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Guidebook for Toronto

Debbie

Guidebook for Toronto

Food Scene
Open 8am-8pm every day. It's right next door and carries a selection of small-batch and local products. Locally roasted Propeller Coffee, Blackbird bread baked daily, housemade sandwiches and salads, Mad Mexican, artisanal jams, hot sauces, mustards, local craft sodas and fresh pressed juices. Eggs, bacon, milk, cheese and everything else you need including Kawartha hand dipped ice cream.
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The Lucky Penny General Store and Cafe
189 Shaw St
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Open 8am-8pm every day. It's right next door and carries a selection of small-batch and local products. Locally roasted Propeller Coffee, Blackbird bread baked daily, housemade sandwiches and salads, Mad Mexican, artisanal jams, hot sauces, mustards, local craft sodas and fresh pressed juices. Eggs, bacon, milk, cheese and everything else you need including Kawartha hand dipped ice cream.
Take a 20-minute stroll east on Dundas to Spadina and you'll hit Chinatown. But if you turn north anywhere between Bathurst and Spadina you'll find yourself in Kensington Market, a wonderful place to get lost in. Every Sunday from May-October is Pedestrian Sunday. http://www.kensington-market.ca
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Kensington Market
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Take a 20-minute stroll east on Dundas to Spadina and you'll hit Chinatown. But if you turn north anywhere between Bathurst and Spadina you'll find yourself in Kensington Market, a wonderful place to get lost in. Every Sunday from May-October is Pedestrian Sunday. http://www.kensington-market.ca
One of our favourites. Slow BBQ. Reservations recommended. http://thecarbonbar.ca/
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Carbon Bar
99 Queen St E
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One of our favourites. Slow BBQ. Reservations recommended. http://thecarbonbar.ca/
Right around the corner, fresh, vegetarian, delicious. You can order ahead for take-out. Patio. http://freshrestaurants.ca/
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Fresh on Crawford
894 Queen St W
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Right around the corner, fresh, vegetarian, delicious. You can order ahead for take-out. Patio. http://freshrestaurants.ca/
Italian fine-dining a short walk away. Neighbourhood favourite. June renovation work, check with restaurant first, reservations usually recommended. http://nocerestaurant.ca/
Noce
875 Queen St W
Italian fine-dining a short walk away. Neighbourhood favourite. June renovation work, check with restaurant first, reservations usually recommended. http://nocerestaurant.ca/
Yummy! Italian pizza and pasta, casual dining, great for kids, decent wine for the adults. Lovely back patio. Make a reservation, this place gets packed quickly. DO NOT ask them to alter anything on the menu, or to slice your pizza for you, they get testy, but the food is mighty tasty. Less than 10 minute walk. http://www.terroni.com/
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Terroni
720 Queen St W
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Yummy! Italian pizza and pasta, casual dining, great for kids, decent wine for the adults. Lovely back patio. Make a reservation, this place gets packed quickly. DO NOT ask them to alter anything on the menu, or to slice your pizza for you, they get testy, but the food is mighty tasty. Less than 10 minute walk. http://www.terroni.com/
Fresh Oysters, great food, relaxed friendly atmosphere, right around the corner. Small, so go early or make a reservation. http://www.oysterboy.ca/
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Oyster Boy
872 Queen St W
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Fresh Oysters, great food, relaxed friendly atmosphere, right around the corner. Small, so go early or make a reservation. http://www.oysterboy.ca/
Excellent Fish & Chips, only 3-4 window stools, this is a take-out joint.
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Hooky's Fish and Chips
893 Queen St W
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Excellent Fish & Chips, only 3-4 window stools, this is a take-out joint.
Ossington used to be filled with Korean shops, this is one that stood the test of time. Some great Pho!
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Pho Rùa Vàng Golden Turtle Restaurant
125 Ossington Ave
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Ossington used to be filled with Korean shops, this is one that stood the test of time. Some great Pho!
Open 24 Hours! Shakes, burgers, grilled cheese, deep-fried Mars Bars.
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The Lakeview Restaurant
1132 Dundas St W
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Open 24 Hours! Shakes, burgers, grilled cheese, deep-fried Mars Bars.
Neapolitan Pizza
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Pizzeria Libretto
221 Ossington Ave
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Neapolitan Pizza
Japanese, Asian Fusion, Izakaya. Everyone says you have to try the stuffed wings.
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Hanmoto
2 Lakeview Ave
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Japanese, Asian Fusion, Izakaya. Everyone says you have to try the stuffed wings.
