The Best Bars in Toronto

Toronto has come a long way with its cocktail culture in the past ten years. These days you can choose your poison at any number of cool cocktail lounges or at craft breweries or at old favorite neighborhood haunts.

505 College St, Toronto, ON M6J 2J3, Canada
Bar Raval looks ordinary from the outside, but inside, the sinuous lines of the floor-to-ceiling mahogany woodwork—bar, walls, window frames—instantly bring Gaudí to mind. Created to mimic the spirit of Barcelona’s pintxos bars (in addition to the Catalonian influence of the decor, platters of food are laid out on the bar, as is the Basque pintxos tradition), the space is often packed. In the mornings, patrons sip lattes and enjoy doughnuts finished with a lick of chocolate and spiced hazelnut.
1378 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6K 1L7, Canada
The West End neighborhood of Parkdale, once considered an unsavory part of town, has undergone a transformation. One of the new arrivals is the Shameful Tiki Room, a Vancouver transplant with a kitschy Polynesian atmosphere. The cocktail selection emphasizes drinks made with rum and orgeat—tiki ingredients from the 1950s—particularly fruity, boozy punches. The best, dubbed the Volcano Bowl, arrives tableside in conjunction with a smoke machine, a thunderous voice-over, and a flaming “volcano” in the center of the drink vessel. It doesn’t get much more fun than this.
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