Where to eat and drink along the pa­rade route

NOW Magazine - Pride - - Contents - By STEVEN DAVEY


CREWS/TANGO 508 Church, at Mait­land, 416-972-1662, crewsand­tan­ Drag shows down­stairs (Crews), danc­ing dykes up­stairs (Tango) and DJs ‘n’ drag kings in the Zone. M

FLASH 463 Church, at Mait­land, 416-925-8363,

flashon­ New self-de­scribed “mem­bers’ sex club and bar” in the for­mer Bigliardi’s (!) steak house from the George’s Play crew. Naked pool en­cour­aged. M

FLY 8 Glouces­ter, at Yonge, 416-925- 6222,

fly­night­ Mas­sive laser-strafed cir­cuit-party-style dance club open Fri­day and Satur­day night. Drink till 2 am, dance till 7 am.

FLY­ING BEAVER 488 Par­lia­ment, at Carl­ton, 647

347- 6567, Ev­ery night is ladies’ night at Slack Alice and Big Mama’s Boy mama Heather MacKen­zie and comic Mag­gie Cassella’s re­cently launched Cab­bage­town pub-slash-cabaret. Dirty bingo and Sun­day brunch, too.


504 Church, at Alexan­der, 416-9638251, play­ George Pratt’s or­nately dec­o­rated play­room is home to a num­ber of drag res­i­den­cies – Chris Ed­wards and

Michelle Ross both hold reg­u­lar nights – as well as karaoke Mon­days and bingo ev­ery af­ter­noon.

GOOD­HANDY’S 120 Church, at Lom­bard, 416-760- 6514, good Pan­sex­ual play­ground for T- girls, T-boys, drag kings and their ad­mir­ers anony­mously lo­cated up­stairs from Spring Rolls’ Go and next door to McVeigh’s Ir­ish pub. M

PE­GA­SUS 489B Church, at Welles­ley, 416-927-8832, pe­ga­su­ This re­laxed sec­ond­storey space fea­tures four pool ta­bles as well as a num­ber of video and pin­ball games. Reg­u­lar drink spe­cials and free pizza Fri­days.

REM­ING­TON’S 379 Yonge, at Ger­rard, 416-977-2160, rem­ing Male strip club in the heart of Yonge Street’s de­cid­edly het­ero sleaze zone. M

SLACK’S 562 Church, at Welles­ley, 416-928-2151, Once a slacker named Alice, this neigh­bourly gas­tro-pub pulls a mixed crowd for $2.50 drinks Tues­days, DJs Thurs­days through Satur­days and live mu­sic most Sun­days. New: Sun­day brunch! M

SMITH 553 Church, at Dun­don­ald, 416-926-2501, The for­mer gay bar called Straight morphs into its lat­est alias in time for Pride. Ex­pect a more re­laxed vibe, an ac­ces­si­ble com­fort food card and week­end brunch.

TAL­LU­LAH’S CABARET 12 Alexan­der, at Yonge, 416-975-8555, bud­diesin­bad­timesthe­ Where “art meets

dance cul­ture,” the cabaret space of Bud­dies in Bad Times The­atre dou­bles as a retrothemed dance club.

WISH 3 Charles E, at Yonge, 416-935- 0240, wish­into Sis­ter to nearby 7 West and the newly minted Smith, this swanky South Beach­style resto-lounge oozes so­phis­ti­ca­tion on a chic white- on-white curb­side ter­race. Week­end brunch, too.

WOODY’S 467 Church, at Mait­land, 416-972- 0887,

woodys­ Ever watched Queer As Folk? Then you’ll know what Woody’s looks like from the street. Sadly, inside is noth­ing like TV. In­stead, this ram­bling room has sev­eral stand-up bars and pool ta­bles, and hosts a weekly Best Chest contest. M

ZIPPERZ/CELL­BLOCK 72 Carl­ton, at Church, 416-921- 0066, zip­perz­cell­ Two bars in one! Sing along to Broad­way show tunes in the old-school pi­ano bar com­plete with work­ing fire­place, or dance the night away on a stain­less steel dance floor in the ad­ja­cent disco. M



710 Yonge, at St Mary, 416-975- 0000. You have to be very drunk in­deed to eat the house spe­cialty at this stu­dent-friendly Korean cantina: Tear­ful Blaz­ing Chicken, quite pos­si­bly the hottest dish in the city. More cheap beer

and shots of rotgut soju help deaden the heat. Thurs­day to Satur­day noon to 2 am, Sun­day 5 pm to 2 am.


