• eat
  • shop
  • see
  • go
  • stay
  • daytrip
  • map
  • calendar
  • transport
  • weather
  • currency
  • tofrom


Caplansky’s Bloor-Yorkville Location


View More: http://sweetheartempire.pass.us/caplanskys

The stylish facade of the Bloor-Yorkville Caplansky’s. Photo by Kate O’Conner.

Until Caplansky’s  came along, it was tough to find quality smoked meat and authentic Jewish deli fare downtown. Now Caplansky’s is going national with a franchise concept, starting with their location in Bloor-Yorkville. Hungry patrons can grab a beef brisket sandwich or the new turkey ruebenesque paired with the tasty house-made mustard and crisp pickles to go, or stay and enjoy a pint while taking in the cheeky decor like floor tiles with messages like “Pick up a check once in a while,” and pickle-themed wallpaper.

3 Barbecue Hotspots


Big barbecue flavour at Big Crow. Photo by Connie Tsang.

  1. Tucked in an alleyway behind Rose & Sons, you’ll find Big Crow. Family-style seating with long benches making makes it easy to share a number of dishes—and you’ll want to try as much as possible. Be sure to wash it all down with a refreshing Dupont Sour.
  2. For Southern style barbecue look no farther than Queen Street joint Smoque N’ Bones. Pulled pork, ribs galore, chicken, sausages and sandwiches plus a standout coleslaw. An impressive selection of bourbons lines the wall behind the bar.
  3. Wenona Lodge (1069 Bloor Street W, Toronto; 647-344-6444) recreates that cottage feeling in the city. There’s lots of comfort food to be had, including a hearty selection of meats and sandwiches, all served up with house-made chips infused with smoky flavour—plus a great selection of Canadian craft beer!

Hot Dining

By Janice Hudson

KITCHEN ALCHEMYGio-Tea--024---Version-2-resized

Downtown at Gio on Market Street, Chef Bee Choo Chair gives traditional recipes an inventive new twist. Her version of poutine includes fried polenta fingers topped with duck confit, red wine jus, and blue “Cheez Whiz.” Open for lunch and dinner, Gio has a curated wine list and a creative mixed drinks menu.


Photo: Timothy Richard

Photo: Timothy Richard

As the weather turns chillier, cozy up in a booth at Stayner’s Wharf Pub and Grill. The menu here has plenty to keep you warm, including steak and chicken dishes, plus local fare like pan-fried haddock and curry-crusted salmon. Most evenings offer live music, too.



There’s a new executive chef in the kitchen at Seasons by Atlantica on Robie Street. Chef Daniel Orovec is passionate about showcasing local ingredients on his new menu, which includes seafood favourites such as bacon-wrapped scallops and seafood linguini with saffron cream. “It’s about supporting local food and letting good ingredients shine on their own,” he says.


Photo: NS Tourism Agency

Photo: NS Tourism Agency

On Lower Water Street, McKelvie’s takes fresh seafood to new creative heights. Try the maple-roasted bacon wrapped scallops or the lobster poutine with hand-cut fries. The crunchy haddock is another top seller, with creamy BBQ sauce and garlic mashed potatoes.

SLICE OF LIFEClam-Pie2-resized

Specializing in thin crust, New York Italian-style pizza for over 20 years, Salvatore’s Pizzaiolo in The Hydrostone has doubled its seating capacity thanks to a recent renovation. The restaurant kept its signature Italian-style décor and stucco walls, but it now has a sleek bar area serving local brews on tap.

GOURMET TO GOThe-Canteen-resized

With chef Renée Lavallée at the helm, The Canteen on Ochterloney Street in Dartmouth serves up a flavourful array of sandwiches, salads, and take-out meals featuring fresh local ingredients. The bread is baked on-site, including gluten-free options.

