Four places in Toronto to Brunch / by Didier Young

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Sunday morning, we wake up and put on our best attires. we clean up and try to make sure we look as decent as possible and we head out for one of the most important rituals of the week: brunch. An amalgamation of breakfast and lunch, this special meal originated in England in the late 19th century and gained popularity in the 1930s in the Unites States. Acting as a perfect excuse to consume alcohol at eleven in the morning, brunch has traditionally consisted of english muffins, egg benedicts and pancakes drizzled in maple syrups. It will come to no surprise to everyone that brunch is my favourite meal of the week but most brunch places often offer safe and interchangeable menus. Today, I am talking about food from my favourite brunch places in Toronto who offer their own take on the weekend meal.

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The Commodore

The Parkdale restaurant is one of those few examples of gorgeous restaurants with equally gorgeous food. With its all white nautical theme, the restaurant is an equally perfect setting for a romantic meal or a brunch with friends. I had the chance to try all the dishes on the brunch menu and I am pleased to announce that they are all stellar. The Octopus frittata and Truffled Scrambled Eggs & Prosciutto are two of my favourites and would pair wonderfully with your mimosa. Finish your brunch with the Fluffy Pancakes and its creamy tiramisu mousse. Believe me, you won’t be dissapointed.

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Saturday Dinette

Located at the intersection of Gerrard St East and Logan Avenue, Saturday Dinette is a small diner that fights for a good cause. With its The Dinette’s Kitchen Programme, the restaurant employs women from humble backgrounds and gives them a chance to kickstart a career in the culinary world. The dinette offers a week long brunch and includes such items as a delicious shakshuka and the Jayne Mansfield, a pancake dish with maple syrup and deep fried boneless chicken thighs. My usual fare at the restaurant is the Dinette Brekkie, a delicious twist on the traditional breakfast plate and is absolutely fantastic with a side of farmer’s sausage.

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Maha’s

One of the few Egyptian restaurants to be found in Toronto, Maha’s is located at 226 Greenwood Avenue. The food here is as divine as the coffee: a visit to Maha’s is not complete without one of their signature honey cardamom lattes and their amazing Cairo Classic dish. I have always been intrigued by the Date Grilled Cheese but I never managed to order it as it always seemed to sell out before I’ve had the chance to give it a try. It is to be noted that the restaurant is always busy. They do not take reservations and you might be waiting 45 minutes for a table for two.

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La Cubana

The cuban restaurant has two locations in Toronto but brunch is only served at the Roncesvalles location. The prices are average, the portions generous and the food delectable. The steak and eggs with chimichurri is fantastic but the Pork Belly with the pineapple glaze is my ultimate favourite at the restaurant. A side dish of corn frituras is an absolute must and always finish your meal with some of their delicious doughnuts.

Toronto is full of amazing brunch places and it was hard for me to narrow it down to solely four restaurants. Other notable brunch places would include Bar Buca, Bar Raval and Rose & Sons. In a city that recently started finding its culinary bearings, you can be assured that my list of favourites will only keep going up.

-Didier