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NYC gals visiting T.O in Nov looking for great mid-priced restaurants

Being from NYC, I know you don't have to spend a fortune to have a wonderful dining experience. Any suggestions for some good places? We're staying near Eaton Centre but we're willing to travel a bit.

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  1. Def going to Black Hoof/Hoof Cafe.

    1 Reply
    1. re: nadiav

      Good call on either of the Hooves. Also in that neighbourhood is Union and Foxley two moderately priced places with a good vibe and really good food. Plus if it's something you're interested in there are a whole host of bars along the Ossington strip ranging from small places with jukeboxes featuring everything from Belle and Sebastian to Deerhunter to Bad Brains, to Resposado a tequila bar as well as some other bars that attract what could be compared to the bridge and tunnel crowd. Depends on your interests. During the day there are clothing boutiques, art galleries and some other interesting stores. Plus it's attached to Queen Street so it can be part of a nice walking tour. There's also loads of inexpensive food options in Kensington Market -- a search will turn up all the suggestions -- plus Kensington is a great place to wander for a bit, and it's within walking distance of the Eaton Center.

      Whoops, just noticed that it's in November so depending on the weather walking tours may not be at the top of your list.

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      Foxley
      207 Ossington Ave, Toronto, ON M6J2Z8, CA

    2. Can you tell us a little about the type of experiences you're looking for? Cheap and cheerful, where it's only about the food? Or fun and hip that also has great food (like Black Hoof)?

      If the former, I'd hit up Gandhi for an East Indian style roti (something I've not seen in NYC - think delicious curry burrito) and wander through Kensington Market and Chinatown (the neighbourhoods are right next to each other) and eat your way through the area -- think dumplings, banh mi, pupusas, empanadas, pho, etc.

      If the latter, I'd put Origin and Buca on your list. Both have a great vibe and good food and are at a nice mid-range price point.

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      Buca
      604 King St. West, Toronto, ON M5V 1M6, CA

      The Black Hoof
      928 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6J, CA

      1 Reply
      1. re: TorontoJo

        i would also recommend Pomegranate on near bathurst and college for authentic persian food. Very nice restaurant, great food and not too expensive.

      2. Lots of great suggestions so far - the Hooves, Origin, Foxley, and Buca are good picks. If you like early dinners or don't mind a line, I still think Guu Izakaya makes some great food and is always fun.

        I'd also look into the Drake Hotel for a fun girls night hit with solid food, Harbord Room for a good burger and good vibe.

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        Foxley
        207 Ossington Ave, Toronto, ON M6J2Z8, CA

        The Drake Hotel
        1150 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J, CA

        Harbord Room
        89 Harbord St, Toronto, ON M5S1G4, CA

        Guu
        398 Church Street, Toronto, ON M5B 2A2, CA

        Buca
        604 King St. West, Toronto, ON M5V 1M6, CA

        1. op here. Thanks for all the terrific suggestions! We were looking for a bit of everything--from inexpensive, ethnic lunches to nicely prepared food in a beautiful room-- so you've all helped in setting up my eating itinerary!

          1. Hi ladies,
            When out-of-towners come to Toronto, I always like to take them to the Marche in BCE Place, an office building at Yonge and Front. It is a very fun place, with huge lineups, but it doesn't take long to get a seat if there's only 2 of you. When you are seated, you are given a plastic card. There are many stations with different types of food. You go around the dffierent stations, ask for what you want, and the server adds it to your card. At the end the cashier tallies up what you have on your card.

            The food is good (although some chowhounds might turn up their noses) and nice desserts. The atmosphere is the main thing.

            5 Replies
            1. re: Lake

              there is no atmosphere it is in the middle of an office building... and the food IMO is anything but good.

              1. re: Lake

                That's great that you've had good experiences there. However, given that the poster is from New York and is looking for a "wonderful dining experience", I personally would avoid Marche at all cost. The food ranges from ok to bad and the whole "serve yourself" thing is really not that interesting (especially since that still charge you an auto-grat). The building where it's located is beautiful and certainly worth a walk through, but I would just keep walking by Marche.

                1. re: TorontoJo

                  You expressed that so much better than I did! Thank you TorontoJo. :-0

                  1. re: TorontoJo

                    Yup, walk through BCE and try to place which movies you've seen it in, skip Marche and keep walking east on Wellington or Front towards Church. Better resto and bar pickings there like the new Oliver Bonaccini place on Front, Trevor (which was good a couple years ago when I went, no idea how it is now) on Wellington and Manhattan priced vodka cocktails at Pravda.