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Aug 25, 2010 07:40 AM

Le Paradis Brasserie Bistro

Could anyone tell me if this place is good? Thanks !

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  1. There are a few French bistros around town that are better than Le Paradis, and a lot that aren't nearly as good. The place has been around more than 30 years, so it must be doing something right. What it does is deliver consistently good, solid bistro cooking at an attractive price. It's not great, by any stretch - few bistros catering to low and medium price levels are - but it's certainly tasty and satisfying. Some main dishes clock in at $14 and $15. Over the years, I've tried just about everything on the menu, and it rarely disappoints. Service is usually good, if occasionally brusque (standard for the bistro experience), ambiance is what you'd expect from an old-time bistro. As you can see, I like it a lot, as does the neighborhood crowd, which keeps it busy most nights. But Le Paradis always holds about one-quarter of its seats open for walk-ins, so you can turn up on impulse without reserving. Added inducement: some of the lowest wine markups in town. You can usually count on walking out after dinner content, refreshed, and with only a slight dent in your wallet ($75-$100 per couple with wine, tax and tip). If you're watching your pennies, I defy you to get better value in a Toronto bistro.

    5 Replies
    1. re: juno

      Thank you so much for the infos. How would you compare it to Beerbistro?

      1. re: lamaranthe

        Its absolutely nothing like Beerbistro, with the exception of being a boisterous and fun atmosphere. Le Paradis serves more traditional French bistro fare at cheaper prices. Its not new or hip, but as Juno stated a solid, tasty, honest place. They have a great selection of wines by the bottle that are probably the most reasonably priced in Toronto.

      2. re: juno

        Thanks to you all. I was a bit worried after reading the following on Chowhound (July 2010) '' mass produced food, unprofessional service, and a very dirty and grubby room.''

        1. re: lamaranthe

          I'm going to chime in with my support for Le Paradis ... I have not had any issues with service or the space and the food has always been great.

          Completely different vibe than BeerBistro though, that's for sure.

          Le Paradis
          166 Bedford Road, Toronto, ON M5R 2K9, CA

      3. Very tasty, satisfying, unpretentious cuisine at quite reasonable prices, considering its proximity to Avenue Road. Try the grilled sardines - they are fabulous !! Service has been casual and friendly anytime I've been there.

        1. I completely agree with the rest of the positive reviews. The food is solid, not cutting edge, but very good for the price point. Nice wine list for minimum mark up.

          I typically get the beef bourgignone, the steak frites or the couscous dish - not dissapointed.

          Could the room use a fresh coat of paint? Sure, but for the atmosphere, food and price point I am more than willing to overlook that.

          1. I actually just came back from dinner there tonight!

            As others have posted already, it's a very pleasant place to eat. Good food and excellent value. The food is a bit more "rustic" than what you might get down the road at Bistro 990, but that's reflected in the price (i.e. presentation is rougher, little details like unevenly cut toast), but its satisfying. The portions are pretty big, too. It's not a fancy bistro, or a romantic bistro, or even a novel bistro; if anything, I get the impression that the clientele sees it as more of a sophisticated pub with classic dishes than as dining treat.

            I can understand someone complaining about service and decor if they were expecting a more upscale place, but that's not really what this bistro is. I hope you enjoy your visit, it's a very charming neighbourhood spot.

            4 Replies
            1. re: Underdog Rally

              I basically agree with everything you've said but I've never though of Le Paradis as a "neighbourhood spot". I can see why you may think that-there are many regulars who live in the neighbourhood but there's an equal amount who don't live anywhere near that area.

              That's why I've always loved it-the diversity of the clientele is very unique.

              1. re: Splendid Wine Snob

                The price-value ratio is satisfactory : you can't go wrong but I feel tired of the same unchanging menu and no surprises. Also, they started using sugar in their ratatouille which is a complete no-no for me. I was rather disappointed because I did not think that they would stoop as low as trying to seduce the Toronto population with such cheap tricks. I am not a professional cook, but I think that it should do everything to protect its standards.

                1. re: nazaruk

                  The menu changes on a regular basis-have no idea what you are talking about?

                  No cheap tricks in that kitchen, it's honest, that's for sure.

                  1. re: Splendid Wine Snob

                    Sugar in the ratatouille? If so, I certainly didn't notice it.

                    While there are some menu items that have endured over the years - the regulars would riot if they disappeared - there are enough changes every now and then, both on the regular menu and among the specials, to satisfy anyone with attention-deficit disorder. Indeed, I mourn some the the old items no longer available. But it's still a pleasure to walk in the front door of Le Paradis of an evening. I know I'll eat and drink well - at a modest price - among like-minded fressers. In my view, no budget-minded resto in Toronto has offered more consistent quality over the decades.