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Foodie visit to TO

Hello! I am going to TO very soon (by way of NYC) to visit some family and was looking for some dining help while there.

I LOVE food. Some of my favorite meals of all time have been at: Blue Hill Stone barns, Per Se (though found the ambiance a bit to, hmm, "classic", for my taste) Il Buco, and Northern Spy Co (on the more reasonable end). Also, I would really like to eat at The Fat Duck one day. So, I am looking for restaurants in the same vein as the ones above (farm to table, interesting/ experimental execution, fine dining but not stuffy, etc).

I will have time to have 3 diners out, and I am trying to decide between the following (but suggestions welcome!!):

Woodlot
Origin
The Black Hoof (do they serve any vegetarian or fish dishes?)
Brockton General
Niagara Street Cafe
Loire

I am also having a hard time coming up with 3 brunch/ lunch spots (2 weekend and 1 weekday).

As well, I am thinking of checking out the St. Lawrence Market on a Saturday morning - thoughts?

Finally, there any snack spots/ sweet treat shops that I must check out too??

Thank you in advance for all of your help!!

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Niagara Street Cafe
169 Niagara St, Toronto, ON M5V1C9, CA

St. Lawrence Market
92 Front St E, Toronto, ON M5E, CA

Fat Duck
210 Kortright Rd W, Guelph, ON N1G4X4, CA

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

Brockton General
1321 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1Y1, CA

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  1. Your list seems good. I would visit St; Lawrence Market but mainly as site seeing venture and not food. Desserts will be better in NYC but I would recommend Rahier as I think its one of the best in the city.
    I would add The Beast to your list as a maybe it has the qualities you are looking for (I haven't tried it but have read good reviews.)
    I would recommend trying some dim sum while you are in TO. If interested I can list some places worth looking into.

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    Rahier
    1586 Bayview Ave, Toronto, ON M4G, CA

    2 Replies
    1. re: elvisahmed

      St. Lawrence for sight seeing and not food? That is odd advice. Definitely St. Lawrence Market for the food too.

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      St. Lawrence Market
      92 Front St E, Toronto, ON M5E, CA

      1. re: acd123

        Well I haven't had a good meal at St. Lawrence market. Do you recommend anything for food there? unless the OP is grocery shopping I think there are better options for food than SLM.

    2. Where will you be staying? Do you have access to a car?

      I'd avoid SLM on a Saturday morning unless you like crowds. It's a zoo by 8 am.

      1. For brunch, I would recommend Lola's Commissary and Le Petit Dejeuner (particularly the Belgian waffles and the eggs benny), both open for breakfast on weekdays and weekends. On the weekend, check out Black Hoof and Beast.

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        Le Petit Dejeuner
        191 King St E, Toronto, ON M5A1J5, CA

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

        Lola's Kitchen
        634 Church St, Toronto, ON M4Y 2G3, CA

        2 Replies
        1. re: TorontoJo

          i have to disagree on the petit dejeuner rec...we made the trek down there a few months ago and found very ho-hum breakfast, not particularly clean space, and a genuinely terrible belgian liege waffle -- heavy as a hockey puck, and about as flavorful. (perhaps they are supposed to be that way? dunno.) the regular waffles weren't bad, but not standouts. i don't think the place would be in the least bit remarkable in nyc.

          the search for a good brunch in toronto continues...

          1. re: autopi

            Oh, those liege waffles are awful -- hockey pucks, as you say. I'm talking about the raised yeast waffles -- I think they may call them "Brussels waffels" on the menu. I think they are the best waffles in the city and are the primary reason I go there, though Lola's Commissary is my more frequent destination these days.

            Try Lola's Commissary -- it will be a totally different experience than LPD. Bright, open space, fantastic food (very vegetarian friendly menu, too), excellent coffee.

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            Lola's Kitchen
            634 Church St, Toronto, ON M4Y 2G3, CA

        2. Not even close to fancy, but worth the visit are:

          Stockyards for bbq and fried chicken.

          Porchetta and Co. for amazing porchetta sandwiches (get it with rapini and the truffle sauce). You may also get lucky and end up on a day when they're serving soft shelled crab sandwiches.

          Not sure if these interest you (they're not vegetarian at all), but damn good food.

          1. Nobody answered the Black Hoof question, in short if you are vegetarian or pescatarian, forget it, no veg items unless you count bread and pickles/olives and most fish dishes are combination with meat (current menu has a beef heart and scallop dish, and octopus spaghetti which may have other meat in the sauce).

            I'm not sure about Brockton General at this point, they recently got a new chef and their menu is very limited, I'd suggest as an alternative Atlantic on Dundas.

            As a rule Toronto's most formal restaurants will never be as formal or stuffy as the most formal places in New York.

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

            Brockton General
            1321 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6J 1Y1, CA