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Restaurants

Soho Bistro

Posted by Libby Roach / Reviewed on August 25, 2013 / review policy

Soho BistroSoho Bistro has long been a fixture at the corner of Yonge and Woburn (north of Lawrence). And while the locals have mixed views and generally pan the place for their dinner service, brunch has always been a solid meal here. Head Chef Jeyendiran Sivakumaran prides himself on an almost exclusively house-made menu and brunch provides some solid choices to give his best creations a go.

Soho BistroFlanked by two patios (one facing Yonge Street and a shady option on the Woburn side), the interior is a galley style bistro space with an open kitchen. A second floor accommodates groups and parties, which boasts a brave 'create your own' menu for any celebration. An under-utilized bar hovers and interrupts the flow of the room, and with no stools to sit at it, seems like a complete waste of space. Miss-matched chairs dot the rickety tables.

While the menu features everything from everywhere, regulars know to stick to the basics and skip through to the pizzas and risottos. Brunch offers everything from standard eggs and bacon options to fancier crepes and quiches. Fresh squeezed OJ is a solid bet ($2.99) offering a distinctly pulpy flavour. Morning Glories are also an option for those looking for a hair of the dog solution. Service is swift, with usually only one server managing the entire restaurant.

Soho BistroWith five different styles of the classic Eggs Benedict to sample, we tucked in for the standard version ($10.99) as well as the healthier spinach-focused Eggs Florentine (also $10.99). Both come with sides of mixed greens (with a simple balsamic dressing) and their highly addictive home fries. We actually ordered another side of these potatoes ($2.99) after ours disappeared too quickly.

The eggs themselves are glorious, oozy and soft, running onto the plate to further enhance the equally impressive Hollandaise sauce, which is not too vinegary, and not too buttery. This is definitely one of those times when a simple dish can get killed by the wrong hands. Each component can ruin the next, and with the lightly toasted English muffins hanging in to soak it all up, these benny's are tough to beat.

Soho BistroFluffy Belgian waffles ($8.99) are similarly show stopping, with a side of bacon, eggs and seasonal fruit (bonus points for not being melon). The portion-controlled packets of "maple syrup" are sad and inefficient, and pancake syrup is an insult to all good breakfasts (and lunches and dinners too if you're a maple freak like me).

Soho BistroKid-sized chicken fingers and fries ($6.99) are always a good way to keep the munchkins quiet. Although their claim of 'everything is house made' gets a bit challenged when the three fingers arrive, looking and tasting like frozen boxed castoffs.

Soho BistroWhile some may be put off by the dated interior, freakishly orange bathrooms and general staleness of the restaurant, I celebrate it for what it does do right, making a mean Eggs Benedict, consistently.

Soho Bistro

Discussion

5 Comments

Jess / August 26, 2013 at 10:53 am
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So...one star, yet a glowing brunch review? I don't get it.

We went here for brunch a few weeks ago, and we'll never return. We were one of only two tables (each with two people), and the already-distant server forgot my partner's coffee (I just had water). After she brought our food and I politely asked for it, she looked at me like I was an impatient so-and-so. I had asked for cheese on my BLT and homefries instead of fries with my order, which I received with fries anyway, and no cheese to be found. We had to go to the prep station ourselves to get salt and pepper, because she never came back.

The food was terrible. My partner's homefries tasted like onions, yet there were no onions in the mix. Fine either way, but the "essence" of them seemed suspicious to me. The bacon was super thin and dry, like cardboard.

For the price point and the neighbourhood, I can't believe this place is still open.
angie / August 27, 2013 at 11:17 pm
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I wrote a yelp review years ago - food used to be good, but everything has gone way downhill. shocked to hear brunch went so well.
678kati / August 30, 2013 at 08:06 pm
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This place is empty during peak hours on weekends for good reason. I've heard countless horror stories about the sub-par food, awful service, and overall dated feel of the restaurant. People in this neighbourhood like to eat out, and all the other restos in the area do well except for this one. When I moved to the area friends told me specifically to avoid SOHO because of how terrible its reputation is. How this place isn't closed, I don't know. And no matter how solid an eggs benedict they may make, there is no reason customers should continue - in any capacity - to support a business which doesn't value existing/prospective clientele and their basic need for FRESH, good-tasting food.
raf / January 3, 2014 at 06:38 pm
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ordered shrimp Linguine today for lunch. it was hard. not el dente as the server insisted. when we complained were told she cannot do anything about it.
Roctop replying to a comment from raf / January 4, 2014 at 06:01 pm
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I sympathize with you RAF, but, maybe you should have told the hapless server that you forgot your credit card, and since you didn't eat the undercooked CRAP, you could do nothing about it.
The dingbat will think before saying that again to anyone. LOL.
Oh, and shouting NO TIP FOR YOU goes a long way, too.

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