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Visiting TO, Need Recos

Bagel Guy Mar 6, 2009 02:42 PM

Miss L and I are coming to Toronto from Calgary this Saturday (6th) and staying for 5 days on business. Staying downtown at Hyatt Regency at 370 King West. Need some recommendations for breakfast, lunch and dinner ... but all within walking distance of the hotel. Anything goes. Love flavor and spice. We're both originally from Toronto, but have lived in Calgary for many years with periodic visits here, so we know the Town well, but not too familiar with new and good restaurants near the hotel. We're grateful for any suggestions.

  1. Bagel Guy Mar 7, 2009 01:05 PM

    Thank you everyone for your very good suggestions. On our first day here, because of the rain (and we wanted to walk) we were not able to take advantage of any of these great suggestions. However, we took in the new restaurant downstairs in the hotel (the Hyatt Regency at 370 King West), the "King Street Social". We had a late lunch/early dinner at 3:30 in the afternoon, and were very happy with the meal. We shared a Tom Yum Kung soup, which was nice and tasty with just the right Thai spices and tomato. I had the Sticky Ribs, which had very interesting and delicate spices and herbs, again reminiscent of good Thai. They were sticky but not at all that yucky BBQ stuff that so often spoils a nice short rib. Miss L tasted them and approved. Miss L had a really nice Baked Lavash (flatbread, caramelized onions, asiago cheese, and baked tomato which the menu said was sundried, but it was baked wedges). She said she would definitely have this again. I concur. The coffee was a nice roast from Starbucks (surprise!). When the server told us it was a Starbucks coffee, I was concerned since I don't generally like Starbucks and tend to stay away from them, but we were both pleasantly surprised. Must be the water they used. The service from Suzanne was excellent. Couldn't be better. Polite, friendly and with a good sense of humor. Considering it was 3:30 in the afternoon, and we were the only ones in the place, the kitchen did a wonderful job. We enjoyed our first meal in Toronto on this trip very much, and would definitely come back to the King Sreet Social.

    1. sloweater Mar 6, 2009 06:18 PM

      I'm surprised it hasn't been mentioned; you should definitely give Amuse Bouche a try. It's just west of Bathurst Street at 96 Tecumseth Street. The food is great and the wine list is intelligent.

      96 Tecumseth St, Toronto, ON M6J2H1, CA

      9 Replies
      1. re: sloweater
        ChalkBoy Mar 7, 2009 04:52 AM

        Crush (casual wine bar - they call it gastropub)


        Dhaba (north Indian ayce lunch buffet



        Tutti Matti (modern Italian



        Jule's (modern French cafe



        Smoke's (all poutine fast food joint



        and downstairs in the same building:
        Burrito Boyz (California-style Mexican fast food



        Queen Mother (veggie friendly Asian-ish



        Peter Pan (retro diner with cheap lunch specials, Susur Lee used to cook here in, uh, 1982



        1. re: ChalkBoy
          millygirl Mar 7, 2009 06:54 AM

          If you can, get your hands on a copy of the latest Toronto Life. This issue features the 2009 restaurant guide along with the Top 10 rated restos in the city. I think you would find it extremely valuable.

          1. re: millygirl
            Tatai Mar 7, 2009 08:02 AM

            I could be mistaken, but isn't the Restaurant Guide only included with mailed subscription copies?

            1. re: Tatai
              millygirl Mar 7, 2009 08:05 AM

              Oops, yes you are right tatai. Hmmm, okay bagel guy I guess you are out of luck in that respect. But on re-reading your post, I see that you are probably already here and well on your way with your food adventures. Anyways, if you can get your hands on the Guide it would be helpfu. Hope you are enjoying your visit.

            2. re: millygirl
              Googs Mar 7, 2009 08:41 AM

              Did I miss something? Is this the year Toronto Life has both up-to-date and accurate reviews? Last I checked they still had reviews of places that closed years ago. I don't mean to offend you, Millygirl, honestly. I just find TL to be a poor source for accurate info.

              This may be useful. When not using "hey, I haven't seen that before, let's try it" I go here for an up-to-date resource:


              1. re: Googs
                millygirl Mar 7, 2009 11:14 AM

                No offense taken Googs. I suppose I could have added a caveat to not go by the ratings but having said that, I stand by the opinion that it is a handy guide as to what's in and around T.O., esp. for visitors to our fair city. I was going on the assumption that most people realize a review is just that, one person's opinion - and to be taken with a grain of salt.

                1. re: millygirl
                  LemonLauren Mar 7, 2009 12:59 PM

                  although, they do have my favourtie line i have read in a review ever: "just say no to quadruple-cheese-hot-artichoke dip", in a sidebar about the trend of casual fine dining chains (ala Milestones). lol.

                  no, i like TL, they call things like they see them, and they have a review for Mogette which is pretty up to date if you ask me.

                  1. re: LemonLauren
                    Googs Mar 7, 2009 01:42 PM

                    It's things such as this that irk me. From their current website:

                    Mamminas closed years ago. If I went there based on this review and found a Magic Oven instead (which it is) I would be majorly pissed. This is one example of many that they don't keep it up-to-date. More culling people.

          2. re: sloweater
            JamieK Mar 7, 2009 09:23 AM


            96 Tecumseth St, Toronto, ON M6J2H1, CA

          3. JamieK Mar 6, 2009 03:13 PM

            Very nearby, classic French bistro - Le Select for lunch, brunch or dinner.

            Le Select
            432 Wellington St W, Toronto, ON M5V1E3, CA

            1. JamieK Mar 6, 2009 02:57 PM

              For breakfast or lunch, Zoe's is down the street west of Spadina. Great sandwiches.

              548 King St W, Toronto, ON M5V, CA

              1. redearth Mar 6, 2009 02:51 PM

                Nota Bene - dinner.
                Lai Wah Heen - lunch (dim sum).
                Le Petit Dejeuner - breakfast.

                4 Replies
                1. re: redearth
                  pinkprimp Mar 7, 2009 07:55 AM

                  Although I like Le Petit Dejeuner, I don't think it is walking distance at all! It's at the opposite side of town.

                  1. re: pinkprimp
                    redearth Mar 7, 2009 08:14 AM

                    I wouldn't say it's on the opposite side of town... It's a bit of a stroll, yes, but it shouldn't take more than 20 mins. to walk from 370 King West to 191 King St East. I would definitely say it's within walking distance. Plus, it's one of the best brunch spots in Toronto, if that's what Bagel Guy is looking for.

                    1. re: redearth
                      Googs Mar 7, 2009 08:26 AM

                      1.8 km or a 21 min walk according to GoogleMaps. Really too far for your first meal of the day. Then there's the lousy service, cramped tables, and (for the life of me I don't understand) line-ups(!) to get in where they leave the door hanging open whether it's cold or not cold outside.

                      1. re: Googs
                        redearth Mar 7, 2009 08:29 AM

                        Fair enough. Should I retract my recommendation? Okay, if you say so.

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