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Smarter side of casual dining in dowtown Toronto?

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Hey there,

I am meeting two old friends for dinner and a girls night and trying to decide on a restaurant. None of us are local so we're a bit stumped. We are looking for something downtown and on the smarter side of casual - any cuisine, though preferably something Mediterranean or somewhere with a range of options (we have one vegetarian and one dedicated carnivore!).

The two big deal breakers are price and the ability to have a conversation - we don't want anywhere to noisy since we are trying to catch up and we are looking for somewhere with moderate prices (say up to $10 for starters and in the $15-20 range for entrees). A decent wine list would be a plus, but not a deal breaker.

Any ideas from chowhounds of the GTA? Thanks :-)

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  1. What do you consider downtown?

    1. East of Dufferin, South of Bloor, West of Jarvis... or possibly up on the Danforth, since that's pretty easy, as far as I remember, to get to from the subway... it's been many years since I was in Toronto!

      1 Reply
      1. re: Serwl

        Try The Harbord Room...meets all of your requiisites.

        http://www.theharbordroom.com/

      2. Sidecar on College would fit the bill or Strada on Spadina.

        1. I love Museum Tavern just across from the ROM on Bloor at University. It has a great menu of bistro-y dishes, a great cocktail menu and friendly service. http://www.museumtavern.ca/
          Also a fan of Caren's Wine and Cheese in Yorkville. I couldn't see the fondue menu on the website, but they have several options.
          http://www.carenswineandcheese.com/
          Both offer a place where you can have a conversation and while some items may be more expensive than you're looking for, many fall within your range.