Winterlicious, produced by the City of Toronto, is back bigger and better than ever in 2017, and the popular $28 dinner options are plentiful and packed with delicious menus well worth your hard-earned dollars. This year’s restaurants will have you wishing you had more time to try the special three-course prix-fixe meals they’re offering. Use this list to narrow down your selections and make your bookings!
The contemporary Indian cuisine at 259 Host sees traditional recipes prepared with new techniques and given an innovative presentation. The flavours are sublime, the presentation gorgeous and the ambience striking. On the Winterlicious menu you’ll find panir tikka, samosas and chicken kebabs among the starter options, followed by mains that include jack fruit masala (vegetarian) and lamb roganjosh, all served with naan, rice and a side dish. Dessert selections include gulab jamun, rasmalai or pista kulfi, a kind of Indian ice cream.
This fun and lively Danforth staple specializes in fresh, unpretentious and authentic Southern Italian food. The space is eclectic, warm and comfortable, a theme repeated by the staff and owners alike. Let Mama Rosa and her team wine and dine you in comfort, just like family. The Winterlicious menu includes grilled crostini with goat cheese, arugula, smoked salmon, red onion and capers; penne with prosciutto, pecorino, tomato and onion; and dessert options like apple crumble cheesecake or chocolate hazelnut caramel biscotti.
70 Down Restaurant and Lounge has an upscale yet rustic ambiance, offers live entertainment and Yorkville's only charcoal barbecue. The food is inspired by authentic Afghani cuisine with a variety of vegetarian dishes. Cocktails created by an award-winning mixologist pair perfectly with the food. For Winterlicious, their offerings include The Shah's Bolani (fresh house-made dough stuffed with potatoes and caramelized leeks); Afghan eggplant; and traditional baklava.
Enjoy a bold urban tavern experience at the new Against The Grain, located in the Corus Quay building at Cherry Beach, with a breathtaking view of Centre Island and the waterfront. The menu balances traditional tavern offerings with bold, unexpected flavours complemented with a true craft experience of rotating craft pours and hand-crafted cocktails. Winterlicious menu options include crispy Asian calamari, wild boar bacon pizza, harissa spice chicken supreme and what sounds like a real winner in the dessert department: a butter tart doughnut.
A quaint neighbourhood restaurant, Aioli Bistro is located in the heart of Cliffside Village not far from the Scarborough Bluffs. The focus here is on southern French cuisine with a wine list to match. The decor, candlelit dining room and sounds of Piaf, Brel and Aznavour complete the experience. On the Winterlicious menu you’ll find soup and salad options to start, followed by mains like braised Ontario lamb shank, confit de canard (duck), and chicken breast in a pesto sauce. Dessert choices include crème brulee with lavender and honey, and a crepe filled with caramelized apples.
The appropriately named Alleycatz gives music lovers and foodies plenty to cheer about: a menu with Mediterranean flair, a varied martini line-up and after-dinner entertainment in the form of salsa, karaoke and live bands playing ’40s dance music. On the Winterlicious menu: eggplant cannelloni with roasted spinach, ricotta and parmesan; giant wild mushroom ravioli; and dessert options like tuxedo truffle mousse cake and classic chocolate ice brownie.
Located in Leslieville, Aprile Bambina Cucina offers the following philosophy: simple, fresh and homemade. Since its opening, Aprile has been a neighbourhood favourite, attracting a loyal clientele of locals and visitors. On the Winterlicious menu you’ll find lobster and artichoke dip with flatbread, braised beef cheek pizza and mocha crème brulee.
With a seasonally changing menu, Archeo offers easygoing and hearty Italian food with a modern twist. Reasonable prices and casual, friendly service make it a popular destination. Winterlicious options include beef carpaccio with pickled mustard seeds, golden blyth aged chevre and smoked olive oil; black garlic cavatelli; and bittersweet cocao cake with tiramisu cream and balsamic caramel.
Arisu serves authentic Korean and Japanese cuisine with the goal of introducing and enriching diners' experience with the warmth and comforting nature of Korean and Japanese food. On the Winterlicious menu you’ll find a Korean style taco with shrimp; an Aberdeen Black Angus table BBQ with rice, soy bean stew and a veggie wrap; and anmitsu, a Japanese style ice cream dessert.
One of the first restaurants to bring traditional Thai cuisine and culture to Toronto over 30 years ago, Bangkok Garden is acclaimed as one of North America's premier Thai restaurants. It is one of only four Toronto restaurants to be awarded the Thai Select Premium designation from the Thai government, recognizing authenticity of food and outstanding service. The Winterlicious menu includes coconut mussel soup with a silky lemon broth, Sriracha barbecue pork, spicy shrimp pad Thai and warm white chocolate rice pudding.
Bannock’s eclectic and approachably Canadian architecture features antique pine and hemlock reclaimed from one of the Queen's wharfs that sat under the waters of Lake Ontario at York Street for over a hundred years. The restaurant’s honest approach to food is rooted in familiar, wholesome ingredients that represent Canada’s rich regional and cultural diversity, delivered in an innovative and playful way. Winterlicious options include potted matane shrimp and Fogo Island cod with friend bannock; braised chicken laksa hot pot; smothered pork shoulder with 100 km beans; and screeched sticky toffee pudding.