555 Church, at Dun­don­ald, 416-324-8463. Funky lun­cheonette in the for­mer Five Alarm fea­tures in­ex­pen­sive all-day Molly Wood break­fasts, burg­ers and hot open-faced sand­wiches. Thurs­day and Fri­day 7 am to 10 pm, Satur­day 9 am to 10 pm, Sun­day 9 am to 10 pm.

CREPE IT UP 507-1/2 Church, at Welles­ley, 416-916-3558, After be­ing shut­tered for a lengthy ren­o­va­tion, this health- con­scious creperie is now twice the size, hav­ing ex­panded into the old Pita Pan space next door. The menu’s larger, too, and cur­rently in­cludes the café’s sig­na­ture crepes, freshly roasted cof­fee and house-baked Greek pas­tries like ad­dic­tively lick­able louk­oumades honey balls. Thurs­day to Sun­day 8 am till late. Un­li­censed.


1033 Bay, at Ir­win, 416-923-8784. Fancy some of the tasti­est – and prici­est!– dim sum in town in an over-the-top set­ting that’s best de­scribed as Ver­sace does Ver­sailles? Servers in French maid cos­tumes and Strauss waltzes on the sound sys­tem only add to the lux­ury. Show up early or wait in the in­evitable queue. Thurs­day and Fri­day 10 am to 4 pm, Satur­day and Sun­day 9 am to 4 pm.

DARVISH 508 Yonge, at Mait­land, 416-929-8893, darvis

hrestau­ For­merly Tem­pus, this cozy Per­sian bistro gets its rep for mezes-like starters, char-broiled ke­babs and chicken fe­s­en­joon in nutty pomegranate sauce. Thurs­day and Fri­day 11:30 am to 11 pm, Satur­day 2 to 11 pm, Sun­day noon to 10 pm.

ETHIOPIAN HOUSE 4 Ir­win, at Yonge, 416-923-5438, ethiopi­ In­cen­di­ary and mod­er­ately priced veg­gie-friendly plat­ters on a curb­side pa­tio just off the pa­rade route. Warn­ing: if you don’t like eat­ing with your

fin­gers, re­mem­ber to BYOF – bring your own fork! Thurs­day to Sun­day noon to mid­night, bar till 2 am

FABARNAK 519 Church, at Dun­don­ald, 416-355- 6781, Stylish new café in the re­cent 519 ad­di­tion with a lo­cally sourced and mostly or­ganic con­tem­po­rary card. In­cred­i­ble bang for the buck. Best food in the vil­lage? Thurs­day 7:30 am to 9 pm, lunch from 11:30 am, din­ner from 5 pm. Closed Fri­day. Brunch Satur­day and Sun­day 9 am to 3 pm, din­ner Satur­day only 5 to 9 pm. Un­li­censed.

GHAZALE ON WELLES­LEY E 78 Welles­ley E, at Church, 416-922- 4417, Up­stairs from a bath­house, this whole­some fam­ily-run Mid­dle East­ern take-away of­fers an ex­tremely in­ex­pen­sive and rel­a­tively health- con­scious card in fast-food- chain digs. Skip the mi­crowaved falafel and dig into mostly veg­gie nir­vana. Also: 661 Col­lege, at Beatrice, 416534-7441; 504 Bloor W, at Bathurst, 416-5374417. Thurs­day to Satur­day 9 am to 4 am, Sun­day 10 am to 4 am

Un­li­censed. Cash only.

