Great food for 8 ppl near Park Hyatt on Avenue Rd.
Vancouver Chowhounder here....wondering if you might be able to lend me some of your fabulous Toronto insight....wanting to book dinner for 8 colleagues on Monday evening in TO....will be staying at Park Hyatt on Avenue Rd. Looking for really, really good food. Mid-range prices - nothing too extravagant (company budget!). Entrees over $30 would likely be a bit too high. We are all big foodies and love great restaurants - where would you suggest??
When I last stayed at that hotel, I had a lovely meal at Fieramosca Trattoria just around the corner on Prince Arthur... and I'm not even much of a fan of southern Italian food or (sometimes) the decor that goes along with it.
Really friendly and accommodating service (while not in your face) and although too cool when I was there in April, a beautiful back garden dining area or comfortable (and quiet) indoor dining. The food was wonderful; fresh and flavourful and not too heavy-handed with sauces etc. I don't think we chose from the menu for mains: the chef's specials were great that evening.
I was really not expecting much and I was so pleasantly surprised, I'm going to make a point of going back when next in TO. I don't know that it was "Foodie" great: but it was a solid traditional choice...
I've also dined at Opus across the street from Fieramosca but it's a bit beyond your stipend... http://www.opusrestaurant.com/Welcome...
If a traditional French bistro is of interest, I've also had great meals here:
http://jacquesbistro.com/Bienvenue.html; a short walk from the Park Hyatt.
Hope that helps
Since you don't mind a short cab ride, I would recommend heading to Harbord Street, where there are several great, mid-priced restaurants. My personal choice for your needs would be 93 Harbord.
Another option is Harbord Room, though it might be tough to get a res for 8 there, as it's quite small.
L'Unita on Avenue Road is quite good, and about half the mains are $30 or under. I like the food and service at L'Unita more than the food at Ciao. L'Unita is located a few blocks north of the Hyatt.
Le Paradis is a reasonable bistro within a 15-20 minute walk of the Hyatt. http://www.leparadis.com/
Globe Earth http://www.earthrosedale.com/ http://www.earthrosedale.com/Menus/di... and Rosedale Diner http://www.rosedalediner.com/ are within a 20-25 minute walk, or a short taxi ride. Mains are under $30.