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Eat & Drink

The 10 most expensive restaurants in Toronto

Posted by Liora Ipsum / January 15, 2014

most expensive restaurants torontoThe most expensive restaurants in Toronto are places that specialize in luxe ingredients and engaging techniques. In my mind, these are places reserved for major celebrations, high-rollers, expense account holders, dinners where mom, dad or an unsuspecting first date picks up the tab.

While you'll find a few steakhouses on the list, we didn't want them to dominate, so allow us to give honourable mentions to Joso's, Harbour Sixty Steakhouse, Michael's on Simcoe, Mistura, Splendido, Woods, Buca.

Here is a round-up of the most expensive restaurants in Toronto. On a side note, I've hardly touched on how alcohol can send the tab off the rails, as my principle criteria was the cost of mains.

Kaiseki Yu-Zen Hashimoto
Cooking for 30+ years, the kitchen at this Japanese restaurant is staffed solely by chef and owner, Masaki Hashimoto. The dinner menu, a flat $300 (not including drinks) features an eight course omakase menu with complimentary tea ceremony to finish.

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Situated in the 31st floor of the Trump Tower, it's easy to drop a few hundred bills on dinner when mains like a the 12oz New York Strip are $48 and available with add-ons like foie gras for an extra $22. Go all out and make it a surf and turf with a side lobster tail for $27, or just stick to the sides dishes like lowly brussels sprouts offered for $9 each.

Jacob's & Co.
This highly regarded King West steakhouse is home to seafood towers ($58), duck fat frites ($12) and most notably, charbroiled slabs of meat that range from a modest 6oz tenderloin ($39) to an ungodly 16oz Black Tajima ribeye priced at $328. As if that's not rich enough, there is always the option to add an Atlantic lobster tail for $30.

Canoe
Showcasing domestic products wherever possible, the menu at Oliver & Bonacini's flagship restaurant features starters like bison carpaccio ($24) and pan seared Quebec foie gras ($28). Follow that with main courses like mackerel with lobster or braised Alberta lamb ranging in price from $32 to $47.

Scaramouche
This upmarket Avenue Road restaurant with a stunning view of the city specializes in luxe ingredients that elevate rustic cuisine. First courses like the foie gras terrine are priced at almost $30, while handmade pasta goes for $37 thanks to truffled porcini sauce and fresh truffle shavings.

Cafe Boulud
Housed in the Four Seasons Hotel, this restaurant from celebrated chef Daniel Boulud does seasonal haute cuisine driven by French technique. Ultra rich plates like seared foie gras with medjool dates are listed under apps for $28 while the steak au poivre tops the priciest of the a la carte mains at $46.

The Chase
This recently opened restaurant makes it possible to drop $38 on a vegetable dish; parsnips and foie gras anyone? Mains like lobster carbonara ($46) or wild bass ($42) are at the top end of the price scale but the cocktails priced between $14 to $18 can also easily do damage to your pocketbook.

Barberian's
This legendary steakhouse on Elm Street champions gastronomical hedonism with a menu featuring pricey top cuts of meats and seafoods. A 12oz filet mignon wrapped in bacon sells for $60.50 -- start that off with a jumbo shrimp cocktail for $24.75 and order a couple drinks and the final tab quickly gets into triple digits per diner.

Sotto Sotto
It's easy to rack up an exorbitant tab at this Avenue Road trattoria, especially when following the typical Italian multi-course progression. Shared antipasti hover around the $20 mark, but add to that a similarly priced pasta course, seafood or meat mains ($35-$45) and a $14 dessert, and you're looking at a real chunk of change.

Shoto
This third-floor Momofuku restaurant does 10-course tasting menus for $150, add-on wine pairings for $80 more. While the flat fee means the final tab will be predictable, what you'll get is always unexpected. Menus change frequently but are known to begin with a number of amuse bouche followed by a parade of inventive plates featuring luxe seafoods like Sea Urchin and scallops and rare and interesting meats like lamb belly or elk.

Feel free to nominate other wallet-breaking Toronto restaurants in the comments.

Photo of The Chase by Carly Miller

Discussion

23 Comments

JR / January 15, 2014 at 06:27 pm
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Foie Gras is vegetarian now?
Matt F / January 15, 2014 at 08:14 pm
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Don't forget Kaji: http://www.sushikaji.com/
Grasshopper / January 15, 2014 at 08:40 pm
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I tried Canoe for Summerlicious 2012...very tasty 3-course lunch for around $30.
Cameron / January 15, 2014 at 09:21 pm
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George is fantastic, but you're looking to drop near $200 per person if you do the wine pairings.
NDP much? / January 15, 2014 at 09:37 pm
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What is wrong with having some expensive restaurants? As long as there is a market for them they will be here. Don't like it? Go get a bacon sandwich at the St. Lawrence Market.
Toronto Photo Booth / January 15, 2014 at 10:09 pm
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Canoe is hands down my favourite restaurant in Toronto! yum.
Henry / January 15, 2014 at 10:49 pm
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Cue the nonsensical complaining because something is too expensive/exclusive. There are a lot of people with money in this city. If they want to drop a grand on a meal, go nuts.