GINGER ON CHURCH 546 Church, at Welles­ley, 416- 413-1053, gin­ger­cui­ Dead cheap Viet­namese and Thai-style veg­gie-friendly noo­dle dishes in a ca­sual self-serve cafe­te­ria set­ting. Also: 695

Yonge, at Charles, 416-966-2424; 252 Carl­ton, at Par­lia­ment, 416-923-7979; 521 Bloor W, at Bor­den, 416-536-3131; 212 Queen W, at Dun­can, 416-977-8778. Thurs­day 11 am to mid­night, Fri­day and Satur­day 11 am to 4 am, Sun­day 11 am to 1 am (Church). GOURMET BURGER COMPANY ON CHARLES W 9 Charles W, at Yonge, 647-351- 6408, the­gour

met­burg­ Ul­ti­mate hang­over helper: the Aussie burger, 6 ounces of aged lean, never-frozen house-ground Cana­dian beef topped with ba­con, let­tuce, tomato, Hell­man’s mayo, gooey ched­dar, grilled pineap­ple, honey-poached beets and a runny fried egg. Also: 482 Par­lia­ment, at Carl­ton, 647-344-5103. Thurs­day and Fri­day 11 am to 10 pm, Satur­day 11:30 am to 10 pm, Sun­day noon to 9 pm (Charles). Un­li­censed.

GUU 398 Church, at McGill, 416-977- 0999, guu-iza­ Like to be ver­bally abused in a for­eign lan­guage while eat­ing din­ner? Then this in­sanely popular and ex­tremely noisy Ja­panese-Korean hy­brid iza­kaya just south of the vil­lage should do the trick. Also: 559 Bloor W, at Bathurst, 647-3431101, Thurs­day 5 pm to mid­night. Fri­day to Sun­day 4 pm to mid­night.

KAISEKI-SAKURA 556 Church, at Welles­ley, 416-9231010, kaisek­ For Pride week­end, chef Daisuke Izutsu ditches his stun­ning $100-plus tast­ing menus based on 16th-cen­tury Zen tea cer­e­monies in favour of a more mod­er­ately priced iza­kaya-in­spired ta­pas card – chicken kara-age, skew­ered yak­i­tori – start­ing at four bucks a pop. Fri­day to Sun­day 11 am to 2 am.


517 Yonge, at Mait­land, 416-924-5787, kath­man­durestau­ Friendly all-you­can- eat north In­dian lunch buf­fet right in the mid­dle of the pa­rade. $11.99 Thurs­day and Fri-

day 11:30 am to 3 pm, $12.99 Satur­day noon to 3 pm. A la carte menu Thurs­day to Satur­day 5:30 to 10:30 pm, Sun­day 11:30 am to 10 pm.

MAGIC OVEN ON WELLES­LEY 6 Welles­ley W, at Yonge, 416-929-7888, magi­ Health- con­scious pizza ‘n’ pasta in a cozy room just off Yonge. Pair that gluten-free pie with a gluten-free beer! Daily 11 am to 11 pm.

MASA 15 Charles E, at Yonge, 416-920-3388, hrg88.

com. All-you- can- eat sushi for as lit­tle as $10.99 might not sound like an ap­pe­tiz­ing propo­si­tion, but this mod­er­ately priced Ja­panese spot makes ev­ery­thing to or­der. Make the mis­take of or­der­ing too much and you’ll pay ex­tra for what you didn’t fin­ish. Daily 11 am to 3 pm, 5 to 11 pm.


450 Yonge, at Col­lege, 416-934-1480. Ridicu­lously af­ford­able jerk chicken with rice ‘n’ peas, mas­sive veg­e­tar­ian roti and din­ner com­bos. Thurs­day to Satur­day 11 to 11 pm, Sun­day 11 am to 9 pm. Un­li­censed.

7 WEST CAFÉ 7 Charles W, at Yonge, 416-928-9041, 7west­ 24-hour resto-lounge with tiny street-side deck and third-floor rooftop aerie.

