Open/Closed: Toronto Restaurant News July 25-31, 2019

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This summer is anything but a bore, thanks to 20 new arrivals this week and way too many events to cram into your calendar at once.

One thing’s for certain, though: your weekend will be packed with phenomenal food and drinks.

Here’s the very latest:

OPEN

Get a sneak peek of The Big Bruce Public House (1963 Queen St. E.) during this weekend’s Beaches Jazz Festival. They’ll be open today through Sunday, then closed again until… well, you’ll read it here first, of course. 

If donuts, cakes, cookies, homemade bread, and other baked goods are your spirit animal, head to Queen and Bathurst. The second outpost of bakery and café Bloomer’s (715 Queen St. W.) softly opened earlier this week.

Greektown’s long-standing Café Frappe (519 Danforth Ave.) is back.

CXBO Chocolates newest location: Pusateri’s at Saks Food Hall downtown at CF Toronto Eaton Centre (176 Yonge St.).

While you’ll have to wait awhile longer to book a room upstairs at Hotel Delilah (1036 Gerrard St. E.), the “bohemian” snack bar is open. Choose from vegetarian, vegan and gluten-free dishes in the meat-free space, including: Gnocchi Stirfry ($10), Miss Vickie’s Halibut Fish & Chips ($14.50), Lobster Waffle Roll ($9), Octopus Taco Roll ($8.50), and Buddha Bowl ($12.50). For drinks, select from an array of signature cocktails, beer, and natural, organic and sustainable wine. 

The new home of Isabella’s Boutique (2066 Queen St E.) kicks off today right in the heart of The Beaches. The soft opening will include brunch during the day and for the Jazz Fest in the evening.

Jam Cereal is popping up this weekend at Convenience Resto Bar (1184 Queen St. W.). Their Cereal Milkshakes (it’s a thing) will be available as of noon today. 

Moniker modification alert: The Jim Bar is now The John Bar. In addition to their popular Bloor/Dufferin location (1174 Bloor St. W.), they’re soft launching two new bars tonight: The John 3: 3-Peat and The John 3: 3-Way. The spots at Queen and Broadview are conveniently located next door to one another (682-686 Queen St. E.) and feature +40 craft beers on tap, a big outdoor patio, and entertainment in the form of pinball, darts, and “kick ass music videos.” That’s not all: expect another location soon. Stay tuned… 

Le Chanceux Ice Cream & Tea (526 Yonge St.) is your new HQ for all things liquid nitrogen ice cream and tea.

Grocery shopping just got a lot easier for North Yorkers. Longo’s opens at Yonge Sheppard Centre (4841 Yonge St., Level 3) on Wednesday.

The Loop Creamery (3797 Lakeshore Blvd. W.) specializes in homemade all-natural frozen custard. What’s the difference between that and ice cream, you ask? The invention born out of Coney Island, NY contains more egg yolk, making it much richer than the traditional frozen treat. 

Mascot Brewery (220 King St. W.) is launching the first of two venues this weekend in the former home of Los Colibris. Reserve your spot now for the grand opening party. And watch this space. I’ll have all the deets on their soon-to-open spot in Etobicoke. 

Vegandale’s Mythology (1265 Queen St. W.) dropped the “Diner” and reopens tomorrow as an “elevated resto bar” with vegan fare by previous chef, Doug McNish. 

San Coffee Room (135 Ossington Ave.) softly opens their flagship café, just in time for OssFest this Saturday.

You can get Tiger Sugar’s famous Taiwanese “brown sugar boba fresh milk” at the newly minted Toronto flagship shop (348A Yonge St.) as of Saturday. The first 100 customers receive a free gift.  

Normally I wouldn’t include a chain such as Tim Hortons here, but their new “innovation café” at the base of the Exchange Tower (130 King St. W.) illustrates how restaurants are quickly trying to adapt to the myriad of new rapid-fire trends and lifestyle choices. This includes their new “brew bar,” with dairy-free alternatives such as internet-breaking oat milk, a “dream donut lineup,” elevated sandos (Pesto Chicken Wrap, their version of a Muffuletta) and soups (Lobster Bisque, Tomato Gouda), wireless charging stations, and more. Doors open today.

Xing Fu Tang Tea Hall has not one, but two new spots for you to indulge your love of brown sugar milk bubble tea:
- 550 Highway 7 E. in Richmond Hill premiered Saturday
- the downtown location just south of Wellesley (506 Yonge St.) softly opens Saturday.
Good news: Enjoy ten per cent off until August 1st. More good news: There are two more in the works.

Yardsale Cocktail Bar (1062 Gerrard St. E.). a watering hole with retro vibes, has landed right at Gerrones - Gerrard + Jones - your new fave hangout .

CLOSED

Age-old Mezes (456 Danforth Ave.) is currently closed, opening “soon” under new management.

EVENTS

Toronto Caribbean Carnival celebrations are in full effect. 

There are eight restaurants participating in this weekend’s Tirgan Festival in Markham.

Beer lovers unite - Toronto’s Festival of Beer is back!

Close to 40 food trucks will be gathered at the Toronto Food Truck Festival this weekend.

Moist towelettes are in order for the three-day Richmond Hill Rib Fest.

Competing for your love of ribs in York this weekend, the Thornhill Rib Festival.  

Enjoy a “fantastic evening of shopping, food, music, activities and more,” Saturday from 4pm-10pm at the third annual Leslieville Night Market.

OssFest, the west-end’s uber popular annual street festival, is where you want to be Saturday.

The Rosé Picnic takes over Hotel X on Saturday.

Head to Yonge-Dundas Square on Saturday for Taste of The Middle East.

Dumplings galore are what’s in store at the Momo Food Crawl TO in Parkdale on Sunday.

Diner en Blanc returns next month.

Get tickets now for the epic 5-course dinner paired with two cocktails by The American Bar from Savoy Hotel, UK - the number two bar in the world - taking place Sunday August 11th at Après Wine Bar, because they’re going to sell out like that. 

NEWS

The Broadview Hotel’s café is now The Broadview Bistro + Bar.

Famoso Italian Pizzeria + Bar announces expansion plans throughout Ontario and Western Canada.

Good news for craft brewers!

Toronto Caribbean Carnival got a shoutout from Essence Magazine, including tips on where to dine.

ICYMI

One of the best ways to stay cool this summer? Booze-infused popsicles!

If you’re obsessed with all things René Redzepi and Noma, you need Jeff Gordinier’s new book, Hungry.

FYI 

Same name. Same fab content. New look. New insta. Introducing Toronto Restaurants brand new Instagram @torontorestaurants.co, so be sure to follow the new account. You'll also notice a new, sleeker logo and fab website makeover to go along with it.

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Hear of a place that’s about to open or just closed? Have an upcoming food or restaurant event? Want to partner with Toronto Restaurants? Send me an email. writerscramp@stephaniedickison.com

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