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Dundas Street West

Ufficio: Italian-Style Seafood in the West End

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Ufficio’s charming nautical-inspired decor.

WITH A MENU THAT CENTRES AROUND SEAFOOD, UFFICIO IS A FRESH ADDITION TO TORONTO’S ITALIAN DINING SCENE

Torontonians love their Italian restaurants; we each have our favourite spot for Neapolitan pizzas and spaghetti Bolognese. But when it comes to coastal cuisine, we’re somewhat underserved. Enter Ufficio, a highly stylish spot that puts the focus on seafood, with pescatarian dishes ranging from romesco-sauced B.C. Saltspring mussels on a chickpea fritter to grilled octopus with caponata. The intimate restaurant sits on one of Dundas West’s hipper stretches, so don’t be surprised if you find yourself swimming in specialty cocktails, too.—Craig Moy

1214 Dundas St. west, 416-535-8888; ufficiorestaurant.com

Hot Dining: Bent Keeps Food in the Family

Dotted with smallish, neighbourhood restaurants that nonetheless draw diners from across the city—see The Black Hoof, Campagnolo and more—the Dundas West strip is now even more foodie friendly, courtesy of a top chef and his clan. Bent is the second Toronto outpost for experiencing the food of Asian-fusion master Susur Lee, offering a seafood-heavy carte of casual bites prepared with cosmopolitan flair. In keeping with the area’s inclusive vibe, the restaurant itself is run with confidence by the chef’s sons, Kai and Levi Bent-Lee; his wife, Brenda Bent-Lee, designed the nostalgia-tinged interior featuring subway tiles, church pews and a trio of antique pachinko machines.  —Craig Moy

Hot Shopping: Fanciful Frocks at Comrags

After 14 years on Queen Street West, Judy Cornish and Joyce Gunhouse have relocated their popular Comrags line to new digs on the up-and-coming Dundas Street West strip. The creative Toronto duo have been at the forefront of the city’s fashion scene for nearly three decades, thanks to their effortless mix-and-match separates. At their new flagship boutique you’ll find fun dresses like the belted Lester, the plaid Meryl or the snakeskin-inspired Faithful, and the geometric Margaret jacket.

Hot Dining: Dundas West’s Restaurant Row

Enoteca Sociale's chef Rocco Agostino (photo by Aislinn Laffan)

It may be somewhat outside of the downtown core, but there’s a lot of delicious dining action along Dundas Street West, between Bathurst and Dufferin street. This charmingly gritty strip has, over the past couple of years, seen an influx of excellent and affordable eats, including internationally known charcuterie citadel The Black Hoof and hyper-specialized sandwich shop Porchetta and Co. (825 Dundas St. W., 647-352-6611), which proudly offers only two menu items. Honest, homespun fare is the watchword here, with Campagnolo (832 Dundas St. W., 416-364-4785) offering local comfort dishes and chef Rocco Agostino of Enoteca Sociale cooking up Italian cuisine just like nonna used to make it. And, though tiny, Brockton General (1321 Dundas St. W., 647-342-6104) serves up big taste from its limited daily menu.