Welcome to the patio neighbourhood

Welcome to the patio neighbourhood

Bloor-Yorkville’s restaurants are reopening with plenty of alfresco dining, and seating stretching out across rooftops, decks and sidewalks

Photo courtesy of The Pilot

Outdoor seating is essential this summer for any of us eager to get back to socializing over brunch, dinner, an iced latte or Aperol spritz. The neighbourhood to get the most out of the alfresco dining experience is Bloor-Yorkville—its range of options, strict social-distancing policies in place and picturesque city space makes us all feel like old times again. Visitors to the neighbourhood can look forward to expanded patios onto the street, through the City’s CafeTO program: 7 West on Charles St. West, Planta on Bay St., Bar Reyna on Cumberland St. and Sassafraz, Yamato, Gelato Shop, and Trattoria Nervosa on Bellair St.

Photograph by Erin Leydon

Tucked along a European-style alleyway, chef Patrick Kriss’s much-lauded bistro Alobar Yorkville (162 Cumberland St.) serves creative, scratch-made food fusing European and Asian influences. The pretty courtyard patio, perfect for sipping one of the signature arctic-cold martinis, is now open from Thursday to Saturday, 4:30 to 10 p.m., and on Sundays from 4:30 to 9 p.m.

Photograph by Hector Vasquez

Offering handmade, traditional Italian fare—fresh pasta, pizza, antipasti and grilled items—and a lengthy wine list, Cibo Yorkville (133 Yorkville Ave.) is a modern rustic restaurant welcoming guests on its patio. Tables are available on a first-come, first-served basis daily from noon to 10 p.m.

Photograph by Erin Leydon

Dimmi Bar & Trattoria (140 Cumberland St.) sweet patio tucked around the front entrance along a pedestrian walkway, and festooned with beautiful planters, is a quiet spot for a glass of vino or a southern Italian dish. Open daily to 11 p.m.

Eataly (55 Bloor St. W.) is bringing a spritz of colour to Bloor-Yorkville with Il Patio di Eataly by Aperol. Located on Bay and Bloor, the Italian gourmet palace is working with Aperol to bring the dining experience outdoors—complete with comfortable safety measures such as capacity limits, limited contact, and hand-sanitizing stations. The menu includes Aperol spritzes, Torino-style pizza al padellino, summer-inspired aperitivo bites, and salads packed with seasonal colours and flavours. Open from Monday to Sunday with reservations online.

Photo credit: Erin Leydon

Constantine (15 Charles St. E,) in The Anndore House re-opened its doors on July 15 with a brand new rooftop patio, “The Next Level” along with their existing Charles St. patio. Celebrating the diverse cuisine of distinct regions in the Mediterranean, Constantine cultivates an intimate and inviting atmosphere, with the patio open from Wednesday to Saturday, 6 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.

Photography by Hugh O’Brien

The recently reopened patio at Firkin on Bloor (81 Bloor St. E.) is one of the best under-the-radar, open-air spots in the city. It takes over the building’s entire rooftop, over the two-storey restaurant. The British regalia and décor helps you get back into the after-work (or, really, anytime) drink mood with a good selection of pints, pub grub and more—everything we’ve come to expect from the Firkin family of bars and restaurants.

Photograph by Hugh O’Brien

The upstairs patio at Flo’s Diner (70 Yorkville Ave.) is a brunch institution in the city—and twice the size of the indoor space. This old-school diner serves all-day breakfast, salads and comfort food and has a great view of the streetscape below. The patio is open Monday to Thursday, 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Friday and Saturday from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Famous for its sprawling rooftop patio, Hemingway’s (142 Cumberland St.) is an iconic Yorkville destination for the last 39 years, known for its draft beer, pub eats and as a home away from home for visitors (plus the owners themselves, who are from New Zealand). The patio is open for online reservations and walk-ins every day until 2 a.m.

Photo courtesy of Chase Hospitality Group

Kasa Moto (115 Yorkville Ave.) reopened its expansive and one of the city’s most celebrated rooftop terraces, in the heart of Yorkville, on July 24. The kitchen serves popular dishes including sushi, tempura, lobster Caesar salad and shucked oysters along with yummy sake sangria pitchers. Open Seven days a week, noon to very late.

Celebrity chef Mark McEwan’s ONE Restaurant (116 Yorkville Ave.), a contemporary hotspot located at the chic Hazelton Hotel, has a see-and-be-seen tree-lined patio and sumptuous cocktails and menu items, including weekend brunch service, oysters, caviar and lobster spoons.

Photograph by Hugh O’Brien

Fashionable Sassafraz (100 Cumberland St.), located in a Victorian house on the corner of Bellair and Cumberland, offers a popular patio (book it online) and French-inspired Canadian cuisine, plus a hearty wine list and cocktail program. Patio is open Tuesday and Wednesday from 11:30am to 9 p.m., Thursday and Friday from 11:30 a.m. to 11pm, Saturday from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.

Intimately located in the courtyard of 99 Yorkville Avenue, Sofia Yorkville is a fine dining establishment run by hospitality czar Charles Khabouth. Serving refined and seasonal Italian cuisine by executive chef Rob LeClair, Sofia has two expansive patios (reserve online) surrounded by vibrant murals. The space is open daily for lunch from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., dinner daily from 5pm, and a special Sunday brunch from 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Longtime watering hole The Pilot (22 Cumberland St.) has a sprawling rooftop patio—known as The Flight Deck—along with a street-side patio. Patrons are encouraged to book ahead online and observe the cashless rule—to minimize contact, all purchases must be made via credit cards or debit. Open Monday to Friday 11:30 a.m. to 2 a.m., Saturday 12 p.m. to 2 a.m., Sunday 12 p.m. – 12 a.m.

Photo courtesy of Nigel DeSouza

Known forever as a spot Beyoncé and Jay-Z visited with Blue Ivy when they were in town, Trattoria Nervosa (75 Yorkville Ave.) is located in a quintessentially Yorkville semi-detached house with both rooftop and roadside patios. A chic and chill setting for classic Italian dishes and drinks. Open for both lunch and dinner Tuesday to Sunday, with lunch reservations only.

Photograph by Hugh O’Brien

Wish (3 Charles St. E.) has a breezy, South Beach-inspired patio serving contemporary cocktails, an eclectic menu inspired by California tastes and Mediterranean flavours, plus a popular weekend brunch menu.