Getting Around
It's a quick walk (5-7 min) through the park to Enterprise. Handy if you aren't renting a car from the airport but need one for only part of your visit. https://www.enterprise.ca/en/home.html
Enterprise Rent-A-Car
115 Strachan Ave
It's a quick walk (5-7 min) through the park to Enterprise. Handy if you aren't renting a car from the airport but need one for only part of your visit. https://www.enterprise.ca/en/home.html
We have a selection of bike helmets in various sizes that you can borrow, along with bike path maps, if you decide to rent a bike. You can pick up and drop off bikes at different locations, credit card required for rental, it's all automated. There are designated bike paths and many roads have bike lanes, but there is not one cohesive system, so you'll find the bike lanes change dramatically from one neighbourhood to the next. Trinity Bellwoods is part of a major bike path, with hundreds of bikes passing the apartment daily on the way to the park. Heads up for super-fast bikes taking the corner in front of the apartment. http://www.bikesharetoronto.com/
Bike Share Toronto
952 Queen St W
We have a selection of bike helmets in various sizes that you can borrow, along with bike path maps, if you decide to rent a bike. You can pick up and drop off bikes at different locations, credit card required for rental, it's all automated. There are designated bike paths and many roads have bike lanes, but there is not one cohesive system, so you'll find the bike lanes change dramatically from one neighbourhood to the next. Trinity Bellwoods is part of a major bike path, with hundreds of bikes passing the apartment daily on the way to the park. Heads up for super-fast bikes taking the corner in front of the apartment. http://www.bikesharetoronto.com/
You have easy access to public transportation on all sides. The 505 Dundas Streetcar 1 block north, the 501 Queen Streetcar 1 block south, the 504 King Streetcar 2 blocks south. The Ossington bus runs frequently and gets up to the east-west subway line. Avoid rush hour and the TTC is very convenient. Summer 2016 streetcar track repair on the 510 Queen line between Bathurst and University. Tokens, tickets, and family day passes are available for sale at The Lucky Penny. Otherwise, exact change only when boarding. https://www.ttc.ca/ There is an app to check bus and streetcar times for each stop.
Toronto Transit Commission Head Office
1900 Yonge St
You have easy access to public transportation on all sides. The 505 Dundas Streetcar 1 block north, the 501 Queen Streetcar 1 block south, the 504 King Streetcar 2 blocks south. The Ossington bus runs frequently and gets up to the east-west subway line. Avoid rush hour and the TTC is very convenient. Summer 2016 streetcar track repair on the 510 Queen line between Bathurst and University. Tokens, tickets, and family day passes are available for sale at The Lucky Penny. Otherwise, exact change only when boarding. https://www.ttc.ca/ There is an app to check bus and streetcar times for each stop.
Parks & Nature
One of the largest parks in the city right at your front door. Tennis courts, baseball diamonds, ice rink, volleyball courts, bike paths, playgrounds, splash pad in the summer, off-leash dog bowl, lots of trees to picnic under. Great people watching. There is a selection of park toys, sports equipment, blankets, etc., in the apartment for you to borrow and enjoy the park. It is safe enough both day and night, lighted walkways when it's dark. As always, be aware of your surroundings. Please #PicnicResponsibly and don't leave garbage behind. The park is famous for it's White Squirrel. It is an albino family that has been in the park for generations, keep an eye out for one. Please note: You will see people discreetly drinking alcohol and smoking pot in the park. Both are currently illegal activities and police can ticket and/or charge for these offences, but they usually have better things to do. However, once in a while they conduct a blitz in the park to remind everyone. Community police on bicycles patrol the park. When you think you smell a skunk, it's probably weed. http://www.trinitybellwoods.ca/
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Trinity Bellwoods Park
790 Queen St W
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One of the largest parks in the city right at your front door. Tennis courts, baseball diamonds, ice rink, volleyball courts, bike paths, playgrounds, splash pad in the summer, off-leash dog bowl, lots of trees to picnic under. Great people watching. There is a selection of park toys, sports equipment, blankets, etc., in the apartment for you to borrow and enjoy the park. It is safe enough both day and night, lighted walkways when it's dark. As always, be aware of your surroundings. Please #PicnicResponsibly and don't leave garbage behind. The park is famous for it's White Squirrel. It is an albino family that has been in the park for generations, keep an eye out for one. Please note: You will see people discreetly drinking alcohol and smoking pot in the park. Both are currently illegal activities and police can ticket and/or charge for these offences, but they usually have better things to do. However, once in a while they conduct a blitz in the park to remind everyone. Community police on bicycles patrol the park. When you think you smell a skunk, it's probably weed. http://www.trinitybellwoods.ca/
