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First date spot in TO

verytasty Sep 8, 2009 10:24 AM

I'm new to the city and looking for a good resto for a first date on Thursday night. Any suggestions?

  1. Jamie Eats Burgers Sep 8, 2009 10:48 AM

    I friend of mine told me once that he took a girl to Utopia Cafe on College. He ended up having a double burger (1lb) and she never called him back.

    sometime advice on what not to do is just as good as what to do.

    Moreover, its often good to have a back up plan in case you change your mind on the first date.

    haha yes, I am suggesting getting a double burger if you don't want the date to go well.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Jamie Eats Burgers
      Gary Sep 8, 2009 01:54 PM

      Haha, my wife and I had our first real "date" at Utopia (her suggestion). And based on the fact that we're now married, I guess it was a success! We both happen to like casual, low-key places... it all depends on what you and your date like, everyone is different.

      1. re: Gary
        Jamie Eats Burgers Sep 9, 2009 06:17 AM

        haha Good job Gary.

        I am not specifically suggesting that Utopia is a bad spot... I think it was more the double burger that turned the date off in that scenario.

        I say good riddance!

    2. j
      JennaBean Sep 8, 2009 11:14 AM

      How abot sharing some spanish style tapas at Torito? They are in the market. If you google the name you'll see some of the hounds really enjoy the food and fun casual nature of the space.


      276 Augusta Ave
      Toronto, ON M5T
      (647) 436-5874

      1. s
        simplepieman Sep 8, 2009 11:17 AM

        Little Italy is a good bet. Utopia and Kalendar are 2 of the most popular dinner-date spots. Utopia has way better cuisine, but Kalendar is VERY popular with women.

        1. v
          verytasty Sep 8, 2009 01:20 PM

          Any thoughts on Nyood or Sidecar?

          1 Reply
          1. re: verytasty
            Rabbit Sep 8, 2009 01:29 PM

            Like them both... Sidecar is more casual, Nyood a bit on the glam side (in a fun way). Nyood is pricier. Both have good food and good bartending. Nyood is a small plate menu so you have to be comfortable doing doing the shared-food thing (which I personally think is a great icebreaker, but it depends on the person).

            Utopia and Kalendar are very casual, perhaps best suited to students or early-ish twentysomethings.

            Second Torito... great food, good sangria, fun and intimate but a bit sexy, not trying too hard (although you have the small plate caveat once again).

          2. s
            styleguider Sep 8, 2009 01:32 PM

            Try Dimmi's in Yorkville, its great Italian food with a lot of people watching.

            1. i
              igk Sep 8, 2009 01:54 PM

              Messis on Harbord. sit on the patio.
              Julie's cuban on Dovercourt.
              La Palette in Kensington market.

              lots of reviews on all of these places on chowhound.

              1. l
                LemonLauren Sep 8, 2009 06:34 PM

                yes, yes, yes to Sidecar (esp prix fixe nights to keep the budget down) or Utopia (if you want somewhere a bit louder and more casual). Kalendar is lovely but the food in NOT memorable.

                i'd put Harbord Room out there as a great first date spot for the vibe and amazing food. if you're just two on a Thursday, you can gamble on going without reservations.

                the Baldwin restos are also lovely for dates as the strip makes for nice strolling.

                and i'm partial to insomnia for first dates because it's very low lit and groovy and the food is affordable and generally yummy.

                good luck ;)

                1. t
                  thebutcher Sep 8, 2009 07:21 PM

                  Julie's Cuban on Dovercourt - nice warm night would be fun and romantic.
                  The Rosebud (Queen/Bathurst) - cosy spot.
                  Ristorante Roma (Bloor/Dufferin) - my partner and I went there for our first date and we've been married for 15 years!
                  Somewhere on Ossington would be good (# of choices) - then if the date goes well - you could go to the Dakota for some live music post dinner....

                  1. g
                    gerbera Sep 9, 2009 08:47 AM

                    Globe Bistro.

                    1. v
                      verytasty Sep 9, 2009 10:07 AM

                      Decided to go with Sidecar. Any cool bars for drinks nearby?

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: verytasty
                        TorontoJo Sep 9, 2009 10:12 AM

                        Sidecar is great and great value. The cocktails are fantastic. I would recommend sitting on the very nice back patio, where they have big patio heaters and baskets of wraps for your date if she gets cool. You can always move in to the bar after dinner for more drinks if you want.

                        1. re: verytasty
                          Gary Sep 10, 2009 03:44 PM

                          There's a martini bar called Souz Dal a few blocks west of Sidecar at 636 College. It's been around for a long time (in terms of trendy bars) and they've got a funky dark vibe. Their one-page website sorta sums it up: http://www.souzdal.com

                          1. re: Gary
                            TorontoJo Sep 10, 2009 03:56 PM

                            Actually, it's more than a one-page site -- you can look up the menu and photos of the interior. The navigation menu is on the window in the photo on the right. Subtle. Maybe too subtle!

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