Summerlicious 2014: 40 Restaurants That Are Your Best Bets

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SUMMERLICIOUS 2014
Gary Blakeley via Getty Images

If you weren't quite on the ball when it came to Summerlicious reservations, you may think your opportunity has passed to try out one of Toronto's top restaurants for a fraction of the price (or as it really turns out on the bill, a free dessert).

But fear not, Torontonians! We've taken a look at the offerings being showcased in the summer of 2014 and determined which menus have the best options (which, in many cases, means the most options), truly original dishes and a great price point — not to mention, reservations still available.

Take a look at our list of Summerlicious restaurants you can still try out, and let us know where you've visited this time around.

Summerlicious Picks 2014
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Restaurant: Blu Ristorante
Neighbourhood: Yorkville
Price point: $35 dinner
Menu highlight: Short rib agnolotti with zuccihini, corn, pepper, and a Napolitana sauce (and tons of vegetarian options)
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day except Thursday, July 17

Restaurant: Bodega
Neighbourhood: Chinatown
Price point: $35 dinner
Menu highlight: Blue crab cakes with ancho chili aioli & tomato provençale
Patio: Yes
Reservations available: Every day except Saturday, July 19

Restaurant: Bymark
Neighbourhood: Financial District
Price point: $45 dinner
Menu highlight: Lindt chocolate pudding with toasted marshmallows, cookie crumble, strawberry cannoli
Patio: Yes
Reservations available: Yes, but not via OpenTable — must call (416) 777-1144

Restaurant: Bier Markt
Neighbourhood: Esplanade
Price point: $35 dinner
Menu highlight: Markt charcuterie For One with espresso candied bacon, saucission sec, markt pickle, house mustard, smoked gouda cheese, grilled bistro bread
Patio: Yes
Reservations available: Every day, but limited on Thursday, July 10

Restaurant: Biff's Bistro
Neighbourhood: Front St.
Price point: $35 dinner
Menu highlight: Salmon tartare with Belgian endive, zucchini ribbons & Espelette mayo
Patio: Yes
Reservations available: Every day

Restaurant: Bloom Restaurant
Neighbourhood: Bloor West
Price point: $35 dinner
Menu highlight: Calamari with caramelized sour onion tossed in arugula-cilantro and onion mojo salad
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day, but no seatings between 7 and 8 p.m.

Restaurant: 5th Element
Neighbourhood: Queen West
Price point: $25 dinner
Menu highlight: Railway mutton curry, slow-cooked with tamarind, Kashmiri chili and cardamom (and so many other options)
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day

Restaurant: 7 Numbers
Neighbourhood: Midtown
Price point: $25 dinner
Menu highlight: Salsiccia (homemade Barese veal sausage)
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day

Restaurant: Arisu
Neighbourhood: Koreatown
Price point: $25 dinner
Menu highlight: Galbi Jjim (signature braised beef short ribs with simmered vegetables, traditional Korean herbs and ginseng)
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day

Restaurant: Bangkok Garden
Neighbourhood: Yonge and Gerrard
Price point: $25 dinner
Menu highlight: Sugar cane shrimp with potato, wild ginger with curry paste; served with sweet & spicy sriracha sauce
Patio: Yes
Reservations available: Every day

Restaurant: Bannock
Neighbourhood: Financial District
Price point: $25 dinner
Menu highlight: Smoked salmon and salt-baked beets with split and sweet pea hummus, grapefruit, grenadine
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day, closed for dinner Sundays

Restaurant: Cafe Boulud
Neighbourhood: Yorkville
Price point: $45 dinner
Menu highlight: Cumbrae beef brisket with wild leek kimchi, grilled watermelon, crispy rice, black sesame
scallion & ginger sauce
Patio: Yes
Reservations available: Every day, but very limited times still available

Restaurant: Chiado
Neighbourhood: Little Italy
Price point: $45 dinner
Menu highlight: Terrine of salted cod with wilted spinach, shrimp, red wine sauce
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day

Restaurant: Destingo
Neighbourhood: Queen West
Price point: $25 dinner
Menu highlight: Rack of New Zealand lamb in a fresh mint sauce, served with roasted vegetables
Patio: Yes
Reservations available: Every day

Restaurant: Edward Levesque's Kitchen
Neighbourhood: Leslieville
Price point: $35 dinner
Menu highlight: 12-hour stout-braised braised pork shoulder with cabbage/carrot/lime/sesame slaw, Boston baked beans
Patio: Yes
Reservations available: Every day, but must call: (416) 465-3600

Restaurant: Estiatorio VOLOS
Neighbourhood: Financial District
Price point: $35 dinner
Menu highlight: Seafood barley pilaf with eggplant, giant sea scallop, and gulf shrimp
Patio: Yes
Reservations available: Every day, but getting limited; closed Sundays

Restaurant: Five Doors North
Neighbourhood: North Toronto
Price point: $25 dinner
Menu highlight: “The Butcher's Son” Szechuan marinated Miami ribs
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day, but limited times on Fridays and Saturdays; closed Sundays

Restaurant: Globe Bistro
Neighbourhood: Danforth
Price point: $35 dinner
Menu highlight: Perth County pork loin with cucumber kimchi, wild rice, Korean BBQ sauce, cilantro
Patio: Yes
Reservations available: Every day, except for July 10 and July 14

Restaurant: Harlem
Neighbourhood: Old Toronto
Price point: $25 dinner
Menu highlight: Southern fried chicken and waffles and signature Scotch-bonnet-coriander-lime syrup and homemade gravy
Patio: Yes
Reservations available: Every day

