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Great Italian and Steakhouse in Downtown Toronto?

We are Chicago couple visiting Toronto for 2 evenings next week. Need recommendation for best Italian Restaurant(not super expensive) and Steakhouse in downtown Toronto

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  1. Steakhouse -- Check out this recent topic: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/341164
    Best downtown options that won't break the bank: Carmen's and Tom Jones.

    Italian -- Terroni - http://www.terroni.ca - authentic southern Italian, casual atmosphere, and the best pizza in town.

    Where are you staying?

    1 Reply
    1. How is Terroni best Italian restaurant??? Thats like saying McDonalds is our best steakhouse! Best pizza at Terroni...not even close! That title belongs to Bar Mercurio. Don't get me wrong, Terroni is a cool lil spot...but not for showcasing to our tourists who are up for a nice night out!

      Italian...(in no particular order)

      Romagna Mia, Zucca, Il Mulino, Bar Mercurio, Noce, Tutti Matti, and for over the top expensive options...Via Allegro and Mistura. Check out the super cool jazz lounge...Sopra, above Mistura for sure if you go!

      Steakhouse...(in no particular order)

      Harbour Sixty, Mortons and Ruth Chris (which you will know already), Tom Jones, Hy's, Carmen's and my new fav...The Fifth Grill. Only open Thursday - Saturday. Definately a great spot.

      If you'd like to combine the two ideas...head out to Via Allegro in Etobicoke. Canada's top wine program, over the top Italian, and great proprietor aged Limousin Beef and great Veal Chops.

      5 Replies
      1. re: The Macallan 18

        A neighbor of mine went to Barberian's Steak House last month, what is your opinion?

        1. re: mookiejg

          Went to Barberian's last month for (one of) my birthday dinner. Very old school atmosphere. Lots of original artwork from the group of seven. Very different from our norm, but fun for a special occasion.

          It was a great meal. My one problem was that I ordered the french onion soup as a starter. It was sooooo big, cheesy (I'm talking never ending gooeyness)and delicious that I didn't have room to finish my steak - and it was a fine peice of meat.

          1. re: mookiejg

            I went to Barberians about a month ago and was not impressed with the steak. Also, if you like wine, you will have to spend a lot as almost all their wines are quite expensive.

            1. re: mookiejg

              I really like the old school atmosphere in Barberian's. The food, on the occasions I was there, was good in a no frills kind of way. You ask for steak, steak is what you get.

              Check out the new addition with the spectacular wine cellar that seats up to 40 people on one long table. The mezzanine sits about 10 in comfort. From extremely old school to totally up to date in just a couple of steps through a doorway.

            2. re: The Macallan 18

              Curious about The Macallan 18's sky-high praises of Bar Mercurio, I finally tried its pizza. Pretty good, but it doesn't hold a candle to Terroni. The crust is nice and thin, but to the point that it's crumbly and burnt around the edges. The topping combinations are OK, but compared to Terroni the selection is minimal and the prices are high. I'm not changing my vote.

            3. Hands down best Italian in Toronto is Mistura. Great kitchen that offers always interesting takes on Italian.

              Best Steakhouse without doubt Harbour 60. Not only do they know how to cook a steak, their selection of apps, sides and desserts blows every other steakhouse in town out of the water. And a serious selction of seafood that is unheard of in other places. Very pricy but you get what you pay for.

              1. I would second the rec for Romagna Mia, Tutti Matti, and Mistura...SOPRA is great too, especially if you like great live music with your drinks... The 3 above mentioned restaurants all do northern italian cuisine. Via Allegro is a fantastic option as well, even though its not in downtown Toronto, however, that will be a more expensive option than the other three.
                If you are only spending a few days in Toronto, I would not suggest Terroni...sorry.
                Sorry I cant help out with the steakhouse...not too familiar.

                1. Noce on Queen West is great italian. Personally, I'd not consider Romagna Mia, there's something weird going on with the food lately, quality is irregular. Mistura is great too. Risotto at Biagio, yumm.

                  Steak >> Carmen's by a country mile. Morton's & Ruth's Chris quality is available in every american city.

                  1. was at Il Mulino last night and had the sable.
                    It was delicious.
                    I still feel that Zucca is slightly better, and has a more diversified menu..
                    Both are good.
                    I do like Mistura as well.
                    I like the Italian atmosphere at Noce, but don't find the food that exceptional.
                    I have never been to Romagna Mia, due to the terribly mixed reviews here.
                    Why would a Chicago hound want steak in Toronto?
                    You have far better steak houses at home.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: erly

                      I am a steakaholic, what do you expect from a Chicagoin.Any great thin crust pizza downtown, the thinner the better?

                      1. re: mookiejg

                        For this you should go to Terroni, they have a couple of locations.

                        1. re: mookiejg

                          In that case, I stand by my original recommendation. Terroni is just three short blocks from your hotel, at Victoria (one block east of Yonge) and Richmond.

                      2. if you want American-Italian, by all means go to Terroni (it sounds like you do) Zucca and Tutti matti are more authentic Italian.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: nummanumma

                          It is my opinion after travelling many parts of Italy, that Terroni makes very real and authentic pizza. They have recently gone crazy with the topping combos, I agree, but the basics are true to the Italian ways and flavours. They are fantastic thin crust pizzas because everything from the dough to the sauce to the cheese are very tasty.

                        2. Have to agree with nummanumma
                          Never understand the love that most here have for Terroni.
                          Go for a pizza, but don't expect a long relaxed evening.
                          Zucca, as mentioned above, and many others also mentioned are better choices.
                          Possibly Carmen for steak, only because it is not a chain, and is one of the oldest steakhouses in Toronto....