A throwback to the roaring Tehran of the 1970s, this family-owned Queen West Iranian eatery serves up grass-fed meats, vegetarian stews and an extensive international vodka menu. Their Winterlicious menu offerings include kashk e bademjan (roasted eggplant with whey, fried mint caramelized onion and barbari bread), kabob e koobideh (two grilled ground sirloin skewers with roasted tomato, fresh herbs, saffron basmati rice and sumach) and baklava.
Bar Buca is an Italian-style eatery where King Street begins its day over housemade pastries and perfectly prepared specialty coffee. Throughout the day, guests can enjoy executive chef Rob Gentile’s creative menu of small dishes that changes seasonally to reflect Bar Buca’s commitment to sourcing fresh, authentic ingredients. A unique cocktail list of Italian classics and an extensive wine list, including 21 selections by the glass, complete every meal. Winterlicious options include crispy pig’s head, Roman dandelion with anchovy vinaigrette and gremolata, porchetta schiacciata, and torta cioccolatino.
Overlooking College Street, Bar Italia has long been an institution in Little Italy. The contemporary decor, intimate atmosphere and classic Italian dishes make this neighbourhood gem a favourite for both fine and casual Italian dining. On the Winterlicious menu you’ll find a roasted beet salad; risotto di mare with shrimp, bay scallops, mussels and calamari in a lobster broth; and a lemon and strawberry ricotta cake with raspberry coulis.
Basso Pizzeria is a friendly, welcoming place to get your home-style Italian fix. Authentic Italian offerings include pastas, delicious entrees and pizza from their in-house wood burning pizza oven. It’s a great place to enjoy a drink at the bar, a meal with friends or an intimate dining experience. The Winterlicious menu includes a jumbo veal, beef and pork meatball simmered in house tomato ragu, house-made potato gnocchi in a gorgonzola and roasted chicken cream sauce, and deep-fried ice cream.
Batch is a warm gathering place in the heart of the city that offers good food, cold beer and friendly people. Their focus is on hand-crafted, house-made cuisine. On the Winterlicious menu you’ll find beer and potato soup with a smoked beef croquette and sauerkraut; Ontario trout with cauliflower, grapes, caper and raisin puree; and a house-made donut with lemon curd and raspberry cream
Located in the heart of Little Italy, family owned and operated Bella Vista brings together the traditions and authenticity of Italian cuisine to create a contemporary yet relaxed dining experience. Comfortable seating, soft colours and an illuminated bar with a warm glow produce an inviting atmosphere. Their Winterlicious offerings include lobster bisque soup, veal scallopini finished in either marsala or piccata sauce, and tiramisu.
Tucked away on a quiet street off Yonge Street, Brownes Bistro offers a cozy atmosphere, a varied menu, reasonable prices, service with a smile and a great selection of wines by the glass. Its Winterlicious dinner menu includes grilled calamari, slow-braised short ribs and an apple cranberry crisp with vanilla ice cream.
Located in a historic building at the corner of Yonge and Gloucester, Brownstone Bistro has been a Toronto landmark since 1995. The exposed brick walls and chandeliers create a cozy and intimate atmosphere – a perfect spot for a first date or just a night out. On the Winterlicious dinner menu you’ll find fior di latte with seasonal tomato, aged balsamic reduction and homemade pesto; mushroom agnoloti with a truffle oil butter reduction; and vanilla crème brûlée.
Newly renovated with eclectic decor, an antique baby grand piano, a martini bar and a beautiful seasonal patio, Café California has been the place to see and be seen for over 25 years. A Mediterranean-influenced menu combined with courteous and friendly service has helped make Café California a fixture of the Church-Wellesley community. The Winterlicious menu includes crab cakes with panko-crusted with spicy chili aioli, an 8 oz filet mignon with mushroom Merlot sauce, and a chocolate mousse cake.
Café La Gaffe is a great place to enjoy a French and Mediterranean meal in a casual and relaxing atmosphere. On their Winterlicious menu you’ll find escargots with garlic and Pernod butter sauce, roasted Muscovy duck confit with an orange and anise glaze, and gateau creole, a bittersweet Belgian chocolate cake baked with dark rum.
Specializing in cuisine that is continental and Mediterranean, Café Pleiade features deliciously prepared food with a French twist. The casual atmosphere, charm and quality food have pleased neighbours, patrons and friends for over 25 years. Their Winterlicious menu offerings include a crepe au poulet, grilled lamb loin with bordelaise sauce, and caramel mousse.
Canteen is a casual, fresh market café and bakery with a grab-and-go counter, located in the heart of Toronto’s entertainment district in the TIFF Bell Lightbox. All of Canteen’s chef-prepared offerings use fresh ingredients, from house-made sandwiches and breakfast butties to grilled half chickens and oven-baked pizzas. On their Winterlicious dinner menu you’ll find wild and tame mushroom barley soup with kale pistou, charred Thai beef tri-tip with coconut rice, and chocolate chia pudding with candied orange.
Canyon Creek is more than a steak house. With a variety of handcrafted dishes, from flavourful salads to uniquely seasoned aged steaks and fresh seafood, it’s a total dining experience. From the moment you sit down to your final bite, you'll be treated to a memorable meal. The Winterlicious menu here includes candied Atlantic salmon with golden beets and horseradish crème fraiche, beef short rib with veal jus, and salted dark chocolate ganache.
