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"Melanie's" under construction on Danforth west of Woodbine

It's on the north side; there's a sign in the window indicating they've applied for a liquor license, and another says "Opening soon: Melanie's". Was driving by, so there may be additional information I couldn't see...

Anyone know anything about this?

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  1. O.K. I drove by slower and noticed the sign said it was a bistro and patisserie. Someone's gotta know something...

    1 Reply
    1. re: Full tummy

      Months ago (beginning of the summer) there was an official re-opening of the playground at East Lynn park and the cake was supplied by Melanie, who said she was opening a bakery/bistro. There hadn't been any work done at the site in months so I'd kind of given up. Hopefully it will open soon. I don't remember much about the cake - it was good is all I remember.

    2. Just putting this out there again to see if anybody has heard news. I see a sign up now: "Melanie's Bistro". The windows are still papered over with signs indicating they're hiring.

      3 Replies
      1. re: Full tummy

        You could get in touch with the neighbourhood busybodies, uh, I mean community association, they seem to know what's going on in the 'hood.
        http://www.danfortheast.ca/

        1. re: hoagy294

          lol, or call to ask about a job...
          http://insidetoronto.yourclassifieds....

          I'm within walking distance, so hoping for something decent there. The Yellow Pages has it listed as Melanie's Bistro & Patisserie -
          http://www.yellowpages.ca/bus/Ontario...

          1. re: JamieK

            I'm in walking distance, too! Saw a fellow carrying what appeared to be a coffee machine out of the door tonight and all lights were on inside. Yes, I was aware of the patisserie part and am hoping, big time.

      2. It's open now, they are open for breakfast
        and lunch this week . As of next week they're offering dinner as well Wednesday to Sunday.

        1 Reply
        1. re: hoagy294

          Ya, I dropped by two nights ago for dinner and discovered that. Did you go in? Did you see a menu? Any sign of patisserie? I'm hoping....

        2. +

          -----
          Melanie's Bistro
          1870 Danforth Ave, Toronto, ON M4C1J4, CA

          1. I received an email with the menu attached from someone associated with the community association (I told you they know everything!). I haven't been in yet. I guess after the downfall of Beanies and Niche I better start eating out more to support the neighbourhood businesses.
            Sorry, tried to attach the menu, didn't work. It's pastas and salads and sandwiches at lunch, pasta + fish and risotto and cornish hen and steak at lunch and a full brunch menu which I can't remember other than a lot of eggs and some yogurt, granola, pancakes. Actually it's a pretty good variety.

            1 Reply
            1. re: hoagy294

              Hoagy, can you copy and paste the menu here? It would be interesting to see. :)

            2. Here ya go, the menu says something about "offering a wide selection of hand crafted pastries & whole cakes for all occasions."

