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Oct 11, 2007 06:28 PM

Best Downtown Resto for Under $200

My criteria are:

- consistently excellent food and service (this my #1 criteria)
- fairly broad menu so that even picky eaters will have more than one choice
- downtown
- cool, funky atmosphere
- romantic (I don't mean quiet, I mean "sexy")
- any cuisine is okay as long it meets my #1 criteria
- bonus: a place with a lounge to have a post-dinner drink (or lounge nearby)
- extra bonus: if the lounge has entertainment
- under $200 including tax & tip, but not including wine

I have a special evening planned for Nov. 3rd and would like my fellow Hounds to select the perfect place.

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  1. Is that $200 per head or for two?

    7 Replies
    1. re: Yum2MyTum

      Xacutti on College? Does Bird stll exist upstairs?

        1. re: Jean Georges

          Globe bistro, followed by Embrujo Flamenco; Danforth and Broadview.

          Tabla Indian Restaurant, followed by downstairs at Centro; Yonge north of Eglinton.

          1. re: Snarf

            Globe bistro followed by Embrujo Flamenco is a good possibility. Went to Globe went it was brand new and afterwards we went across the street to a Latin place for dancing. It was upstairs, just west of Globe, but I can't recall the name.

              1. re: NovoCuisine

                That was it!. Excellent caipirinhas. We didn't eat there but it I wonder if the food is good. I have been to excellent Churrascarias in Brazil and would love to find one in Toronto that is as good.

                1. re: Jean Georges

                  Last I was there I was going to order a caipirinhas but they'd been out of cachaca for months.

                  I've been to Red Violin and I thought it was good until I was at a Churrascarias in Portugal last month. Unfortunately, people here seem to be scared of rarer meats which is why I suppose they overcooked everything. When I left the restaurant in Portugal, my plate was a big puddle of blood; so, so good. But it's a preference thing, I guess!

        1. re: thenurse

          Mistura/Sopra is another good idea, and something I've been considering. Actually we had been thinking of Sopra for dinner as well, although it seemed to be more of a lounge than a restaurant.

          1. re: Jean Georges

            Honestly I wasn't that impressed by Mistura. Would have rather eaten at Zucca which only meets 1, 2, and 9 of your criteria.

            1. re: Googs

              Agree with you about Mistura - but I was there once only and several years ago. I love Zucca and it's one of my "go to" restaurants. But I want something different so it will be a more special night.

        2. bonus point for any one who can throw out restos under $100 total for two with out wine for the same conditions...

          5 Replies
          1. re: LemonLauren

            My meal at Tabla for 8 (and we ate well) with 2 bottles of wine and two glasses of wine was $300. Therefore, I think you can eat very well there for 2 under $100. No lounge though.

            1. re: pescatarian

              Wife doesn't like Indian. I guess I need to update criteria #6.

              1. re: Jean Georges

                2 more ideas:

                Start at 93 Harbord for dinner, very good middle eastern with decent wine selections; then follow up with either the Revival on College, or top of the Park Hyatt. If top of the Park Hyatt is of interest, walking in the area could start from either Vittorio's on Dupont and Avenue, or Flow.

                Or, Fat Cat Wine Bar on Roncesvalles, followed by Hugh's Room. Not exactly lounge, but on the right night, the music can be fantastic.

                1. re: Snarf

                  i second 93 harbord.....oh the appetizer platter...

                  1. re: Snarf

                    Snarf, your ideas are right on the mark. 93 Harbord sounds really good.

                    What can you tell me about Flow - there isn't much at all on this forum. The room and menu look really good.

            2. I’ve been to Canoe, North 44, Jump, Biff’s, Far Niente, Rosewater Super Club, Senses, Stratus Restaurant, and Truffles. They’re all good. For less formal places, how about Rodney’s Oyster House, Bier Market, or The Sultan’s Tent? I heard about Susur, Scaramouche, Rain, The Fifth, Morton's, Jamie Kennedy Wine Bar, Harbour Sixty Steak House, Hy’s, Romagna Mia. However, I haven’t tried out these places myself yet.

              3 Replies
              1. re: chutchut

                Canoe and Susur would be very hard under $200. Jump is ok if you are going right after work because it's convenient, but it's not "special". Biff's is "ok", not a special evening place. Far Niente is far from special. Rosewater - please don't. Bier Markt is for partying not eating. The Sultan's Tent is for navel watching not eating. Rain is out of date. Romagna Mia - good food, not good service so not good for a special night.
                The only place on your list that is worthy IMO is JK Wine Bar, but I don't think it's the kind of place the OP is looking for.

                1. re: chutchut

                  Absolutely skip the Sultan's Tent unless you want disappointment. Bad food, mediocre service, and nothing romantic about it.

                2. amuse bouche?


                  it'll just fit into your cost restraints but would likely be totally worth it. then scoot up to the drake for drinks, no food, and have a sexy fun time.

                  love snarf's choice of revival for an after if you pick a spot in the college vicinity. the space is great!