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best 'to go' coffee Yonge and Gerrard area?

d
Dan G Sep 29, 2010 07:28 PM

will be leaving Delta Chelsea around 8 am, trying to beat the rush hour to get out of town, and will need coffee really badly. What's the best bet, either a quick walk from the hotel or enroute in the car (heading out on the Gardiner). Anyone brewing with a clover, for instance?

  1. d
    detritus Sep 29, 2010 07:49 PM

    Nearest Clover and very good espresso-based drinks at Crema at 53 Bloor St E. That's a 20-minute walk (each way) or you could drive and get on the DVP to the Gardiner.

    Alternatively, Bulldog is at 89 Granby St, a 5-minute walk. I don't think they do any brewed coffee (could be wrong). Decent espresso-based drinks.

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    Crema
    3079 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6P1Z9, CA

    6 Replies
    1. re: detritus
      food face Sep 30, 2010 09:32 AM

      I would not rec Bulldog to anyone especially an out of town visitor. The owner is extremely rude, controlling and unwelcoming. Please see thread:

      Bulldog Coffee Toronto- A lot of bull, not a lot to write home about
      http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/6756...

      1. re: food face
        d
        detritus Sep 30, 2010 10:18 AM

        Yes, service is occasionally an issue at Bulldog, although I think the bad service there tends to get blown a bit out of proportion on these boards. Its really only an issue with the guy who owns the place, not the other staff, in my experience. For a quick take-out coffee, 99.9% of the time it'll be a total non-issue.

        Furthermore, it's the best (possibly the only worthwhile) coffee within a short walk of Yonge & Gerrard, which was what the original poster asked for. Have you got a better suggestion near there?

        (NB: Crema at Yonge & Bloor is much better, both coffee- and service-wise. That's why I recommended it first. Go there if you can.)

        A few more alternatives en-route to the Gardiner by car:

        Bisogno Espresso Bar @ 61 Sherbourne Street
        Hank's @ 9-1/2 Church St
        Dark Horse @ 215 Spadina Ave

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        Bisogno Espresso Bar
        61 Sherbourne St, Toronto, ON M5A, CA

        1. re: food face
          k
          kwjd Sep 30, 2010 10:25 AM

          I still haven't had any rude service at Bulldog and I don't go enough to be a regular or anything (maybe once every month or 2 for the past couple years). They do only have espresso-based drinks, but they are quite good and are really close to your hotel.

          I prefer Crema though and they have a Clover, but it isn't exactly a "quick" walk and it isn't on your way driving. I would probably walk it in 10 minutes, but I walk fast.

          1. re: food face
            pescatarian Sep 30, 2010 11:00 AM

            I've never been served by the owner, but I've never experienced any service issues at Bulldog, in fact, I've always found them very friendly and helpful. I've had bigger service issues at Dark Horse on Queen East (but not all the time). Bulldog's espresso is great and in the area and I think it's the best option in the area. They have some tasty treats too. Not the same so-so baked goods that seem to be offered in most of the other independent coffee houses (Ezra's Pound is another exception).

            I tried Crema once and was not impressed. Not nearly as good as my faves, such as Broadview Espresso, for example.

            1. re: pescatarian
              k
              kwjd Sep 30, 2010 01:53 PM

              I actually find Crema can vary depending on the barrista. I've had some drinks that are worse than Bulldog, but when they are on, they are fantastic.

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              Crema
              3079 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6P1Z9, CA

              1. re: kwjd
                d
                detritus Sep 30, 2010 02:24 PM

                Could be true for espresso-based drinks, although I've had good luck there.

                The quality of coffee brewed in the Clover should be relatively consistent (and high).

        2. ekim256 Sep 29, 2010 09:22 PM

          I'm not a coffee-connoisseur by any means, so please take these with caution...
          In order of distance from Yonge & Gerrard:
          Cafe Oro (Yonge & Dundas)
          B Espresso Bar (Jarvis & Queen)
          Carpe Diem's espresso (King & Sherbourne)
          Balzac coffee in the Distillery District

          While Balzac is the maybe the least efficient, my coffee-fiend friend loves it so much that she bikes a couple km out of her way in the morning to grab a cup...and she's been all around the city trying different brews (all to-go so that's perfect for you!) so I'd trust her. I had a decent cup at Little Nicky's today, but it's nothing to write home about. Go if you like donuts though! But again...I'm no expert. I just like a pick me up once in awhile from wherever's closest or I get nice cup at a brunch place if they do a French press.

          I hope that was of some help :s
          Erin
          http://www.cookiesandtomatoes.com/

          -----
          Distillery District
          55 Mill St, Toronto, ON M5A, CA

          B Espresso Bar
          111 Queen E, Toronto, ON M5C1S2, CA

          Carpe Diem! Cafe
          263 King St E, Toronto, ON M5A, CA

          Cafe Oro
          21 Dundas Sq, Toronto, ON M5B1B7, CA

          Little Nicky’s Coffee
          375 Queen Street West, Toronto, ON M5V 2A5, CA

          3 Replies
          1. re: ekim256
            g
            Gary Sep 30, 2010 05:11 PM

            B Espresso actually has a new location at 65 Dundas St East, a stone's throw from Dundas Square in the Bond Hotel. This is quite close to Yonge & Gerrard and probably the bestest/closest recommendation. http://www.bespressobar.com

            Many like Cafe Oro, which is a hole-in-the-wall place on the south edge of Dundas Square tucked in between the Hard Rock Cafe and some jewelery stores. I'm not sure of the quality of the coffee as most people seem to rave about the food, but might be worth a shot.

            And, if we're wandering as far as Sherbourne (a bit of a walk from Yonge Gerrard!) then Bisogno Espresso at King & Sherbourne easily beats Carpe Diem's -- though I do like their thick and square pizza!

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            Bisogno Espresso Bar
            61 Sherbourne St, Toronto, ON M5A, CA

            Carpe Diem! Cafe
            263 King St E, Toronto, ON M5A, CA

            1. re: Gary
              ekim256 Sep 30, 2010 08:45 PM

              whoops! thanks for the correction Gary! Are u a B Espresso fan? If so, do you like their baked goodies? :)

              -----
              B Espresso Bar
              111 Queen E, Toronto, ON M5C1S2, CA

              1. re: ekim256
                g
                Gary Oct 1, 2010 11:36 AM

                Yes I like the coffee at the original B Espresso a lot, and the authentic Italian espresso bar vibe. I've only tried a few pastries there but I definitely remember they were definitely above average. I don't get there often, though, because it's a bit far from me and they have no wireless.

                -----
                B Espresso Bar
                111 Queen E, Toronto, ON M5C1S2, CA

          2. j
            jeffs101 Sep 30, 2010 06:14 AM

            Fresh Start, 655 Bay Street, just around the corner from the Chelsea.

            1 Reply
            1. re: jeffs101
              d
              Doopsylalolic Oct 1, 2010 05:14 AM

              Golden Mint Coffee Co
              439A Yonge Street. It's on the east side just south of College, a long block north of Gerrard. They make decent coffees out of one of those big copper machines with the figure of a bird on top (someone probably knows what machine that is).

              Also there's a down-the-stairs sandwich/snack shop on the north side of Gerrard, just east of Church. It's a Ryerson student place. They make good Italian style coffee from a good machine too. Don't have the name I'm afraid!

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