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Parts & Labour

Posted by Guest Contributor / Reviewed on July 28, 2012 / review policy

parts and labour torontoParts & Labour gets a lot of things right: their cocktails have been classed among the city's best; the in-vogue communal tables are not only ideal for larger dinner-parties, but also meeting new people as individual groups seem to fuse into one over the course of the night; and The Shop has made a name for itself hosting top-notch punk acts and hip-hop dance-parties Saturday nights. So it comes as no surprise that Chef Matthew Matheson is meeting high expectations with brunch.

parts and labour torontoDespite near-freezing temperature and comme ci comme ├ža service (not rude but definitely lacking personality), it hit all my personal brunch fundamentals: the food came out quick and hot, water glasses were topped up continuously, and the caesars were delicious.

With a background in bartending and a deep love for Caesars, I am pretty picky about how I like the classic brunch cocktail. The key: extra Worchester and fresh cracked pepper. We watched as the bartender landed both requirements and added tobasco sauce according to our orders.

parts and labour torontoShe then topped the drink with a dollop of St. Ambroise Oatmeal Stout, which helped it to keep its thickness. A spicy pepper and olive skewer took the P+L Caesar into the drink-appetizer category.

The menu covers the essentials, with steak and eggs, blueberry pancakes for the sweet tooth, and a vegan option, but it was the Shake N' Bake Porkloin, with white gravy, a biscuit and fried egg, that initially caught my eye. Not convinced I could handle white gravy so early in the morning, I backed out and opted for the Ploughman's Breakfast.

parts and labour torontoJust a light fare of soft-boiled egg, a slab of homemade terrine pate, with chunks of blood sausage, apricots and pistachios, some Mennonite gypsy sausage and 10-year-old cheddar, paired with homemade butter pickles and pieces of warm and perfectly chewy baguette, then finished off with half a green apple--all served on a wooden cutting board stabbed with a knife. It was exactly what I want every morning, but you've got to be seriously hungry to tackle this version, or at least have friends with you that are.

The Steelhead gravlax was replaced by salmon the morning we were there, and served with "green tomato chow chow" (better known as a small portion of romaine with a side pile of cherry tomatoes) and boiled creamer potatoes. It functioned as lighter fare, with nothing left wanting but also nothing worth mentioning.

parts and labour torontoThe best dish was The P&L. The namesake breakfast featured a medium fried egg served over pork belly on a pancake, served with hash and maple trotter sauce and garnished with onions. The taters were blah and the cracklings were tough to cut through, but so worth the effort. Salty-sweet perfection.

Parts & Labour deserves a place among Toronto's dependable brunch destinations and the food is well worth any trek to Parkdale. I'm already planning my return, and have my eye on the shake n' bake.

parts and labour torontoWriting and photos by Megan Leahy



chelsea / December 9, 2010 at 02:58 pm
this place sucks... i got the bartenders beard hair in my drink. so gross...
SinSinner / January 5, 2011 at 05:53 pm
That sounds pretty gross. Haha remind everyone never to eat or drink from such a filthy place.
JB / January 6, 2011 at 11:09 am
Looks nice, but there's something that's still strange to me about a joint serving entrees in the $25 range and $12 cocktails in the middle of Parkdale.
JB / January 6, 2011 at 12:19 pm
$25 entree? the cheapest entree on their menu is $25 hamburger ranging up to $100. kind of blows my mind a little bit. I ate here once and will never go back. I think their idea was to hire a bunch of hip looking kids and this place would become popular. I guess it worked, but their food and desserts (especially!!) are extremely lackluster. Hopefully the service has been improved since I was there last. A disgruntled server slammed our plates down in front of us, and walked off irritated.
Richard Pickolo / January 28, 2011 at 05:31 pm
Get a neck tattoo and stand outside for a bit chit chat about Terry Richardson.. Then go inside and grab a drink. Wait it has to be non alcoholic since your straight edge. This place is for ppl who moved to Toronto within the last 8 years.
Have at er' all be at a real bar like Hurricanes on Bloor St.
Peace Out!
RO / April 17, 2011 at 01:31 am
Great place if you like rude waiters who treat you like cattle and try to shovel you in and out the door. I think the nicest person there was the security guard. Avoid this douchebag joint at all costs.
whaaaat? / April 29, 2011 at 02:52 pm
there has never been a $100 item on the P&L menu. the most expensive entree item is currently $36, the menu is posted on their website and it changes with the seasons. If $36 is too rich for your blood, get a real job LOL!!
Jason / June 7, 2011 at 08:28 am
They make the greatest grilled cheese sandwich I have ever eaten. The bread it very crisp with a asiago cheese topped off with a fruit puree. It literally blew my mind.
Dan / June 27, 2011 at 08:56 pm
Jason. So the grilled cheese sandwich LITERALLY blew your mind, eh? I think I'll stay away from that sandwich. Are you okay?
Darrin Berg / September 20, 2011 at 09:35 pm
Im Darrin Berg, I recently released my third CD "Shake, Sift, Settle, and Stir" this past summer. My band, 'The Darrin Berg Blues Band" along with Hello Bella and Ripley 29 are currently on a promotions tour in support of the album.

