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Downtown Toronto, Entertainment, Food & Recipes

Top 5 Favourite Bars for Craft Beer in Toronto

April 7, 2015

Craft Beer in TorontoCraft beer is big business in Toronto. According to the Ontario Craft Brewers Association, “there are currently over 100 craft breweries in Ontario employing over 1,000 people in direct brewery jobs across the province. This represents over 30 per cent of the direct brewery jobs in Ontario.” Now that grocery stores will now have the opportunity to sell beer and wine, this will not replace your visit to your local bar to taste test brews. If you don’t want to stay in your furnished suite or apartment to drink, here are our favourite places in Toronto for this niche experience.

1. Bellwoods Brewery. The popular indie brewery on Ossington Ave–with its white picket fence and prime people-watching patio– is listed as one of the 100 best breweries in the world by Rate Beer. Sip and savour on IPAs, stouts, single hop series, Belgian saisons, and a variety of ales. There’s a good selection of charcuterie to nibble alongside your pints. The brewery is dealing with its line-ups with a next door bottle shop (you’ll also want to save those beautiful labels for your home collection) and are opening a new location at Dupont and Dovercourt. Currently, you can quench your thirst by participating in a spring guided tasting.

2. Bar Volo. Bar Volo is the craft beer bar that was ahead of the trend and now 25 years old. It’s a great centralCraft Beer in Toronto location if you are living in our furnished suites downtown or North Toronto. The dim-lit, intimate, wooden space gets crowded early. It’s a casual process: look at the list on the walls for over 30 rotating regional beers on tap, casks, more than 75 international types of bottles, and a hectolitre nano brewery. You then find your own table, and order/pay at the bar. Though known for beer, there are two VQA wines served on tap, and over 60 bottles of bourbon and rye for non-hopheads. In the summer, there are DJ nights and during those times, cans of Howe Sound Lager is available for $5 (as previously stated on their site, last year).

3. Bar Hop. Located a short walk away from our 300 Front, Icon, and Element locations, Bar Hop is the ideal unpretentious after-work spot on King West. The bar has over 36 rotating taps plus tap takeovers, gluten-free beers and ciders, aCraft Beer in Torontond two casks. Special deals like Sunday Sessions ($5 for select craft beers); Mussel Mondays (2 pounds of mussels and fries for $9.95); and Buck-a-Shuck Tuesdays ($1 Oysters) make this a bustling place. Fret-not, a second location is in the works around Richmond and Peter.

4. Indie Ale House. If there is one reason to head over to the Junction, it’s for its noteworthy brewery. There’s a variety of beers here, including their speciality of bold ales. Peruse their menu for collaborations and their original brews with fun flavours and names like the Broken Hipster, Zombie Apocalypse, and the Breakfast Porter. Add a flavourful, varied menu of healthy options and bar staples with a twist; tours, and tastings, and you’ll never want to leave (unless you go here first and then dance the night away at 3030 down the street).

5. Amsterdam Brewery. Though it now feels like a tourist attraction due to its Harbourfront location, Amsterdam Brewery has bCraft Beer in Torontoeen in Toronto since 1986 and come a long way from its first location on John St. Now the brewery is a short walk away from our temporary housing Toronto. Amsterdam Brewery is known for its Boneshaker unfiltered IPA and has other original brews like the Sweetwater Squeeze Radler, the 416, and the all natural Blonde. Sip lakeside on a muskoka chair with an unparalleled view of Lake Ontario and the Toronto Islands. A bonus if you can’t grab a seat on the patio is that you can grab your favourite beer from their bottle shop, which is open 7 days a week until 11pm.

Honorable mentions go to some of Toronto’s newer breweries like the soon-to-open Left Field Brewery (which is hosting tastings and pop-ups to buy select bottles from time to time); East York’s new Muddy York brewery; and the established Granite Brewery at Eglinton and Mount Pleasant.

What is your favourite bar for craft beer in Toronto?

