cafe paradise toronto

Cafe Paradise

Cafe Paradise is the second space to open up beside a wine shop as part of Paradise Theatre near Bloor and Ossington. 

In 2019, owner Moray Tawse revived the historic theatre after it was closed for 13 years.

cafe paradise torontoWhen the lockdowns hit and shows were put on pause, Tawse opened Blue Door Wine Shop beside the theatre which operated as a takeout bottle shop during this time.

Opening a cafe and restaurant as the third installment seemed to make the most sense as business progressed. That happened in early September 2022 with the introduction of Cafe Paradise.  

cafe paradise torontoThe Bloor strip between Dufferin and Ossington is dotted with takeout food joints and coffee windows. There are few options that serve more than pastries when it comes to sitting down with a laptop to work. 

Cafe Paradise offers that solution to remote workers, but has also been buzzing with friends catching up during the week and families coming in for brunch on the weekends. 

cafe paradise torontoThe room's open-concept layout is divided into two sides to separate the customers lining up for a takeout coffee from those who are sitting down for a meal. 

cafe paradise torontoTo the right of the entrance sits a fridge with grocery options like freshly made lasagne, cans of Tawse ciders and wine (from the owner's winery), and cured meats and cheeses. 

If you are planning to spend some time inside, you can expect a menu of appetizers, mains and desserts filled with comfort food made using local ingredients. 

cafe paradise torontoI started with the Roasted Red Pepper Tartare ($11) which is a vegetarian twist on the classic dish made with beef.

Diced roasted red pepper are tossed with shallots, capers, and parsley in red wine vinegar. The mixture is garnished with toasted almonds and a fresh egg yolk. 

cafe paradise torontoI enjoyed how the yolk added a sort of creaminess to the seasoned pepper mixture. The accompanying grilled sourdough bread was a nice contrast to the soft textures from the egg and vegetables. 

cafe paradise torontoCafe Paradise offers breakfast seven days a week until 11am.

The Ricotta Pancakes ($15), however, is available all day. Made with ricotta cheese, these fluffy flapjacks come as a stack of three. 

cafe paradise torontoBesides a hint of lemon, there's sweet raspberry compote that's spread on top of the pancake stack that adds to the dish's vibrant flavours. 

cafe paradise torontoSpaghetti Cacio e Pepe ($18) tosses al dente noodles in velvety pecorino butter and gets a kick from toasted black pepper and pink peppercorns.

cafe paradise torontoThe Paradise Burger ($19) features a beef patty made from half chuck and half brisket. Served on a homemade brioche bun, the burger comes with Gouda cheese, onion marmalade, and bibb lettuce. 

The beef patty is super juicy, and although it tastes classic it has fun textures from the marmalade and bibb lettuce. 

cafe paradise torontoCafe Paradise offers a mix of cider, beer and wine including full bottle options you can purchase at the wine shop next door. 

I tried the Tawse Apple Cider ($8) which is cultivated in the Vineland community of Niagara where the owner's winery is located.  

Not too fizzy or sweet, it had a sour taste with notes of apple blossom and honeysuckle. 

cafe paradise toronto

Cafe Paradise has become a hot spot for neighbourhood regulars and curious walk-ins. The entrance to the cafe can be found on the left of the building, adjacent to the wine shop and theatre. 

Photos by

Fareen Karim

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