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yonge and eglinton date suggestions?

Hey guys, first date with a lovely girl in the yonge and eglinton area, just looking for any suggestions, restaurant wise or ambiance wise, restaurant? cafe? dinner? dessert? anything appreciated, thanks

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  1. Coquine for classic french bistro, Zucca or Quince as well. All are similarly priced with good food and not so loud that you can't have an intimate conversation. After dinner, you could try downstairs at Centro for drinks and jazz (you need to check out which nights they have it).

    2 Replies
    1. re: Snarf

      I love Quince (as is obvious if one were to review my prior posts) and Zucca, but I'd say Coquine might be more first-date appropriate (a bit more casual, yet still very nice).

      That's my opinion, as someone in her mid-thrties. mwalton11, if you're much younger or older than me, I might have different advice.

      1. re: torontofoodiegirl

        I really did not enjoy the service or food at Coquine. Too loud (not in a good way if that makes any sense), and compared to all the other French bistros in town, I've had much superior "classic" French bistro fare. Honestly, it also felt like a bit of a pick-up joint the night I was there-people getting wasted at the front and near the bar etc...


      1. re: h2o

        Over on Mt. Pleasant are Phebe's and Celestin. I like the staff at Phebe's. The seafood is great too. Celestin has some nice variety on the menu, though I've only looked at it while having brunch there. South of Eglinton on Yonge is Tabule, which could be fun, if you're both interested in Middle Eastern food.

        1. re: 1sweetpea

          thanks for the suggestions guys, i'm going to check their sites and see what catches my eye, were in our mid twenties, foodiegirl

          1. re: 1sweetpea

            ''641 Mt. Pleasant Rd. In The Yonge-Eglinton Area - Zee Grill Seafood Restaurant & Oyster Bar - Is One Of The Oldest And Best Seafood Restaurants/Oyster Bars In Toronto, Serving Oysters, Lobster, Steak, Fish And Seafood To Toronto Since 1981 As Phebe's Oyster Bar and Zee Grill Since 1999''

            1. re: lamaranthe

              A lot of really nice restaurant ideas have been offered throughout this thread, but I maintain that Phebe's Zee Grill is a really top notch choice. My SO and I have taken my parents there a couple of times for celebrations. They aren't intimidated by the menu, we are pleased with the variety and creativity coming from the kitchen, the wine list is approachable and has many affordable choices, and the staff is knowledgeable and isn't afraid to make suggestions. I can't say enough good things about this place. It's definitely date-worthy, especially if you are both seafood fans and share the seafood platter -- very romantic. It's not a quiet, pretentious place, but a friendly neighbourhoood gem which has thrived for many years and outlasted many on Mt. Pleasant's restaurant row.

          2. re: h2o

            Went to Lolo tonight and had a wonderful dinner! Great local place!!! Will highly recommend this to others. We had the prix fixe and it's well worth the $25!

          3. Coquine is very good - except if you want to have a private conversation with your date. The place is awfully noisy on week-ends. What about Taboulé? Or La Vecchia?

            4 Replies
            1. re: lamaranthe

              I agree that Coquine can be a bit noisy (though I still think it's a decent choice). I thought of Tabule, but didn't mention it because the food seemed less "safe" (for the reasons sweetpea mentions below); however, if your date is into Middle Eastern food, it's great. La Vecchia's not wildly exciting, IMHO, but you could definitely do worse.

              1. re: torontofoodiegirl

                With the fabulous Zucca just south of Eglinton there really isn't a reason to go to La Vecchia. It's far too hit or miss for a first date.

                Of all the places mentioned (I don't really think the OP could go wrong with any of them), I'd pick Phebe's Zee Grill. There's just a certain romantic feel to the room. That is, unless the date-ee is a vegetarian.

                1. re: Googs

                  I 2nd Phebe's Zee Grill, never had a bad experience there.

              2. re: lamaranthe

                You can have a look at La Vecchia's page : http://lavecchia.ca/menu_items.php?id... -- The atmosphere is warm, service friendly. The mussels they serve are as good as those of Coquine's. And at Coquine I would highly recommend the Caprese Salad with Bocconcini and Heirloom Tomatoes (which in the good old time were simply called 'Field Tomatoes') - They are so flavourful... and there is enough for 2 as an appetizer. I was not impressed by the Onion Soup. Many people praise their steak but I did not try it.