Downtown Toronto, Food & Recipes, Lifestyle talk, North York

Top 10 Restaurants in Toronto, 2015

March 6, 2015

Top 10 Restaurants in TorontoWith Spring just around the corner, getting out on the town made us think of our favourite restaurants in Toronto. It’s a mix of those classics you might find on a list like Winterlicious mixed with newer restaurants and cafes. If you’re looking to get out of your furnished apartment in Toronto or try something new at one of Toronto’s many diverse and delicious restaurants, look no further to our comprehensive top 10 restaurants in Toronto. Our list is in no particular order.

1. Bar Isabel. It’s no surprise that this Spanish-inspired restaurant with a Black Hoof twist (owner Grant Van Gameren used to co-own the Black Hoof) is on many top ten lists. We love the chorizo, grilled octopus, and basque cake with sherry cream. Be on the lookout for Van Gameren’s anticipated opening, Bar Raval, this year. Reservations are recommended.

2. Canoe. Canoe remains one of the best restaurants in Canada and a homage to haute Canadian cuisine. It is the perennial place for a special occasion with views of the Toronto Islands and CN Tower to match from the 54th floor of the TD Tower. You’ll be lucky to sit at the chef’s table and interact with Chef John Horne. It is a treat! It is also one of our picks to drink with your fellow corporate executives.

3. Big Crow. Big Crow is the city’s answer to a backyard BBQ, complete with an Algonquin and Canadiana theme year-round (in winter they bring out the blankets and heaters). Chow down with your friends over ribs smothered in pesto sauce, steel-trout poke nachos, and s’more ice cream sandwiches in the summer.

4. Fat Pasha. Another extension of Anthony Rose’s empire (including Big Crow, above), Fat Pasha is your excuse to eat through the MiddleTop 10 Restaurants in Toronto Eastern trend. We love the dips (especially labneh and hummus) and the nutella babka cake. A must if you’re looking to venture out of your usual tastes.

5. The Black Hoof. Since 2008, The Black Hoof has set Toronto on the charcuterie trend and remains the best place for the boards. It has since expanded its menu so you can more adventurous parts of an animal (whether it’s offal or horse) and never fails to impress the tastebuds. We love the staples of charcuterie, bone marrow, and cheese but give the horse tartare a try. Try its intimate cocktail bar across the street, aptly named Cocktail Bar, pre or post meal.

6. Electric Mud BBQ. Owned by Black Hoof alum, Colin Tooke and Ian McGrenaghan, Electric Mud BBQ is their second outpost of the Electric empire (Grand Electric around the corner on Queen West slinging out tacos). Chow down on good ol’ BBQ, bourbon alongside a great soundtrack at picnic tables with your friends. The ribs are classic but we return for the chicken, crack rolls, and $2.50 pints of Great Lakes Beer on Monday nights. They also now deliver. We love a good deal!

7. Origin. Tapas has become one of Toronto’s biggest culinary trends and Origin executes it in an original fashion. The restaurant is so popular it has expanded from its original location at King and Church to Origin North at Bayview and Sheppard (a sophisticated option near our furnished apartments in North York). We love the deviled eggs, tostones and guacamole, hand rolls, miso glazed cod, and dulce de leche. Look for chef Claudio Aprile to expand his repertoire of fresh, global dishes to the Toronto PeTop 10 Restaurants in Torontoarson Airport soon.

8. Eastside Social. One of Leslieville’s newest additions to the neighbourhood, Eastside Social is casual enough to sit and chat with someone at the bar over a dark n stormy yet sophisticated enough for a date. Share their inventive fish charcuterie platter. Their oyster special is every Tuesday and Wednesday.

9. Campagnolo. Our pick for Italian cuisine, chef Craig Harding, continues to deliver the classics that make us feel like it’s okay we can’t hop on a plane at a moment’s notice to Italy. You’ll salivate over his burrata with roasted grapes, spaghetti all’matricana, rabbit saltimbocca, and his famous budino.

10. Mildred’s Temple Kitchen. For the brunch lovers, Mildred’s Temple is large enough to accommodate your group but popular enough for you to be waiting in line even 15 minutes after opening. It’s worth the trek to Liberty Village. If it’s one thing to order it’s those fluffy, blueberry pancakes.

