The Best New Restaurants in Toronto, 2011
The best new restaurants to open in Toronto in 2011 are a varied lot to be sure with
everything from tacos to Thai, 'cue to Guu making an appearance. Since timing is everything in these kinds of end-of-year things, some places made it in by the skin of their teeth to qualify for this year's list (I'm lookin' at you Grand Electric & Yours Truly).
Low-key appears to still be the flavour of the moment as diners flock en masse to neighbourhood joints offering up tasty grub at a reasonable price-point in relaxed digs. Jen Agg's ears must be burning with the constant mention several of these restaurants as the next Black Hoof. Time will tell, but for now we've got some eating to do.
Here are the best new restaurants to open in Toronto in 2011.
- The best new brunch restaurants in Toronto, 2011
- The best new cheap eats in Toronto, 2011
- The best new restaurants in Toronto, 2010
- The best new restaurants in Toronto, 2009
The second coming of the Black Hoof? Unlikely and irrelevant despite the pata negra pedigree. Ex-hoofers Colin Tooke and Ian McGrenaghan offer up mouth-watering tacos, ceviche, pozole and menudo in an unpretentious space which will more than double in size with the opening of the patio this summer. Throw in a sick bourbon collection and some Enter the Wu-Tang and you've got a most welcome addition to Parkdale. More »
Jeff and Nuit Regular’s west-end temple to Thai was slammed from day one thanks to word-of-mouth-and-tweet buzz from folks who braved the trek east to Regent Park and sampled their cuisine at Sukhothai. Much of the card made the trip west and along with outstanding additions like squash fritters and a liquor license, Khao San Road offers an authentic taste of Thailand in a room about as west-end Toronto as it gets. More »
Ten years ago folks bemoaned the lack of serious barbecue in this town but with the opening of the Stockyards and now Barque, the city is swimming in smoke and sauce and Barque in Roncesvalles is the latest welcome addition pit stop on the quickly coalescing barbecue trail. With excellent offerings such as brisket poutine, succulent smoked chicken, and a variety of beef and pork on offer it’s best to get a sampler platter and spare yourself the agony of deciding which menu items to give the axe. More »
A bit of lowcountry in little Italy, Acadia’s Chef Matt Blondin pays homage to his East-coast diasporas’ roots with a menu that tips a hat toward tradition while being brilliantly inventive at the same time. The diver scallop and chicken skin appetizer alone is worth the visit. Mix in some of Scott Selland’s excellent cocktail spinning and front of the house charm for good measure and I’d kiss Acadia’s grits any day! More »
Transforming an annex-area Burger King took longer than expected but it appears to have been worth the wait with the second outpost of the popular Vancouver izakaya chain receiving rave reviews for it’s inventive take on Japanese inspired tapas. Classics like takoyaki and ramen share space with Kimchi Udon and Fried Brie on the pub’s extensive and extremely tasty menu. More »
From the people who brought you the Comrade, Leslieville’s Goods & Provisions offers a short card of comfort food in some seriously charming digs. Perfectly grilled steak, duck-fat frites and Korean-inspired tacos share center stage in a lovely speak easy inspired space. Considering their other place is renowned for its extensive list of Belgian brews, the compact wine list at G & P offers an excellent selection of local and imported vino at a decent price. More »
New kid on the Ossington block, this dinner and cocktail spot is home to emerging Chef Jeff Claudio whose pedigree is certainly impressive, having deputized at Noma in Copenhagen and Per Se in NYC among others. A nightly meat/veg prix fixe gives way at 10 pm to snacks and bevies for the late-night crowd looking to line their bellies before heading out for some shenanigans in the area. More »
No Splendido-lite. Co-owners Carlo Catallo and Victor Barry transformed the former Oddfellows space, mashing up southern snack bar with lumber yard for a tasty addition to West Queen West. Fried chicken thigh and Cajun catfish sandwiches, frites served in a low-ball glass and an impressive selection of bourbon go a long way to justifying the line-ups for yet another “next-black-hoof” at the hipper end of Queen St. More »
Though the tiny song bird isn’t actually on the menu, this tiny, 26 seater no-reservations resto in Bloordale does offer up some un-fussy, locally sourced, French and Italian influenced cuisine. Chef-owners Damon Clements and Daniel Usher cut their teeth on Lower Ossington (Delux and Pizzeria Libretto respectively) and offer a seasonally rotating card that has people flocking to this formerly unfashionable stretch of Bloor. More »