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Harbour Sixty Steakhouse, Toronto - BAD exp!

Tir_na_nOg Jun 28, 2008 09:39 AM

I only had time for one good meal out while visiting Toronto this week, and that turned to be at Harbour Sixty. 1 1/2 hours to get apps and my medium rare filet was decidedly medium. You'd think these prices, the steaks would be cooked correctly! Some of the apps and sides were good, but hardly made up for the wait or the overcooked steaks. Although there was a good view of the CN Tower from the outside courtyard and they did give us a free tasting plate of desserts to make up for being so slow (dessert was served 3-3 1/2 hours after we arrived). The desserts were OK, but just typical heavy, clumsy steakhouse fare.

The wine list had a very interesting selection, but based on the few bottles I recognized from my own cellar, they are marked up a ridiculous 400%. I don't know what is typical in Canadian restaurants, but that is highway robbery here in Boston. We ended up going with a single bottle of Duoro for the 3 of us, which was nice, but at $72 was one of the cheapest things on the list. $100/person (since I refused to buy any more wine at those prices).

Sorry to give a bad report. Should have checked this board first!

Cheers,
Kevin
Boston, MA

  1. atomeyes Jul 8, 2008 08:13 AM

    here's my take:
    i 've been there once and, yes, it was on someone else's dollar.
    we were in the Board Room on the top floor. very nice interior. service was excellent.
    apps were quite tasty, including the carpaccio.
    i had the filet mignon for dinner and it was excellent. incredibly tender, thick and flavourful. cooked to perfection.
    the side dishes were great as well.
    dessert was a chocolate cake that was amazing.

    it is an over-the-top restaurant, and now you know why A-Rod was caught there last year. the prices are high, the portions are huge, the decor is huge.

    i would NEVER pay for Harbour60 out of my own pocket. but...if someone offered to take me there for a steak dinner, i would certainly not object

    1 Reply
    1. re: atomeyes
      w
      Westwardho Jul 8, 2008 09:00 AM

      I tried to stay out of this one, but I can't. I have to hand it to Harbour 60. With it widely known how expensive their steaks are and agregious their wine pricing is, they seem to be doing pretty well. People still pack the place. And I've been there a half dozen times. (Paid 3 of them) The food has always been good. Great rib steak (bone on). Expensive sides. Expensive wines. But if you know that going in, then there is generally nothing to complain about. I honestly think it is top 3 in the city for steak with Morton's and Ruth's Chris. They are pretty consistent.

      I've done the circuit over and over along with Hy's, Kegs, La Castile, Bigliardi's. Barberian's, Black Angus, Bardi's, Senior's. I eat a lot of meat. Never been to Jacob & Co.

      If you happen to like the H60 experience and need to go for steak before the hockey game in Montreal, Queue de Cheval has the same pricing model, consistenly good and expensive food and wine. But the room is nicer. Spectacular actually.

    2. f
      FiniganFoodie Jul 7, 2008 12:19 PM

      I'm confused. Another site that I've been using to compare to Chowhound, gives them a fairly good rating: http://www.restaurantica.com/on/toron... - and the reviews are really, really detailed to help weed out the whackos from the people who genuinely want to share...

      It would be really helpful if there was a rating system here so that you could see what the good (or in this case) questionable things about different restaurants.

      Maybe the problem is that I'm not a foodie - just someone looking for good dining choices when I visit Toronto with my partner....

      For me, perfect restaurant review guide would have everything chowhound has with a bonafida rating system....

      1 Reply
      1. re: FiniganFoodie
        t
        torontofoodiegirl Jul 7, 2008 12:40 PM

        Restaurantica's overall rating of H60 is 6.4 out of 10 -- not what I would personally qualify as "fairly good" (especially for a high-end restaurant). That said, I've enjoyed the couple of meals I had at H60 (though haven't been in several years). But then again, I wasn't paying...