              BREAKFAST
              Morning Crunch: granola parfait with low fat yogurt ..............6
              Muesli Martini: served with home made muffin............................6
              Oatmeal Brulee: with fruit compote.................................................5
              Seasonal Fresh Fruit Salad:with cottage cheese,
              toasted pine nuts & banana bread...........................................................8
              I’ll Start With You:any style 2 eggs, breakfast
              meat, fries, fresh fruit and toast....................................................................7
              Rahul’s Huevos Rancheros: any style two eggs
              chorizo spicy black beans, corn & tomato salsa,
              sour cream & flour tortillas..............................................................................9
              Tower of Power:toasted bagel, crisp greens,
              sautéed mushrooms, fried eggs, fresh fruits.........................................8
              Newfoundland breakfast special: pan fried
              cod cakes topped with poached eggs, finished with herb
              hollandaise,country fries & toast..............................................................10
              The Denver: ham&cheese omelette,onion, pepper,
              mushroom tomatos, country fries & toast.............................................8
              Chefs recommendation:healthy egg white
              omelette,spinach,,mushroom, onions, leeks & asparagus,
              chicken sausage, country fries. ................................................................10
              Canadian Smoked Salmon Bagel cream cheese,
              baby greens, red onions and fresh fruit..............................................10
              Blueberry Pancakes: served with breakfast meat..............7
              Candied pecan&corn flakecrusted
              Frenchtoast
              caramelized peaches, khalua anglaise.........................................................7
              At Melanie's Bistro we use only
              Omega-3 eggs
              LUNCH
              Soup du Jour:composed daily from the chef’s kettle...........4
              Spinach Salad: red onion, julienned carrots & beet,
              crisp bacon & sun dried tomato vinaigrette.......................................8
              California “C”Salad
              mixedlettuce,avocado,tomatoes,bacon, smoked turkey,
              feta cheese, sweet tarragon vinaigrette................................................10
              Crazy CeZar!:
              romaine leaves tossed with parmesan, cheese
              roasted garlic caesar dressing and herb croutons.......................7
              Warm Multi Grain & Wild Rice Salad
              on a bed of greens, toasted walnuts,
              house dressing.........................................................................................................8
              Sandwiches with Style & Substance
              (served with salad or fries)
              Toasted Chicken Club: herb marinated
              chicken breast, smokedbacon, lettuce, tomatoes,
              swiss cheese, roasted garlic spread....................................................8
              Smoked Turkey Sandwich: avocado, swiss cheese,
              lettuce,lemon-sage aioli, toasted multi grain.........................................8
              Bistro Burger: homemade burger, onions, cheese,
              bacon, lettuce, tomatoes...................................................................................9
              Shrimp BLT: bacon, greens, tomato,remoulade &
              grilled bread..............................................................................................................8
              Croque Monisuer: ham & cheese on multigrain...................8
              Wraps
              (served with fries or salad
              Chicken CeZar Wrap: garlic croûtons, chicken strips,
              torn romaine lettuce.............................................................................................8
              Grilled Vegetable Wrap:
              with spinach, & feta. Cheese.........................................................................7
              Tasty Thai Shrimp Wrap: sprouts, red curry spice,
              sweet chili sauce.....................................................................................................8
              Chicken Tikka Wrap: tandoori spiced chicken, onions
              tomato, cucumbers, fresh coriander & mango chutney...............8
              PastaPasta
              Penne Siciliana:
              tomato, spinach, pinenuts, chili flakes, eggplant, zucchini
              &roasted garlic in lemon olive oil emulsion.....................................12
              Fusilli with Grilled Chicken: red onions &
              peppers tossed in a coconut curried cream sauce....................12
              Linguine with Vodka Marinated Grilled Shrimp
              melted leeks, fresh tomato and arugula..............................................16
              Rigatoni with Italian Sausage:
              caramelized fennel, spinach, fresh tomato & basil......................12
              Entrees
              Butter Chicken
              with basmati rice, papadums, raita & mango chutney...................12
              Grilled Salmon Paillard: feta cheese, crisp greens,
              roasted red pepper & oregano vinaigrette.....................................14
              Chicken Quesadilla: sour cream, salsa,
              guacamole and greens....................................................................................10
              DINNER
              Appetizers
              Baby Spinach Salad
              red onions, juliened carrots & beets, crisp bacon,
              sundried tomato vinaigrette............................................................................6
              Seared Prawn Chorizo
              chili, spinach & lemon cumin dressing......................................................8
              Roasted Beet Salad
              goat cheese, greens, toasted walnut citrus vinaigrette................6
              Crab Cakes
              with mango chutney, cucumber,
              tomato & crushed cashewnut salad........................................................10
              Crazy Cezar Salad!
              romaine leaves tossed with parmesan cheese,
              roasted garlic caesar dressing, herb croutons..................................7
              Salmon Croquettes
              greens, sherry cayenne mayo..........................................................................7
              Soup du Jour
              composed daily from the chef’s kettle...................................................4
              Pasta
              Penne in Creamy Parmesan Cheese Fondue
              roasted eggplant, sundried tomato, spinach,
              pine nuts, roasted garlic................................................................................12
              Fussilli with Grilled Chicken
              red onions & peppers
              tossed in a coconut curried cream sauce............................................14
              Seafood Fettuccine
              medley of shrimps, scallops, mussels, salmon & calamari
              in a spicy tomato sauce.....................................................................................18
              Linguine with Vodka Marinated Grilled Shrimp
              melted leeks, fresh tomato & arugula......................................................16
              Rigatoni with Italian Sausage
              caramelized fennel, spinach, fresh tomato & basil..........................14
              Entrees
              Grilled Cornish Game Hen
              with seven grain risotto, pan jus port drizzle...................................16
              Thai Style Seafood Risotto
              with red curry lemongrass & coconut milk..........................................20
              Blackened Salmon
              five lentil ragout, jicama, jalapenos cilantro slaw,
              citrus burre blanc.................................................................................................18
              Pan Seared Tilapia
              with fricasse of white beans, carrot , bacon,
              t omato & lobster fondue drizzle.............................................................16
              Butter Chicken
              basmati rice, pappadums, mango chutney &raita............................ 15
              Grilled Peppered New York Striploin
              bourbon maple jus, garlic mash with
              cheese & grilled vegetables.........................................................................20

