harrys toronto

50-year-old Toronto diner just re-opened after closing for good

Toronto residents were devastated when news broke over the summer that Harry's Charbroiled, a Parkdale mainstay for more than 50 years, was closing down.

The beloved diner — famous for its old-school ambiance, friendly vibes and deliciously greasy classic burgers — announced in a social media post that it would be permanently closing down by October due to rent increases, unanticipated infrastructure costs and even a potential future demolition of the building.

For those still feeling the loss two months later, there's some astoundingly good news: in an unexpected turn of events, the diner has been revived by some of its original staff, and is open for business once again near King and Jameson.

The long-standing institution was bought by two former Harry's servers, as well as an investor who apparently has ties to the family that originally operated the diner in the 1960s. It now bears a new name, the Originals Dining Lounge, and a slightly different menu.

New co-owner Penny Andru says that the restaurant's original founders, Tommy Petropoulos and his brothers, will be hands-on in helping to shepherd the diner into its new form, while other old service and kitchen staff have also returned.

The new iteration is notably without Grant van Gameren, who purchased and revamped the spot in 2016 before closing it this fall.

Though fans may not be able to stand under the iconic vintage Harry's sign any longer, they can be sure that they'll get a delicious — and familiar — feed at Originals.

"It's like a dream come true," Andru says, which is certainly the way to put it for both staff and Torontonians alike. 

Lead photo by

Jesse Milns


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