You can experience the essence and flavours of the Philippine Islands at Casa Manila. The menu offers authentic wholesome cuisine – a blend of Indo, Malay, Spanish, Mexican, Chinese, Polynesian and indigenous Filipino flavours. Their Winterlicious menu includes the Casa Manila salad of pickled papaya slaw with calamansi sesame dressing, crispy pork belly with garlic rice and tropical vegetables, and leche flan.
The newest Italian eatery in Yorkville, Cibo Wine Bar offers a true taste of authentic southern Italian cooking made fresh amongst patrons at an open kitchen counter. A soaring wine room boasts 2,500 bottles of vino. This bold and beautiful space is a blend of old world rustic and modern industrial chic. Their Winterlicious menu includes grilled octopus with fried capers, pollo parmigiana, and a pine nut ricotta tart with raspberries and lemon syrup.
District Oven features a combination of Middle Eastern and southern Mediterranean food that represents a delicious, authentic and innovative fusion of flavour, technique and culture, using seasonal and quality ingredients. The eclectic wine list features interesting grape varieties from local and international wine regions. For Winterlicious, their offerings include charred squid with a Turkish fig compote; duck tajin with cinnamon apricots and steamed Moroccan couscous; and phyllo stuffed with pear, walnuts and a honey date drizzle.
Five Doors North offers a great Italian-influenced menu with amazing value in a fun and relaxed atmosphere. Its inspired cocktail list features locally crafted spirits created by Robin Heywood. Chefs Vito Rizzuto and Tom Shanoff combine their years of experience to capture the essence of simplicity with flair. The Winterlicious menu includes baked goat cheese with polenta, sundried tomato paste and pesto; pork tenderloin with sweet peas and onions; and a banana chocolate chip bread pudding.
Located in the Mount Pleasant and Eglinton area, Florentia serves quality food, handmade pasta and bread, and a wide range of wines in a cozy and relaxed atmosphere with friendly service. Their Winterlicious menu includes P.E.I. mussels in a basil, white wine and tomato sauce; tender veal scaloppini in a mushroom sauce; and a classic tiramisu.
Toronto’s oldest brew pub, The Granite offers an extensive menu in a comfortable and relaxed environment and boasts a number of beautiful patios. Craft beer is brewed on-site and free parking is available. On the Winterlicious menu you’ll find mushroom and goat cheese salad, IPA braised lamb shank and French vanilla cheesecake.
Voted “Top Five Izakayas in North America” by Bon Appétit Magazine and “Best Casual Chain” by Vancouver Magazine from 2011 to 2014, Hapa continues to offer a winning combination of Japanese cuisine, fun and culture, paired with local seasonal and Ocean Wise ingredients. The Winterlicious menu includes chicken karaage, an ishiyaki hot stone rice bowl with miso pork, and matcha crème brûlée.
Inspired by the Harlem renaissance of the 1920s, Harlem celebrates the joy of Toronto’s cultural diversity and the art of entertaining with creativity, food, art, music and cocktails. Their Winterlicious menu options include catfish Lafayette, southern fried chicken and waffles, and a mini red velvet cake.
Hawker Bar serves up Southeast Asian street food in an intimate space on Ossington Avenue. In addition to the bar and seating area on the main floor, there is a beautiful upstairs space that can accommodate larger groups while still retaining a romantic ambience. Chef Alec Martin's background in Southeast Asian cuisine shines in unique dishes like his laksa. The Winterlicious menu includes BakKut Teh pork ribs in broth, pig and duck red curry, and a pandan banana fritter with vanilla red bean ice cream.
Offering an intimate dining experience, Hawthorne focuses on bringing local and sustainable fare to the table and operates as a social enterprise, training people in need of skills and employment. All profits are used to support the training program. Hearty and heartwarming is the base for all their dishes, finishing with a spark of imagination and a dash of the unexpected. The signature cocktails and wines from the carefully curated regional wine list highlight the tastes of Ontario. The Winterlicious menu includes their daily croquette poutine, jerk pork and French toast bread pudding.
A Toronto culinary landmark for nearly 20 years, The Hot House uses the freshest ingredients to serve an eclectic menu in a big, bright and airy space. For Winterlicious, their menu includes options such as house-made chicken liver pâté, Norwegian cod braised in a Spanish inspired broth, and a Nutella crème brûlée.
Il Fornello is a neighbourhood favourite, serving “Zagat Recommended” traditional Italian fare in the heart of Greektown on the Danforth. On their Winterlicious menu you’ll find options such as arancini Arborio (rice balls filled with mozzarella and bolognese sauce); chicken stuffed with asiago cheese, spinach and caramelized onions; and panna cotta with a raspberry cranberry compote.
A celebration of the Indian coffee shops of Delhi and Mumbai, Indian Street Food Co. dishes out authentic Indian cuisine using local ingredients. The welcoming space on Bayview Avenue makes for a truly enjoyable dining experience. On their Winterlicious menu you’ll find options like mutton keema sloppy joe; a choice of thali – Punjabi chicken, dhaba lamb, coastal fish and Sindhi; and warm chocolate samosa for dessert.
