Trying to plan a night out dining with friends can sometimes test the limits of your organizational skills and diplomacy. But according to Vogue, Toronto is the city that all food lovers should be flocking to, so if you’re stuck for ideas, leave it to us at Aeroplan to help you out. There are tons of hidden gems that you and your friends will enjoy. So here are our 8 best restaurants for a night out with friends. We know you’ll be talking about them for weeks to come:
328 Wellington St West
Toronto, ON M5V 3T4
Superstar chef and television personality Susur Lee opened Luckee, the chic restaurant in the SoHo Metropolitan Hotel, in 2014. The space combines a modern feel with accents of imperial red and wall-to-wall panels of Chinese dynastic architecture. You’ll be captivated by dishes that feature some favourites like siu mai, sweet soy glazed cod and their ever-so-popular lobster cheung fun.
The Sultan’s Tent
49 Front St East
Toronto, ON M5E 1B3
The Sultan’s Tent is a taste of Morocco right in the core of downtown Toronto. Decorated with large Pergola tents featuring bright silks and comfy cushions, you’ll have no problem getting into the Moroccan spirit. Dig into one of their specialized tagines, seasoned with saffron and other delectable spices and flavours. Or order the mint tea, which the servers expertly pour from an unbelievable height. But if you do anything, be sure to catch their belly dancing show that takes place every evening.
Hawthorne Food & Drink
60 Richmond St East
Toronto, ON M5C 1N8
If you’re looking to support local, then the best thing you could do is head down to Hawthorne Food & Drink. Just a short walk from historic St. Lawrence Market, this restaurant has become well-known as a social enterprise that provides free training and career development for unemployed members of the restaurant industry. The menu is a mix of local, seasonal and sustainable ingredients, with standouts such as their beef burger and the roasted beet and squash salad. When you eat here, you know you’ll have a great meal and do something good for your community.
Veloute Bistro & Catering
2343 Queen St East
Toronto, ON M4E 1H2
Nestled in the heart of The Beach neighbourhood in the city’s east end, Velouté Bistro & Catering may look like a rustic country cottage from the outside, but it offers chic, high-end dining on the inside. This is thanks in large part to Executive Chef Fawzi Kotb, who has made quite a name for himself in the Toronto dining industry. With a commitment to farm-to-table freshness, Fawzi (as regular diners know him) serves up classic french bistro food with a modern flair. Try the crab and lobster cake or the lamb rack with crushed Yukon potatoes, and you won’t be disappointed.
100 Yonge St #100
Toronto, ON M5C 2W1
We love sustainable seafood and we know just the place for it: lbs. (which stands for lobster, burger, salad), in the heart of the Financial District. This modern, light-filled restaurant is opulent with gold and marble finishes throughout. Have a seat at the bar to either watch all the action in the restaurant unfold or take a gander into the open kitchen where you can watch the restaurant’s top dishes being made. Order a plate of spaghetti alle vongole with clams or try their 1-pound lobster. Don’t forget the bib!
Tundra Restaurant and Bar
145 Richmond St West
Toronto, ON M5H 2L2
If you’re in the vicinity of the Hilton Toronto hotel, in the downtown core at Richmond and University, be sure to make reservations at Tundra Restaurant. Tucked away inside the lobby, you’ll find the large dining area offering a stylish and contemporary look and feel. The team at Tundra pride themselves on populating their menu with locally sourced proteins and produce, which updates seasonally. We recommend the mushroom and brussel sprout salad. If you’re lucky, you might catch a jazz trio playing in the bar, which adds to the elegant vibe.
180 Queen St West
Toronto, ON M5V 3X3
Nota Bene’s executive chef David Lee pulls out all the stops with his restaurant dedicated to seasonal Canadian cuisine. The decor is upscale, but the food is anything but pretentious, featuring noteable nods to Chef Lee’s Asian influences, including tuna tartare and Wagyu steak with wasabi. Plus, we hear there is an entire menu dedicated to the classic gin and tonic cocktail, featuring 15 different gins, 3 different tonics and multiple ice formats. Just what the doctor ordered!
Did we miss one of your favourite spots that you like to visit with friends? Share it with us and we’ll add it to our next Aeroplan eating adventure.