              3 Replies
              1. re: hoagy294

                Wow, seems kind of all over the place. They've certainly covered all the bases on this one. Be interesting to hear from those that give it a try.

                1. re: millygirl

                  My thoughts too. Hopefully they can pull off all those dishes properly. I will definitely be checking it out.

                  1. re: millygirl

                    Yes I think it will be great the owner is the chef & spent the last 10 years @ the Royal York Hotel his wife was a pastry chef @ Richtree markets(marche) before Movenpick. Definately support from the community will be great

                2. Trying to get my bearings -- this place is actually east of Woodbine, is it not? Sort of halfway to Main?

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: JamieK

                    No - it's a couple of blocks west of Woodbine, sort of halfway to Coxwell, on the north side of the Danforth.

                    1. re: thought_for_food

                      I got the menu this evening in the mail - has someone tried it yet? If so - can you report back?

                      I thought the menu was abit everywhere - but would love to support a great local place.

                      1. re: Apple

                        We were visting Toronto last week and went in twice, enjoyed everything we ordered.
                        Breakfast we had Morning Crunch (I'm a sucker for homemade granola) and Newfoundland special. Went back for lunch the next day. Lunch we had Tikka wrap (must try this!) and the quesadilla. Someone next to us had the Shrimp linguine which also looked good. They were pretty busy but staff was pleasant and smiling.
                        Will revist when I return!

                  2. So, hubby and I went for brunch this morning.

                    The place was packed. The space is newly painted, a little short on wall decor, but it's nicely furnished, clean, and the chairs are comfortable. We ordered poached eggs on cod cakes and French toast. Both plates looked great, on arrival. The eggs were done right, the cod cakes were flavourful (though I would have preferred a crispier exterior), the "country fries" also were a little too mushy for my liking; however, everything tasted good and the flavours went well together. The French toast was coated with cornflake crumbs and drizzled with kahlua crème anglaise; it was looking sumptuous till I tasted the "maple" syrup, and I am pretty sure that it wasn't the real thing. (Personally, I'd rather pay an extra dollar -- the dish was $7 -- and get real maple syrup, and I don't understand the point of kahlua crème anglaise when you're pairing it with fake maple syrup...)

                    Service was pleasant, and they were trying their best, but refills were slow. Hubby complained that the coffee was extremely weak; he didn't think it was bad coffee, however.

                    All in all, a good brunch, and we will be back. No sign yet of the "patisserie".

                    1. My husband and I, and his parents went to Melanie's last night for dinner. We were met with a sign on the door that told us that they were currently only accepting cash. We all took a step back, got out our wallets and started to assess if we had enough for dinner, or whether we needed to find an ATM.

