Introducing: Brooklyn Tavern, a cozy American bistro in the middle of Leslieville
The Food: Throwbacks to Mad Men-era cuisine: meatballs, pan-fried liver and onions, and an iceberg wedge topped with buttermilk blue-cheese dressing and crumbled bacon. The house-ground brisket burger comes square and medium-rare.
The Drinks: Local craft beers and affordable Ontario wines, including a pair of house wines made from Henry of Pelham grapes.
The Place: If Sam Malone had been a decorator with a penchant for salvaged finds, Cheers might have looked a bit like Brooklyn Tavern. The neighbourly space has comfy blue banquettes, a big central bar and, for decor, a hodgepodge of vintage memorabilia, including photos, framed LPs and an antique boxing-ring bell.
• 20 embroidery hoops repurposed as coat hooks
• 8 ounces of brisket in each burger patty
• 4 vintage sconces from homes around Toronto
• 2 walls made out of tortoiseshell-patterned acrylic
• 1 original Prohibition-era arrest warrant
• 1 friendly ghost who’s reportedly been haunting the space for years
• 1 house mascot named Doris, who appears in a painting behind the bar (the owners claim she drinks gin and talks out-of-place—but always stays classy)