      2. a
        air621 Jul 6, 2008 12:10 PM

        It is unfortunate that the best steaks you'll find are the ones you grill at home. My worst steak experience was at Montana (back when they claimed to be known for their steaks). I was there for a party and I ordered the porterhouse along with 3 other people. I think it was like a $40 steak.
        When the steaks arrived, the waiter asked who ordered the porterhouses. I said which one as I had ordered mine rare and most others ordered theirs medium to (gasp) well done. The waiter replied he didn't know which was which, so we should just 'cut them in half to see'

        1 Reply
        1. re: air621
          Moimoi Jul 7, 2008 11:11 AM

          I'm thinking Deelicious might be the manager of H60... ;-)

          Check out these H60 comments
          http://www.chowhound.com/topics/461731

          Okay, maybe Pier 4 and Captain John's were a bit harsh, but even though they aren’t in the same league, that’s how I feel. Whether a restaurant is fancy or not, you can still leave feeling like you’ve been taken advantage of, and thank goodness we have places like this to rant and rave about the things we feel so passionately about.

          I also agree with air621… the best steaks can be had at home, and I can attest to this. Just last week I attended a private birthday party and the chef was from Trapezi. This guy (sorry I forget his name) was amazing and the steaks were out of this world!

          He was cooking on an enormous bbq. I started chatting with him about the whole “touch” thing with steaks as I watched him and thought about how I have to have my little meat thermometer handy when cooking, and he said that many chefs will volunteer at Ruth's Chris or somewhere for months just to learn the "touch" technique to determine doneness. Anyway, we had black angus steaks with bernaise sauce. Wow!! OMG! I can still taste them, and best of all they were FREE. :-)

          I hope the chef at the party will chat about steak "touching" here. He and I chatted for about 15 minutes about it - great conversation!

        2. Moimoi Jul 6, 2008 07:26 AM

          On behalf of the City of Toronto, I apologize that we have restaurants like Harbour 60, but be thankful that you didn't go to Captain John's or Pier 4... two seemingly fun and friendly spots on our harbourfront that remind me of that scene in Chitty Chitty Bang Bang where the children are lured by the Child Catcher into a fun house filled with candy and games, but once inside the walls collapse, the fun house transforms into a cage. "There are children here, I can smell them...". Just like Harbour 60. Come on in... it's good in here...

          Toronto has so many wonderful, and original restaurants, and so many little cultural hubs throughout the city.... I hope you'll come back again and check CH first.

          http://www.chowhound.com/topics/461731

          1. h
            hungry_pangolin Jun 30, 2008 11:07 AM

            I'm so sorry, Kevin, that your one opportunity to eat here was H60. Although someone on here will probably come to its defence, most people regard it, quite rightly, as a clip joint. Please, come back for some real chow.

            1 Reply
            1. re: hungry_pangolin
              Tir_na_nOg Jul 6, 2008 06:09 AM

              Well, since I WAS on an expense account, I guess I didn't feel as bad as I could have!

              /<evin

            2. Fwagra Jun 29, 2008 02:20 PM

              Sorry you ended up there. H60 is truly offensive in so many ways.

              Do come back for: dim sum in one our Chinatowns, the flavours of Kensington market, and other good things we have.

              1. a
                Aardvark Jun 28, 2008 12:09 PM

                The last time I got ripped off there, at least the steak was properly done. As mentioned, it's targeted at the expense account crowd and they really soak you on the alcohol. Avoid unless you are being entertained by someone on an expense account.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Aardvark
                  g
                  garlicandwingnut Jun 28, 2008 02:21 PM

                  That would be good advice for all steak houses in Toronto.
                  IMHO.

                2. g
                  garlicandwingnut Jun 28, 2008 11:32 AM

                  We consider it highway robbery here too!
                  It's a place for expense account booze hounds before a hockey game.
                  I hope you will come back because there are a number of restos trying to do a good job, unfortunately very few if any steak houses make the grade here.

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