The Best Places to Play Billiards in Toronto
The best places to play billiards in Toronto must be of a few unwavering conditions. Evenly spaced tables is a necessity, lest you want a wayward cue to introduce you to your neighbour. Good music is a plus, as well as a great selection on tap, and the rates have to be such that you're not preoccupied with going over the hour.
But the most important factor is perhaps the most difficult to pin down; the intangible atmosphere that makes the place just feel right for billiards. Or, if that's too abstract, let's just leave it with the number of beers on tap.
Here are the best places to play billiards in Toronto.
The second floor of the Rivoli is a great billiard spot because you rarely feel the leering eyes of onlookers waiting for you to kick the curb. With 11 tables to go around and plenty of booths to keep the crowd occupied, you can usually get away with playing an extra round or two. Tables are $8/hr. More »
Andy Poolhall's tables are more-than-generously spaced, making a game of billiards here less an exercise in trying not to elbow the person at the adjacent table. The space is brighter and more colourful than most dungeon-esque pool halls, which might explain the line-ups on Saturday nights. Tables are $12/hr Thursday through Saturday, and $10/hr Tuesday and Wednesday. More »
Uh, speaking of dungeon-esque, VIP isn't exactly pansies and pastels, but the dark vibe is to be expected of a lower-level pub. Billiards is the obvious raison d'etre here, though it has a full restaurant and dining room to go along with its 17 billiard and three snooker tables. Tables are $10/hr in the evenings, and $6/hr between 1 p.m. and 5 p.m. More »
Pegasus Bar in the Village may have just four tables, but what it lacks in quantity it makes up for in Gaga abundance (only a bonus, of course, if you can still tolerate Poker Face sing-alongs). Pegasus offers its tables at a lower rate than most at $8.50/hr, and just $5.50/hr during Wednesday Pool. More »
The Raq's billiard area offers a somewhat confused version of a man cave with dark tables, hanging lamps, wooden floors, and, uh, sparkling crystal chandeliers. It works, though. Raised glass bars allow you to keep a drink nearby (without risking a table spill) and the $12/hr charge takes an average toll on the wallet. More »
Annex Billiards is a billiards club, so move east to the Brunny if you want to dance, kids. Most patrons here get that, thankfully, and make proper use of the eight billiard and 10 snooker tables. Annex Billiards has been around for decades and offers pretty good rates starting at $8/hr on weekends. More »
The Charlotte Room fulfils most stereotypes of the quintessential pool hall. It's slightly off the beaten path, stocked with a great selection of beer, and always seems to be showing the hockey game on its screens during the season. The Charlotte Room is where professionals and amateurs alike come to play, with its seven tables available for both leagues and lessons. Tables are $14/hr. More »
Chalkers has lots of space (necessary, of course, for 12 billiard tables) and a really relaxed vibe that's all too foreign south of Bloor. Eighteen beers on tap and live music only ameliorate the experience, unless, of course, it's salsa night wherein little can be redeemed. Tables at Chalkers are $14/hr. More »