                      The owner (I believe it was Melanie), came outside to greet us, was apologetic, and told us to come in, and that we could work something out at the end of the night. She was extremely nice about the situation, saying that we could always come back later and cover the bill if needed. I believe their CC machines will be up and running as of Monday. I made a reservation earlier in the day, and if I were the restaurant, I would have just advised patrons of the situation on the phone. It wouldn't have stopped us from coming at all, and everyone likes to be properly prepared. :)

                      The restaurant looks new and fresh, but I agree with the other poster about the walls looking a bit bare at this point. I also think some people might miss the restaurant due to the fact that they have a hand-painted sign that's not backlit like many other places on the street. Hard to see when driving by at night. That being said, I think they have some lighting for the sign which they turned on later in the night.

                      Service was attentive, but you couldn't definitely tell it was a new place, as everyone was a bit green. We also seemed to have three rotating waiters, but I figured it was so everyone could get some practice? :) This will probably smooth out in the coming weeks.

                      The menu for the night was a shortened version of the one hoagy posted above. I think they rotate their selections, which is nice because it keeps the kitchen focused. There were maybe 6-8 appetizers to choose from, 4 pastas, and 3 mains. We weren't terribly hungry, so we shared the shrimp/chorizo and beet salad dishes to start. Both were presented nicely, and quite tasty. I would order them both again.

                      For mains, I had the blackened salmon with the jalapeno jicama slaw. The fish was cooked nicely, and really enjoyed the slaw. Crispy and crunchy, with jalapeno flavor without the heat. Two people had the linguine with vodka marinated shrimp (declared good), and the last had the butter chicken, which I tried a piece of, and it was very nice.

                      Desserts were two kinds of cheesecake, but we were already full and passed.

                      One note on service - a waiter brought over the house wines to show them to the table. I appreciated knowing what they were, as many places do not even bother to list them, but I found it a little awkward. I would have preferred they were just listed in the menu. The house red is Argento's malbec, and the white is the Folonari pino grigio - which are both decent house choices, and definitely better than some of the un-named stuff you get in restaurants that taste like they were brewed in someone's basement. Good pours, and only $6 a glass.

                      Total bill for two apps, 4 mains, 5 glasses of wine was $124 before tip. Very good value. I think the owners have been smart about their pricing for the neighbourhood, and how to bring locals in. We enjoyed all of the food, and will definitely be back. I want to stop in for brunch soon, as we really need more good brunch spots in the east end!

                      1. Wow, Melanie's must really be filling a gap in the area for a decent family brunch place. There were four strollers parked outside and a couple inside today when I went for brunch.

                        The place is busy busy busy and you can tell the staff are a little overwhelmed (there's a help wanted sign in the window) but all were friendly, helpful and reasonably attentive.

                        I agree the mostly bare walls could use some livening up. Perhaps down the road they could invite local artists to show their work. The music was fine, some kind of Spanish guitar and low-key jazzy stuff, loud enough to cover the hubhub of the place but not too loud to be annoying.

                        I had the aforementioned "Newfoundland special" poached eggs on cod cakes and they were delicious, nicely seasoned and very tasty. The fruit salad that came with the fish and eggs was fresh and colourful.

                        My friend was pleased with her grilled vegetable wrap, which came with fries or salad. The fries were pretty good, not heavenly in a JKWB kind of way but not terrible.

                        All in all we had a pleasant brunch there today and I would definitely go back. I'm so glad Melanie's turned out to be worthwhile because I really want to support this place and the other little restos around here, there's too many so-called "health/massage spas", old-guy coffee clubs, low-life bars and empty storefronts around this neighbourhood.

                        Edited - forgot to add -- On a bright sunny day, as it was earlier, there's too much glare in this restaurant (north side of Danforth). And no one wanted to sit at the table at the very front window in the full sun. They should consider an outside awning for the window or some kind of internal window treatment to control that and make it more comfortable.

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: JamieK

                          Has anyone been to this place recently? It got three stars in Toronto Life. Looking at the menu above, I don't care for the 'all over the place' feel of butter chicken on the same menu as seafood fettucine. But it seems to be in the casual local spot niche that I tend to enjoy.