It’s difficult to add our all of our top 10 Restaurants in Toronto (honorary mentions go to Lady Marmalade for brunch, Porchetta & Co. for lunch, and Chantecler for dinner).

What are your favourite restaurants in Toronto? What are the restaurant openings in Toronto you’re looking forward to?

Community Events, Entertainment, Family Vacations in Toronto, Lifestyle talk, North York, Toronto Family Travel, Vacation Travel

Top 5 Things to do on Family Day

February 12, 2015

Family DayAs one of Ontario’s statutory holidays, Family Day is a time to connect with the ones you love. This year Family Day falls on the Monday after Valentines Day on February 16. Whether you’re hanging out in your furnished suite in Etobicoke or want to go somewhere nearby, here are our ideas on some things to do on Family Day.

1. DJ Skate Night. Harbourfront’s Natrel Rink is just steps from our 300 Front Street property and a great activity to spend with the whole family. On Valentines Day they are hosting the last of their weekend DJ SkaThings to do on Family Dayte nights and this event is a queer-friendly theme.

2. Get Away for the Weekend. There are tons of choices for great weekend getaways near Toronto in the winter (we wrote about that here!). If you want a soak not too far from Toronto, try the Nordik Spa at Gatineau Park, 10 minutes from downtown Ottawa. It is the largest spa in North America and features baths (hot, cold and temperate), 8 unique saunas, infinity pool, outdoor and indoor relaxation areas as well as a restaurant & lounge with terrace.

3. Play ToThings to do on Family Dayurist. Visit an iconic Toronto tourist attraction for the first time that you haven’t been to or look at it from different eyes the second or third time around. Check out our top ten things to do in Toronto. Toronto in Ten Photos for exploration inspiration is here.  Or you may want to check out our ten fun family activities in Toronto. Another option is to check out some of the incredible exhibitions at one of our many art galleries downtown and in North York.

4. An in-night. Sometimes, staying in and relaxing can be one of the most enjoyable weekends. Get a board game, order-in, have a movie or TV marathon, plan your next vacation, or oThings to do on Family Dayrder your groceries from Grocery Gateway to cook dinner for your loved ones. (It is one of the many services we offer.)

5. Specific Family Day Events. Toronto Tourism has a great round-up of events from iconic attractions and landmarks in the city. There are also a lot of things to do on Family Day in Etobicoke, Mississauga, Brampton, and Markham.

There are plenty of things to do on Family Day. Enjoy your Monday off with the people you love.

Brokers, Insurance Conference, Insurance Housing

DelSuites Exhibits at OIAA Claims Conference

February 2, 2015

OIAA Claims ConferenceMaking the connection with industry professionals is a key part DelSuites ability to provide guests with high-quality services.
As part of DelSuites continuous growth and development of our network of professionals within the insurance industry, this year, representatives will be attending the Ontario Insurance Adjusters Association’s (OIAA) Professional Development and Claims Conference being held in Toronto on February 4, 2015 at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre.

While the OIAA Claims Conference event is intended to connect insurance professionals with one another, it’s also an opportunity for those who provide insurance-related services to further broaden the scope of their network across this dynamic industry.

For many insurance professionals, ensuring that their clients are offered a safe, welcoming and comfortable environment in a furnished suite in Toronto, is a critical part of the job.

Whether their client is forced from their home due to fire or flood, insurance professionals will do what it takes to ensure their clients are provided with the security and stability of relaxing accommodations.

At DelSuites furnished apartments in Toronto, we’ve always believed that that offering guests all the customary comforts of home no matter what their circumstances takes top priority. But when the circumstances that bring you to our properties are less than optimal, DelSuites’ staff have the resources and know-how to offer you the little extra attention you may need.

As one of the conference exhibitors at the OIAA Claims Conference 2015,  you’ll have the chance to meet representatives from the members of the DelSuites team. Whether you’ve got questions about our properties or would like to share your client’s (or your own) experience with DelSuites, we invite you to stop by our Booth #506, and take a fun photo in our photo booth and say hello. Plus as an added bonus, you’ll have the chance to snag a little extra swag.