Hop on the Ferry and get out of the city for the day. There are three connected islands, Ward's Island, Centre Island, Hanlan's Point. No cars allowed on the island. There is a fantastic little amusement park for the under 12 crowd, petting zoo, Franklin Children's Garden on Centre Island, beaches (including clothing optional beach at Hanlan's Point), bike rental. Something for the whole family. Info and Ferry schedule here: http://www1.toronto.ca/wps/portal/contentonly?vgnextoid=34e9dada600f0410VgnVCM10000071d60f89RCRD
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Toronto Islands
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Hop on the Ferry and get out of the city for the day. There are three connected islands, Ward's Island, Centre Island, Hanlan's Point. No cars allowed on the island. There is a fantastic little amusement park for the under 12 crowd, petting zoo, Franklin Children's Garden on Centre Island, beaches (including clothing optional beach at Hanlan's Point), bike rental. Something for the whole family. Info and Ferry schedule here: http://www1.toronto.ca/wps/portal/contentonly?vgnextoid=34e9dada600f0410VgnVCM10000071d60f89RCRD
Go Jump in the Lake! Beautiful beach, boardwalk, bike bath, dog friendly areas. Rent a Stand Up Paddleboard or take lessons at http://www.wsuptoronto.ca/ Toronto participates in the Blue Flag program, an international program that awards Blue Flags to communities committed to maintaining high standards for water quality. This means that water is tested daily from June - September so you know its safe to swim in Lake Ontario. There are other beaches around, check them out here http://www.toronto.com/articles/best-toronto-beaches/
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The Beaches
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Go Jump in the Lake! Beautiful beach, boardwalk, bike bath, dog friendly areas. Rent a Stand Up Paddleboard or take lessons at http://www.wsuptoronto.ca/ Toronto participates in the Blue Flag program, an international program that awards Blue Flags to communities committed to maintaining high standards for water quality. This means that water is tested daily from June - September so you know its safe to swim in Lake Ontario. There are other beaches around, check them out here http://www.toronto.com/articles/best-toronto-beaches/
Sightseeing
The Koffler Centre is located across the street from the apartment in Artscape-Youngplace, and for summer 2016 they are offering unique self-directed bike tours with audio from speakers mounted on bikes. For PED.Toronto, the collective has created a series of bike tours through Toronto’s West Queen West area that examine the city’s shifting identities, multi-faceted realities and imagined potential. The Koffler Gallery serves as a bicycle terminal and information hub. Bike tours are available to anyone wishing to ride; bicycles are borrowed and returned free of charge. *Government issued photo ID and deposit required* http://kofflerarts.org/exhibitions/2016/03/16/ped-toronto/
Koffler Centre of the Arts
180 Shaw St
The Koffler Centre is located across the street from the apartment in Artscape-Youngplace, and for summer 2016 they are offering unique self-directed bike tours with audio from speakers mounted on bikes. For PED.Toronto, the collective has created a series of bike tours through Toronto’s West Queen West area that examine the city’s shifting identities, multi-faceted realities and imagined potential. The Koffler Gallery serves as a bicycle terminal and information hub. Bike tours are available to anyone wishing to ride; bicycles are borrowed and returned free of charge. *Government issued photo ID and deposit required* http://kofflerarts.org/exhibitions/2016/03/16/ped-toronto/
In 1812 The United States declared war and invaded Canada. Well, they tried. They had 2700 men, we had 750. We won. The neighbourhood around the apartment is full of landmarks from the war, but Fort York is the hub. Garrison Common at Fort York is a music and entertainment venue that hosts various food, drink, cultural, and music festivals, usually something happening every weekend and its close enough to walk to. http://www.fortyork.ca/news-a-events/events.html
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Fort York National Historic Site
250 Fort York Blvd
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In 1812 The United States declared war and invaded Canada. Well, they tried. They had 2700 men, we had 750. We won. The neighbourhood around the apartment is full of landmarks from the war, but Fort York is the hub. Garrison Common at Fort York is a music and entertainment venue that hosts various food, drink, cultural, and music festivals, usually something happening every weekend and its close enough to walk to. http://www.fortyork.ca/news-a-events/events.html
Crazy alley just south of Queen street, about 15 minutes walk from the apartment. It's cool to walk the alley, not likely to get hassled, but watch for discarded needles and be aware of your surroundings.