Nestled in the heart of Toronto’s Annex, Insomnia Restaurant & Lounge is a neighbourhood favourite known for its great food and warm service. The menu combines international comfort foods with seasonal and classic cocktails and local and imported beers and wines. Their Winterlicious menu includes a pulled pork taco, a vegan wild mushroom and lentil shepherd’s pie with roasted cauliflower and celeriac mash, and chocolate truffle cake.
The newly renovated Jaipur Grille is known for re-inventing classical Indian cuisine using a fresh new approach, incorporating familiar elements combined in a contemporary manner. The casually elegant atmosphere is well suited for large group affairs as well as intimate dinners. Options on the Winterlicious menu include charcoal grilled chicken ginger tikka, Bombay fish curry, and an Alphonso mango puree with fresh cream.
This cozy spot in the heart of Little Italy embodies a sense of romance with its decor and flavourful dishes. Sparkling chandeliers, large, gilded mirrors and intimate tables are part of why Kalendar has been continually voted as the best place for a first date and the most romantic restaurant in Toronto. On their Winterlicious menu you’ll find lobster bisque, bisteca Marco Polo (an 8 oz Black Angus steak with a peppercorn sauce) and tiramisu.
Krystos is known for their Spartan and Macedonian influenced Greek dishes including kalamari, lamb chops and, of course, a sharp and fragrant tzatziki sauce. A wine list including mellow Retsina or fragrant Moschofilero complements the Greek dishes. With a modern and inviting space featuring both a waterfall and fireplace, Krystos is suited for casual and family dining. Their Winterlicious dinner menu includes pita bread with babaganoush, hummus and tzatziki dips; pastitio, a Greek pasta bake with beef and béchamel sauce; and homemade baklava.
For almost 40 years Le Papillon has been providing diners with a casual fine dining experience. The new location in a beautiful Old Town Toronto heritage building continues this tradition. Their Winterlicious offering includes dishes like smoked salmon with a polenta cake and truffle cream sauce, duck confit with port wine and fresh pomegranate juice, and a peach and strawberry jubilee served over French vanilla ice cream.
Located in the Shops at Don Mills at the corner of Don Mills and Lawrence, Linda Modern Thai was the first Canadian restaurant to be awarded the distinction of Thai Select Premium restaurant by the Thai government for authentic Thai food, outstanding service and great atmosphere. The menu combines classical Thai flavours, homemade curries and sauces with modern techniques showcasing the best of Thai cuisine. Winterlicious menu offerings include tum yum talay (hot and sour seafood soup), golden curry with shrimp and tab tim grob (coconut milk rice with jewels).
Lisa Marie is the brick and mortar restaurant for the Fidel Gastro’s food truck located in the heart of the Fashion District. With a vibrant energy and a constantly evolving menu, this restaurant fully embodies its West Queen West roots and its street food heart and soul. On the menu are Alabama tailgaters (bacon-wrapped shaved beef tenderloin stuffed with cheddar and kimchi); house smoked ribs with vinegar slaw and cornbread; and handheld apple pie with bourbon caramel sauce.
Lisbon by Night serves up authentic Portuguese cuisine in a warm and friendly atmosphere. Whether it’s a romantic dinner for two or a function for up to 120 people, you can discover for yourself what Portugal has to offer from its centuries old culinary art. Lisbon by Night offers live entertainment on weekends. On the Winterlicious dinner menu are dishes like grilled sardines, Portuguese style marinated pork and pastel de nata, a Portuguese custard dessert
With its bright red walls and cozy interior, Mambo Lounge on the Danforth welcomes diners to Toronto’s very own slice of Cuba. Authentic cuisine and music turn a culinary experience into a truly cultural one. On the Winterlicious menu you’ll find a tropical salad with mango, pollo a la Cubana with congri and tamarind sauce, and a flan de coco for dessert.
Marigold Indian Bistro features unique Indian cuisine. Chef Dinesh Sharma is a master of tandoori cooking and is well known for his fresh, distinct flavours. The menu features savory street food and breads, tantalizing vegetable specialties and fragrant curries. The renovated interior and updated wine menu pair perfectly with Marigold’s take on modern Indian cuisine. Their Winterlicious menu includes Road Side Chaat (puffed rice with potatoes, onions, crispy noodles and chutneys); Goan seafood curry; and ras malai (Indian cheesecake served with clotted cream syrup).
Mata, a South American eatery in Parkdale, is the collaboration of four industry friends with the objective of bringing Latin food to the forefront of Toronto’s culinary scene. Sharing plates highlight unique ingredients indigenous to the Southern Hemisphere fused with Northern Hemisphere tastes. Mata is a casual, comfortable and inviting restaurant blending the simple decor of a South American Taberna with a dose of Toronto cool. Their Winterlicious menu includes caldo verde soup with cassava, chorizo and collard greens; Brazilian mac sliders; and guava and cheese empanadas with cinnamon.
Using the freshest ingredients, Matagali serves great Indian and Thai cuisine to bring diners the best of both worlds. Winterlicious menu options include vegetable samosa, chicken tikka with raita, chicken korma, lamb vindaloo and mango ice cream.
