12 great brunch destinations just outside Toronto
Brunching outside Toronto is the thing to do when visiting family in the 'burbs or making a pit stop en route to cottage country. These Southern Ontario eateries range from fancy buffets and boozy taverns to old-school diners and roadside grills. They couldn't be more diverse, and yet they're all top notch spots to get your brunch on.
Here are some of my favourite brunch spots found just outside Toronto's city limits.
Breakwater Restaurant, 15 Stavebank Road South, Mississauga
The Sunday brunch buffet at the Waterside Inn in Mississauga features a chef-manned carvery, omelette, and waffle stations, along with selections of sweet and savoury breakfast and lunch fare, antipasto and desserts.
Kravingz, 1710 Lakeshore Road West, Mississauga
This all-day brunch spot serves up a cross-cultural array of eats. Highlights include The Flip Side ($11), a take on a Filipino favourite featuring house-made longansia with garlic fried rice and a fried egg, The Islander ($12) comprising jerk corned beef hash over cheddar grits with a poached egg, and The Polski Benedict ($14), which features smoked salmon or peameal on a potato placki.
The Water Street Cooker, 2084 Old Lakeshore Road, Burlington
This Burlington restaurant does a Sunday brunch buffet where the vast spread of delectable edibles includes breakfast standards along with a stations devoted to waffles, roast meats, chilled seafood, bagels and lox, a salad bar and more.
Papa Leo's, 638 Concession Street, Hamilton
Highlights on the breakfast menu at this Hamilton eatery include the all-day biscuits ($14) available in three variations. There's the Mr. Lee loaded with double smoked bacon, back bacon, cheddar, tomato, slaw and ranch, the Mr. Hack loaded with crispy chicken, kimchi and mozzarella, and Cid's, a veggie version loaded with roasted red pepper, avocado, cheddar and mayo.
Aberdeen Tavern, 432 Aberdeen Avenue, Hamilton
Another solid brunch spot in Hamilton is this tavern where weekend brunches are a boozy affair. On the menu you'll find BBQ beef hash ($17) topped with a poached egg, and stuffed French toast ($13) paired with coffee toffee, banana jam, fresh berries and bourbon whipped cream.
Caledon Family Restaurant, 16560 Hurontario Street, Caledon
Formerly the Flapjacks Family restaurant, this casual diner on Hurontario Street in Caledon is famous for its specialty pancakes offered in nine different varieties including chocolate chip, Dutch apple, or Pigs in a Blanket-style wrapped around breakfast sausages.
Plank Resto Bar, 67 Bronte Road, Oakville
The brunch menu at this Oakville restaurant boasts tempting selections including a bourbon Benny ($12) featuring poached eggs and lime infused hollandaise over pulled pork, and chicken and waffles ($13) smothered in maple gravy.
Michael Kelly's, 93 Winchester Road West, Whitby
Head to Brooklin (Whitby) to partake in brunch served week-round at this casual family restaurant. On the menu you'll find fluffy pancakes and thick Texas-cut French Toast for just $5.95. I dare you to try to find prices like in downtown Toronto.
PORT, 1289 Wharf Street, Pickering
This restaurant in Pickering serves brunch on weekends and holiday Mondays. The menu is well stock with sweet and savoury fare and includes standouts like soufflĂŠ pancakes, huevos rancheros in a cast iron pan, buttermilk fried chicken and Halifax donair.
Mercury Diner, 165 Wellington Street East, Aurora
This roadside diner in Aurora isn't fancy, but it's brimming with retro charm. Here you'll find classic Hungry Man Breakfasts, pancakes, waffles, and all the standard eggy dishes at very fair prices.
Lazy Tulip Cafe, 29 Maple Avenue, Barrie
Breakfast is served week-round at this cozy cafe in Barrie. Notably the menu is pork-free (though turkey bacon is present) and offers ample vegetarian selections including crepes florentine, huevos rancheros and tofu scrambles.
Cottage Canoe, 453 Dunlop Street West, Barrie
This brunch spot in Barrie is the place to find local and road-tripping hockey teams. Highlights on the menu include a breakfast club sandwich ($11), mushroom, bacon and cheese omelettes ($12), and meaty three-egg breakfast ($15) with bacon, ham and sausage, home fries, toast and house-made jam.
Share your go to brunch destinations outside of Toronto in the comments.
Lead photo from PORT restaurant.
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