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Graffiti Alley
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Crazy alley just south of Queen street, about 15 minutes walk from the apartment. It's cool to walk the alley, not likely to get hassled, but watch for discarded needles and be aware of your surroundings.
Self guided walking tours of Toronto. Portal run by the City of Toronto. http://www1.toronto.ca/wps/portal/contentonly?vgnextoid=fe68372ad5f02410VgnVCM10000071d60f89RCRD
Heritage Toronto
157 King St E
Self guided walking tours of Toronto. Portal run by the City of Toronto. http://www1.toronto.ca/wps/portal/contentonly?vgnextoid=fe68372ad5f02410VgnVCM10000071d60f89RCRD
Entertainment & Activities
Live music by the lake in an amphitheatre. Check the schedule here: http://www.livenation.com/venues/14878/molson-canadian-amphitheatre
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Budweiser Stage
909 Lake Shore Blvd W
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Live music by the lake in an amphitheatre. Check the schedule here: http://www.livenation.com/venues/14878/molson-canadian-amphitheatre
We've tried and failed to escape the room. 10 minute walk from the apartment, book ahead. You work as a team, great for teens and for kids with some help. 1.5 hours of intense fun! Also have games at Casa Loma if you want the upscale version, but this one is close and quick and everyone is happy. Choose Stafford St location. https://www.realescapegame.ca/
Real Escape Game - Secret City Adventures
76 Stafford St
We've tried and failed to escape the room. 10 minute walk from the apartment, book ahead. You work as a team, great for teens and for kids with some help. 1.5 hours of intense fun! Also have games at Casa Loma if you want the upscale version, but this one is close and quick and everyone is happy. Choose Stafford St location. https://www.realescapegame.ca/
Blue Jays. Concerts. http://www.rogerscentre.com/
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Rogers Centre
1 Blue Jays Way
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Blue Jays. Concerts. http://www.rogerscentre.com/
Toronto Football Club. Walk there, weave home. http://www.torontofc.ca/
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BMO Field
170 Princes' Blvd
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Toronto Football Club. Walk there, weave home. http://www.torontofc.ca/
2 blocks away, one of the best yoga studios in the city. We highly recommend teachers Bibi, Louisa and Jules. Extensive drop-in schedule. There are yoga mats in the apartment for you to borrow to go to a classs or for your own practice. http://www.yogaspace.net/classes/drop-in Louisa and Jules also offer Thai massage - http://yogarepairshop.com/
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Yogaspace
148 Ossington Ave
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2 blocks away, one of the best yoga studios in the city. We highly recommend teachers Bibi, Louisa and Jules. Extensive drop-in schedule. There are yoga mats in the apartment for you to borrow to go to a classs or for your own practice. http://www.yogaspace.net/classes/drop-in Louisa and Jules also offer Thai massage - http://yogarepairshop.com/
Outdoor pool for those hot nights. Open late during heatwaves. There is a supervised splash pad just down the street in Trinity-Bellwoods park. Large indoor pool and kiddie pool in the Community Centre in Trinity-Bellwoods park. Find all the city operated pools, splashpads, and hours here. https://trca.ca/activities/swimming/
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Stanley Park
76 Walnut Ave
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Outdoor pool for those hot nights. Open late during heatwaves. There is a supervised splash pad just down the street in Trinity-Bellwoods park. Large indoor pool and kiddie pool in the Community Centre in Trinity-Bellwoods park. Find all the city operated pools, splashpads, and hours here. https://trca.ca/activities/swimming/
Indoor pool and kiddie pool, ping pong tables, running track, weightroom. Around the corner on Crawford Street in Trinity-Bellwoods park. http://www1.toronto.ca/parks/prd/facilities/complex/287/index.htm
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Trinity Community Recreation Centre
155 Crawford St
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Indoor pool and kiddie pool, ping pong tables, running track, weightroom. Around the corner on Crawford Street in Trinity-Bellwoods park. http://www1.toronto.ca/parks/prd/facilities/complex/287/index.htm
Go Leafs Go! https://www.hhof.com/
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Hockey Hall of Fame
30 Yonge St
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Go Leafs Go! https://www.hhof.com/
Shopping
The Mink Mile - couture shopping in Toronto. http://www.bloor-yorkville.com/
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Yorkville
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The Mink Mile - couture shopping in Toronto. http://www.bloor-yorkville.com/
Consistently voted #1 Vinyl Shop in Toronto. Close by on Ossington Ave. (They moved recently, so ignore address in title, they are located at 186 Ossington Ave.) If you are looking for a more complete list of record shops, including specialty, please let us know and we can give you a comprehensive list. http://www.rotate.com/
