Which Yorkville lunch spot will impress my mentor?
July 23, 2014 4:07 PM   Subscribe

My mentor and his wife are visiting my city and I would like to take them out for an exceptional meal as a gesture of gratitude for all their help. I’d like it to feel hip and trendy but not so noisy that you can’t hear anything. They are both in their late 60s and meat-eaters. What downtown /Yorkville restaurant will really knock their socks off? I want them to feel as if they've been somewhere special.

I am also looking at reviews on BlogTO, NOW, Zagat, etc… but thought I would ask here too. I don’t have a clue!
posted by OlivesAndTurkishCoffee to Food & Drink (11 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I would stay away from Yorkville, personally. Most restaurants there seem designed for expense accounts and are overpriced (in my humble opinion). Lee is still a known name, and Benihana is visually striking (food is eh). The Library Bar is a nice place to go after for a cocktail too (both are within the Royal York). I've heard the BBQ at Carbon Bar is good but haven't been personally. When you say knock their socks off, were you thinking atmosphere or food-wise? Because I still think the CN Tower is a nice treat for out-of-Towners, it is certainly not an experience they would have anywhere else (I've been to 360 but not Horizons).
posted by saucysault at 4:57 PM on July 23, 2014

Pangaea ticks all your boxes if you're ok with the prices.
Splendido is excellent, and expensive, but not in Yorkville.

I found Carbon Bar overpriced, underwhelming, and needlessly trendy.

Check out The Atlantic on Dundas if you are willing to try something a little different. They have no menu but the food is very good and the vibe is 'anti-trendy'. It was unlike any other dining experience I've had (and I like to eat out).
posted by sid at 5:15 PM on July 23, 2014 [2 favorites]

... and I see now that you're looking for lunch spots so Atlantic and Splendido do not help at all.

I lunched at Cafe Boulud in the new Four Seasons about a year ago. I think it would be the type of experience you're looking for. It is, of course, expensive, but not needlessly so and the ambiance and service is top notch, the food is probably not worth the price but still very good.
posted by sid at 5:35 PM on July 23, 2014 [2 favorites]

Try The Oxley, on Yorkville just east of Avenue.
posted by wdenton at 6:35 PM on July 23, 2014 [2 favorites]

posted by brujita at 10:12 PM on July 23, 2014 [1 favorite]

Downtown + special = Canoe.

Also any of the Momo restaurants at the Shangri-La. Beware of falling glass.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 10:37 PM on July 23, 2014

The Oxley is quite good, but the Queen and Beaver on Elm is exceptional, techincally a pub, but quiet, friendly, and brilliant, brilliant food. Also, any of the resturants on Harbord, quiet street, fantastic atmosphere, and the best food in the city.
posted by PinkMoose at 11:52 PM on July 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


(It's also maybe 20 minutes from Yorkville, maybe a bit less)
posted by PinkMoose at 11:53 PM on July 23, 2014

I recommend the Oxley and cafe boulud. Boulud has more of a wow factor. Dynasty had very good dim sum but you'd need to know your way around a dim sum menu. Yorkville is a lovely place to wander in the summer. Enjoy!
posted by biggreenplant at 5:30 AM on July 25, 2014

Slightly more low-key but apparently mindbogglingly delicious is Richmond Station, owned by this wunderkind who kicked all the ass on the second season of Top Chef Canada. Rustic-ish, but everyone I know who's been there has almost visibly started drooling when they started talking about the food.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 6:45 AM on July 25, 2014

For expensive options, if they are really into eating meat (as opposed to just not vegetarian), I'd suggest Bymark, which has great steaks in addition to all the other fancy fine dining food you would expect. Canoe is probably more stunning overall (the view is pretty damn awesome).

If you want something less expensive that is in Yorkville, I would suggest La Société. They have a delightful dining room.
posted by grouse at 9:54 AM on July 25, 2014

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