Meet the owner

As childhood best friends, Fabio Bondi and Michael Sangregorio dreamed of running a restaurant together. Their dreams were finally realized when they launched Local Kitchen & Wine Bar in 2009.

Amid the antique stores at the western end of Queen Street, Local Kitchen quickly became the subject of several “best new Toronto restaurants” lists from the likes of Toronto.com, BlogTO and Toronto Life magazine, and received a glowing Globe and Mail review. “It was a bit slow for the first four days, but it’s been packed since,” Michael says, smiling.

The biggest boost was yet to come. In 2010, the intimate 29-seat eatery was tabbed as one of the 10 best new restaurants in all of Canada by enRoute, Air Canada’s in-flight magazine. “It was a very special time, experiencing the international reception of this place,” Michael says. “People arrived at Pearson airport and came straight here for dinner.”

Read the story of Local Kitchen & Wine Bar Inc

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Appears in 4 Smart Lists

Editor’s Pick
Toronto restaurants open on Boxing Day

Toronto restaurants open on Boxing Day

The Chef’s Table is not to be missed at this charming Parkdale wine bar and tapas-style eatery. Diners get a chance to mingle with the cooking team, and watch their dinner get made. The atmosphere, courtesy of the room’s collection of simple, candlelit tables, is as romantic as it is rustic, with sweet features like a ceiling-level clothesline hung with Parkdale-themed T-shirts. The wine list is extensive, and an extraordinary cocktail program rounds out the beverage offerings sweetly. Service is attentive and never cloying. Local’s lighting (hand-crafted chandeliers adorn the place) and decor (chalkboard menus, vintage photos of Toronto behind the bar) are very chill, producing almost a lounge-y vibe (without bleating dance music in the background).

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If you’re looking for a serious wine list without the pretension, this Italian kitchen and wine bar, perched at Queen and Roncesvalles Avenue, is a solid bet. Gorgeous primi and secondi dishes (think papardelle with chestnuts and boar ragu, and polenta with grana padano and beef cheeks) pervade the menu, but you can also snack on some crudi (lamb tartare, for instance) and a glass of wine. The vino list here is impressive, with 50+ bottles on offer and more than 30 reds, whites, sparklings and rosés by the glass.

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