It’s just our way of saying thanks for making the time to share your thoughts, questions and ideas with us.

Events, Family Vacations in Toronto, Lifestyle talk, Mississauga, North York, Toronto Family Travel

Statutory Holidays in Toronto, 2015

January 15, 2015

Statutory Holidays in TorontoAs we begin the new year, one of our plans may be to organize our schedules to our statutory holidays. As most Torontonians get two to four weeks of vacation on average, stat holidays are a great way to maximize that time whether it’s buying new furniture for your apartment or suite or getting out of the city for the weekend. Here is a list of statutory holidays in Toronto for 2015:

New Year’s Day: Thursday January 1, 2015
If you’re not staying at one of our furnished apartments to watch the specials on television, New Year’s Day is a great way to lounge around and think of your goals for 2015 or plan to go take advantage of January’s winter festivals in Toronto if you have an extended stay in Toronto.

Statutory Holidays in TorontoFamily Day: Monday February 16, 2015
This Monday off is a great way to take advantage of a long weekend or a winter weekend escape just away from the city. You may use this time to get some sun on an island escape or take advantage of the staycation by soaking up local culture or seek out some new restaurants or cheap eats in Toronto.

Good Friday: Friday April 3, 2015
A Catholic religious holiday which extends into Easter Sunday and Monday (check with your employer to see if you get this day off) to extend into a long weekend.

Victoria Day: Monday May 18, 2015
Celebrated on the last Monday before May 25, Queen Victoria’s birthday is an unofficial way to mark the start of summer. The weekend is also unofficially known as “May 2-4.” This is the perfect time to go somewhere near the city (like Etobicoke, Mississauga, or Brampton), explore the city (like watching the fireworks), or planning your next vacation. We recommend these apps if you’re traveling.

Statutory Holidays in TorontoCanada Day: Wednesday July 1, 2015
Celebrate Canada’s 148th birthday in Toronto (maybe relaxing by our pool at 300 Front Street West), or in our Nation’s capital, Ottawa. July also marks the inauguration of the Pan Am Games in Toronto. If you’re embarking on a road trip, can we suggest our Great Canadian Roadtrip Playlist for the ride? It will be an exciting summer for Torontonians!

Civic Holiday: Monday August 3, 2015
Also known as Simcoe Day, which was to honour the first Lieutentant-Govenor of Upper Canada, John Simcoe, this statutory holiday is celebrated the first Monday of every August. August is prime time for a number of festivals in Toronto. Here are our must-dos in Toronto in August.

Labour Day: Monday September 7, 2015
Labour Day marks the unofficial last day of summer, the day before school starts and many companies go into their last quarters of the year. Perhaps, there is a need for corporate housing for executives who are coming into Toronto for an short term stay or an extended stay in the city. Or you want to spend as much time with your family to sStatutory Holidays in Torontooak up the summer rays. Here are our top ten family fun activities in Toronto. September is the lead up to fall and fall activities including our famous Toronto International Film Festival. Here is our guide to Toronto in Autumn.

Thanksgiving Day: Monday October 12, 2015
Thanksgiving Day is traditionally the day we go home to spend time with our families. It’s also a great time for a weekend getaway if you decide to eschew tradition. October is also the mark of low season in places like Europe and the Caribbean if you are planning to travel. Perhaps, it’s time to take that solo trip? Here are our tips.

Christmas Day: Friday December 25, 2015
Christmas Day is a popular statutory holiday. As it falls at the beginning of a weekend, you’ll have the week to prepare for the festivities. Here’s our guide to a hassle-free holiday and our guide to the top shops in Toronto for your Christmas shopping needs.

Boxing Day: SaturdaStatutory Holidays in Torontoy December 26, 2015
Whether you’re braving the crowds at the malls for shopping deals (or some discounted furniture for your apartment or suite) or just staying in to enjoy a day off post-Christmas celebrations, Boxing Day this year will be the ideal Saturday. Another year has come and gone and now is the time to start getting ready for New Year’s Eve!

How do you use your statutory holidays in Toronto? Do you use them as a way to tag on extra vacation time? Or do you use them to maximize a staycation?