Cozy on down to these pubs in Toronto’s Junction

One hundred years ago, Toronto's west-end neighbourhood The Junction was a designated dry ward, with no alcohol in sight. Although the ward lost its temperance status just 15 years ago, the Dundas West strip is already home to several independent breweries, bars and pubs. For a pub crawl or private celebration, The Junction's cozy pubs serve cocktails and comfort straight up. [Image credit: iStock.com/ Silvrshootr]

The Hole in the Wall

1
2867A Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6P 1Y9

Join Junction locals for Caesars and craft beer at this hidden gem. It’s tucked away from the busy street. Plus, the stained glass windows and exposed brick of this intimate watering hole bring warmth to a snug, inviting space. Stop in for an after-work cocktail and enjoy standard pub fare and comfort food while listening to live music from west Toronto bands.

Indie Alehouse

2
2876 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6P 1Y8

Satisfy your burger and beer cravings at this upscale brewpub. This independent brewery gives beer enthusiasts the chance to experience their in-house brews as intended – with good friends and good food. Pair a pizza with your pint of Barnyard pale ale, or try a specialty beer flight. The in-house shop offers Indie Ale swag and a variety of seasonal and flagship ales to take home.

Axis Gallery Café

3
3048 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6P 1Z3

Axis Gallery & Grill is The Junction's neighbourhood favourite corner pub. This all-purpose space offers casual family-friendly dining, live entertainment and the requisite sports viewing. The large menu ranges from nachos and fish-and-chips to blackened salmon and truffled mac and cheese. You'll discover comfortable outdoor seating and daily specials. Stop in for weekend brunch or stay right through happy hour.

Gabby's

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3026 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6P 1Z3

Get comfortable in the traditional, mainstream pub ambiance with Gabby's textured wallpaper, beer memorabilia and strategically placed televisions. While everybody might not know your name, you'll know what to expect from this local, family-owned chain. Raise a pint with sports fans enjoying wings and beer, or give a nod to couples having post-date night drinks and dessert.

Shoxs Billiard Lounge

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2827 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6P 1Y6

This spacious, authentic sports pub is a low-key spot to grab a drink and watch the game, but it also holds the distinct honour of being the first establishment to serve alcohol in The Junction after the dry ban was lifted. You can flock here for weekend cocktails and traditional pub grub, or you can indulge in friendly rivalries over the pinball and pool tables or take part in trivia tournaments.

3030

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3030 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6P 1Z3

This spacious, authentic sports pub is a low-key spot to grab a drink and watch the game, but it also holds the distinct honour of being the first establishment to serve alcohol in The Junction after the dry ban was lifted. You can flock here for weekend cocktails and traditional pub grub, or you can indulge in friendly rivalries over the pinball and pool tables or take part in trivia tournaments.

The Beet

7
2968 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M6P 1Y8

The newest arrival to The Junction offers an altogether different atmosphere from its neighbours. This upscale, art deco-themed gastropub provides a sophisticated setting for cocktails and conversation. Despite the exposed kitchen and trendy industrial decor, The Passenger is a relatively quiet, intimate setting for wining and dining, and wining a bit more.

Comic book culture is on the rise, which is no doubt cause for the popularity of superhero blockbusters. In Toronto's comic stores, DC fans and Marvel newbies can get the latest issues or start a new collection. While each shop has its own unique vibe, they're all well-stocked with new and vintage titles sold by staff who are friendly, knowledgeable and enthusiastic. [Image credit: iStock.com/mediaphotos]
In this digital culture, some still prefer the warmth and ritual of playing a full-length album on vinyl. Whether it's a mint-condition original or a well-loved second-hand reissue, there's no better gift for music geeks. Boost your hi-fi IQ and pick up a stack of wax for the vinyl enthusiast on your list.
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