Toronto’s Best New Restaurants: Pinky’s Ca Phe

Toronto’s Best New Restaurants: Pinky’s Ca Phe

Pinky's Ca Phe

Leemo han, chef-proprietor of the effortlessly cool Korean-Japanese late-night hangouts OddSeoul and ­Hanmoto, saw this rundown Little Italy semi and immediately envisioned a dusky, ­lantern-lit bar serving sneakily powerful, frothy cocktails and Vietnamese-style barbecue from a charcoal backyard grill.

Clockwise from top left: Pinky’s ceviche with taro chips, clay pot beef curry, lemongrass chicken banh mi, and grilled meat platter, with a Pink Lady cocktail

There are no reservations, and no matter when I’ve shown up, whether for an after-work drink with colleagues or just before last call, there’s a line to get in. It’s worth it for the short ribs, covered in sugary char, and the beef sandwich that you dunk in a bowl of pho broth. After a few Pink Ladies (gin, raspberry syrup, egg white), you’ll be planning your next back­packing trip to Vietnam.

53 Clinton St., no phone, @pinkys_caphe

You Dip, I Dip is the kitchen’s take on a French dip. The beef sandwich is meant to be dunked in the pho broth with which it’s served.