The best mussels in Toronto

Native to both saltwater and freshwater habitats, mussels are truly a unique treat, whether served steamed, smoked, barbequed or fried. They're also an excellent source of selenium and B12. Paired with fresh frites, soft bread or dropped into a scrumptious seafood stew, mussels represent a culinary tradition that’s alive and well in Toronto. [Image credit:]

Le Select Bistro

432 Wellington St W, Toronto, ON M5V 1E3

This historic French bistro, known for their beef cheeks, bone marrow and “Confit de Canard,” boasts a long wine list and an intimate, finely decorated interior. Their featured seafood dish is the Atlantic mussels steamed in Maudite (a strong Québec-made ale) with smoked bacon, which is served with fresh bread. These beer mussels will leave you screaming bon appétit!

The 3 Speed

1163 Bloor St W, Toronto, ON M6H 1M9

With an exposed brick interior and bustling outdoor patio, this place is the perfect spot for a summer night supper. The mussel selection at this eclectic locale changes from day to day, but mussels are always served piping hot with a side of toasted bread. Popular flavours include: white wine, garlic, lemon and rapini, creamy coconut milk with cilantro, pickled ginger and white wine.

Whitlock's Restaurant

1961 Queen St E, Toronto, ON M4L 1H7

This Beaches spot is famous for their brunch buffet and easy-peasy outdoor patio. They serve a plate of delectable PEI mussels in your choice of sauce. Options include white wine, garlic and cream, marinara, or Thai curry lemongrass. They’re also known for their creamy tiramisu and custardy crème brûlée, perfect desserts for any day of the week.

Pure Spirits Oyster House & Grill

17 Tank House Lane, Toronto, ON M5A 3C4

Snug in the Distillery District, this upscale oyster shack offers delicious fare and a remarkable view of the historic district from their outdoor patio. Pure Spirits’ organic east coast mussels are served in saffron cream with shallot, pickled chilli and roasted bell pepper and a side of fries. Other hot dishes to check out include their humbolt squid, black cod and 12 ounce Alberta-raised rib eye. Oh, and don’t miss out on the oysters.

The Captain's Boil

476 Yonge St, Toronto, ON M4Y 1X5

The Captain’s Boil specializes in boiled Cajun- and Asian-inspired seafood. Patrons are put through a three-step process in ordering. First they’re asked to choose their catch (the restaurant offers a wide array of fresh seafood ranging from clams and crab to mussels). Next, they choose their flavour – options include Cajun pepper, lemon pepper, garlic or a mix. Finally, they state their preferred heat level – mild to spicy to “fire,” for those who like their seafood extra hot). Hot tip: meals are served “messy” in a see-through plastic bag – but don’t worry, you’ll get a disposable bib.


This chic King Street bistro has an obscenely large selection of mussel offerings, all of which are served in beer broth with a loaf of freshly baked Cantillon sourdough. One notable dish is their Devil’s Puttanesca which includes La Fin du Monde beer, tomato sauce, garlic, onion, capers, olives, parsley, oregano and anchovies. They also offer an impressive list of craft brews, spirits and wine.

Esplanade Bier Market

58 The Esplanade, Toronto, ON M5E 1A6

Located on the bustling Esplanade, The Bier Markt is many folks’ favourite stop for mussels. Whether served A La Snob (with Pernod, leeks, tomato concassé, shallots, garlic and white wine) or Porto Fino (with fresh chillies, shallots, garlic and Roma tomato sauce) all mussel orders come with a fresh-baked baguette and hand cut fries, as well as a suggested drink pairing. You can order a small or large pot depending on hunger level, and the menu offers many gluten-free options to boot.

Bourbon, gumbo and Mardi Gras beads: Many would say that New Orleans is one of the most magical places in North America. Toronto has embraced the culinary traditions of the Big Easy with a slew of NOLA-themed restaurants and watering holes. Whether serving up a bowl of crawfish or a sparkling Sazerac, the following restaurants will knock your socks off faster than you can say beignet.[Image credit:]
Trinity Bellwoods is one of Toronto’s top spots to soak in the sun all summer long, not to mention one of best beaten paths for dog owners during winter, spring and fall. Whether catching a match of tennis or lounging in the dog bowl, activities always go better with a good cup of joe. The following is a list of the best close-by cafés and coffee shops to keep you peppy all day long. [Featured image: The Tampered Press]
Absinthe is one of the most mysterious of liquors, with its origins in 18th century Switzerland. With an anise-flavour and greenish colour, Absinthe is one of the most sought after – and hard to find – alcoholic drinks on the market, popular among bohemians, academics and artists alike. The following is a list of places you can go in Toronto to dance with the green fairy. [Image credit:] 
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