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Rotate This
186 Ossington Ave
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Consistently voted #1 Vinyl Shop in Toronto. Close by on Ossington Ave. (They moved recently, so ignore address in title, they are located at 186 Ossington Ave.) If you are looking for a more complete list of record shops, including specialty, please let us know and we can give you a comprehensive list. http://www.rotate.com/
#1 Recommended Record Shop in Little Italy. If you are looking for a more complete list of record shops, including specialty, please let us know and we can give you a comprehensive list. http://www.soundscapesmusic.com/
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Soundscapes
572 College St
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#1 Recommended Record Shop in Little Italy. If you are looking for a more complete list of record shops, including specialty, please let us know and we can give you a comprehensive list. http://www.soundscapesmusic.com/
West Queen West Art + Design District. Voted one of the coolest neighbourhoods in the world by Vogue. Walk through the park to Queen Street, turn right or left for blocks and blocks of eclectic shops, restaurants, pop-ups and some very interesting characters. We coexist peacefully with the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health a few blocks to the west, but the corner of Queen and Bathurst (Graffiti Alley is nearby) can sometimes look a bit rough. Not usually anything to worry about and that guy isn't yelling at you. Probably. http://westqueenwest.ca/
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West Queen West
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West Queen West Art + Design District. Voted one of the coolest neighbourhoods in the world by Vogue. Walk through the park to Queen Street, turn right or left for blocks and blocks of eclectic shops, restaurants, pop-ups and some very interesting characters. We coexist peacefully with the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health a few blocks to the west, but the corner of Queen and Bathurst (Graffiti Alley is nearby) can sometimes look a bit rough. Not usually anything to worry about and that guy isn't yelling at you. Probably. http://westqueenwest.ca/
Shoes! Shoes! Shoes!
heel boy
773 Queen St W
Shoes! Shoes! Shoes!
Drinks & Nightlife
The Legendary Horseshoe Tavern since 1947. Local and international music. Queen & Spadina - hoof it there, cab it home. http://www.horseshoetavern.com/
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Horseshoe Tavern
370 Queen St W
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The Legendary Horseshoe Tavern since 1947. Local and international music. Queen & Spadina - hoof it there, cab it home. http://www.horseshoetavern.com/
Mostly local, some international live music. Less than 10 minute walk. Bluegrass Brunch on the weekends. http://thedakotatavern.com/
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The Dakota Tavern
249 Ossington Ave
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Mostly local, some international live music. Less than 10 minute walk. Bluegrass Brunch on the weekends. http://thedakotatavern.com/
The Ossington Strip. From Queen to Dundas, Ossington is stuffed with bars, restaurants, nightclubs, pop-up shops, a local brewery, new and vintage clothing. Great for a morning stroll or an evening of bar-hopping. Reservations recommended for most restaurants. Things open and close frequently, check what's current here: http://ossingtonvillage.com/
Lower Ossington Avenue
The Ossington Strip. From Queen to Dundas, Ossington is stuffed with bars, restaurants, nightclubs, pop-up shops, a local brewery, new and vintage clothing. Great for a morning stroll or an evening of bar-hopping. Reservations recommended for most restaurants. Things open and close frequently, check what's current here: http://ossingtonvillage.com/
This Is Paradise. Live music 7 nights per week. integral part of Toronto music scene for decades. A block from The Legendary Horseshoe Tavern if you want to make a night of it. http://www.thecameron.com/
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The Cameron House
408 Queen St W
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This Is Paradise. Live music 7 nights per week. integral part of Toronto music scene for decades. A block from The Legendary Horseshoe Tavern if you want to make a night of it. http://www.thecameron.com/
Cool vibe.
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Communist's Daughter
1149 Dundas St W
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Cool vibe.
Pool tables, Karaoke, Sports, fair-priced drinks
The Dog's Bollocks Pub
817 Queen St W
Pool tables, Karaoke, Sports, fair-priced drinks
A bar with a little more party to it
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The Parkdale Drink
1292 Queen St W
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A bar with a little more party to it
Great place to grab a beer and watch a game
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The Dog & Bear Pub
1100 Queen St W
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Great place to grab a beer and watch a game