With its diverse population, relative wealth, and popularity as a city-break destination, it’s not surprising that many consider Toronto to be one of the best foodie cities in the world, rivalling even its southern neighbour New York. While you can get classic Canadian fare throughout the city, it also has a great international cuisine scene, with some of the finest chefs in the world chopping, frying, and serving all kinds of food. The plethora of immigrants has also led to some incredible fusion experiments, so there are some spots you’ll have a truly unique culinary experience.
Ready to dig into the Toronto food scene? Keep on scrolling for Orbzii’s best places to have breakfast, lunch, and dinner in the Canadian capital.
Considered one of the best Middle Eastern restaurants in a city full of world class hummus and za’atar, a stop at Souk Tabule is worth it at any time of the day, but it’s the breakfast and brunch menu that really makes this casual restaurant shine. While the décor and ambience is more bustling kitchen than high-end eatery, the brunch food is second-to-none – and, thankfully, is all-day, so if you are a late riser you’ll still have the chance to indulge.
The brunch offering is small, with just five options, but they are all so wonderfully put together you won’t want anything else. Our favourite dish is the Akaawi and Roasted Tomato Omelette, although you can’t go wrong with the classic Shakshuka, which is the peak of Toronto food.
The owners of Souk Tabule have three other venues across the city, but this is the first and serves the best breakfast dishes. A must-visit if you’re keen to explore the best restaurants in Toronto.
Emma’s Country Kitchen
While Souk Tabule will take you around the world before noon, Emma’s Country Kitchen is very much about homely, hearty food to start the day off right. Bread and other pastries are all baked in-house, so if you’re looking for something a little lighter, they have you covered as well.
With that being said, if you stop here for breakfast of brunch it’s worth trying the more filling items on the menu. There’s every kind of traditional breakfast food here, with pork, eggs, pancakes, and cereals on offer, as well as some distinctly Canadian designs (the Brunch Poutine is as delectable as it is gut-busting). However, our favourite thing about Emma’s Country Kitchen is probably the excellent breakfast drinks and cocktails on offer, which is saying a lot as the food is to die for.
All in all, if you’re not pleased with a Breakwich and Morning Mule combination from Emma’s, then we don’t think anything will satisfy you, because we cannot think of a more delicious way to start the day.
With over a decade in business, this Toronto institution is the home of gut-busting, mouth-watering burgers and fried chicken that would make even the most committed vegan think twice. Taking their inspiration from the American Midwest, this isn’t a spot for those looking for healthy Toronto food – think crispy batter, juicy slabs of meat, and moreish sides that are just as good as the mains.
While the griddle smashed burgers are a revelation, it’s the fried chicken at The Stockyards that’s the star of the show. The succulent meat is tossed in buttermilk and seasoning before simmering in oil, keeping in the tenderness and adding flavour. With that said, if you do prefer your meat red, then there’s other great choices too: the sandwiches are filling and tasty, and the sides are all worth eating alone.
However, if you’re really into smoked meats, then head down on Tuesday, Friday, or Sunday from 17.00, as that’s when they do a traditional barbeque. Aside from smoked chicken, The Stockyards also offer melt-in-the-mouth ribs. Undoubtedly the best restaurant in Toronto for barbequed meats.
In a foodie city that’s specifically known for amazing Asian and Asian-fusion food, being considered the best ramen spot by those in the know isn’t just a compliment, but a badge of honour that’s better than any star or rave review. Ramen Isshin has two venues in the city, one on College Street, and one on Queen Street – both whip up astoundingly good noodle bowls (and other Japanese goodies) but the College Street one is our favourite for the general ambience, which is a bit cosier.
While we’d heavily recommend eating in, you can also get DIY Frozen Ramen Home kits, so if you’re in accommodation with a kitchen you can enjoy the dishes at home. They also have a huge range of food for vegans, vegetarians, and celiacs, which makes it a spot for everyone.
While all the food is fantastic, you can’t miss the various Ramen bowls – our favourite is the Roasted Garlic Shoyu Ramen, which has that perfect umami/sweet combination that makes the best Japanese food so flavourful.
If you’re looking for the best of Toronto pizza, then Terroni is the only place to go. With nearly a century of history in the flagship Terroni Queen branch, a meal here is like being transported to Italy, with lighter-than-air, chewy crusts, and a tomato sauce that you could eat by the spoonful.
Many of the ingredients are sourced from Italy for that authentic factor, and the same family that opened the spot in the 1920s is still in charge of things, which makes us believe Terroni’s claim they’re ‘as much an ideology as a restaurant’.
If you’re somehow not a fan of pizza, there’s a menu full of other traditional Italian dishes, from pastas to meats, as well as an extensive vegan selection. However, as the beating heart of the Toronto pizza scene, we’d highly recommend digging into the doughy goodness.
When it comes to deciding what the best restaurants in Toronto are, Alo has to be in the conversation. With a Michelin star, this contemporary French eatery shows just how strong the Francophone influence in Canadian culture is, serving up dishes that wouldn’t be out of place in the finest venues in Lyon.
Ingredients are all seasonal and they generally tend to serve a tasting menu, like many starred restaurants. However, there is a smaller ‘Barroom’ that serves dishes a la carte, if you want the refinement without the heavy stomach that comes from a multi-course meal.
The wine list is extensive and full of great bottles, although cocktails are also available if you want to add a bit of an extra kick to your meal. While the food here may be expensive, it’s definitely worth the investment – the quality of the food and ambience make it an experience you’ll never forget.
DaiLo Toronto (Dailoto)
Another standout Asian-fusion restaurant in a city of exceptional Asian restaurants, DaiLo is named after a Cantonese term of endearment and respect, which makes sense as their dishes are a combination of perfectly served traditional meals with some modern twists, to give the food a distinctive yet delicious character.
There is a tasting menu available for those who want to dig into everything, but eating a la carte is also doable. Unlike a lot of Chinese or Chinese-fusion restaurants, the menu here is relatively small, with the focus being on quality and not pleasing everyone.
There are vegan and gluten free options, but we recommend the Glazed Korean Short Ribs and the Smoked Duck Breast. When combined with the welcoming atmosphere and beautiful presentation, it’s like being transported to another world.