                          1. re: grandgourmand

                            I've only ever had the butter chicken (and will again to be sure) and have only heard great things about the pasta ...but will never have the two together -- I'm not into being 'all over the place' either. >:-p

                            Only too happy to support this local treat. When we want someplace great now we don't have to go far at all.

                        2. Haven't been recently but the last time I went about seven or eight months ago, I had the seafood fettucine. My tablemate had the butter chicken. Both delicious. Service good. It's a neighbourhood gem but slightly elevated, making it worth coming from elsewhere although perhaps not across the city.

                          11 Replies
                          1. re: JamieK

                            Agreed. The food is good; the service competent (not polished). But three stars? What? I don't know, but I'd much rather go to 2.5 star Batifole than Melanie's. Unless I was heading out with one or more youngsters in tow...

                            Let's hope that this gives them the motivation to start serving real maple syrup with their French toast.

                            1. re: Full tummy

                              For the type of place they are aspiring to be, Melanie's should definitely be serving real maple syrup.

                              1. re: Full tummy

                                This place is OK, and definitely a cut above the average neighbourhood establishment, but three stars? And no real maple syrup? :)

                                Reminds me I haven't been there in a while. They do seem to be able to provide a diverse menu and keep it competently done, and the service is competent. Hmm. Maybe tomorrow night...

                                1. re: Pincus

                                  Just a follow-up to my previous post. Hubby and I ate dinner at Melanie's recently. First of all, the menu is noticeably pared down from our last dinner there; none of the mains raved about in the Toronto Life review were listed; the butter chicken praised on this board is also gone. The menu is no w heavily pasta focused, with five or six different options, ranging in price from $14 – 18, if I remember correctly, plus three “meat” options: one salmon, one steak, and one chicken (coq au vin), all priced close to $20.00. There were also two specials, another pasta and a stuffed chicken dish. Also, it is important to note that Melanie’s has perhaps 7 or 8 different wines, red and white, all-tolled, which can be ordered by the bottle, or by the glass.

                                  They keep the tables bare and then bring cutlery and paper napkins after your arrival. I find this an annoying disruption, and also gritted my teeth when the server placed the knife and fork in the wrong positions on the napkin, but then maybe I’m just a stickler. I do feel that tables should already be set; I know this sometimes means there’s extra cutlery at a four-top, when only two people occupy it, and the servers need to remove two place settings, but that would be better, as it doesn’t interfere with conversations, etc. Nobody has to lean in front of you... That said, the tables did have lit candles on them, and the room somehow looks softer, more romantic at night.

                                  The night we were there, about half the tables were full, which impressed me, as it was a frigid week night, and the location is not exactly prime… Everybody seemed to be enjoying their dinners; there were no kids in sight, so maybe this is a brunch phenomenon.

                                  We started with a spinach salad and the crab cakes the Toronto Life reviewer noted had “nary a trace of filler”. I beg to differ. These were like discs of sponge, there was so much filler. They weren’t unpleasant, but almost like crab-flavoured plump blini. I definitely didn’t feel any chunks of crab on my tongue, and they were easy to hold in the hand and eat like a cookie, they held together so well. With a little side mesclun salad and a pot of slightly spicy dip (sorry, but nothing about this dip suggested artistry much advanced from mixing mayonnaise and sriracha), it was very nicely presented, and the flavours did meld well. Don’t know if I would order it again, though, as the cakes left me wondering "where's the crab?"

                                  The “warm” spinach salad came topped with cranberries, walnuts or pecans (sorry, don’t remember), bacon bits, with a sweetish apple cider salad dressing and was quite yummy. I was wondering what made the salad so yummy while eating it, and landed on the sweetness of the dressing. I don’t tend to add sweeteners to my salad dressings at home… I also realized when tasting the salad that came with the crab cakes that it, too, had a high level of sweetness for a salad.

