In the midst of my weekend shopping a couple months ago I ducked into The Ossington for some sustenance and shelter from the cold. The beautiful barista Danielle warmed me from the inside out with a Bailey's-spiked Americano. Danielle and Jimmy Mills, the DJ du jour, were contemplating the evening's set list. They had a sweet mix of hip-hop, R&B, soul, and funk lined up for their Saturday night crowd. It was the calm before the storm.
Manager Pat Colosimo was looking cool and collected behind the bar. When I commented on the 'calm before the storm' vibe he corrected me. 'This is more like when the thick black clouds gather together and start spitting rain,' he explained. Pat was juggling late booze deliveries and a last minute request to host a party for all the staff members of The Drake Hotel , The Beaconsfield , and The Kitchen . As I watched Pat take care of business in his nonchalant but caring way, I realized something. The Ossington is Ossington's next best thing.
Located in the old Gallery 61 just north of Queen on Ossington, the newish bar is appropriately dedicated to 'Keeping the Art on Ossington.' The place is staffed with a core group of the neighbourhood`s most flagrant working artists. Danielle the beautiful barista is a photographer. Jubal Brown, the barman, does weird and wonderful audiovisual art. He gets to show off once a week at his theme night called Intervention Monday. From heavy metal to Elvis, you never know what will surface at Jubal`s party.
Thursday is another safe bet for a good time at The Ossington. It's the bar's busiest night and is unofficially called The Shit Show. At The Shit Show artist friends are invited to take over the sound system and iPod DJ the night away. The resulting organized chaos feels like your best friend's neighbourhood house party without the Parcheesi or stale pretzels.
I wasn't the only one looking for shelter on that chilly Saturday night. Lawrence, one of the poverty-stricken locals, popped in for his daily Americano on the house. Danielle greeted him warmly and accepted a cigarette as payment. Lawrence comes by the bar every day for his coffee. He has been known to pay in pre-packaged chicken breasts and vintage clothes on good days, but tobacco is his usual currency. A strong pulse beats away beneath The Ossington's slick designer decor. West-enders will appreciate this pretention-free, community art hub with drinks and dancing to boot. Lawrence is only one of the many locals who call The Ossington a home away from home.
Writing by Jennifer Toole
Two Shows: Nov 20th, 7 PM & 9 PM
Howl & Roar presents Queens, a live stand-up EP recording by two of the fiercest & fastest rising stars in Canadian comedy!
Brandon Ash-Mohammed (CBC's 15 Comedians To Watch, a Now Magazine's Breakout Artist of 2018, The Ethnic Rainbow aka Canada's First & Only Show for QPOC)
Meg MacKay (Writer on Baroness Von Sketch)
With opening sets by:
Small But Mighty is a brand new stand up comedy show at The Ossington on the last Friday of every month.
About this Event:
Come see some of the countries best comedians do extended sets in an intimate environment. Get tickets quickly before this sells out!
Featuring Hisham Kelatii (Just For Laughs/CBC LOL), Tommy Marshall (Letterkenny) and Ryan Dillon (Just For Laughs/Kevin Hart LOL ne...
Join comedian Michael Balazo as he records a live stand up album over two nights at The Ossington in Toronto.
Tuesday, December 3 @ 9PM
Hosted by Jackie Pirico
With Brandon Ash-Mohammed and Jordan Foisy.
Wednesday, December 4 @ 9 PM
Hosted by Tim Gilbert
With James Hartnett and Natalie Norman
Both nights are Pay What You Can at the door.
Nick Nemeroff is a cool & strong & award-winning comedian. So far he's appeared on CONAN, Just For Laughs, CBC's Winnipeg Comedy Festival, and Comedy Central's Clusterfest. He's recording his debut comedy album December 9th and 10th at The Ossington at 8pm. Tickets are $10 online at nicknemeroff.eventbrite.com or $15 at the door.
"A burgeoning and very funny comedian" - The Hollywood Reporte...