              3. Maybe your date posts here.....

                3 Replies
                1. re: Snarf

                  Make sure whichever place you choose is the type of place in which you will feel comfortable (and hopefully she will too). You both want to be at your most charming. My boyfriend (of 10+ years) let me choose the restaurant on our first date. I asked him if he liked sushi. He said sure. We went and had a great dinner, though he later confessed that he'd never eaten raw fish before and was completely winging it to impress me. Great guy, which is why I decided he was a keeper, but I felt badly that he was out of his element that night. What if he had never used chopsticks before, or had eaten the whole mound of wasabi, thinking it was a mild garnish (he's colour blind -- who knows what the wasabi looks like to him?). It could have been a disastrous first date. It wasn't, but it's thoughtful to choose some place that allow you both to enjoy each other's company, while enjoying the food, service and ambiance. Just my two cents.

                  1. re: 1sweetpea

                    Of course, that begs the question, sweetpea: did he discover a love for sushi that night? Because that would make the love story twice as sweet. :)

                    1. re: Wahooty

                      Absolutely! He's become even more adventurous than me ... in all cusines. We travel the world together and he's a fearless foodie. I'm less fearless, but more foodie. ;-)

                2. If you like Mexican you should try Mariachis. Good food and great margaritas. I think its a great place for a first date as its low key, casual and fun.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: beergal

                    Just a note, Mariachis is closed/boarded up at the moment for renos. I walked by sometime last week and they said that the renovations would last until the end of the month.

                    As far as some of the suggestions posted above, I also think Coquine would be a little loud for a first date. I do like Lolo and Zee Grill as options though -- I enjoy the food at both places, and both dining rooms are lovely.

                    1. re: tjr

                      But no pressure. For a first date tjr? The poor girl would probably have a hard time holding onto her fork she'd be so nervous. Lovely choice, but I wouldn't want to be the girl.

                      1. re: Googs

                        Depends on the girl, I guess! If I were a girl, I wouldn't mind being taken to North 44 on a first date, haha.

                        1. re: tjr

                          Yeah serious.. I'd be like BALLER .. doesn't guarantee anything afterward though =P

                            1. re: Googs

                              Something we can both agree on!

                            2. re: tjr

                              Am I missing something? I don't get it. Who's to say that this girl hasn't already been to North 44? Just because it happens to be their first date, doesn't mean it's her first time going out...to a restaurant? Does it?

                              1. re: millygirl

                                I think Googs was suggesting that not everyone would feel comfortable going on a first date at a restaurant like North 44, which is true (whether they have been to the restaurant before or not).

                            3. re: Googs

                              Agree with millygirl here.
                              I don't think you can predict what the girl's reaction to a first date at North 44 would be. My reaction wouldn't be nervousness- I might wonder why the guy was trying so hard on a first date. Or why he chose North 44 over all the other upscale restaurants in that price range.

                              On another note- a restaurant that serves French or Italian food (Pastis, Mistura, Zucca,Celestin, even 5 Doors North) is always going to be more of a date place in my mind than a place serving upscale whitebread food (North 44). I think of North 44 as more of an expense account resto.

                          1. North 44 and Celestin are pretty much the best restaurants in the area. But I agree with Googs. Taking a girl to an upscale restaurant might make her nervous on the first date. Second date might be better...but if you know her well, then either of these would make a great night.

                            La Vechhia like others have said, is a pretty "normal" no fuss restaurant, and nothing special...except for their tiramisu. If anyone knows of a better tiramisu, let me know, I am willing to drive quite a while for my fix.

                            Amaya's Bread Bar serves imo one of the best Indian fare in the city.

                            Happy Eats!

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: stonedtoronto

                              Try the tiramisu at Fusilli the next time you're in Corktown. It's the only place I'll order it now.

                              1. re: stonedtoronto

                                I love Indian food, but it's not the best idea for a first date imo, since it's one of those love-it-or-hate-it cuisines. One of those things to try later after you find out how adventurous they are.

                              2. I'll add Seven Doors North... fun and casual but still dark and cozy/intimate. I like Quince too.

                                I'll echo cautions that North 44/Centro may seem trying-too-hard. Please let us know where you end up!!