SIZZLERS 460 Yonge, at Col­lege, 416-966- 4714, siz­zler­ Diner-style burg­ers, French fries and Greek sal­ads on the Yonge Street strip. And they de­liver from 5 pm till clos­ing! Daily 11 am to 4 am. Un­li­censed.


637 Yonge, at Is­abella, 647- 436-9943. This sushi resto brings your sup­per to ta­ble via a 62-me­tre con­veyor belt. Grab what­ever you like, stack up the empty colour- coded plates to tally the bill once you’re done and you’re in ‘n’ out for un­der 20 bucks in less than 30 min­utes. Thurs­day to Satur­day 11:30 am to 11 pm, Sun­day 12:30 pm to 10:30 pm. Un­li­censed.

YO­GURT SPOON 573 Yonge, at Welles­ley, 416-966-1881, face­­gurt­spoon. Re­cently launched

DIY self-serve Pinkberry frozen yo­gurt clone. Thurs­day and Fri­day noon to 11 pm, Satur­day noon to mid­night, Sun­day noon to 11 pm Un



522A Yonge, at Welles­ley, 416-921-5158. No frills food- court-style Korean grilled kalbi ribs and noo­dle sides. Daily 11 am to 11 pm. Un



BARN 418 Church, at Granby, 416-593-9696, theb

arn­night­ Sweaty three-storey dance palace in an old Vic­to­rian with a sec­ond-floor chill deck. M

BISHOP AND THE BELCHER 175 Bloor E, at Church, 416-591-2352, bish­opand­ Pub grub and combo plat­ters on a wrap­around high-rise ter­race.

BLACK EA­GLE 457 Church, at Mait­land, 416- 413-1219, black

ea­gle­ Toronto’s only leather bar – un­less you count the Bovine – at­tracts the BDSM crowd for cruisy year-round bar­be­cues on the rooftop deck ev­ery Satur­day from 5 to 11 pm and Sun­day 3 to 9 pm.

BLAKE HOUSE 449 Jarvis, at Mait­land, 416-975-1867,

the­blake­ Bloor East’s Ground­hog Pub re­lo­cates and re­brands it­self on the old Red Lion’s 80-seat ter­race, the per­fect spot for Sun­day night’s $17 prime rib ‘n’ York­shire pud­ding meal deal.

BOU­TIQUE BAR 506 Church, at Mait­land, 647-705- 0006, bou­tique­ Swelle­gant mar­tini lounge with curb­side gar­den at the vil­lage’s ground zero (aka across from Woody’s).

BROWN­STONE 603 Yonge, at Glouces­ter, 416-920- 6288, brown­ Pasta, pizza ’n’ panini in an in­for­mal bistro set­ting right on the pa­rade route.

BYZAN­TIUM 499 Church, at Welles­ley, 416-922-3859, byz.

ca. The up­scale cock­tail lounge opens to the street, mak­ing it one of the vil­lage’s prime cruis­ing zones. Un­usu­ally good grub for the nabe and a gazil­lion dif­fer­ent types of mar­too­nis. M


538 Church, at Welles­ley, 416-960- 6161.

Ta­pas and san­gria next to the for­mer Zelda’s.

CARO­LINE’S 554 Par­lia­ment, at Amelia, 416-927-1593, car­o­li­nes­din­ Cab­bage­town’s Big Mamma’s Boy gets a new name and man­age­ment but keeps its health-con­scious card of lo­cally sourced mains and funky back­yard deck. Lots of gluten-free op­tions and week­end brunch, too.

CHURCHMOUSE & FIRKIN 475 Church, at Mait­land, 416-927-1735, firk­in­ Pub grub and pints at the cen­tre of the ac­tion.

COCINA LUCERO 523 Yonge, at Mait­land, 416-923- 4545, cocina Mex­i­can restau­rant with leafy pa­tio and a front-row view of the Pa­rade. If you stand on a lad­der.

