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Sep 30, 2008 06:51 AM

Breakfast around Queen and Woodbine - any recommendations?

My parents and 2 sets of aunts and uncles will be coming to Toronto this Saturday and would like to meet for breakfast (at 8:30 AM, so not brunch) in the Queen and Woodbine area. Keeping in mind that they are all in their 70's and not from Toronto (Cambridge, Hamilton and near Montreal), where would you recommend for them to meet, sit comfortably and have a decent breakfast? I'm not overly familiar with the Queen East/Beach area, and restaurants seem to come and go a bit there.

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  1. I live in the Beach and unfortunately, it's not the best area for finding great food (you'll find a general agreement about this in numerous threads on this board). Beach Side Grill (1922 Queen Street East) is the closest place to Queen and Woodbine but I've only been once and I don't remember it being that great. Maybe someone else has some more recent opinions about it. Sunset Grill (2006 Queen St E) near Queen and Lee usually has a decent breakfast (basic eggs, good potatoes, etc) but there is often a line up on weekends so it may not be ideal for an older crowd. Green Eggplant (1968 Queen St E), at near Queen and Waverley Road is popular and their breakfast is ok. It's comfortable and you usually don't have to wait. Whitlock's is across the street but I've never found it too great. I would avoid Mars diner - after a couple of mediocre experiences and bad service I can't really recommend it. Another one to avoid is Beacher Cafe, further down Queen. Very mediocre.
    Hope that helps!

    5 Replies
      1. re: Dimbulb

        I love The Tulip. Great all-day breakfast for a very reasonable price. I agree with currycue about Patisserie Zane, too.
        If you'd like something really wonderful, I'd take the streetcar west to Edward Levesque's Kitchen for brunch (beware, they'll be a line).

        1. re: mummy2Luna

          I actually forgot about Tulip and Zane - I wasn't thinking west of Woodbine for some reason! I've only had coffee and pastries at Zane but they were very good. Tulip definitely has a good breakfast and sandwiches.

      2. re: ms. clicquot

        I wouldn't dismiss the Beacher so quickly, they have a new chef, the service is friendly, I found the eggs benny pretty good the last time I was there. Certainly, the relaxed neighbourhoody atmosphere and friendly service there would have provided a better experience than the poster had at the Cottage.

        1. re: JamieK

          I may give it another try if they have a new chef. The few times I've been in the past the service was quite slow (but friendly) and the food pretty mediocre. However, things can change so perhaps I'll check it out again soon and report back. I agree that it would have been better than the Cottage though, no matter what!

      3. Highly recommended (and at 8:30, you should be able to get seats on the patio) is Patisserie Zane, just west of Meat on the Beach. Love their quiches, ham & cheese croissants, chocolate / lemon / plain croissants, the list goes on. Very good French pastry shop and decent coffee.

        1. Leslieville is a bit of a trek, but at least it's on Queen (so it's one street-car ride): Bonjour Brioche

          I love this place... lighter breakfast with great food, not your typical egg/sausage breakfast place.

          2 Replies
            1. re: vacuum

              Please don't take a group of people to Bonjour Brioche, especially older folks. The place is very small and they would be hard pressed to accomodate any group larger than 4. Besides that, the service stinks! I'd 2nd the Green Eggplant recommendation.

            2. Given your criteria - how about Il Fornello? I think they have a breakfast buffet... I know it's there on Sunday but not sure about Saturday?

              If greasy spoon is okay - then I highly recommend the Tulip. Love it!

              2 Replies
              1. re: Apple

                Yes, agree with Il Fornello or The Tulip; both have comfortable seating, are not too noisy, and offer a menu that those with more traditional tastes will feel comfortable with. My husband's parents are similar in age to the op's relatives, and they enjoy both places, and though hubby and I might prefer to go elsewhere, the food is fine for us, too.

                1. re: Apple

                  although Il Fornello doesn't open til 9:30 am on Saturday and these folks want to dig in at 8:30.

                2. If they are not adventurous eaters, you won't go wrong with the Tulip. While I'm not a Tulip fan, they serve good diner food at great prices.

                  If they want something more interesting, Zane is lovely. However, if it's not a patio kind of day, there isn't any comfortable seating inside.

                  Unless Edward has undergone a personality transplant, I do not recommend Edward Levesque.