                                3 Replies
                                1. re: Rabbit

                                  Five Doors North - louder than Quince, more laid back, a bit more affordable
                                  Quince - great food, can be a bit uptight depending on how young you and date are
                                  Taboule - a bit loud, amazing food, fun atmoshpere
                                  Coquine - my pick, great ambiance, wide variety of awesome food

                                  1. re: LemonLauren

                                    I;m putting my vote in for five doors north as well...great restaurant for people in the mid 20's...the servers are very laid back, but at the same time they are educated on their food and wines its a funky little place that is easy on the budget, but has a different look to it that is fun for just about anyone

                                  2. re: Rabbit


                                    Five Doors North
                                    2088 Yonge St, Toronto, ON M4S2A3, CA

                                    2110 Yonge Street, Toronto, ON M4S 2A5, CA

                                    2009 Yonge Street, Toronto, ON M4S 1Z8, CA

                                    2075 Yonge St, Toronto, ON M4S2A4, CA

                                  3. Lots of good restaurant suggestions already made. It depends on how much you want to spend, and how formal you want the evening to be. I'd choose a restaurant on Mt. Pleasant. Simple Bistro is a good restaurant as is Across the Road, which is more affordable. Then I suggest taking your date to Il Gelatiere on Mt. Pleasant for a great after-dinner gelato.

                                    1. I agree with other posters' comments that Centro and North 44 would be too much (ie. trying too hard) for a first date. If you're looking for somewhere with a more casual vibe (which I personally would be for a first date), I also agree with the Five Doors North suggestion made by Rabbit and LemonLauren.

                                      1. I'd go for Cafe Pleiade on Mt. Pleasant. Nice chill vibe, can be romantic without trying too hard, good service, very good food (safe, Mediterranean-ish), fair prices. Be quick on the reso though.

                                        Maybe I don't go here for a first date, but my unconventional choice would be Churrasco Villa at Mt. Pleasant & Eglinton. Sure it's more cramped, a little smoky, and kinda casual (try and score a booth). But there's a good life to this place, it smells great the moment you walk inside, the fires are blazing, you're getting good, simple delicious food, and I've found that the girls have always had fun there. Just dig into the chicken and potatoes together, douse that piri-piri sauce all over, get a little grimy with it, and it's all good, son!

                                        3 Replies
                                        1. re: Chester Eleganté

                                          I had considered suggesting Pleiade as well. I love going there, but I think it's more of a lunch place or somewhere to meet a friend. If you want relatively casual and low-key with good food, this is good choice. Then head north a block for some excellent gelato!

                                          1. re: merlot143

                                            Also puts you close to the Chick'n'Deli if you strike out and want to get cougared up.

                                          2. re: Chester Eleganté

                                            The first and one time I was at Churrasco Villa I was served the driest piece of chicken I ever had.

                                          3. Why not ask what she would like best?

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: lamaranthe

                                              Lamaranthe makes a very good point -- it's crazy that, 40 posts in, it's the first time it's been mentioned!

                                            2. Hey everybody thanks for all the lovely suggestions, i ended up getting sick on friday night so had to postpone the date until sunday, we decided to wing it and take a walk up yonge and see what caught our eye, i left the decision up to her, we ended up at a small little gastro pub called "Dizzy on Yonge" it's right beside "Amore" and it was excellent, decent selection of beers on tap, and they are working on bringing in more, i had striploin roast with mashed potatoes and yorkshire pudding, the roast was perfectly cooked medium rare, the right balance of fat and meat, extremely generous portions, even the side vegetables tasted very fresh!, my date had a chicken breast stuffed with bacon and brie untop of cheese tortelinni and she said it was very good. It's a small place and everyone there seemed very pleased with their food, the appetizers looked really good but didn't try any, very small menu and open kitchen....priced very very reasonably, two pints each and our meals came to 60 dollars, i would recommend this place for anyone looking for something casual and really decent food

                                              3 Replies
                                              1. re: mwalton11

                                                http://www.dizzyonyonge.ca/ this is the website for the place we went, i had the special for a sunday, from sunday to thursday it looks like they have some really nice specials off the menu

                                                1. re: mwalton11

                                                  I haven't been to the Yonge location but have been to the original on Roncesvalles a bunch of times. A good reliable place, nothing outstanding, decent food all around.

                                                  They make pretty good burgers, wings, salads, etc. The food has a more refined edge than your typical pub grub.

                                                2. re: mwalton11

                                                  You ended up doing what I usually do and always suggest - never go to a restaurant for a first date!

                                                  I always go out for drinks, downtown or midtown, since it's more casual and a no-pressure environment. No one's tied in to several uncomfortable hours or paying for a meal that the other person truly won't enjoy. If things go well you can always get dinner where you are having drinks or somewhere else. It also makes our better restaurants far more accessible - Bymark is a great place in the spring/summer for a few drinks and you then have many options for dinner. At Y&E you could go to Centro/North 44 for a glass of wine and see how events progress.

                                                  As to whitebread food... WASPs & carnivores need food too!