Why can't anyone read a fun post anymore without thinking, "This isn't aimed at me, therefore I must hate, decide it's an attack on my social class and ridicule everyone who goes there."

It's just a bunch of expensive restaurants. Go try 'em or get over it.
VS / January 16, 2014 at 12:00 am
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Not all vegetable dishes are vegetarian. See: every thai restaurant, ever.

You can get a vegetarian/vegan cashew foie at URSA, though.

But, yes, the author has no business calling foie gras "a vegetable dish."
HamTornado / January 16, 2014 at 08:59 am
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AV,

That review is from 2007.

Her updated information is correct from the restaurant's website:

http://www.kaiseki.ca/#!information/c245k
TJ / January 16, 2014 at 09:18 am
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My only problem with expensive restaurants is when the food doesn't match the price. For example, $35 for a plate of vegetarian pasta or almost $20 for a salad is insane because pasta and vegetables are cheap. If it is $30 for lobster, I understand because normally it is $7-10/lb.
Jake / January 16, 2014 at 11:27 am
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I'm actually quite keen to hit up jacob and co, for a decent price stake. I wonder how that 24oz japanese ribeye is for $492! bananas.
Jeromey / January 16, 2014 at 12:25 pm
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Most expensive I've been to is Ruth's Chris under the Hilton. Bachelor party dinner for about $100 each, but that was about 10 years ago. Great steak and prime rib, though. Mains are $40-70, sides are $8-15.
Jon / January 16, 2014 at 03:05 pm
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Forget The prices people, it's all about an experience. You don't have to go everyday, but if you enjoy dining these are recommended places. I would not say Jacob and Co. Is on the top or say Barbarians, they are Ok. But for real steak experience one must try the left out Hys Steakhouse on adelaide. With a grandeur dining room, beautiful lounge, exceptional service and wonderfully prepared Steak it is much more value driven.
Please try the above and make your thoughts known not on price but rather the experience you are left feeling after.... BON APPETITE!!!
sean / January 16, 2014 at 06:18 pm
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obviously this article is based upon the most expensive menu options. at Barberian's the 9oz sirloin is quite affordable and the old school ambience and service far superior to what you'd get at the keg for the same price.

Is this Torontolife.com? / January 17, 2014 at 06:16 am
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Except not as good?
ah / January 18, 2014 at 10:37 pm
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NOT A STEAKHOUSE : Mistura, Splendido, Woods, Buca.

At least have the decency to actually even look up a menu before writing an article about restaurants in Toronto. Liora Ipsum there is such a thing as journalistic integrity even if you are for the pathetic atrocity that is BlogTo.
ah / January 18, 2014 at 10:40 pm
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TAKEN FROM HASHIMOTO'S WEBSITE. IT HAS NOT BEEN OPEN FOR 30 YEARS, THE CHEF HAS BEEN IN CANADA FOR 30 YEARS.

SO APPARENTLY WE CAN'T EVEN READ THE WEBSITES EITHER. DEAR GOD BLOGTO!!!!!

"It has been over 30 years since Owner/ Chef, Masaki Hashimoto landed in Toronto, Canada with his wife Sachiko.
Trained for 10 years in Kaiseki cuisine at Tsujitome in Kyoto and Kocho in Tokyo, he was one of the few Kaiseki chefs to leave Japan for the new world. To build the initial structure of Japanese Culinary artisan overseas, he with his family, continue to express the beauty and elegance of Japanese culinary tradition and authenticity. "
Does the shit smell if you No.2 in their washrooms? / January 20, 2014 at 01:11 pm
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Have they solved the prob?
Joseph / May 11, 2014 at 11:10 pm
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I would like to add sassafras at Yorkville neighborhood...
Joseph / May 11, 2014 at 11:11 pm
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I would like to add Sassafraz at Yorkville neighborhood. They are expensive too...
Daniel / May 12, 2014 at 01:03 am
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@Ah

I'm pretty sure they were trying to say that the chef has been cooking for over 30 years.
"Cooking for 30+ years, the kitchen at this Japanese restaurant is staffed solely by chef and owner, Masaki Hashimoto. The dinner menu, a flat $300 (not including drinks) features an eight course omakase menu with complimentary tea ceremony to finish.
ray / September 7, 2014 at 07:57 am
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note: George is more pricey than most of these, even for lunch.
Stuart / September 9, 2014 at 10:12 am
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Pricy does not mean great just better than average. I've tried a few on the list, Sotto Sotto, to me, is mainly hype, where as Scarmouche and Cafe Boulud are great all the time. Canoe is good but great? I didn't think so. Lots pf great choice but pales comparing them to Montreal fare.

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