Market Street Redevelopment... new restaurants coming.
I walk on this street daily and was wondering what was going to be put in here. They have several restaurant fronts, with patios now put in place... and Liquor license applications on the windows.
Pastizza on the corner, and from what I read its from restaurateur Paolo Paolini, co-owner Mistura. Looking forward to this one for sure.
There is a Market Cafe that I can't find anything one
There is Bindi Bistro (I think that's what its called) which is Indian fare, which again, I can't find anything on. This one looks the closets to opening.
Also, there will be the Olive & Olives chain.
Anyone else come across any news or updates lately on these places?
Yes! All of the spaces have been leased except for unit 4.
As you've mentioned, Pastizza is taking the corner space, though the renovations are taking forever. Their patio will seat over 100 people.
The space underneath the LCBO will be called Barsa. It will be a Mediterranean style tapas/bar/restaurant with a 60 person patio. This space is supposed to be "cave like" with original stone work from the 1800's.
In between Pastizza and LCBO will be Bindia, which will be an East Indian bistro. There will also be Market Street Catch serving seafood, Olive and Olives, and Balzacs Coffee.
Hope this helps.
My wife and I talked to Bindia's chef and his partner recently while they were waiting for a furniture delivery. They seem to know their business, so we have high hopes for the place. They will have all the usual Toronto Indian fare - tandouri dishes, biryani, etc. The chef wasn't familiar with Parsi food, but he promised to learn about dhansak and add it to his menu. We'll know soon - September opening, I think.
Bindia (indian food) opened a couple of weeks ago. I have gone there twice already and the food is great. Not too spicy (but can be if you ask) and great selection. My fav is the lamb samosas and the mint tikka apps. The butter chicken and bhunda lamb mains are amazing. Food is not oily like at other Indian food places that I have been too, and the decor of this place is modern. If you like authentic North Indian foods, I def recommend this place. This area needed a place like this. The other restos on that strip are not open yet.
I agree. My wife and I have eaten at Bindia twice now, on our own the first night they were open and with a neighbourhood friend last week. It isn't cheap as Indian restaurants go, but the food is uniformly excellent and attractively presented. The serivce is friendly and efficent too, although it can take time to get your bill if they don't need the table.
I like Bindia - and I know that everyone has their own level of spice tolerance, so I'm happy that this place will dial it up for me. They have a Chilli Chicken dish that they can do as Chilli Prawn - wow, it's great! Fresh, hot, sings with fresh ginger and chilli. May not be your thing, but I would recommend it if you are frustrated trying to find good Indian food downtown.
Barsa - went for late lunch - really great looking room, very friendly staff, but I was expecting a tapas bar as you'd find in Spain, i.e. a range of small dishes served at the bar, including the really basic classics such as garlic prawns, tortilla, (I don't have to tell Chowhounders the difference between Spanish and Mexican), great haunches of Serrano ham carved on the spot. But no. They only offer "tapas" as one menu item. Basically a plate of olives, pickles, chacuterie. You could assemble it from the market for half the price.
My friend had the burger and fries, the fries were overcooked and limp. I had a weird broccoli cauliflower salad on some kind of soggy grain, I couldn't finish - it was just such a bizarre and altogether unappetizing concoction.
This place is best approached as a wine bar, or a club, after you have dined elsewhere. I suspect that it is really LOUD when crowded. Some staff members are rude and clumsy (pushing past me instead of allowing me to return to my table). Bonus points - toilets are on the ground floor.
But I won't be back. If you want to try it, I suggest you sit at the bar and ask for an example of the chef's best tapa. That will limit your expense, and, if you are a fan of true tapas bars, will let you know if this is the place for you.
EDIT - Just noticed this post form the owner:
"Tapas are not supposed to be $13 and $14. You're supposed to order two or three plates each, and share. It's just ridiculous." On Barsa's tapas menu, everything will range in price from $6 to $9.
The lowest thing on the menu is $9 and up to the sky from there. This is not a Tapas bar at all, apart from its décor.