                                  Now, onto the mains. I was very much in a comfort food mood and ordered a pasta with chicken, mushrooms, and tarragon-cream sauce. Hubby ordered a pasta with a tomato sauce and wild boar. Pastas were nicely al dente, and portions were on the large size. That said, my chicken was a bit gristly in parts (it definitely wasn’t a sliced chicken breast, for example), and the mushrooms were all button or cremini, so not that exciting. Some spinach was tossed in for colour, and overall I was satisfied with the dish. Hubby’s wild boar pasta was a bit of a disappointment, as it was clear from the dish and not from the menu that the boar was processed into some sort of meatball or sausage slices. From the menu description, we were expecting more of a braised sauce with pieces of boar meat. Aside from this, though, the pasta was fine. We probably wouldn’t have ordered that dish had we known, though. Real, already grated Parmesan and pepper were offered upon arrival of the pastas.

                                  There were three desserts on offer: Crème brulée, strawberry cheesecake, and pear crumble cake. We ordered a crème brulée and a pear crumble cake. The former was a classic crème, minus vanilla bean seeds (so I’m assuming it was flavoured with extract); the brulée was nice and crisp, very well done. The latter was, alas, lacking in crumble and had definitely been nuked to warm (I suspect this was how the crumble had been lost…). Very bland, but the cake was nice and light. More like a simple coffee cake and a bit of a disappointment for a dinner dessert. Also, I just think baked goods shouldn’t see the inside of a microwave, especially in a restaurant. Hubby, who is fussy about coffee, was happy with his, and I enjoyed my latté.

                                  Overall, service was friendly and efficient; however, water glasses (which are on the small side) did sit empty for a bit, and we were waiting for what I felt was an inordinately long time for the mains, after finishing our apps.

                                  I will definitely be back; it is a great neighbourhood place; clean, comfortable, friendly, (even romantic), with overall good food. Is it worth three stars? Maybe on the strength of the meal the reviewer and his/her companion happened to have, but most of those dishes aren’t on the menu anymore, and the review doesn’t point out the preponderance of pastas on the menu (nor did either diner have a pasta dish that night). I have now eaten there twice for brunch, twice for dinner, and I would have to say there are a few rough edges, and there’s nothing special or unusual about the ingredients, the button mushrooms in my $18 pasta a perfect example of this,and the fake maple syrup at brunch being a glaringly big fault, in my opinion.. Is it tremendous value, as noted by Toronto Life’s reviewer? Not in my opinion. Did my $18 pasta have shiitake mushrooms, porcinis, or chanterelles, some special kind of poultry, or even all white meat? No. For the most part, things are cooked as they should be. At its best, Melanie’s serves very competently prepared, “like home” meals. At least, that is what they feel like to me.

                                  Batifole – 2.5, Zucca – 2.5, Globe Bistro – 2.5, The Citizen – 2... Melanie’s Bistro’s 3 stars just don’t make sense to me. That puts it on par with George, North 44, Treadwell, Mistura, Auberge du Pommier, and Pangaea. I don’t think so. Sorry.

                                  1. re: Full tummy

                                    The thorough review is appreciated. I don't think I'll go. A menu that is heavy on pasta doesn't appeal to me. I make it plenty at home and rarely order it when I go out. That, and I live a hop skip and jump away from Batifole. From your comments, you prefer Batifole.

                                    1. re: grandgourmand

                                      I, like you, don't usually order pasta in a restaurant, as I make it so often at home. Chicken, tarragon, mushrooms, and cream are also a favourite sauce for me to prepare. So.... my choice at Melanie's was partly dictated by a kitchen renovation that has me pulling my hair out (hence, I haven't eaten pasta for a bit...)

                                      Batifole offers a range of dishes that aren't part of my regular cooking repertoire, and I love love love some of them--the escargots, for example. The service is much more polished, too. A step up, in my opinion.