Matahari serves up a tantalizing variety of aromas and flavours of the Far East, blending Malay, Chinese and Indian cuisines. On the Winterlicious menu you’ll find green mango salad, chicken satay with Matahari peanut sauce, prawn curry, rendang beef and a pandan crepe.
Midi brings you the relaxed ambience of a typical French bistro and offers simple and tasteful dishes inspired by the south of France. Imagine the beautiful flavours and subtle aromas of classic meals prepared with care and the soft murmur of people enjoying each other's company. Their Winterlicious options include home-made French pâté, roasted duck confit with wild blueberry and port glaze, and a crème brûlée with vanilla and cardamom.
Milagro Queen is a classic neighbourhood cantina nestled in the heart of Queen West where service is always friendly and the atmosphere warm and relaxed. They serve traditional Mexican cuisine: you’ll enjoy an amazing selection of regional specialties, fresh fish ceviches, delicious tacos and tortas as well as a large selection of tequila, mezcal, cerveza and margaritas. For Winterlicious, the options include a quesadilla stuffed with queso Oaxaca and zucchini blossoms; tender beef stewed in tomato, beer and chipotle sauce, served with cactus salad; and churros with milk caramel.
Located in the heart of the Entertainment District, Milestone’s on John Street is known for its jaw-dropping interior, floor to ceiling windows and comfortable booths. Serving familiar, internationally inspired dishes, combined with award-winning service and an approachable wine list, Milestone’s is a popular neighbourhood hangout. The Winterlicious menu includes a roasted garlic Caesar salad, Cajun shrimp creole and a white chocolate cheesecake.
Located on the ground floor of Momofuku Toronto, Noodle Bar is a sister-restaurant to the restaurant of the same name in New York City. The menu features bowls of ramen, a roster of dishes like steamed buns and rice cakes, and a large format fried chicken meal. Noodle Bar is also home to a custom piece of art created by the American artist Steve Keene, called “Rust Never Sleeps.” On the Winterlicious menu you’ll find smoked chicken ramen, a shrimp spring roll with white kimchi and spiced chocolate mousse cocoa crumble.
Offering great food with a focus on local flavours and an extensive selection of craft beer and fine wines in a friendly, relaxed atmosphere, Morgans has easily become a local favourite. Their Winterlicious menu includes curried sweet potato soup with candied ginger, braised rabbit in a mustard tarragon sauce with herbed spaetzle and mini carrot cakes with maple cream cheese icing.
Moxie’s focuses on superior food quality, exceptional service and prices that represent great value for guests. The atmosphere provides an upscale casual dining experience. For Winterliciuos, they are offering options like Caesar salad, chipotle mango chicken, and a mini sticky toffee pudding with toasted almonds, caramel sauce and French vanilla ice cream.
The new Murphy's Law Pub & Kitchen is a favourite Beaches local spot dedicated to the craft experience. They have 24 craft taps, hand-crafted cocktails and made-in-pub dishes. This is a great place to experience unique, untraditional pub fare in a vibrant and fun atmosphere, with live music from Thursday to Saturday. Their Winterlicious menu offerings include masala calamari, spicy chicken bao, duck sausage paparedelle, a P.B.J. sundae and a personal chocolate cream pie.
Museum Tavern is an upscale, authentic American tavern, serving a contemporary, sophisticated take on continental comfort food classics. On their Winterlicious menu you’ll find spinach and goat cheese salad, duck buns, a buttermilk fried chicken burger and a key lime pie pot de crème.
A cozy neighbourhood restaurant in the Annex, Nord Bistro serves classic food with a modern twist, made from scratch and internationally inspired – something for everyone’s taste. The welcoming atmosphere, friendly service and cozy bar in the back make it a destination for locals and food seekers alike. The menu is complemented by local craft beer, an extensive by-the-glass wine list and custom cocktails. The Winterlicious menu includes roasted winter squash soup, pan-seared Ontario trout, and banana cream flakie with fresh cream and toasted coconut.
Nuit Social is a cozy and comfortable place with a great vibe, a beautiful stained glass bar and an intimate patio. Dishes are inspired by flavours from all over the world and are complemented by great cocktails and wines served by the glass. Their Winterlicious offerings include beet salad (drunken beets, white asparagus, smoked goat cheese and candied walnuts); braised beef cheek poutine; and a butterscotch budino with salted caramel and fresh whip cream.
Nestled in the heart of Toronto, Hotel Ocho is an industrial-chic hotel and restaurant housed in an early 1900s building, minutes away from the Art Gallery of Ontario, Chinatown and the Fashion District. The restaurant serves up a variety of contemporary continental dishes and has a lounge and espresso bar. Their Winterlicious menu includes quail egg, prosciutto and fig salad; herb crusted mahi mahi with tomato fondue on roasted squash; and a walnut tart with French vanilla ice cream.
Oliver & Bonacini Café Grill in Bayview Village is the first of O&B’s casual dining restaurants. This large urban space feels very downtown despite its North Toronto location. A gleaming open kitchen extends into the airy dining room, featuring washed tin ceilings, leather banquettes, and dramatic and distinctive light fixtures. For Winterlicious the menu offerings include Tuscan kale and gem lettuce salad with blue cheese dressing; braised beef short rib gnocchi; and a caramelized custard tart with raspberry coulis.