Restaurant: John & Sons Oyster House
Neighbourhood: Summerhill
Price point: $35 dinner
Menu highlight: Potato crusted albacore tuna, grilled asparagus, oven roasted roma tomatoes, smoked egg, chermoula aioli
Patio: Yes
Reservations available: Every day, but increasingly limited times

Restaurant: La Société
Neighbourhood: Yorkville
Price point: $35 dinner
Menu highlight: Pickerel with asparagus and barley risotto, lemon olive oil
Patio: Yes
Reservations available: Every day, but very limited times for July 11 and 12

Restaurant: L'Unita
Neighbourhood: North Yorkville
Price point: $35 dinner
Menu highlight: Chocolate truffle cake with Nutella mousse, candied pecans & maldon salt
Patio: Yes
Reservations available: Every day; closed Sundays

Restaurant: La Fenice
Neighbourhood: Entertainment District
Price point: $35 dinner
Menu highlight: Papardelle egg noodles with tomato and red wine braised pork back ribs with assorted mushrooms and Parmigiano-Reggiano
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day; closed Sundays

Restaurant: Lee
Neighbourhood: King West
Price point: $45 dinner
Menu highlight: Thai fried chicken, green mango and citrus salad with grapefruit, jicama, lime leaf, chili calamansi vinaigrette, sesame crisp
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day, but very limited times (especially Thursday, Friday and Saturday)

Restaurant: Maialino Enoteca
Neighbourhood: Parkdale
Price point: $25 dinner
Menu highlight: White pizza topped with fresh Arugula,vine ripped tomatoes and our house cured Prosciutto, and Olive Oil
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day

Restaurant: Michael's on Simcoe
Neighbourhood: Entertainment District
Price point: $45 dinner
Menu highlight: Pan-seared Orata fillets on fennel puree topped with tomato, olive, potato and crab salad
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day

Restaurant: Mistura
Neighbourhood: North Yorkville
Price point: $45 dinner
Menu highlight: Roasted pork capicollo and creamy white polenta and caramelized carrots and black garlic cloves
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day, but increasingly limited times on weekend evenings

Restaurant: Momofuku Daishō
Neighbourhood: Financial District
Price point: $45 dinner
Menu highlight: Somen noodles with pea dashi, mizuna, scallion
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day, but only limited times still available

Restaurant: Nota Bene
Neighbourhood: Queen and University
Price point: $45 dinner
Menu highlight: Oceanwise albacore tuna sashimi with citrus soya, ginger, coriander, bonito flakes
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day

Restaurant: Ouzeri
Neighbourhood: Danforth
Price point: $25 dinner
Menu highlight: Pastitsio, Greece’s most famous pasta dish, baked layers of penne pasta and spiced ground beef topped with béchamel cream served with baby greens
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day

Restaurant: Pangaea
Neighbourhood: Yorkville
Price point: $35 dinner
Menu highlight: Duck breast spiced with coriander seed, fennel seed and orange zest, carrot puree, roasted root vegetables, orange-coriander gel
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day; closed Sundays

Restaurant: Pukka
Neighbourhood: St. Clair and Christie
Price point: $25 dinner
Menu highlight: Beef short ribs braised with black cumin, garlic and ginger
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day, but increasingly limited times

Restaurant: Pulcinella Ristorante Italiano
Neighbourhood: Etobicoke
Price point: $35 dinner
Menu highlight: Cinghiale, three-hour braised farm raised Boar Ragu with home- made Rigatoni pasta and shaved Caciocavallo Cheese
Patio: Coming soon
Reservations available: Every day; closed Mondays

Restaurant: Rock Lobster
Neighbourhood: Ossington
Price point: $25 dinner
Menu highlight: Rock Lobster Roll, consisting of Nova Scotia lobster, mayo, lemon and RLFC seasoning
Patio: Yes
Reservations available: Every day, but must call (416) 533-1800

Restaurant: Splendido
Neighbourhood: Annex
Price point: $45 dinner
Menu highlight: Black Truffle Agnolotti with Ricotta, Nutmeg & Parmigiano Reggiano
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day, but limited times and must call (416) 929-7788

Restaurant: Tabülè
Neighbourhood: Midtown
Price point: $25 dinner
Menu highlight: Akaawi, cheese seared with nigelli seeds topped with tomato concasse and finished with za'atar and extra virgin olive oil drizzle
Patio: Yes
Reservations available: Every day

Restaurant: The Host
Neighbourhood: Yorkville
Price point: $25 dinner
Menu highlight: Kori Gassi, Manglorean style chicken cooked in a gravy of zesty masala which ranges from peppercorn, coriander to coconut and tamarind
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day

Restaurant: Rosedale Diner
Neighbourhood: Rosedale
Price point: $35 dinner
Menu highlight: Petite Poutine au Canard: off-the-bone duck confit & québécois cheese curds, frites, demi-glace gravy
Patio: Yes
Reservations available: Every day

Restaurant: Toula Restaurant
Neighbourhood: Lakeshore
Price point: $35 dinner
Menu highlight: Handmade Canadian Atlantic lobster ravioli, with a Sauvignon Blanc San Gimignano saffron cream reduction
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day, but increasingly limited times on weekends

Restaurant: Weslodge
Neighbourhood: King West
Price point: $35 dinner
Menu highlight: Saffron tagliatelle with spring vegetables, olive dust, Bufala mozzarella, pickled enoki
Patio: No
Reservations available: Every day, but very limited times on weekends

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