Introducing Firkin on Harbour

The area of Harbour/Yonge/Queens Quay near the waterfront is finally reviving. If you live in this area of the downtown core, it’s a bit of a dead zone for socializing. You’re usually heading elsewhere to grab a hot or cold drink and a bite to eat.

Firkin on Harbour

Firkin on Harbour

Finally, a well known name has come to the Harbourfront area. Firkin on Harbour, part of the familiar Firkin Group of Pubs, has leased the space that formerly belonged to Harbour Sports Grille. The grand opening is on April 26th at 4pm, according to their Facebook page. Surrounded by condos, this pub is sure to the local watering hole in this neighbourhood and it also includes an outdoor patio.

Another newcomer to the area is Tim Hortons. Located at 10 Queens Quay (by Yonge Street), it moved in a few months ago and is doing well because who doesn’t need a Tim’s in the morning.

Tim Hortons on Queens Quay

Tim Hortons on Queens Quay

For those of you who aren’t a fan of Timmy’s, you’ll be happy to note that I spied a Starbucks sign at the bottom of The Toronto Star building at Yonge and Queens Quay.

Starbucks at 1 Yonge St.

Starbucks at 1 Yonge St.

It’s not quite open yet but it looks like it will be in another week or two. I say to them all, welcome to the neighbourhood!

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Ritzy Sunday Brunch

Mimosa

Mimosa

Like many, I love having Sunday brunch. It’s a wonderful ritual to while away your afternoon with family or good friends. But the brunch at the Ritz Carlton hotel in Toronto is not your typical brunch. Served on the upper level at the elegant TOCA restaurant, the variety and quality of the food is stunning.

I started with the massive display of oysters, mussels, shrimp, lobster tails and the most amazing smoked trout I’ve ever tasted. Beside that were platters of sushi and ham charcuterie.This all-inclusive feast included unlimited glasses of your choice of  prosecco, bellinis or mimosas You could probably have prosseco, bellinis and mimosas. You choose!

The salad table has about 5 different options like including grilled asparagus as well as make your own mini salad bar. I also sampled dumplings, a pan fried fish of the day with julienne vegetables  and some mini plated items like roast duck. The carving station had a massive beef wellington. It was perfectly cooked, tender, still warm with a flaky pastry.  Delicious. At the made to order omelette station, the chef assured me they use real eggs and he was kind enough to add lobster to my order. You can also request eggs any style. TOCA is known for their cheese cave so of course there are a selection of cheeses included but since I’m lactose intolerant I focused on the things I could devour. Not to be forgotten is the fresh croissants and breads with butter and jam for accompaniment.

The most amazing area was the room dedicated to desserts. If you can find room you must, must, must have dessert!  There is a chocolate fountain, macaroons, chocolate ganache, cheesecake pops and much more! After two hours,  I was still drinking mimosas because hey…it’s Sunday.

I found the level of service just amazing. Every time I went up to get more food, my glass was refilled (yay!), my plate was cleared and my napkin folded. The restaurant was full but I never felt over crowded or rushed  and the food was always replenished. I order to not detract from an enjoyable experience, I did not take photos every items in the room. For this type of brunch, just  let your taste buds lead you and enjoy.