Located in the heart of Toronto’s Greektown, Ouzeri has been a mainstay in one of North America’s largest Greek communities. Capturing the culinary style of authentic Greek cooking, the menu offers a wonderful myriad of tastes and textures, from their famous saganaki to succulent roast lamb and fresh seafood. For Winterlicious their menu includes mydia (mussels steam in red wine), lamb rosemary pie and loukoumades (sweet distilled Greek honey fritters dashed with cinnamon).
Nestled in the heart of Toronto’s Greek community, this Danforth eatery delivers a unique fine dining take on Greek Mediterranean cuisine. The menu highlights top quality meat, fish and more. The exclusive selection of fine wines includes the best of Ontario, Greece and sites around the world. Every Friday and Saturday enjoy the live Greek band and belly dancing shows. On the Winterlicious menu: zucchini croquettes with feta, kefalograviera cheese and fresh herbs; a braised lamb shank served over orzo pasta in a tomato broth; and a honey walnut cake.
The essence of Eastern African cooking is found in the subtle balance of aromatic spices to enhance rather than overwhelm the base flavours of any dish. A sprinkle of this. An exact pinch of that. Chef Wondiy Beshir creates classic Eritrean recipes, with live entertainment from Friday to Sunday adding to the experience. The Winterlicious menu includes collard and split pea soup; beef tibsi, made with onion and awaze; and coffee cake.
The new Pogue Mahone Pub & Kitchen is located just north of the Financial District at College and Bay Streets, steps from College subway. Dedication to the craft experience is key here – with 24 craft taps, hand crafted cocktails and made-in-pub dishes. Experience unique, untraditional pub fare in a vibrant and fun atmosphere, with live music from Thursday to Saturday. The Winterlicious menu includes spicy chicken bao, forest berry rainbow trout with a maple pecan glaze, and a mini sticky toffee pudding.
Pukka offers a forward-thinking take on Indian cuisine. Featuring smart, zingy flavours, the menu is prepared by chefs hailing from different parts of India. Dishes take you on a journey through decadent tastes while maintaining a lightness that enchants the palate. On the Winterlicious menu you’ll find south Indian fried chicken with a chilli-tamarind glaze; lamb shank Xacuti with coconut, red chili and fennel seeds; and a chili chocolate torte.
Located on Lakeshore in the area of South West Etobicoke, Pulcinella Ristorante Italiano is like a trattoria you would find in Italy, with lots of rich woods and stone feature walls as well as elegant but rustic decor. The service is warm and courteous, parking is free and the best local and imported ingredients are used. All cured meats and tomato sauces are made in-house. Winterlicious menu options include the Mario salad; cinghiale, a rich ragu of farm-raised boar from Puslinch, Ontario, served with campanelli pasta; and flan with fresh fruit.
R&D is a bold and modern restaurant in the heart of Toronto’s iconic Chinatown. Buzzing with youthful energy and ’90s R&B, the space features graffitied walls, funky lighting and double-height ceilings. The eclectic menu offers a variety of modern Asian sharing plates, each with their own playful flair, as well as an extensive and spirited cocktail list. On the Winterlicious menu: Korean chicken skewers with gochujang, sesame and scallion; Macanese seafood curry with shrimp, scallops, haddock and cheong fun; and lychee panna cotta.
Real Mo-Mo’s serves a variety of new and exotic dishes in a familiar environment. The space is designed to create an atmosphere resembling that of a living room more than a restaurant, making for a comfortable, welcoming experience for diners. On the Winterlicious dinner menu you’ll find bitterballen (crispy Dutch-style meatballs served with selection of mustards); nasi goreng (Indonesian fried rice with chicken, leek, fried egg and peanut sauce); and a Rockslide Square (a chocolate and toffee brownie).
Swagger meets sociability at Reds, where the chef-inspired menu is paired with an extensive beer and wine list, not to mention the intriguing gin and cocktail menus. This is a great place to relax, unwind and enjoy some great food. The Winterlicious menu includes tuna tostada with Serrano crema, guacamole, pineapple, feta, guajillo and sesame; roasted chicken with a cremini truffleta demi-glace; and salted dark chocolate mousse.
Besides the ground floor restaurant, Safari boasts a second floor billiard room and lounge, and North Toronto’s largest heated outdoor patio. It serves a unique blend of great food, wine and speciality beers in a warm and inviting environment. Everything is made in-house using the freshest available local ingredients. Winterlicious menu options include grilled steak crostinis with braised mushrooms, grilled onion and a red wine-peppercorn pan jus; grilled Ontario chicken breast medallions; and a white chocolate and raspberry butter tart.
Sambucas on Church serves up delicious, quality Italian cuisine that has earned them a loyal following. On their Winterlicious dinner menu you’ll find roasted cinnamon pears on garlic crostini, Arborio rice risotto with black tiger shrimp and scallops in a saffron broth, and Grand Marnier chocolate cheesecake.
Newly renovated and with a completely new menu, Santamonica offers a truly enjoyable dining experience. The fresh market cuisine focuses on contemporary Italian and Mediterranean dishes. For Winterlicious they have options like crispy pita with artichoke spread, roasted pepper and melted brie; pappardelle with wild boar ragout; and apricot and date bread pudding with caramel sauce.