                                    2. re: Full tummy

                                      Thanks for the detailed review, as I am headed there tonight, and I would probably have ordered that wild boar and also been disappointed. The dessert selection also sounds lame, especially for a place with "patisserie" in its name... none of the items are what I expect from a patisserie. But it's probably better that I won't be tempted

                                      1. re: julesrules

                                        Let us know about your experience, julesrules!!!

                                        1. re: Full tummy

                                          I don't have much to report, as my friend and I only ordered a main each. There were 3 mains listed on the menu, along with several specials including a Thai seafood risotto listed on their old menu above. I chose the $18 Coq au Vin. I don't think I've ever had it before. It was as I expected and very tasty, but I have no comparison points. Minor quibble that the spinach on the side was oversalted. My friend got one of the specials, a $20 chicken breast stuffed with goat cheese, she said it was very good. The prices of the specials were not recited. The contentious pasta is currently described as having wild boar sausage. We did not ask about desserts.
                                          Personally, I would be happier with an actual patisserie (a girl can dream!) than the restaurant. Their sign just says Melanie's bistro. Maybe they had plans to do more baking originally?

                                          1. re: julesrules

                                            Hi, julesrules. I wonder if the menu you saw was different than ours... I don't recall seeing a Thai seafood risotto, and neither my husband nor I saw the word "sausage". Perhaps that's our error...

                                            Yes, I do think they had aspirations of doing Patisserie in the beginning...

                                            1. re: Full tummy

                                              The seafood risotto was a blackboard special. I just noticed that it had been included on their original mega menu, so I imagine it's a recurring special not just a one-off. And they may very well have changed the description for the wild boar sausage in the interim. The menus are just regular computer print outs inserted in a card.

                              2. Hats off for service and customer attitude.

                                I decided to go for Sunday breakfast and had set my heart on the Newfoundland. I was told before I even sat down that there were no cod cakes or eggs Benedict. I almost left, but decided to try something else. My waitresss told me to hang on just in case there were some. She returned to say she was sorry - but no. I ordered the huevos rancheros with poached eggs.

                                After a while a slim Asian lady came up and spoke to me and said she had heard I really wanted the cod cakes; I told here not to worry. She then gave me the inside scoop. That morning when preparing the Hollandaise sauce they had had some form of disaster. She said they did have the cod cakes but couldn't do the Newfoundland special. She told me that she would add a couple to my breakfast for free. They duly arrived.

                                I will be honest and say I preferred the rancheros to the cakes, but together the combination was excellent. I think they should have them as toonie add-ons / extras for all the breakfasts. The poached eggs were spot on.

                                In general the portions are not large by Canadian breakfast standards, but at my time of life that's probably a good thing. I will take my wife there. She likes eggs Benedict, but is sometimes disappointed when the sauce originates from a plastic rather than egg shell. Here we know that not to be the case.

                                The staff I have to say were extremely friendly and helpful and decidedly a cut above the normal breakfast deliverers. They will have a little chat with you, sometimes to the detriment of the service to others. But in general that is what the crowd preferred.

                                The atmosphere and clientèle are more Queen East than East Danforth. The coffee was good. The room was almost full and had a pleasant buzz of people enjoying Sunday brunch.

                                All in all a very enjoyable experience, one predicated on the way the staff treat the customers.

                                1. I've got some news on the Toronto Life rating. Just checked the website and its now only two stars. I'm thinking that the print version was a typo.

                                  Went there last night with my gf. We enjoyed it and will return, but i have to agree with the general consensus that three stars seemed a bit out of whack.

                                  http://www.torontolife.com/guide/rest...

                                  3 Replies
                                  1. re: haggisdragon

                                    Gee, haggisdragon, I was pretty sure that at the time of my post questioning the three star rating that the web version (the only one I read) had three stars also. Strange....

                                    1. re: Full tummy

                                      interesting, Full tummy, perhaps it wasn't a typo. I was wondering about that.

                                    2. re: haggisdragon

                                      I notice that they have the Toronto Life review in the window still - including all three stars. Can't blame them for that though.