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La Bruschetta:

At home in the kitchen with the family and friends

by The Cooks.

The Cooks recently had the pleasure of dining at the well-established 'La Bruschetta'. Located on the south side of St. Clair Avenue West, this unassuming eatery presents outstanding quality and wholesome home cooked dishes. Owners Benito and Franca Piantoni along with their daughters, Silvia and Brenda collectively run a family operation not to be missed.

Casa Mendoza

Authentic Spanish estate on the shoreline of Toronto

By Judi McLeod

Like discovering diamonds in the grass, visitors lucky enough to happen upon Toronto's Casa Mendoza Restaurant can't believe their luck. Built by a refreshingly eccentric connoisseur, who indulged his dream of creating an authentic Spanish estate on the shoreline of Toronto, Casa Mendoza's captivating bay windows overlook breathtaking Lake Ontario & Downtown Toronto.

Casa Mendoza offers literally acres of free parking. Nestled amongst abundant foliage, there is no doubt it offers one of the most incredible views no other restaurant can match.

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Donatello Restaurant

A cut above the crowd

Now Open at 37 Elm St.

by Pamela Bloom

Nestled in the heart of downtown Toronto, Donatello is the perfect place for a business lunch, a party, or a romantic dinner for two. The atmosphere is warm and inviting, with fresh flowers on every table, gentle music playing in the background, and a friendly, knowledgeable staff. The elegant décor is highlighted by the lovely furnishings and stunning marbleized walls.

Owned and operated by  head chef Giacomo Rauti and his wife Filomena, Donatello has been  a fixture  on Elm St. since 1993. Conveniently located just steps away from The Delta Chelsea Hotel, and a short walk from either College or Dundas subway stations, their Northern Italian cuisine is conveniently located for all to enjoy.

For the first course, my guest ordered the Grilled Calamari and I chose the Shrimps With Perno Sauce. The calamari was served on a bed of salad with an extra virgin olive oil and garlic sauce, and it was accompanied by the most scrumptious roasted peppers I have ever tasted.  The calamari was grilled to perfection, tender  and delicious.



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King's Table Fish and Chips:

And so much more...

By The Cooks Are Coming 2 Dinner The Kings Table, Fish & Chip… "and so much more…" most certainly describes The Cooks’ latest find. To say it’s your local Fish & Chip shop would be an injustice. Although the signature dish is the Fried Halibut & Chips, the menu is so much more. Owned by husband and wife team — Louis and Ursula, the two have created a great place in The Beach that is sure to succeed.

Pomegranate

House of Culinary Passion

By The Cooks Are Coming 2 Dinner

Nestled in the eastern area of The Beach is a fairly new interesting place to dine. Open since early this year, it is located at 2222 Queen Street East. Pomegranate —" House of Culinary Passion".

We were greeted by friendly staff and taken into a warm and casual atmosphere. The brightly decorated room seats approx. 26 patrons and has an open kitchen. With the windows opened to the sidewalk, passerbys stopped to chat at this neighborhood meeting place. There was a comfortable diner feel to the place, but the food was most definitely from a learned chef.

The Goof:

Garden Gate Restaurant

They're heading--in droves--to "The Goof's"
by Judi McLeod

The first time a friend suggested we "do lunch over at the Goof’s", I was a tad wary. "The Goof’s" is the fond nickname dubbed to the Garden Gate Restaurant by patrons, some of who have been going there since 1952. Somewhere in time, the `d’ in their "Good Food" logo went missing from a large outside sign. The nickname stuck long after the logo was repaired.

Garden Gate Restaurant at 2379 Queen St. E. (at Beech Ave.) lives up to its promise of "Good Food".

The Garden Gate Restaurant, which has daily lineups beginning with its 8 a.m. opening, needs no advertising.


Balkan Bistro:

Home of Turkish cuisine

by Judi McLeod

When crocuses and snowdrops cropped up this Spring, they paved the way for the opening of Toronto’s new Balkan Bistro.

Located at 126E McCaul Street, Balkan Bistro is right across the street from the famous St. Patrick’s Cathedral.

With windows overlooking busy McCaul Street, the Balkan Bistro is a treasure of a little restaurant and one of the few places where you can find Turkish coffee just the way it should be served, strong, sweet and served up in demi tasse.

The smell of home baked cookies waft from the bistro beckoning tourists and locals alike.

The Balkan Bistro is one of those little cafes whose dedicated chef takes pride in unusual entrees that include Kadinbudu Kofte, a traditional Turkish meal, made up of lightly fried ground beef and rice meatball in a soft shell of beaten eggs.

The Homemade Chicken Parmesan, fresh chicken breast cooked in the chef’s special Parmesan sauce, topped with mushrooms and freshly grated Parmesan packs them in at lunchtime.



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