A neighbourhood favourite since 1995, Sarah’s Café & Bar on the Danforth features bistro-inspired Canadian classic cuisine and chef-crafted daily specials, including vegetarian fare. Their sommelier-designed wine list spans the world’s quality wine regions with 15 affordable selections by the glass and more by the bottle, while 13 craft brews are on tap along with several premium bottled beers. On the Winterlicious menu: chicken liver pâté, duck confit with butternut squash risotto, and apple crumble with whipped cream.
Inspired by Italian passion and generosity, Scaddabush is a place to gather with friends and family for delicious food and good times. On their Winterlicious menu you’ll find options like mushroom and sherry soup; crusted snapper; and a chocolate jar cake with homemade sponge toffee, vanilla whipped cream, candied walnuts and sea salt.
Recently relocated to College Street, Southern Accent continues to charm with southern hospitality and the crowd-pleasing tastes of New Orleans. This is a great place to go for that spicy blend of Cajun, Creole and soul cuisine. On the Winterlicious menu you’ll find chicken and Andouille gumbo, Lafayette catfish and crayfish étouffée, Canal Street jambalaya and N’awlins bread pudding.
At Spacco you’ll enjoy plenty of fresh pasta dishes and gourmet Italian style pizza baked in a wood burning oven, all in an energetic, upscale atmosphere. The Winterlicious menu includes goat cheese salad with spinach, arugula, roasted mushrooms and aged balsamic; veal scallopini in a roasted garlic white wine sauce; and homemade tiramisu.
With a goal to educate, entertain and gratify with libations from the bar and fare from the kitchen, SpeakEasy 21 is a resto-bar serving contemporary bistro cuisine with a large selection of custom crafted cocktails and spirits. Their hand-made cocktails with specially sourced fresh ingredients are paired with a menu designed to be enjoyed in unison. On the Winterlicious menu: beet and mandarin winter green salad, sweet potato mac n cheese and a salted caramel ginger snap sundae.
The Spice Route’s mixture of eclectic Asian decor, mesmerizing music and distinctive cuisine is the soul of this spot. The decor is relaxing and indulgent, while the service is meticulous yet unpretentious. On the Winterlicious menu you’ll find pork pot stickers with chili vinegar, Mongolian sirloin beef, and spiced chocolate molten cake with cardamom cream and a coconut macaroon.
Run by a husband and wife team, Tabülè offers a cozy ambience with refined yet comforting takes on the exotic flavours of the Middle East, all in the heart of midtown Toronto. The freshest quality ingredients enhance traditional dishes for a menu bursting with robust flavours to delight the senses. The drink menu includes a variety of wine, exotic martinis, fresh juices and loose-leaf teas. For Winterlicious, options include flash fried cauliflower finished with touch a tahini, charcoal broiled chicken skewers, and knaffa asta, an angel hair filo layered with custard and topped with rose water syrup.
The Abbot lives up the to the idea that a local pub should be your home away from home. In keeping with the gastropub tradition, The Abbot offers a selection of homemade recipes that are crafted in-house daily. From oven-baked bread, house cured meats and fresh ground beef, to desserts, pickles and pies, The Abbot presents a taste of classic recipes that have been handed down over the generations. On the Winterlicious menu: roasted butternut squash bisque, fennel and mustard crusted roast pork, and sticky toffee pudding.
The Badali Bar and Cucina, formerly known as Joe Badali’s, offers fine Italian fare, sustainable seafood, in-house made desserts and true Italian hospitality. Hand-crafted Italian inspired cocktails and an all Italian wine list complete the experience. On the Winterlicious menu you’ll find house-made duck prosciutto arancina with asiago cheese and fig jam; osso bucco Milanese with saffron risotto; and chocolate panna cotta with a chili chocolate sauce.
The Big Ragu serves authentic Italian cuisine in a quaint, friendly and cozy atmosphere. Pastas, salads and entrees are fresh, homemade and generously portioned, paired with a wide selection of wines and cocktails. For Winterlicious, the menu includes oven-roasted butternut squash, rack of lamb and chocolate raspberry tartufo.
The Blake House is one of the last standing heritage structures in Toronto mixing 19th century Victorian and Second Empire architecture. Within their storied walls they serve up contemporary comfort cuisine for an upscale yet casual dining experience, paired nicely with local and international wines and an extensive bar list. On the Winterlicious menu you’ll find crab cake stuffed with mushrooms, merlot braised lamb shank and Irish cream chocolate mousse.
An English-style gastro pub, The Borough specializes in local, sustainable food, beer and wine. The restaurant partners with local farmers and butchers, allowing the chef to create a seasonally inspired menu featuring many Ontario-grown foods that pair well with drinks from local brewers and wineries. Their Winterlicious menu includes mini Yorkshire puddings stuffed with Paradise Farms sirloin, The Famous Borough Burger and sticky toffee pudding.
Who wouldn’t love to have a group of eager young chefs cooking for them? This is exactly what you get at The Chefs’ House at George Brown College, a student-focused learning restaurant delivering a relaxed urban dining experience with a globally influenced menu. For Winterlicious they are serving up options such as steamed mussels in a coconut curry broth with chipped chorizo nuggets, pan-seared pork medallions with peppered pear rosti and double-smoked bacon, and maple butter pound cake with chocolate gelato and raisin rum caramel.
