The Best Fries in Toronto
The best fries in Toronto pay homage to the simple potato which was cultivated, worshiped and considered divine by the ancient Incas beginning in 750 BC. It was the belle of the ball for some 18th century French aristocrats and we all know what happened several times in Ireland because of their obsession with it and its refusal to grow.
But according to historians it wasn't until sometime in the early 19th century that anyone had even thought of cooking them in fat. Whomever that genius was (the French and Belgians both claim the honour), I thank you. Deeply.
I also thank the current crop of Toronto restaurateurs who are putting bushels of thought, care and time into creating the perfect fry. While the fast food mantel may still be hanging round its neck, the lowly spud is definitely getting a makeover and is ready for its close-up.
Here are the 11 best fries in Toronto.
For a place that specializes in everything beer, the special attention they pay to their fries is commendable. Hand cut Russett's, fried first in a combo of duck fat and beef tallow, followed by a dip in peanut oil are royally presented with both a house-made smoked tomato ketchup and mayo. With fries like these, it's no wonder they go through 20 cases of potatoes a week. More »
Jamie Kennedy's last remaining restaurant is unfortunately easy to miss but it's still famous for the celebrated chef's fries. Yukon gold spuds fried in sunflower oil and seasoned with both coarse and fine sea salt and freshly chopped thyme are soft and crispy. Pair them with a Niagara sourced but made-in-house cider vinegar mayo and you understand why the reputation is well deserved. More »
A house is only as good as its foundation so it's a good thing Poutini's is built on such strong stuff. Seasonally dependent but Russett 75% of the time, these fries are hand cut and twice fried in trans fat free oil before a little sea salt completes their transformation. Served with one of 6 different dips this boite, only open since June of '09, will thankfully be around for years to come. More »
When you name yourself after a type of food people assume a certain confidence in that realm, and with Chippy's their confidence is not misplaced. Their fries are hand cut several times daily, made fresh to order, double blanched and simply seasoned. For my money, and in a place this good, it's the fish that's the dish on the side. More »
A Little Italy stalwart, Utopia has never shied away from fries - and lots of them. Mounds of starchy goodness are fried a golden bronze and lightly seasoned with salt and pepper. Although you can substitute greens with any dish, with fries like these, that'd be a sin. More »
The 3 locations (Ossington, Queen West, Queen East) of the local BQM chain have definitely found their groove. A generous bowl of crispy on the outside-soft on the inside, hand cut Yukon Gold's with a secret seasoning (that my inside sources tell me includes basil and oregano) make their burgers almost an afterthought. More »
With all the sophistication of Le Select you wouldn't expect anything less than frites that are also worthy of attention. Using seasonally appropriate potatoes, with Chef Albert Ponzo always sourcing anew, these are cut shoestring-style, blanched, then fried in peanut oil and given a dusting of kosher salt, chervil, tarragon and flat leaf parsley. French fries indeed! More »
This deli made an instant splash on College with it's bright blue signage, but inside the fries are golden brown. Using Yukon Gold's in the summer and Russett's in the winter, they're hand cut daily to a medium thickness and double fried in trans fat free canola oil. After a sprinkling of kosher salt, they're laid to rest in a wicker basket and ready to please. More »
This College St. bistro pays close attention to its fries which is a very good thing. Slim strings of Yukon Gold's are blanched then fried in trans-fat free oil and lightly seasoned with salt, pepper and thyme and served with a wonderfully smoky chipotle aioli. It's the perfect accompaniment to candlelight and a glass of wine. More »
Part of the growing burger renaissance in Toronto, their fries have a purely Canadian pedigree. Fresh cut, skin on, medium thick and served "industrial style" in a metal tray lined with brown paper, these minimally seasoned fries have a slight resistance to the teeth before the soft innards make your mouth very happy. More »
In operation since at least 1942 and under the current lineage since 1972, this Leslieville haunt epitomizes the mantra "Keep it simple, stupid.", and it works. Extra thick cut, lovingly hand stirred in oil and presented in good old fashioned (but lined) newspaper, these fries are exactly what fish was made for. More »