Open/Closed for the week of December 15-22

With just a few days before the holidays, a flurry of restaurants have managed to open. Folks, this never happens. Not this close to Christmas and certainly not this close to the end of the year.

You’ll never utter the words, “There’s no one good to eat,” again.

Check out the frenzy of places now open:

Bill Hicks
946 Queen St. E.

The outside blackboard noted Bacon Rashers for market price and beers ranging from $2.99-$4.99 earlier this week.

Cool bars in the east end are a plenty, but the new Bill Hicks in Leslieville might just be the coolest.

92 Fort York Blvd.

Hanif Harji’s new spot in the new CityPlace opened Tuesday night. Rustic southern Italian food done by Chef Ben Heaton? Forget the holiday shopping and go for dinner instead!

Flor de Sal 
501 Davenport Rd.

The former Corner House gets a new name, look and chef. Chef Fracchioni’s (from Monk Kitchen at The Templar Hotel) lunch and dinner menus boast local ingredients and will change seasonally.

Does this mean fine dining is making its way back? It may very well be.

Local 1794
1794 Danforth Ave. 

Danforth gets another gastro pub, this one boasting 24 beers on tap, a great wine selection, hand-rolled stone-baked pizzas and a few items fresh from the smoker.

Yet another reason to head east this winter…

Maja Indian Cuisine
345 Bloor St. E.

Bloor east of Church isn’t known for its food, but Maja could change all that with their fresh Indian fare. Thalis, Butter Chicken, Chicken Tikka, Lamb Meatballs, Lamb Curry, chickpeas, rice and naan are just a few options available.

Scratch Kitchen
3471 Yonge St.

Made from scratch food (in-house made breads!) with local ingredients is now available for breakfast, lunch and brunch, north of Lawrence. 

747 Wine Bar
747 Queen St. E.

The former home of Picnic Wine Bar hasn’t had much change to the interior, nor the concept. This wine bar also focuses on wine and charcuterie, though the menu has a few new dishes. 


Tickets go on sale today for Winterlicious Culinary Event Series. Act fast – they’ll sell quickly. 

Hotels are changing it up across the city. The latest news? Oxford Properties purchased all 346-rooms of the Park Hyatt Toronto from a Hyatt affiliate for approximately $90 million USD (or $260,000 USD per key), subject to "certain adjustments."

Lots of people change ups – 25-year-old Zach Albertsen is new exec chef at The Forth, promoted from sous; Tom Bodi, formerly of TOCA, lands at Turf Lounge, which now offers horse racing and wagering; Chef David Lee and Yannick Bigourdan are no longer a dynamic duo – In the split, Bigourdan is keeping The Carbon Bar, while Nota Bene is staying with Lee.


We're heading to An Sibin Pub early tomorrow for their annual Antler brekkie with all the Irish trimmings! We'll be live tweeting from the event, so come on down from 8:30 until 10:30am. 

The Hogtown Cure celebrates their second anniversary this Friday from 6-10 pm. There will be treats from the kitchen as well as free beer samples. Kitchen is open until 10, with dishes from their new dinner menu.

Biagio is Feeding the Homeless on December 21st

Check out the Evergreen Holiday Farmer’s Market this Sat and Sun.

Parlor Foods & Co. is having a mini holiday market this Sunday.

This Sunday head to The Stop’s Holiday Farmers’ Market held at Steam Whistle Brewing.  

Food lovers can head the Toronto Christmas Market at the Distillery and #localTOmrkt at 335 Yonge St. for goodies and treats.

Our very own guides - HolidayBrunchDistinguishedFoodie Gifts and New Year's Eve – are here to help you get through the season with ease – and great food.

And lastly:

Take an inside look at new restaurant Ovest.

And there's a whole whack of exciting new food in TorontoBrazilian sushi, anyone?

Our December Calendar of Events will help you make the most of your holidays.

Find out what's open Christmas EveChristmas DayNew Year's Eve and New Year's Day.

Don't want to cook this holiday? Don't sweat it. We've got 3 ways to hack your Xmas dinner. If you do want to be at the stove, then check out our holiday survival kit for how to entertain like a pro.

For fun food things to do over the holidays, we've got 3 suggestions.

And to help you navigate which bubbly to buy, all you need is this month's drinks column.