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TO Chowhounders: favorite brunch places?

There are quite a few brunch threads, but nothing new for this year. Where do you like to go? I live in little Italy, so tend to stick to my favorites (saving grace, aunties and uncles, eat), although there are a few others that I really like down College (Me and Mine and Tavoos).
Any recommendations to break me out of my rut?

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  1. Gallery Grill, Hart House, Sept - June

    1. Fanny Chadwick, though I'm not sure why I would be contributing to the lineups.

      3 Replies
      1. re: dubchild

        Thanks dubchild: I have wanted to try Fanny Chadwick for a while.

        1. re: rstuart

          Emma's Country Kitchen is on my list.
          The Stockyards serves a good brunch.

          1. re: prima

            Yes I went to Emma's a few years ago.. maybe it's time to go back!

      2. Takht E Tavoos is my clear #1 right now.
        Then the other staples are Aunties & Uncles and Insomnia.

        Not worth the hype, price, attitude: Lady Marmalade. Spare me...never again.

        Still have to try Saving Grace.

        9 Replies
        1. re: pakmode

          It's really, really good, despite the fact that they currently aren't open on Sundays (??), the service is sweet but can be a bit dippy, and line-ups can be long.
          Good to know about Lady Marmalade...

          1. re: rstuart

            TET is not open Sundays?? Really...wow.

          2. re: pakmode

            I've been meaning to try Auntie's and Uncles for years and for for some reason I've never gotten around to it. Is it really that good?

            1. re: kwass

              Their prices are considerably lower then other places, so maybe that has something to do with it. $8 for those banana oatmeal pancakes and cinnamon french toast is hard to beat. I would never wait 45m anywhere. So I only ever go around 2-2:30 when the crowd is lighter.

              1. re: pakmode

                Which do you prefer, the banana oatmeal pancakes or the French toast? And speaking of the French toast, is it run of the mill or is there something special about it?

                1. re: kwass

                  Would have to say the pancakes, as I haven't had the french toast in over a year.

              2. re: kwass

                I love it there. Just don't go hungry because the wait is almost unbearable. Also, use the secret restroom UPstairs, not the scary one DOWNstairs.

            2. Beast currently has the best French toast in the city
              Emma's Country Kitchen
              White Brick Kitchen
              Rose and Sons
              Big Crow

              6 Replies
              1. re: kwass

                I looked at Rose and Sons, but nothing on the menu appealed at the time (I will have to look again..). I am going to try Fanny Chadwicks, but White Brick Kitchen looks good too..

                1. re: rstuart

                  White Brick Kitchen is awesome and I can't say enough about Beast! I love that place for brunch!

                  1. re: kwass

                    I haven't been there for ages.. time to try it again..

                  2. re: rstuart

                    The patty melt at Rose & Sons is (or was) excellent.

                    1. re: rstuart

                      Have you been for your brunch at Fanny Chadwick's?

                      I was sadly underwhelmed by the Crabcake Benedict special at Beast last month. Very meh crabcake. Should have ordered something else.

                      I was happy with my Mushroom Benedict ($12.50, including home fries, frites or salad) at Lola's Kitchen today. There's fresh dill added to the hollandaise for the Mushroom Benedict, so people who don't like dill might want to ask for plain hollandaise. I always ask for some of their special hot sauce on the side, for my home fries.

                      I've also been happy with the quality of the brunch food at Cafe Boulud, but I still find it somewhat overpriced. Brunch ends up costing closer to $35 to $40 per person by the time coffee, sides (the eggs Benny doesn't come with potatoes), tax and tip are included, when I usually spend less than $25 for brunch, including coffee, tax and tip.

                      1. re: prima

                        Yes, I did enjoy it! I didn't have anything fancy, but what I did have was good. Will definitely go back. We were there at 10:30, which seems to be the right time.. I will have to look at Lola's kitchen..

                  3. If you ever head up to Eglinton Ave, The Abbot is so yummy!!

                    508 Eglinton Ave W, Toronto, ON M5N 1A5
                    (416) 487-8350
                    truly my fave.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Idas

                      I don't have a car, but often brunch with people who do.. so it's always nice to get a good suggestion!

                    2. I am often let down by brunch, but was really impressed with my recent brunch at Karelia Kitchen in Bloordale. They had a brunch menu plus their full lunch menu - my dish was maybe a little too meat heavy for me (although really good, just a lot!), but the highlight were my cornmeal bacon pancakes. YUM. Many people were getting cheddar biscuits, they looked delicious.

                      I would check out the menu, you can find it online.

                      2 Replies
                      1. re: ms. cornbread

                        Yes. Absolutely Karelia Kitchen. Thank Ms. C for refreshing my memory!
                        I wouldn't call Karelia my favourite brunch place in town, but it is definitely very unique, quaint, and pleasing. I have been there for dinner twice and brunch once. All of those experiences were Outstanding.

                        The smoked trout with poached duck egg and potato hash - is quite something.
                        I was expecting a lot of the smoked trout and it definitely delivered: perfectly seasoned, flaky and nice smoke. I would have been happy with just the trout and hash, but the duck egg was a very welcoming addition.

                        And of course, the strong coffee and cute cutleries get bonus points!

                        Karelia Kitchen is a bit funny -personally I found their dinner menu to be on the lighter/cleaner side ( you have to try their smorgasbord!) , and their brunch/pastry to be too heavy for my taste. However, I would still return - I find the flavour profile very unique, hence satisfying.

                        1. re: happycamper

                          Well said, happycamper. It's not my favourite brunch spot either but definitely unique and well executed. I really enjoyed my freshly squeezed carrot juice too (who knew). Haven't been for dinner. Soon, I hope!

                      2. Farmers Daughter, Farmhouse Tavern, and Karelia Kitchen stand out in the past 6 months.

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: Food Tourist

                          OK.. now I really want to try Karelia Kitchen!