The Best Pubs in Toronto
The best pubs in Toronto are a handful of unique locales that reflect the city's increasingly complex tastes in beer, our preference to support local talent as opposed to franchises, and the value that a sense of community can bring to the after-work-pint-and-a-bite experience.
Sure, they're the kind of places where the staff is engaging, and the menu and drink list is carefully considered, but they're also places that harken back to the origin of the word "pub" to the public houses of old that fostered a sense of community and reflected a city's culture. They're the kind of places you might feel as comfortable spending a late night as you would a thoughtful Sunday afternoon or maybe even bringing the kids on Saturday.
Here are the best pubs in Toronto.
While this place is rightfully known for the fantastic beers that are made on-site, Bellwoods and its rustic, minimal dining space has become something of cultural hub for the burgeoning Ossington Strip. Its intimate 40-seat dining space (double that when the patio's open), simple menu, and outstanding beer have redefined the city's notion of a neighbourhood bar and clearly, we're all on board. More »
Long a favourite among the city's beer fans, barVolo with its 125 different beers used to be one of a select few destinations for craft beer. It's since been joined by a slew of others but their dedication to a rotating list of beer on tap and hosting all manner of beer-related ensures that this cozy and newly renovated Yonge street staple remains a crowd pleaser. More »
You get the sense that the regulars at this hole in the wall on the Danforth would prefer no one else knew about it, but unfortunately for them The Only's laid-back vibe, outstanding beer tap curating, and casual bring-your-own-food approach has made what once may have been a best kept secret one of the city's go-to destinations for pints or even weekend brunch. More »
A Mirvish Village staple for over a generation, the Vic boast arguably the best patio in the city during the summer and a year-round dedication to all things local. They've got cask ale and an extensive beer menu along with a reasonably priced, locally-sourced menu and the upstairs space hosts live music, poetry readings and all sorts of bohemian offerings. And did I mention the patio? More »
Roncy locals will most certainly question why this fun, laid back pub isn't ranked higher. The go-to place for pre- or post-movie libations for folks headed to the Revue, The Local lives up to its name not only by supporting fiercely loyal regulars but also by serving locally sourced food, pouring locally made wine and beer, and showcasing local musical talent. More »
Seemingly the lone holdout on this year's list for traditional English pubs, the Queen and Beaver is arguably the city's best sophisticated bar experience with classic British fare all made from scratch and two bars (and two patios) pouring a broad selection of beers that might perfectly accompany a football game. More »
If you're looking for character and a place that's a little rough around the edges, this George Brown student hangout is the place for you. Thrift store furniture, big tables, reasonably-priced pub fare, a large draught list, and a decidedly laid-back vibe make this King East classic a destination for a fun evening with no pretense. More »
This Dundas West brewpub is at the heart of a booze-fueled revival currently taking place in the city's Junction neighbourhood. Along with a bustling atmosphere and a menu featuring in-house smoked delectables and wood oven pizza, Indie's on-site brewed craft beer is literally bringing the community together as they supply the area with beer and welcome in neighbours for collaborative brew days. More »
Having moved to new digs next door two years ago, House on Parliament remains a local institution. The new space is a little more modern and the larger size means you'll have less trouble getting a table, but it retains all its casual charm, reasonably priced fare, and the solid draught list that makes this a Cabbagetown classic. More »
Around for over 20 years, Rebel House is arguably the city's first gastro pub, featuring above average pub fare at reasonable prices and a draught list of local options sure to please any beer snob. However the low-key vibe and excellent terrace patio make this perennial Rosedale favourite welcoming and far from pretentious. More »
Boasting 140 single malt scotches and a handful of blends, The Caledonian is a place for serious, no nonsense drinking, as a good Scottish bar should be. There's traditional Scottish fare, specials made from local organic produce, and an intimate leafy patio that Little Italy locals know is one of the city's best kept secrets. More »
One of the city's newer pubs, Bar Hop has already established itself as a craft beer destination and a haven for those seeking a cozy pint among the 905ers and dance-music of King Street West. In addition to an-ever changing draught list, there's excellent food and frequent specials like Buck-a-shuck oysters every Tuesday. More »