The best restaurants on Toronto's Ossington Avenue

Hunger can lead to rash decisions. Instead of settling for the first fast food place you see, try one of these buzz-worthy restaurants instead. The trendy Ossington strip has a growing reputation for superior food that attracts an in-the-know clientele.

Pizzeria Libretto

1
221 Ossington Ave, Toronto, ON M6J 2Z8

You may be wondering what’s so special about pizza, but all it takes is one bite to realize these are no ordinary pies. They use local ingredients to make Neapolitan pizza the way its originators intended – thin crust and flash baked in a wood-fired oven. There’s little or no waiting because the pizzas are ready in 90 seconds. Prix fixe lunch is available during the week.

Foxley

2
207 Ossington Ave, Toronto, ON M6J 2Z8

The food here is so delectable, mere mention of the place sets the taste buds to trembling. The cuisine is part Asian fusion and part tapas, with dishes like lamb dumplings, braised ribs, scallop ceviche, flank steak and kale salad to satisfy your hunger. When the weather’s nicer, eat outside on the cozy back patio, which feels like its own little world. Reservations aren’t needed, but a close look at the extensive and well-curated wine list is recommended.

Soos

3
94 Ossington Ave, Toronto, ON M6J 2Z4

You have to admit, when watching The Amazing Race; part of you secretly wants to try the street food that makes up at least one challenge during every leg. You won’t be offered crickets on a stick here, but you will get a chance to see what Malaysian street food is all about. They use hormone-free meat to make dishes like nyonya oxtail braise, beef short rib sliders and seared duck breast.

Rua Vang Golden Turtle Restaurant

4
125 Ossington Ave, Toronto, ON M6J 2Z2

The name alone twigs your curiosity, but it’s the quality of food that’ll keep you coming back for more. This Vietnamese restaurant does pho like nobody’s business, serving more than a dozen different varieties in three sizes. The broth is super tasty and you can make it as spicy as you want, with the pho ga bowl being a popular choice. For non-pho addicts, the options are many.

Mamakas

5
80 Ossington Ave, Toronto, ON M6J 2Y7

Greek food is like skiing: easy to take up, difficult to master. Luckily, there’s a team of pros in the kitchen at Mamakas that makes Greek food any yiayia would be proud of. There are traditional offerings like olives, lamb chops and Horiatiki salad, complemented by less common choices. One of the best options is their whole grilled fish which varies according to the catch. It’s a combination of the past, present and future that’s impossible to resist.

Bazara Asian Cuisine

6
188 Ossington Ave, Toronto, ON M6J 2Z7

Each dish looks like a little piece of art and you know any place that puts this much effort into presentation will put it into the taste as well. Bazara favours all-natural ingredients for the best taste possible, with options like seaweed wrapped ravioli, mango rice paper rolls, steamed shrimp and scallops in lotus leaves and sushi pizza. Prices are also quite reasonable, so there’s no reason why you can’t taste test a handful of dishes.

Böehmer

7
93 Ossington Ave, Toronto, ON M6J 2Z2

Leave your expectations at the door and give your taste buds free reign. It’s best not to look at the menu beforehand – just show up and be surprised. Böehmer is the kind of place where you need to eat at least once in your life to say you’ve expanded your culinary appetite, with menu offerings that forge their own path. The food’s eclectic and ambitious and will leave a lasting impression.

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