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Sat. brunch near Trinity-Bellwoods

j
j May 17, 2006 01:05 PM

OK, I know brunch has been done on this board but I'm looking for a specific expert recommendation.

Taking my out of town friend for a girls' weekend & would like to explore/shop the west Queen west area. Where is best for brunch - looking for good food - all the typical dishes - plus interesting breakfast cocktails, a hip/fun atmosphere but preferably not a long wait (or a place that takes reservations?).

Mildred Pierce doesn't do Sat., and I've had a mediocre experience at Sugar (sorry, I know some of you love it) - what about Saving Grace? Czehoski? other recs?

If there is any "strategy" to the place you suggest, please let me know eg. call ahead, time to arrive, etc. My friend is not a T.O girl and won't be into the fabulous brunch line-up experience.

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    aaf RE: j May 17, 2006 01:17 PM

    Try Bar One and Queen/Ossington. Nice patio, great food, European atmosphere, trendy but not too trendy, unfussed, unpretentious service.... my fave on Queen West.

    1 Reply
    1. re: aaf
      d
      dt RE: aaf May 17, 2006 03:27 PM

      Swan, Czehoski all good choices..They have a new chef and menu at the Drake and the food is much better during the day. (also cheap drinks till 7pm !)

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      Paolo RE: j May 17, 2006 01:20 PM

      Give Swan a try, on Queen west of the park.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Paolo
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        artificialard RE: Paolo May 18, 2006 12:06 AM

        Swan is great in that area (short of Sugar). Interesting brunch items (there's a benedict with smoked fish I think) and great atmosphere. Seating is miniscule however so be prepared to wait during brunch 'rushhour'.

        Although I've always liked the Drake's brunch menu, the service is usually a put down - the server is often nice but either isn't experienced or more frequently there aren't enough people covering the room and thus extremely long waits.

        The Paddock has a brunch (still?) has anyone tried it?

        1. re: artificialard
          p
          Paolo RE: artificialard May 18, 2006 05:10 PM

          Yes, seating is limited. However, if they are shopping in the area, they could stop in and check. Perhaps they could put themselves on the list, ask approximately how long, and leave to do a bit more shopping at neighbouring stores.

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        airsy RE: j May 17, 2006 01:24 PM

        I've been twice now to Czehoski for brunch, including last weekend for Mother's Day. Have not had to wait at all either time and the food has been great each time. Be sure to be seated in the room upstairs which is brighter and more fabulous than downstairs.

        Saving Grace is also good but there is a chance you'll have to wait there as it is relatively small.

        1. k
          Katie RE: j May 18, 2006 11:00 AM

          Not so much in the Trinity-Bellwoods area, but definitely west Queen West is Mitzi's sister. I was there last weekend, didn't have to wait for a table and while we were there if people waited it was for a few minutes only. The food was great, although the selection wasn't over the top. They had some specials and some standard fare. Also, you should try the Blanche de Chambly mimosa.......delicious!

          We also walked by Czehoski's on our tour of Queen, and looked at the menu. I thought it looked great and the prices were all reasonable.

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            Dom RE: j May 22, 2006 11:45 PM

            Ok, I know everyone in the 'hood is going to hate me.. but Musa has among the best brunch for price in the city IF you can handle quirky but genuine service, 10 minute waits for tables of more than 2, and an amusing musical blend of Bebop, Hank Williams, James Brown and the occasional theme from Jesus Christ Superstar.

            Musa is on the corner of Euclid and Dundas W. (2 blocks north of Queen West .. 2 blocks north of where Czehoski is).

            The breakfast sandwhich - an off the menu special which is always offered - is simple but phenomenal: Arugula, melted swiss cheese, cherry tomatoes, thick country bacon, a fried egg,and a bit of mayonaise, sandwiched between lightly fried Challah bread.

            Try it out, but don't tell too many people.

            1 Reply
            1. re: Dom
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              francelonian RE: Dom Jan 27, 2007 10:04 AM

              Going to disagree with you on Musa. Just came back from it. Very slow service. Far too loud. Dishes that did not come together; quality and flavour just OK. Not bad - but just OK. And for brekky, the lamest toast I've had in a long while. Cold, soggy and very ordinary. I'll try it once more in case this was an off day for them, but it was at best mediocre.

            2. j
              J RE: j May 23, 2006 11:28 AM

              Thanks for all the ideas. We went to Saving Grace (with all your suggestions in hand as backup) and it must have been our lucky day - we were seated immediately. It was a GREAT brunch and I would highly recommend this place. We had a great day shopping too (too bad about the weather)

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