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Via Allegro Stars?

In the new Toronto Life Via Allegro is now a 2 and a half star restaurant. Now I've never been , so by no means am I commenting on the food or service, I'm more curious what all the people who have dined at Via feel about this huge drop in stars. The review itself really bad mouths the wine service, and still feels the food is quite good. What are you the thoughts around here regarding Via Allegro.

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  1. never understood the attraction for this place. I've been 3 times. never impressed. way too loud, too expensive, food looks good, but taste - not so much, especially at those prices. And did I mention it is way way way way too loud.
    Could be useful as a break up location though if you are dating a screamer. :)
    IMHO ugh!

    3 Replies
    1. re: dinin and dishin

      I'm by no means trying to start anything, but if you didn't like it why did you go 3 times? That seems kinda Woody Allen.

      1. re: Googs

        I only went once.
        Still reminds me of a roadhouse atmosphere. Huge portions of not-bad food; some dishes very good.
        Wine list huge, but mostly unaffordable for me!
        I think Toronto Life has it right (for once).

        1. re: Googs

          lol...and such small portions...
          It was over many years and it was always due to location. e.g., close to mother-in-law, close to funeral, close to some other event.
          The mother-in-law visit was the best. She's old school Scottish and just about had a cow at the prices, and then the din went to a level where we were literally yelling across the table just to be heard. And that was the best of the 3 visits.
          I'd like to say never again, but with my track record here....

      2. Haven't been, but I think Toronto Life changed it's star system awhile ago. Perhaps that's the reason for the downgrade in stars?

        3 Replies
        1. re: pescatarian

          The did - about 2 or 3 issues ago, and included an explanation of their new ranking system. I believe they claim they only include reviews for places they'd recommend patrons visit, so their 1-star ranking is 'good' - there's no 'poor' or 'fair'-type rankings. Most restaurants now get 1-2 star rankings, with the odd 3 or 4 stars given for exceptional places.

          That being said, I'd still trust reviews on here a million times more than in Toronto Life. :)

            1. re: Tara9000

              actually, i wouldn't trust many of the reviews here. that being said, i have eaten at via several times always good experiences. the port risotto i had there would be a course i would choose for my last ever meal. i am not a fan of the design, the spacing of the tables etc, but after your first time there, you know that and shouldn't complain again, imo.

          1. Foodguy 905 have been to Via's many times.No it is not cheap. I like to sit at the bar stools at the garde manger kitchen and watch the action.I must say the ingredients used here are the best quality.Try the pizza. Its Fab! I dont understand Toronro lifes comments regarding the wine because two of Vias sommiliers were recently featured in an article in that magazine.Give it a whirl.

            1. never been, but this might help explain the drop in stars...


              1. In my one experience (and I doubt there will be another), Via Allegro's food was good, but not nearly worth the price tag, and it was possibly one of the most overrated establishments I've eaten at.
                For Toronto, that's saying a lot!

                2 Replies
                1. re: Yum2MyTum

                  I've been twice, and won't ever return. I gave it a shot, it was horrid, I considered it may have been an anomole and tried again -- even worse. Never again. The cellar is impressive, but overpriced. The food is NOT at all impressive, and overpriced. It's a gouge-fest with, as estufarian said, a roadhouse atmosphere. Your money is better spent elsewhere.... anywhere else.

                  1. re: Bueno

                    wow...horrid is pretty harsh...it must be very memorable to be that bad...could you validate your experience by saying what you ate?? And when you went....just so I know for sure..thanks..

                2. Been there twice, and enjoyed it both times. Ate waaay too much, though. The owner, Phil, came to our table (a six-top) and chatted with us for a significant portion of the dinner - he was a really engaging guy that made our night. Plus he then gave us some free food and free desserts. Could explain part of it.

                  I'd definitely go back. :)

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: gps_shag

                    I have never been disappointed by a meal at Via allegro-it comes in handy if attending events by the airport and not wanting to go downtown.
                    The Veal chop and and simple margherita pizza are my favs-
                    Yes its pricey.

                  2. +

                    Via Allegro
                    1750 The Queensway, Toronto, ON M9C5H5, CA

                    1. I had to dig this review up again because i attended last night and after a recent string of strong criticisms on CH, i'm kind of left scratching my head. While it wasn't the best restaurant i've attended, i don't think it comes nearly close to being the worst.

                      Alot of Chowhoundies have been slagging it because of the layout of tables and the fact that its too loud. And i get it after seeing the typical demographic of that haunt (and being a 29 year old young professional, i'm definitely not of the typical Via ilk). That said, I'm kind of bewildered on how its "too loud". Really? Did you not notice you were walking into an Italian restaurant? Not to offend, but if i wanted quiet, dull and boring i'd go eat in a funeral home.

                      While the decor is not much to write home about, i found the atmosphere pleasant, enjoyable and lively.

                      I'll agree the food is a tad bit on the pricey side, but i dind't at all feel that it was terrible...or even bad for that matter. Had the 25yr old risotto and I swear that my left side started to tingle. Delish! But a duck confit risotto with foie gras and 25 year old balsamic doesn't need to be portioned that big. I swear, it was enough to kill a horse. But again, absolutely delicious.

                      Had the horse carpachio and pizza to start and I have nothing but praise for both. The horse carpachio was flavorful and delicate. Slices were paper thin, and the cheese (not sure what it was) added the right touch.

                      A friend had the bison and i do have to say that was the most standout dish. Perfectly seasoned, perfectly cooked and a healthy portioning.

                      All in all i'd say it was a good experience and i definitely would go back again.