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Hip, Artsy restaurant in Toronto?

I'm in charge of planning a dinner for my work's AGM in February. I work for a national service organization for opera companies. We're looking for a place to unwind after our big meeting that has an artsy vibe. The price point we're hoping for is about $45/person.

Any ideas?

Thanks in advance!

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  1. How many people? (Some places might be too small for a really large crowd.)

    1 Reply
    1. I would check out Kultura on King East. I think it would fit the artsy, hip criteria. Not sure if it would fit your price point.

      1. well, hello opera.ca!

        Have a look at No Regrets at Mowat and Liberty? Kinda artsy vibe, but more importantly it definitely has the space and the right prices for what you need. Pretty good chow, too.

        1 Reply
        1. re: WineWidow

          ha! hello to you too.
          thanks for the recommendation!

        2. I think that when the Drake opened it was supposed to be a place for "Artists", and it probably has the "Hip" factor too, not sure about the price point though.

          1 Reply
          1. re: SallyCinnamon

            I have been to the Drake a few times and I think the best thing about that place is the patio in the summer. It has a fun vibe, somewhat hip, but the food is mediocre IMO - prices are within your range. Also, it's not an easy place to have a large group of people.

          2. How hip is hip? I think Laide has a pretty cool vibe, although the menu is not overly extensive.

            1. Epicure Cafe does lots of events and parties for the theatre companies in the Queen West neighbourhood. They can reserve the upstairs etc. Would definately be in your price point and the manager is really nice.

              More high end but Crush Wine Bar has a private dining room you can book.

              And I've done a birthday party for a large group at the Paddock that was great - we almost had the whole place.

              1 Reply
              1. re: shana

                I was just about to suggest a smaller place that can accomodate private parties like The Paddock, Te Beaconsfield, or Czehoskis even. I'm not sure I'd call No Regrets hip or artsy. I work right across the street and it always ends up being the default go-to for office birthday lunches.

              2. Czehoski's on Queen West will let you have the upstairs for a party of 35..Went to a similiar sized party there a few months ago and it was great. They will also alter the menu to serve anything that you want.

                1. I've been to a couple of farewell dos (for departing colleagues) at the Kit Kat Club, 297 King St. W. at John. The upstairs area is available for private parties, and has its own bar.

                  1. Check out Kultura as they have a beautiful private dining room on the 3rd floor and a delicious menu. You can begin and end your event in the lounge on the main floor.

                    1. How about Agora in the AGO. It's certainly artsy and the food was good last i went (albeit several years ago). We had my brother's birthday there and it was very nice.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: gourmaniac

                        Agora is no more - the restaurant is now operating as a cafe during the AGO's construction project. Great lunches and brunches (you should go), but not open past 5pm.

                        1. re: artgeek

                          Thanks for the update. i live in Boston so when I revisit your fair city, there's so much new great chow to try.

                      2. I wonder if Mildred Pierce is too old for you to consider. Its been around for years and the decor looks like opera scenery.

                        1. Try the Gladstone or I've been to several events at the Acadamy of Spherical Arts. You can have dinner and then unwind at the classic billiards tables.

                          1. I'd vouch for Czehoskis (or call it Tschykovsky's if you want to bug your musician friends).

                            Upstairs is nice!
                            Wine by the glass is expensive there though.