This week in food: Toronto restaurant openings, closings, and our top picks

Nov 21 2019, 5:34 pm

This round-up spotlights the newest Toronto restaurant openings, bar openings, upcoming closings, and some special spots that should be on your radar.

Here’s what’s up in the city’s food scene right now.

Just Opened

  • Butter Chicken Roti has opened up a new location at 646 Yonge Street, between Wellesley and Bloor.
  • Walrus Pub’s Pong Bar now offers happy hour from Monday to Friday, starting at 4 pm and running until close. This includes discount drinks and half-price pizza.
  • 923 Queen Street West has welcomed home Tacos Rico, taking over the space that used to be Grand Electric’s Trinity Bellwoods location.
  • Now open at 635 Bloor Street West, 1011 SIPTEA is serving up buy-one-get-one drinks all the way until November 30.
  • Woodhouse Brewpub is now open 5 pm ’til late, seven days a week at 301 Lansdowne Avenue.
  • Restaurant? No. Food hub? Certainly. The Toronto Christmas Market has returned to the historic Distillery District, and it’ll be here ’til December 22.
  • You’ll now find three locations of Carlo’s Bake Shop vending machines in the PATH: at Richmond-Adelaide Centre, Royal Bank Plaza, and Waterpark Place.

Opening Soon

  • Chick-fil-A is opening another Toronto location, this time, in Yorkdale Mall. The opening is slated for 2020.
  • Canada’s first Matcha Cafe Maiko opened on the West Coast earlier this year, and soon the second will be landing at Pacific Mall in Markham.
  • On November 28, The Thirsty Elf pop-up bar will be taking over the former York Station space inside the Fairmont Royal York, running for an exclusive four weekends only in the lead-up to Christmas.
  • Christmas-themed booze hub Miracle Bar will be returning to the city this season, taking over 146 Ossington Avenue starting on November 25.
  • And sister to Miracle Bar, Sippin’ Santa will take over Project Gigglewater at 1369 Dundas Street West from November 25 to December 26.
  • Ruby Soho Bar, described as a “relaxed neighbourhood bar and eatery,” is ultra close to taking over the space at 587 King Street West, where Portland Variety used to live.

Our Top Picks

Tacos Rico

Tacos Rico / Instagram

Run by Grand Electric’s Ian McGrenaghan and Colin Tooke, this new eatery is serving up an all-vegetarian and some-vegan menu, with the addition of fresh juices. Why? So that these restauranteurs can do their small part in saving the planet.

“For all the high minded chatter in restaurant dining rooms and kitchens pushing for practices to make the world a more just place, one critical fact remains: we serve food, a good portion of which is meat. And we are contributing to the destruction of the planet by doing so” the post that informed taco-lovers of the transition from Grand Electric to Tacos Rico explains.

So instead of meaty handhelds, here, you can indulge in spicy eggplant, poblano, and bean, or Swiss chard and mushroom tacos instead.

Address: 923 Queen Street West



toronto restaurant openings

1011 SIPTEA / Instagram

Now open at 635 Bloor Street West, 1011 SIPTEA is serving up buy-one-get-one drinks all the way until November 30. That’s right — until the end of the month, you can enjoy a two-for-one at this new Koreatown spot, specializing in bubble tea, fresh cheese foam tea, and fruit teas. While the weather is chilly, you can hold onto the memory of summer a little bit longer with these sweet, refreshing sips.

Address: 1011 SIPTEA, 635 Bloor Street West


Toronto Christmas Market

toronto restaurant openings

Wafel Bar / Instagram

The Toronto Christmas Market has officially returned to the Distillery District, whether you’re quite ready for holiday festivities or not. The market takes over the iconic downtown neighbourhood from November 14 to December 22, and with it comes a fierce collection of festive foods. Kick-start the seasonal jolliness with a cone of festive waffles, a turkey leg or some mulled wine.

Where: The Distillery District
When: Thursday, November 14 to Sunday, December 22, 2019 (closed on Mondays)
Tickets: Available online


Last Call

It’s coming up to closing time for these establishments. You don’t have to go home, but you can’t stay here.

  • Parkdale’s Chantecler is temporarily closed following a three alarm fire that ripped through the restaurant’s address on Tuesday morning.
  • Drake’s Pick 6ix Sports will be closed until further notice due to flooding, the eatery announced on Instagram late Monday night.
  • Known as a reliable spot for authentic Italian in the Yorkville neighbourhood, L’Unità is gearing up to close on New Year’s Eve after 12 years serving the city.

Kayla GladyszKayla Gladysz

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