundas West wins with the opening of La Palma, with flinging open their freshly painted doors welcoming breakfast-lunch and dinner diners to their pocket of town near Trinity-Bellwoods. The crew from Campagnolo is behind this one, so expect top notch food to go with that coffee/tea/tincture.
Chef Nuit and Jeff Regular are gearing up to turn the tables at Kiin, the latest offering from the Thai juggernauts known for hits like Pai and Sukothai. The original Khao San Road is home to Kiin after what seemed like the longest overhaul of all time. The space is airy and light, a huge departure from the KSR days and dishes are favourites from both their travels around Thailand and also childhood memories.
Coming Soon this Month
King Claudio is about to make it reign, with his latest offering: Copetin. Taking over the OG Origin at King and Church, Copetin will still feature all the bells and whistles we’ve come to love the MasterChef for, and with a solid June opening, the corner patio might just be our new hangout. Stay tuned for more on his latest venture after the mid-June opening.
Blue Blood Steakhouse
If Murdoch Mysteries were to host a dinner party, surely the new steakhouse at Casa Loma would be the venue. Blue Blood Steakhouse is slated for a June opening, after years of rigmarole with the heritage cops at city hall.
The newest Japanese cheesecake to buck Uncle of the top slot belongs to Pablo, who is set to open their cheesecake emporium this month, on Dundas by Bay.
Pushed back from their originally planned spring opening, Flock is now looking at a summer start for their 5th location.
The Drake Commissary
The coolness factor continues, with The Drake Commissary opening their doors in the Junction for their part larder/bakery/art gallery/bar/community hangout and prep kitchens. June 9th will see the latest Drake drop, just in time for summer stock ups for the cottage.
Victory Barry is ready to unveil his latest offering, Café Cancan, in the old Harbord Room spot. Designed by Tiffany Pratt, the space evokes a Palm Springs vibe, with bright pink walls playing nicely against the turquoise bar. Not much is known food wise, other than it’s French, and well, helmed by Victor Barry, so we’re in good hands.
Mouths are frothing in the financial district for Sud Forno to open, and since their spring opening is closing in, we can assume that the clock is running down and my friend Robyn will finally have a new lunch option on Yonge near Queen.
A bit south of Sheppard on Yonge, Oliva has taken over a condo resale building, giving the ‘hood what it really wants: less condos, and more food. No word on if it’ll be licenced, but the patio promises baguettes and coffees, so let’s hope good things keep rolling for this two-floor restaurant.
In the Works
Liberty Village is scoring the second location of Garden Gangsters, a from-scratch eatery dedicated to vegging out. This fast-casual concept boasts healthy smoothies, cold pressed juices, and duh, salads.
Chef Rod Bowers’ east side eatery will surely feature more than just carrots, but the aptly named Bunny’s may leave some wondering what’s on the menu, or if it’s a strip club. It’s definitely a watering hole of sorts, but think more bistro and less playboy mansion, taking over the old Hey Meatball address doesn’t allow for a grotto. Bunny’s will be open for the morning crowd to cocktail crushers, a little something for everyone in the east.
Uptown at Yonge and Sheppard, froyo has made way for a new Koryo, a Korean restaurant and bar serving up all things barbeque- look for their opening this summer.
The Alternative Café
Oded Brenner, owner of chocolate chain Max Brenner is opening The Alternative Café later this summer in Yorkville. His chocolate stores are dubbed ‘chocolate by a bald man’ so looks like there will be another rich middle aged bald dude strutting around Avenue and Bloor this summer.
Bisha Hotel Restaurant
ICONINK is inching closer to unveiling the Bisha Hotel, after years of labouring away restoring the heritage building at King and Blue Jays Way. It was announced the major overhaul would also include a new restaurant project with Chef Akira Back running the show. Formerly a pro-snowboarder turned Chef, Akira has been the top dog at Bellagio’s Yellowtail Restaurant and Lounge and appeared on an episode of Iron Chef, losing to Bobby Flay in a spinach battle.
The Beach House
East enders will appreciate the 7 day a week morning to night concept coming soon dubbed The Beach House which is now hiring on Queen East just past Woodbine.
A new franchise of Pi Co is opening just south of Eglinton on Yonge Street. This is the second location from the quick service pizza joint.
And we all wait with bated breath for the next offspring from GvG called The Tennessee, in Parkdale. Look for this one to open in the next few months.
The Comfort Zone
The grungy after-hours hole in the wall, The Comfort Zone, has finally shut down. The inner underage teenager in us all weeps.
The Rectory Café
And it’s looking like curtains for The Rectory Café on the islands. The terrible flooding this spring combined with no ferry service to the island means they can’t recoup the losses and are literally sinking.
The Rolling Pin
More room equals more donuts. The Rolling Pin has shifted over to Avenue Road, with a multi-level building perfect for yes, more retail, but word on the street is that baking classes will also be offered.
But in good news, Patois is set to return after the fallout from a neighbouring fire forced them to close for months.
Bestellen is closing after 5 years in Little Italy. The beefy steakhouse is calling it quits on College Street at the end of this month. Chef Rob Rossi is hinting at a new project, so we’ll just talk his insta until then.
Did we miss any Toronto restaurant openings and closings? Let us know in the comment section or tweet us at @ViewtheVibe.