The Craft Brasserie and Grille specializes in upscale bar food, delicious, shareable dishes and craft beer. Ethnic flavours deriving from Filipino, Spanish and Asian-Fusion cuisine are expertly paired with the many diverse flavours of their craft beers. On the Winterlicious dinner menu you’ll find Parmesan truffle fries, seafood paella, mushroom leek pappardelle, and a white chocolate lemon cheesecake with lavender fondant.
The menu at The Host is the result of traditional recipes prepared with new techniques and given an innovative presentation. Established in 1996, The Host delivers exciting flavours, fresh ingredients, and exceptional service. They are offering a wide range of choices for Winterlicious, including samosas, Mulligatawny soup, Bengal fish curry, lamb roganjosh and saffron flavoured homemade ice cream.
Located in the historic landmark building at 5 St. Joseph Street, The Wickson Social is a great local restaurant and bar. The old warehouse has been transformed into a welcoming and convivial gathering place offering a fantastic selection of local craft beers, authentic wines and thoughtful cocktails, backed up by a seasonal, contemporary menu. For Winterlicious, the offerings include warm winter vegetable salad with roasted and raw roots and creamy goat’s cheese dressing; pork ragu with pappardelle; and a flourless chocolate cake with dulce de leche and sponge toffee.
Trio is a place to lose yourself in a sophisticated environment of lounge-style music, sleek modern furnishings and urban style decor. Located in the cosmopolitan district of Toronto’s North York, Trio offers an opportunity to relax and enjoy great food and select international wines. On the Winterlicious menu: a wild mushroom and asparagus tart, grilled sirloin steak in a white wine reduction, and the Trio Special, three mini eclairs in coffee, vanilla and cacao flavours.
UFFICIO, serves up a pescatarian menu with a decidedly Italian twist. The 36-seat space is both hip and comfortable, with a bustling open kitchen where fresh seafood and pasta are transformed into mouthwatering meals. Add an extensive wine selection and cocktail list and you have the ingredients for an unforgettable dining experience. On the Winterlicious menu you’ll find crudo of albacore tuna, salsa verde, pickled honey mushrooms and sunchoke chips; Lake Erie white bass with cauliflower and celeriac puree; and Torta Della Nonna, a lemon tart with pine nuts.
Union Social Eatery brings together the great food of a premium restaurant kitchen and the comfort of a neighbourhood gathering spot – a perfect union for your next night out. An extensive list of cocktails, draught beer and wines completes the experience. For Winterlicious, their menu options include short ribs with house-made biscuits, grilled Dijon salmon, and Lindt chocolate crème brulee with almond biscotti.
A modern Italian ristorante in the heart of downtown Toronto with an award-winning patio, Vagabondo features authentic Italian dishes, an extensive wine list and hand-crafted cocktails all served up in a casual, trendy atmosphere. On the Winterlicious menu you’ll find bruschetta with marinated tomatoes and feta cheese, gnocchi in a homemade pesto cream sauce, and tiramisu.
Located in the heart of downtown Toronto in beautiful Baldwin Village, Valens serves a wide variety of fusion foods including salads, seafood, aged steaks, grilled sandwiches and homemade desserts in a warm atmosphere. For Winterlicious they are offering options such as wild mushrooms on garlic crostini, veal osso buco, and warm white chocolate lava cake with vanilla ice cream.
Specializing in Italian cuisine and friendly service, Vannis is a casual family restaurant located on St. Clair Avenue West. For Winterlicious, the menu includes stracciatella soup, baby arugula salad, chicken Florentine, mushroom risotto, a selection of pizzas and a classic homemade tiramisu.
Via Mercanti is a small family-operated pizzeria and restaurant hidden away on Elm Street, with a wonderful 60-seat outdoor patio in summer and a large dining room in the historic part of the YWCA building. Highly passionate about good food and quality ingredients, Via Mercanti has been ranked on Joanne Kates' top 100 list, won Best in Chow's hit show “Pizza Wars” and been featured on “You Gotta Eat Here!” On the Winterlicious menu: Caprese salad, slow-roasted beef with potato puree, risotto with radicchio and pancetta, and a dark chocolate almond cake.
Located on College Street in the heart of Little Italy, Vivoli offers a variety of classic Italian food as well as authentic Italian pizzas from their wood burning pizza oven. Choose from a wide selection of wines and martinis to complement your meal in this casual, chic, urban environment. On the Winterlicious menu you’ll find a classic Caesar salad, linguini Genovese (chicken in a fresh basil pesto cream sauce) and chocolate truffle.
Yuzunohana features Japanese cuisine made with the freshest ingredients, authentically prepared and artfully presented in comfortable contemporary surroundings. For Winterlicious they will offer dishes such as leek and gobo (burdock root) soup, Alaskan king salmon marinated in saikyo miso, and a sake cheesecake.
Nestled away in St. Clair West Village sits one of Toronto’s most popular destination restaurants. La Bruschetta has been serving authentic, traditional Italian cuisine based on family recipes to its customers for over 20 years. On its Winterlicious menu you’ll find classic Caprese salad, fusilli alla vodka (using house-made pasta) and a profiterole.