We're playing at the Black Shire in London Saturday September 24, the Duke of Sydenham in Strathroy on Oct 14 and Paddy Flaherty's in Sarnia on Nov 5.

We 're looking to book a few shows in the Toronto area this Fall, and I was wondering if we could fill a Saturday night with you this December/January.

Please let me know if I can send a few CDs your way and talk more!
Thanks for your time.
Darrin Berg
Jenn / May 21, 2012 at 02:44 pm
Really amazing decor. Love it, want every inch of it in my apartment. Barbie heads in a vase? Yes please. Huge, long farm tables. Awesome lighting. OK beers on tap. Fair prices, bottles are the same price so just suck it up and have a pissy beer for a better price. Didn't try any food but I hear its really expensive. Definitely a cool place to have a few drinks with a large group of friends. Tons of seating and not crowded at all. Bar tenders are really nice and quick, you definitely are not ignored here.
steve replying to a comment from whaaaat? / July 28, 2012 at 02:24 am
Many people can't afford 36 dollars entrees. No need to scoff at people who work hard. I have a real job, I'm a Chef, so suck it.
rass / July 28, 2012 at 10:28 am
Way, way, wayyyyyyyyyyy Overpriced for the location and food quality.

STAY AWAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Derek / July 28, 2012 at 11:13 am
Went for brunch on weekend. Had diarrhea for the rest of the week.
Dan / July 28, 2012 at 01:25 pm
Wasn't this place a bar not too long ago?
Tuli / July 29, 2012 at 12:02 am
WHY? I don't understand this place. WHY?
Josh / July 29, 2012 at 12:05 am
If you like cafeteria style it's alright - I prefer Future Bakery's Patio on Bloor St.
Ron / July 29, 2012 at 10:35 am
Wow, if grilled cheese blew one's mind away here then they definitely never used a kitchen in their life before. If you can fork out $30 for a burger you should hire a maid to do everything for you including tying up your shoes. I'd much rather prepare my own food then fork out $$$ at a douche bag place such as this. I hope it goes down.
holy / July 29, 2012 at 06:40 pm
I can't believe how bitter people in Toronto are. It's a real shame.
someones a liar / January 28, 2013 at 01:00 pm
i recently visited P+L expecting, as many of you promised, many-a-douchebag... but there wasn't even one. and the burger was $15 not $30. i suppose haters gotta hate.
Bobby / May 10, 2013 at 10:52 am
I hit up P&L last night for the first time and they totally killed it. The food was amazing, drinks superb, and the service impecable. People started to gather around the bar towards 11pm and a nightlife crowd showed up, but the vibe was cool and casual. Most of all, it was refreshing not to be shuffled out (unlike some other Parkdale hot spots) but rather encouraged to stay, hang out, and have a couple after-dinner drinks. All in all a great experience!
Kathryn / October 4, 2013 at 03:06 pm
Went for a friends birthday on a Saturday evening and I will probably never go back. We skipped dinner and joined the group for drinks in their basement. It had the temperature of a meat locker and similar matching decor. The lady behind the bar was probably one of the worst barteners i've had in a long time (or at least since i've stopped going to giant richmond and john clubs circa my late teens and early 20's). Despite having actually having no one but myself to serve she continued to ignore me for a good 7mins before she finally 'noticed' I was there waiting to be served - because staring off into space is what really makes customer service excel. The best part of my evening was chatting with the security guard outside, other then that I was left with little positive things that I could pass along.
Bangkok girls / October 31, 2013 at 03:37 pm
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kat / March 17, 2014 at 08:44 pm
Not one to write reviews but this place was extremely overrated. Most items were overpriced which would be ok if the service wasn't so bad. I wanted to try the donut but did not feel like waiting 30 minutes to get asked if I wanted dessert.
Marco / November 12, 2014 at 07:14 pm
Never go here again. This place is terrible. We booked a Christmas dinner with friends in September here and they cancelled our reservation today (November 12) Thor a corporate event. Terrible customer service. You just lost a lot of customers, all of our friends and I will be sure to spread the word about how bad your restaurant is to everyone I know
hannah / July 12, 2015 at 02:15 pm
SO, my friends and i went out to to parts an labour and it was pure shit im never going back again. the staff was rude and they didn't seem to have a systems cause if you go out for air or a smoke you might as well plan where your heading to next. the BOUNCERS are DISRESPECTFUL

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