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Sep 16, 2008 07:11 AM

Where to eat?? (North York Area)

Heading to the Toronto Centre for the Arts (5040 Yonge St) and looking for a higher end restaurant to makes resos for....any suggestions?

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  1. How high end? The only true "destination" restaurant in the area is Auberge du Pommier, on Yonge, just south of the 401. Sadly, there really is nothing in the immediate vicinity of the theatre. If you want something decent, but not over-the-top expensive, you could go another couple of blocks south from Auberge and go to Wildfire Grille. It's nicer than the chain restaurant options near the theatre (Baton Rouge and Milestones).

    1. TJ's right. Auberge du Pommier is about the only high-end resto within reasonable distance. If you're driving, presumably, there's easy parking available at both the Auberge and the theatre, and it's about a 5-10 minute drive between. Reservations a must. More details plus menu at link -

      Auberge Du Pommier
      4150 Yonge Street, Toronto, ON M2P 2C6, CA

      1. Thanks for the suggestions...I figured Auberge would be my only choice.

        Any comments on Coppi?

        7 Replies
        1. re: Hlrazr

          I've only been to Coppi once (earlier this year), and it was OK. It has a very old school feel to it (white table cloths, dated decor) that was slightly jarred by the very young hostess/waitress. Food was fine, but not stellar. And the place is NOT cheap. For not that much more, I'd definitely pick Auberge.

          1. re: TorontoJo

            The other posters are correct - there's not much of consequence near the theatre, and Auberge du Pommier is the class of the neighborhood if you're prepared to pay the pop (about $200 a couple with wine). though it's not the kind of place where you should rush through dinner to get to the theatre on time. About Coppi, well, it's a neighborhood favorite of mine. I find the food is of high quality. The service is professional, the dishes mainly traditional Italian (I'm partial to the spaghetti puttanesca, one of the cheapest main dishes at about $17) and, if you're in a hurry, the resto offers valet parking out front - though it's pretty easy to find free parking on nearby sidestreets. Let me also suggest a resto almost diagonally across Yonge St. from Coppi, called Sequel. Smallish, well run, with imaginative food from a select menu and interesting wines by the glass.. Maybe a cut below Auberge du Pommier quality (and prices). Your bill at Sequel or Coppi will be $125-$150 a couple, wine, tax and tip included. As you can guess, I'm fond of Sequel, another neighborhood favorite of mine. The drive from Sequel or Coppi to the theatre will be about 10-l5 minutes up Yonge St., but add extra time to find a parking spot near the theatre.

            1. re: juno

              Thanks for the further advice...were going to be cabbing it, so the timing should be ok. I'll look into Sequel...

              1. re: juno

                What would you recommend at Sequel, juno?

                1. re: phoenikia

                  I'm happy to oblige.

                  A resto like Sequel, with such a narrow, focussed menu - maybe half a dozen starters, about eight main dishes - better do EVERYTHING right, and Sequel does. It's not in the top rank in Toronto (but then, neither are its prices), but it competes admirably at the top of the second level. The menu changes every few months, and I've ingested just about everything on it the past few years. The chef seems to have a deft hand with fish, and handles everything else with aplomb as well - usually a pasta, a risotto, a fowl dish, maybe pork and, invariably, a steak (a flatiron nowadays) - steak to me is the most boring dish on any menu and I rarely order it, though Most every dish comes with some sort of taste twist, unexpected but melding nicely with the dish nonetheless. I'm partial to whatever the soup of the day is, or the imaginitive salads. If Cornish hen's a main dish, I'm on it in a flash - it's one the tastiest fowl dishes in town. I've never ordered the fish (haddock) and chips, but those who have say it's totally unlike any other fish and chips they've had - it's refreshingly light in the tempura style. Joanne Kates reviewed Sequel a while back, and was somewhat lukewarm in her praise. But the two dishes she had minor quibbles with were ones I've never ordered, so our experiences are contradictory. Anyway, I'm glad she didn't rave about the place, because then it'd be hard to get a table when I want it.

                  The wine list is mainly private imports, and most bottles are above my price tolerance level, but I'm quite happy with the well-chosen, affordable wines by the glass or a beer (Creemore Springs lager on tap). I've never tried the desserts because resto desserts don't interest me (especially at $9).

                  Above and beyond the menu, though, Sequel is a well-run, comfortable joint, with good, good-humored service (Eric is a droll, genial host), discreet music (usually jazz) in the background, and a lot of nice little touches that other places in its price class don't bother with: interesting breads, amuse-bouches, palate cleansers, occasionally a free hand when pouring wines by the glass, that sort of thing. All main dishes are under $30 (it wasn't always thus, but tough times demand changes) and two should easily get out of there for $125-$150 (drinks, tax and tip included), which is very good value at this level. The good burghers of York Mills and Lawrence Park, myself included, are certainly aware of what this neighborhood place offers. But we tend to keep it quiet because it's a smallish place - by downtown standards - and we don't want the ruffians from other parts of the city to discover it. But for you, phoenikia, my fellow hound, it's a pleasure to inform. Just try not to broadcast it all over town. Easy free parking around the corner from Sequel on the side streets running west of Yonge St.

                  1. re: juno

                    Thanks so much for your detailed reply, juno.

                    You've convinced me to try Sequel tonight. I'm really looking forward to the meal.

                    3362 Yonge St, Toronto, ON M4N2M7, CA

              2. re: TorontoJo

                Auberge hands down! Coppi's food I found is too bland, lacking any excitement factor! Frankly, the dishes I had, I can do a better job at home.

            2. I quite like Coppi. I think the charm of the place is definitely Fausto (owner). We usually get the snapper encassed in sea salt. So juicy and tender, yet still firm. It's an excellent dish to share, with a salad or soup. And I've never been dissapointed with the risotto.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Raquel

                I'm not positive, but think Sequel is closed Monday nights. But if you insist on going out around there on Monday - the A teams in the kitchens often take off Mondays - Raquel is right about Coppi, a traditional Italian spot almost diagonally across Yonge St. from Sequel. What it does, it does well. And Fausto on the premises adds to the tone of the place, as an owner on site usually does. Indeed, Sequel and Coppi are just about the best of the bunch of almost-wall-to-wall restos and fast-food joints on that stretch on north Yonge St. from Lawrence Ave. to the City Limits, though some might argue for Amaya's Bread Bar and the pan-Asian Cravings. Both good as a change, but I lean towards Sequel and Coppi for value.

                1. re: juno

                  Sequel is open on Mondays, but it is closed on Sundays. By 7:30 p.m. tonight, most of the tables were full.

                  I had the soup of the day, a carrot soup with a caraway cream, followed by the duck confit with a bitter chocolate sauce, cherries, parsnip chips and sweet potato puree. The breads were served with a butternut squash puree, and the palate cleanser was a blueberry port granita. The service was very professional and sincere.

                  Juno is absolutely correct that Sequel is at the top of the second tier of dining. I enjoyed my meal at Sequel more than recent meals at Nota Bene, C5, and the Drake, although I'm guessing CHs seeking trendier food or scene might not be wowed by Sequel. The food quality seemed to be at the same level as Quince or the Globe. I was happy to see Sequel using so many local ingredients in their dishes.

                  I'm sure I'll be back soon.