Visiting from New York City
I'm a 34-year old in town from New York for a work conference and would love some restaurant recommendations. I went to Beer Bistro last night, which I really enjoyed, and I'm looking for another great pick for tonight. Searching for somewhere with a pricepoint of around $15 per entree, good atmosphere/energy. Would also love cool pub/bar recommendations (no clubs or 'sceney' places).
PS, I don't eat seafood
The Rebel House is in midtown, but right across from the Rosedale subway - "Canadian" style pub grub.
I'd caution against the Drake or Czehowski if you're anti-scene... both definitely attract a hipster crowd. I do think agree that PJ's is a good call if you're in that 'hood. I like C'est What (Church and Front)... but others are less enthusiastic. I also like Amadeus at Richmond and York - beerhaus takes me right back to vacay in Zurich... you can search for reviews.
Drake Hotel for a good fun spot to hang out during weeknights, patio upstairs is one of the best in the city, the lounge area is a cool spot to be also. Next door as mentioned is the Beacsonsfield and is a classy little cool spot to be. They are both about a 10 min cab ride west of the core along Queen St W.
PJ Obriens on Colborne has a great bar with the best Guinness in Toronto and great great pub food. Its right in the core.
A little less west on Queen is Czehowski...you can sit at the bar there and eat and drink and have a good time.
There's been a bit of talk about Utopia here lately. Inexpensive, tonnes of food, and pretty decent burritos (by Toronto standards - we don't really have much, or any, authentic Mexican). It's on College between Manning and Clinton.
For Pubs: A few places to drink, but not necessarily eat, around Utopia. Midtown (just down the street, between Manning and Euclid) Crooked Star (just south of Ossington and Dundas), South Side Louis is across the street -definitely not sceney, but not exactly spectacular either...
I liked the Beer Bistro too...but the cooler more authentic places are WEST on King or Queen at LEAST west of Spadina...but west of Bathurst is the best. You really can't beat the laid back atmosphere at the Foggy Dew Pub at King and Niagara. Really large sunny patio. 27+ crowd....sometimes the odd kid. Dogs parked with water dishes just outside the patio railings. THE best fries (and this is coming from a Montreal-er) and Peanutbutter pie. Prices range from $11-18.
The Beaconsfield is a great bar as well. It's at Queen St W and Beaconsfield. It's like the Drake Hotel's jean-clad chilled out older brother.