The Best Soup in Toronto
The best soup in Toronto is the perfect comfort for a cold winter day. And even though the weak light of spring is finally in view, there's still plenty of time to enjoy a bowl of soup in its perfect context - when there's a damp chill in the air outside. Soup might be the most elemental meal of all, a dish so simple and nourishing that it's sometimes treated like medicine.
Some of the soups here might make the perfect starter, but the best of them are a meal in themselves - a bowl of comfort that might be complex or basic in its appeal, but always finishes with the satisfying integrity of a good short story.
Here are the 12 best places for soup in Toronto.
Try to eat at the big table at the back – a big slab of wood where you can pretend to be sociable. Frankly, though the soup will demand your attention, like the rich corn chowder I recently had, garnished with shredded blue crab and crispy shallots, served with a little dish of jewel-like hot sauce and a flaky, perfect cheese biscuit, and yes it tasted as good as it sounds. More »
Once a pillar of Jewish Spadina, United Bakers Dairy moved uptown years ago with its clientele, into this big, buzzing space where you can get a thick, sweet, rich cabbage borscht among the daily specials. Soup like this should be a right, not a choice. More »
It’s hard to believe that anything that started as a running gag on a sitcom could be this good, but it is – service is (suitably) brisk, the choice of flavours bountiful and your soup comes with a choice of fresh fruit. The Senegalese Peanut Chicken soup is thick and far spicier than you’d expect from an underground shopping mall store. More »
This tiny, cheerfully cluttered Kensington vegetarian eatery showcases some surprising flavour combinations, but its soups harmonize nicely, like the squash ginger soup where the ginger – treat of treats – doesn’t overpower, and the various root veg ingredients aren’t overpureed into submission. More »
There’s one soup on the forthrightly simple menu at One Love – the corn soup, peppery and thick, with big chunks of potato and Jamaican pumpkin and a lovely note of aromatic thyme hovering above it all and none of the starchy milkiness you might have come to expect. More »
Kensington’s vegan outpost features 8 soups on regular rotation, four pureed and four brothy and chunky, all of which can be bought in jars for take-home. The sweet potato soup is truth in advertising – sweet but not cloying, and so rich you’d think there was some dairy involved. More »
A Yorkville institution since 1963, Martha von Heczey’s mitteleuropean eatery has had the same chef for 36 years, a consistency that’s made its regulars fiercely loyal. Whatever else might be on the menu, it’s the goulash soup that will bring you back – made with veal and beef, each bowl set with gemlike droplets of oil glowing orange with paprika. Some soup is a meal – Martha’s goulash soup is almost a way of life. More »
A vast revolving menu of soups means that what you get is the luck of the draw at this College eatery that’s veggie-friendly but hardly vegetarian. On a chilly February day the potato leek soup was thick with floury potato, with a mild tang of leeks and an aftertaste of vinegar and pepper. More »
Three locations went down to two this year, which is surprising considering the lunchtime lineups and scarcity of empty tables. There are plenty of soups on their bistro-like menu, made fresh daily, and this winter has seen plenty of silky purees of root vegetables and squash, subtly seasoned. More »
Three soups appear on Kalendar’s daily menu, two regulars and a daily special, scratch-made and seasonal. The Yucatan chicken is one of the regulars, an all-season favourite that works thanks to the big hit of aromatic cilantro and the salsa-fied diced fresh tomatoes thrown in just near the end. More »
One of the diminishing remnants of Roncesvalles’ Polish heyday, Polonez has 2 daily specials in addition to the eight menu regulars, ranging from hearty beef tripe, bean and sausage and goulash soups to cold borscht and a fruit soup in season. The white borscht with sausage is smoky, with a milky broth that’s both sweet and sour, and big chunks of boiled egg hidden at the bottom like an Easter treat. More »