There are a lot of good reasons to raise a glass in Toronto, and the city’s thriving bar scene and slew of talented mixologists are most certainly among them.
From classics stirred and shaken with a twist, to innovative drinkable creations, here’s a list of must-try cocktails to try in Toronto.
Caesars from Rodney’s
The famous Toronto oyster house doesn’t really do cocktails. Caesars are among the exceptions, solely for their iconic status and of course, the fact that the drinks crafted with Walter’s and a choice of spirit pair perfectly with fruits from the sea.
Address: 469 King Street West, Toronto
BetterBeer from The Lockhart
The Harry Potter themed bar on Dundas West offers this bubbling brew blended with Advocaat, cinnamon-infused toasted butter washed Sauza, house ginger beer and ginger ale, topped up with whipped cream and toasted marshmallows.
Address: 1479 Dundas Street West, Toronto
G&T at Nota Bene
The classic gin and tonic is a favourite behind the bar at Chef David Lee’s Queen West restaurant. Find 15 different labels of gin on offer along with a DIY selection of garnishes including grapefruit, cucumber, and hibiscus.
Address: 180 Queen Street West, Toronto
The Cherry Boulevardier at e11even
Cherry-infused and barrel aged in-house for 30 days, gives this classic cocktail a smooth, cherry rich taste and oak finish.
Address: 15 York Street, Toronto
The Saketini at Blowfish on King
Top Toronto mixologist Nishantha Nepulangoda offers this twist on a martini made with yuzu sake, botanist gin, dry vermouth and orange juniper bitters.
Address: 668 King Street West, Toronto
The Cloister at The Clocktower Bar
The Yonge Street bar from the same folks behind coffee house Boxcar Social is home to this zippy drink fine-tuned with gin, yellow chartreuse, grapefruit, lemon, and lemon zest.
Address: 1210 Yonge Street, Toronto
Moscow Mule from Bar Reyna
Vodka, ginger beer and lime amount to one spicy and refreshing cocktail befitting of the Yorkville address where this two-storey restaurant resided.
Address: 158 Cumberland Street, Toronto
Open Windows from El Rey
Kensington Market’s mezcal bar offers the perfect introduction to the agave based spirit. This refreshing tipple features mezcal with Altos Blanco, lime, pineapple gomme, chili, celery and sal chapulin.
Address: 2A Kensignton Avenue, Toronto
The Bronzed Adonis from Bar Isabel
Shake things up at Grant Van Gameren’s Spanish restaurant on College. To go with the spread of cured meats, cheeses and tapas, try this green cardamom infused pisco with Averna, Moscatel, lemon, lime and ginger.
Address: 797 College Street, Toronto
L’Eclisse from Northwood
This licensed cafe near Christie Pits Park double majors is coffee and cocktails. Sample both at once with this cold-brew based bevy spiked with Fernet, house vanilla liqueur, Triple Sec, and a pinch of salt.
Address: 815 Bloor Street West, Toronto
Vanilla Hickory Smoked Manhattan at BarChef
Cocktails composed like works of art are what to expect from this lab-like cocktail bar. A house favourite is this smoky concoction infused with burnt hickory flavour à la minute.
Address: 472 Queen Street West, Toronto
Off Menu Cocktails at Cold Tea
Tucked away in a hidden corner of Kensington Mall, everything is off menu at Cold Tea because there is no menu.
Address: 60 Kensington Avenue, Toronto
Black Mamba Margarita at The Carbon Bar
Charcoal-infused Avion tequila, St. Germain, Bowmore, lime and a sea salt rim make for one spooky0looking but delicious tasting cocktail at this upscale BBQ restaurant on Queen East.
Address: 99 Queen Street East, Toronto
Mimosas at Lavelle
This rooftop restaurant and poolside bar is top Toronto attraction in the summer months. As the weather cools, try it out for a luxe brunch accompanied by sparkling morning cocktails.
Address: 627 King Street West, Toronto
Straight Flossin’ at Good Fortune Bar
Candy floss dissolves to sweeten this drink as a mixture of gin, melon liqueur, Guerra blanco vermouth, lemon and bittered sling lem-marrakech are poured over top at this spin-off bar from La Carnita.
Address: 130 Eglington Avenue East, Toronto
Old Fashioned at Her Father’s Cider Bar
The cider house in Harbord Village offers this fruit-themed take on the classic cocktail made with spiced apple infused bourbon, Applewood apple syrup and chocolate bitters.
Address: 119 Harbord Street, Toronto
The Hook & Furl from Bar Alo
The tasting menus might be the main draw at this third-floor restaurant overlooking Queen and Spadina, but the cocktails are equally impressive. This house bevy starts with J.W. Black Scotch, Dolin vermouth, Strega and China China and is stirred with ice and then strained.
Address: 163 Spadina Ave. 3rd Floor, Toronto
Mr. Right at DBar
The cocktail bar at the Four Seasons Hotel is an ideal destination to indulge. Order an array of charcuterie and strong drinks like this libation crafted with Lot 40 Whisky, Antica Formula and old fashioned bitters.
Address: 60 Yorkville Avenue, Toronto
Apothecary from East Thirty Six
Served in a highball, this seasonal libation starts with Hayman’s London Dry and Sloe Gins, mixed with tonic syrup, lemon and a dash of rosemary tincture, then a splash of Perrier to give it a little effervescence.
Address: 36 Wellington Street East, Toronto
Rosemary Negroni at Piano Piano
The classic Italian cocktail gets a subtle, but delicious herbal twist at Chef Victor Barry’s casual pizza and pasta joint in Harbord Village.
Address:88 Harbord Street, Toronto