THE SPICE ROUTEFOOD_Wonton_Soup-resized

Specializing in Chinese cuisine since 1984, Great Wall, located downtown on Bedford Row, boasts robust Cantonese and Szechuan dishes such as Kung Po shrimp and Singapore vermicelli. Owner Patrick Wong also offers tasty Dim Sum on Sundays from 11:30am to 3pm.

May Hot Dining

By Janice Hudson



•A favourite place for downtown coffee aficionados, The Trident on Hollis Street roasts its beans on-site, offering an array of hot drinks, loose tea and pastries. After you recharge, browse the eclectic mix of used books.

•Veteran coffeehouse Java Blend on North Street has been in the bean business since 1938 and roasts all of its coffee on-site. Unique coffee memorabilia and an old (but still working) coffee roaster add to the cozy, laid-back feel of the café.

•In Dartmouth, Two if by Sea Café is the go-to spot for coffee fiends, offering not just fabulous coffee but also indulgent fresh-baked croissants that can stand in for a meal. The café has a second location on the Halifax side in the Historic Properties near the Halifax Transit ferry terminal.



Offering French-inspired cuisine, Bistro le Coq on Argyle Street has the atmosphere of a Parisian bistro, with an ornate tin ceiling, elegant artwork and plush booths. Service en français is always available. Choose from tasty French classics like steak frites and glazed duck. There’s an extensive list of wines, with many served by the glass (including champagne). For dessert, try the layered Nutella crêpe cake.



The brainchild of award-winning Chef Renée Lavallée, The Canteen on Ochterloney Street in Dartmouth serves up flavourful sandwiches, salads and take-out dinners. Lavallée changes the menu daily to highlight fresh local ingredients. Breadmaster Jessica Best bakes all the bread on-site, including tasty gluten-free options.


Photo: Janice Hudson

Photo: Janice Hudson

A newcomer on Halifax’s vibrant diner scene, Robie Street Station has become the it-spot in Central Halifax for all-day breakfast and comfort food with a global twist. Colourful murals and local artwork decorate the charming eatery, located near the Halifax Common on Robie Street. Hit up Robie Street Express next door for a coffee and fresh baked-goods to go.



A stylish yet intimate space, Obladee on Barrington Street offers a range of stellar, hand-chosen wines, including special local vintages. Try the monthly cellar wine special: staff uncork top red and white vintages for customers to enjoy by the glass. Pair your choice with charcuterie from the local artisanal producers.

Hot Dining: 3 Top Toronto Sandwich Spots

The Caprese Baguette at Sliced

Seeking sustenance in a hurry? Head to one of these excellent eateries serving substantial gourmet sandwiches.

1 As one might expect, Banh Mi Boys specializes in the Vietnamese bahn mi—a sub-like sandwich with fixings like pork and lemongrass, or braised beef cheek. Diners can also get stuffed on steamed baos, Korean tacos and even kimchi fries. 392 Queen Street West, 416-363-0588. See map »

2 When Torontonians just have to have a nice bit of pork shoulder wrapped in proscuitto wrapped in pork belly on a fresh sourdough bun, they visit Porchetta & Co. Feel guilty about all that meat? Make it “healthier” by adding rapini. 825 Dundas St. W., 647-352-6611. See map »

3 Sandwich traditionalists have a new fave in Sliced, which features the likes of peanut butter and jam, ham and swiss, a Caprese salad sammie, and even a decadent lobster BLT. 650 Bay St., 416-971-4000. See map »

Hot Dining: Delicious (and Affordable!) Brown Bag Lunch

On the go? Try the "Brown Bag Lunch" from The Whalesbone.

Lunchtime got a whole lot more interesting when The Whalesbone Sustainable Oyster & Fish Supply started doing its take-away “Brown Bag Lunch.” As the retail shop to its fine dining sister restaurant, The Whalesbone Oyster House, this is the place to go for a hearty fish sandwich. There are three types on offer (selection changes by availability), but we love the smoked tuna with capers and tangy sauce. Hot tip: Tuesdays are “Chowdah Chewsdays,” so you can get a free cup of chowder when you buy a large sandwich. Sandwiches start at $8, lunch is offered Tuesday to Saturday, 11am to 2pm. 504-A Kent St., 613-231-3474.

