Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Ontario (inc. Toronto) >
Mar 31, 2009 09:55 PM

Budget Friendly, Quiet Dinner Suggestions

Hi There!

I'm looking for some suggestions for a nice place to celebrate a special occasion for two, where a lovely meal & some wine would come to no more than $100 max (less if possible). My preference is somewhere quiet, but not boring. For us it is most convenient to stay south-westish in the City, and not hard to get to by TTC...but if something is really amazing I'd make an exception.

Thanks in advance!

The Dishwasher

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. It's in the downtown core, but I would suggest Everest and East! Both are at Queen/John. Very nice restaurants, could easily be mistaken for a higher calibre restaurant. Apps are under $10, entrees, under $20, and most bottles in the $30-40 range.

    6 Replies
    1. re: stonedtoronto

      Sorry, isn't East the Spring Rolls offshoot? If so, please, please stay away for a special occasion. Beyond mediocre "pan-Asian" in a nice setting.

      If you don't mind going a bit further east, Weezie's has gotten consistently great reviews and press for serving quality food in a quiet setting at great prices.

      1. re: TorontoJo

        Yeah I just went to Weezie's the the past two weeks and dinner was under $100 and pretty amazing. Older crowd, pretty quiet.

        1. re: Muffin__Top

          I will definitely be checking out Weezie's at somepoint, and my baby sister's bf works the line there. But I think we might wait for a fam-jam for that one, and not a party of two! :)

          The Dishwasher

        2. re: TorontoJo

          TorontoJo is right actually. I guess I missed the part where you mentioned special occasion. Again, it's not the west end, but how about...

          Sequel - French/Med
          Edo - Japanese
          Amaya Bread Bar - Indian Fusion

          These are all in the Yonge/Eglinton area

          1. re: childofthestorm

            Also, agreed that Everest is terrible. I used to work around the corner from both Everest and East and have been to both. Its fine for a quick work lunch (I guess) but not what I'm looking for this time around!

          1. re: Rabbit

            Especially if you went with the prix fixe they have.

            1. re: ChalkBoy

              Unless the prices there dropped, I don't see how you could eat there for under one hundred. There would definitely be no drinks at that price.

              1. re: foodyDudey

                Of the places suggested to date, Alice's Restaurant meets all your requirements, except - as foodyDudey has mentioned - the price. In my experience, it'll cost about $125-$150 a couple, tax, tip and maybe three wines-by-the-glass for the two of you included. Perhaps you can cut the total by bringing your own wine, a service Alice's offers at what is probably a modest corkage fee (its website doesn't list the precise fee so you'll have to phone to find out how much it is, which means, I suspect, that the fee varies according to the day of the week and how badly they want you to fill a couple of seats). But the place is easily TTC-accessible, on College Street just a few doors west of Ossington Ave., the atmosphere somewhat muted but not drearily so, the service is caring and - most important - the food is good. Some unusual menu items, and everything done with innovation. Stay away from the more expensive appetizers and you'll cut the bill even more. Nice homey touch: the most agreeable chef/owner pops out of the kitchen every now and then to chat casually with the guests in what seems more than just a public relations gesture. Alice's is a superior neighborhood bistro, one of my favorite joints in that part of town.

                1. re: juno

                  We enjoyed eating at Alice's, and don't feel we went overboard on ordering but the bill was still over $200 after tax and tip. We had one app, main and dessert each plus a $50 bottle of wine. I doubt that ordering wine by the glass would cost less unless you limit your self to a glass each. It's a good restaurant and I'd go more often if I could truly get out of there for $100 as Joanne Kates reported in her review. I think I'll go back and see if we can eat for $125 a couple.

            2. Camino Bistro (French) is 10 min walk from the Main subway. It's East not West but is usually quiet and prix fix for $35. If you tell them it's a special occasion in advance maybe they can do something about that.


              1. Le Paradis (at Ave and Dav) is really good value (your bill would definitely come in under $100, before tax and tip) and has some very yummy menu options. It's relatively quiet (though not super-quiet) and has a fairly nice atmosphere.


                1 Reply
                1. re: torontofoodiegirl

                  I was just going to recommend the same. I wouldn't classify it as "quiet" but its definitely not boring-good classic French comfort food at 1980's prices. You will easily get out of there with $100 (including a bottle of wine). And I am always amazed at the mix of clientele. Its the one place in Toronto where everyone eats-from the rich Yorkvillians (sp-villans?) to students to the established Toronto academe.