We've been to Barsa twice now. Their tapas are inventive but not traditional, or ayway not what we've had in other Toronto tapas places or in Manhattan. But all the tapas we've had at Barsa have been delicious. The $50 Tapas Tastings - 6 different ones, as much $20 each on their own, is the best tapas bet, a full meal for 2 people. Excellent sangria roja too, we haven't tried the other kinds.
Last night they finally started serving paella, and we shared the first one they've ever served. Best Paella we ever tasted- proscutto, asparagas, shitake mushrooms, and more. Beautiful! They will have a different paella every night. But the music they play is heavy beat dance club junk, and they still can't take Amex cards, and their patio still isn't ready. Otherwise, it's a great addition to our neighbourhood, and we expect to go there often.
The service is great too, although the staff are all climbing over each other until the patio opens.
Last night I ordered a caipirinha. Our waitress didn't know what it was, but she got the name right and asked the manager. He didn't have the cachaca to make one, but he sent someone to the nearest LCBO to buy it for me. Unfortunately that LCBO had run out of cachaca, since I bought it there myself not too long ago. But I'm pretty sure caipirinhas will be on Barsa's bar menu the next time I ask. That's service!
There is an official website for this redevelopment here:
Olive & Olive was the first to open and I go there every few weeks for certain tasty canned olives that we first found at their Leslieville store. They focus exclusively on olives and olive oils and related things, we'll see if that's enough considering the Market is right next door.
We've also tried Bindia, and while it didn't blow us away and was a bit on the pricey side, we plan to give them another shot when we're craving curry. There are essentially no other Indian food options in the area.
Market Street Catch opened recently and it's a spin-off from Buster's Sea Cove in the South Market. We had some fish tacos and fish and chips there the week they opened, and aside from a being a little oversalted they were quite good. The menu is pretty extensive for those who are adventurous with sea food.
A beautiful-looking outlet of Balzac's Coffee just opened a few weeks back. I'm not really a fan of their coffee but man do I love their decors.
And just this week, Evolution Food Co. is supposed to be opening. From what I can see, it's a restaurant that offers "healthy" food like salads and lean meats along with a juice bar and yogurt bar.
Barsa Taberna really seems to be getting mixed reviews in their early days, I'm intrigued by the space but will wait. They seem to have initiated an identity crisis by being a sort-of-but-not really tapas joint.
I think the big game changer will be Pastizza, which will have its own building at the south end of the street. I think that will be the restaurant that determines whether this strip will be a legitimate restaurant destination for Torontonians or just a tourist trap that survives solely on proximity to the Market.
But for now, I think this is the one of the best things that's happened in Toronto for a long time. It makes so much sense and really adds to the historic feel of the area. Kudos to all these restaurants for taking a chance on these new spaces. I hope they all do well.
Our experience has been similar to yours except for Barsa. It's not what we expected of a tapas bar either, but the quality of their food and service is a match for anyplace in the area, including the Chef's House, Hawthorne, and the late lamented Kultura (which later became a flashy Taquilla Belle).
Market Street is coming along nicely. I wasn't thrilled with Bindia, but they seem busier and I have heard better reviews from clients. We enjoyed Barsa and I posted about that. Balzac coffee has good baked goods and it is nice to have an option which is open on Mondays when my regular coffee joint in the basement of the St Lawrence is closed. I've been to Catch a couple of times, both excellent. The fish tacos are three large double wrapped tacos for $15. The octopus and halibut were my favourites, the tuna lacked flavour. They remind me of the tacos at Seven Lives. The thing to get is the halibut fish and chips. Not overly battered fresh fish with a pronounced clean mineral flavour with decent coleslaw, fries, and tartar sauce. They are still working on a liquor licence. The Italian place at the end of the street should open soon and I haven't tried Evolution Foods but they offer a healthy alternative. The strength with all these restaurants is that there isn't much like it the area and they offer a welcome change from the string of pubs on the esplanade.