Staff Picks: 10 Shops for Great Sandwiches

Grilled cheese sandwiches are the specialty at Cheesewerks

The good old-fashioned sandwich is one of our most malleable meal staples, ranging from grab-and-go combos of bread and cold cuts to multi-layered gourmet offerings. Our favourite sandwich shops showcase the many flavours and textures one can fit on a bun or between two slices of bread. (more…)

Hot Dining: Hand-Held Vietnamese

Image courtesy of Michael Kennedy

Trendy Whyte Avenue has just gotten trendier, thanks to V Sandwiches. The traditional Vietnamese sub gets a bit of a makeover here – a decidedly delicious one – and comes out more like a vermicelli bowl on a toasted French baguette. Eight different varieties will test your decision-making skills, but the Sate Beef Sub seems to be what everyone keeps coming back for. The secret just might be in the sauce: a slightly spicy lemongrass sauce takes the place of the more traditional peanut sauce, with delectable results. Salad and spring rolls, soups and wraps are also available.

Hot Dining: Editor’s Pick: Top 5 Scenes to Savour

Hu's Asian Bistro. Photo by Ian McCausland.

Some of the city’s most popular attractions are also home to popular eats. Enjoy these local food favourites while being entertained or taking in the jaw-dropping scenery:

Buffalo Stone Cafe at FortWhyte Alive serves dishes made with fresh, local fare. After hiking the trails, admiring the buffalo and exploring the interpretive centre, sit down for a hearty bison sandwich and fresh salad made with ingredients grown on-site at Fort Whyte Farms. 1961 McCreary Rd, 989-8370.

With a bird’s eye view of Shaw Park, home of the Goldeyes baseball team, catch gameday action with pan-asian cuisine at Hu’s Asian Bistro (pictured). Crispy battered chicken coated in sticky honey soy sauce and tossed with veggies is a must try. 1 Portage Ave East, 982-7426.

Sink your teeth into a nip, a local burger legend, at Salisbury House on the Esplanade Riel pedestrian bridge overlooking the rushing Red River. Inside this bustling diner chain, take in the spectacular scenery  of St. Boniface, downtown and The Forks, while tucking into fries, breakfast platters or a thick slab of red velvet cake. 237-8305.

Located next to the rooftop sculpture garden at the Winnipeg Art Gallery, Storm Restaurant features an incredible view of bronze sculptures created by Canadian and international artists. Wraps, sandwiches, soups and pizzas with creative ingredients are prepared fresh in this inspired space. 300 Memorial Blvd, 948-0085.

As the horses thunder around the race track at Assiniboia Downs, opt for one of the best seats in the house at The Terrace Dining Room, a tiered eatery overlooking all the excitement. An impressive international buffet, including an Angus prime rib carving station, features a plethora of classics. 3975 Portage Ave, 885-3330.

January Editor’s Picks: Dining

Roosevelt Room<br>photo by Igor Yu1. This city is home to a smattering of supper clubs. Each has its merits, but the Roosevelt Room stands out in its attempt to reflect the golden age of dinner-and-dance venues—the Roaring ‘20s. With its art deco–styled interior as well as an expected slate of entertainment that not only features DJs, but also vaudeville- and cabaret-inspired shows, live jazz and more, the large space glamorously evokes early Hollywood. And while any old club can provide passable drinks and a place to cut a rug, the Roosevelt Room excels equally at the supper side of things, thanks to a menu created by top chef Trevor Wilkinson. Among the sophisticated French-styled classics are lobster thermidor ($35.95), coq au vin ($27.95) and a 22-ounce Alberta rib steak with frites ($39.95)—perfect fuel for dancing well into the night. (more…)