FIRE ON THE EAST SIDE 6 Glouces­ter, at Yonge, 416-960-3473, fire­on­theeast­ Smart resto-lounge in the for­mer Fen­ton’s of­fers brunch Fri­day, Satur­day and Sun­day from 10 am. M

FUZION 580 Church, at Dun­don­ald, 416-944-9888, fuz

ion­ex­pe­ri­ Now that Zelda’s flown the coop for new digs on Yonge, this stylish sup­per club cum mar­tini lounge gets the crown for the Vil­lage’s most swelle­gant scene. The South Beach vibe, bot­tle ser­vice and trendy ta­pas keep the riff-raff at bay on the other side of the rail­ing. M

HAIR OF THE DOG 425 Church, at Wood, 416-964-2708, hairofthe­do­g­ Two-storey wa­ter­ing hole across from the for­mer Maple Leaf Gar­dens.


585 Church, at Charles, 416-923-7267. de­pen­dent cof­fee house of­fers al fresco all­day break­fasts and bar­be­cue all week­end from 11 am. Un­li­censed.

LO­CAL 4 4 Dun­don­ald, at Yonge, 416-915- 0113, lo­cal4re­laxs­ta­ Week­end brunch and great pa­rade sight­lines.

LO’LA MAR­TI­NIS 7 Mait­land, at Yonge, 416-920- 0946, lo­la­mar South Beach-style cock­tail lounge close to the vil­lage and just off the pa­rade route, with a lineup of over 80 mar­ti­nis.

LOLA’S COM­MIS­SARY 634 Church, at Hay­den, 416-966-3991, lo­las

com­mis­ Popular lunch and brunch spot in a ram­bling Vic­to­rian with a curb­side deck at the top of the strip. Thurs­day and Fri­day 8 am to 9 pm, Satur­day and Sun­day 10 am to 9 pm. M

O’GRADY’S 518 Church, at Mait­land, 416323-2822, For­merly Os­car’s, the bar that dared not speak its name, this stu­dent­friendly suds par­lour has a late-night kitchen serv­ing above-av­er­age burg­ers on a huge multi-level deck. M

PI-TOM’S 6A Alexan­der, at Yonge, 416-966-1813, pi-tom. com. Pad Thai on a curb­side gar­den ter­race close to Bud­dies and the pa­rade.

STATLER’S 487 Church, at Mait­land, 647-351- 0957, statler­son­ No longer BLU – or LUB, for that mat­ter – this two-storey show bar fea­tures nightly cabaret acts and an up­stairs deck with un­par­al­leled sight­lines.

SUGO 582 Church, at Dun­don­ald, 416-929-9108,

sug­o­trat­to­ No longer the im­pos­si­ble-topro­nounce Voglie, this un­ex­pect­edly pol­ished two-storey Ital­ian trat and lounge sports two pa­tios, one up front cheek-to- cheek with the Fuzion cock­tail crowd, the sec­ond a gar­gan­tuan grotto out back. M


477 Church, at Mait­land, 416-961- 0616. Generic Dan­forth-style Greek resto. Ask for ta­ble 26, the vil­lage’s peak peo­ple-watch­ing perch.

ZELDA’S LIV­ING WELL 692 Yonge, at St Mary, 416-922-2526, zel­ The liquored-up trailer trash queen re­turns to her orig­i­nal digs with a vir­tu­ally iden­ti­cal lineup of drag queens, cheap drinks and dirty bingo in an ex­tremely se­cluded back­yard.

Chef Peter McKnight serves up his pork chop with red eye gravy and mash at Wish.

Get ready for crowds at the popular Guu Iza­kaya.

Ma­sura Oga­sawara, man­ager

Iza­kaya-in­spired ta­pas card at Kaiseki-Sakura is one of the best food op­tions on Church.

Chow down 24/ 7 at 7 West Café.

Snack on the pa­tio out­side the ram­bling Vic­to­rian that houses Lola’s Com­mis­sary.

Hair of the Dog’s Michelle Chee toasts Pride. Get one of the best views of

the fes­tiv­i­ties at Statler’s.

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