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C'est What?

Your Rating: None
BA SCORE
3.65/5
Good
132 Ratings
PLACE INFO

Type: Brewery, Bar, Eatery

67 Front St E
Toronto, Ontario, M5E 1B5
Canada

(416) 867-9499 | map
cestwhat.com

Notes:
C'est What? brand beers are brewed by County Durham Brewery.

Added by BeerAdvocate

Beers are brewed at / by another brewery.
BEER STATS
Beers:
8
Reviews:
101
Ratings:
132
PLACE STATS
BA Score:
4.15/5
Reviews:
67
Ratings:
92
pDev:
9.16%
 
HISTOGRAM
 
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 92 |  Reviews: 67
Photo of Jotora
3/5  rDev -27.7%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 3 | selection: 3

Photo of cyrenaica
3.08/5  rDev -25.8%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3.5 | service: 2 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.5

Selection: Most of the beers on the current menu can be found at either Smokeless Joe's, Cafe Volo, or the Beer Bistro. About 50 beer total, and all Canadian

Atmosphere: It's a windowless basement pub in Toronto's St. Lawrence Market district, and has been done up decently. It's more a candidate for Restaurant Makeover however than any awards.

Service: As a previous describes, the staff is quite snobbish, to the point of insulting. I asked for one particular beer and the response was 'We don't have it anymore....nobody bought it....you should have been here two weeks ago". Made me wonder why they didn't update the menu that cost them a maximum of $0.05 to make.

Value: The beer value was excellent. $5.00 - 6.00 for a 550ml draught of a Canadian craft brew. The food value...not so great. My burger was very good, but I can get a similar burger at other restaurants for less (and more meat).

I would recommend this place because the beer value is excellent and the beer selection beats a chain restaurant like Kelsey's/Casey's/Jack Astors

 1,050 characters

Photo of valianes
3.25/5  rDev -21.7%

Photo of terrec
3.25/5  rDev -21.7%

Photo of Canada_Dan
3.5/5  rDev -15.7%

Photo of toronto_beermaven
3.5/5  rDev -15.7%

Photo of HokieNoPokie
3.55/5  rDev -14.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.5

During a recent visit to Toronto, a friend and I had some spare time and decided to stop by C'est What? to indulge in the local brewpub scene. After figuring out the Toronto Subway system, we arrived at C'est What? for lunch sometime around noon.

The interior is predominately blue, and the fish tanks lend a cool, underground feeling to the place. Very nice. There seemed to be plenty of beers to choose from, but none of them stood out as one that I'd like. I asked the waitress what was closest to an IPA, and she suggested Al's Cask Ale. I had that and a Chocolate Ale, and unfortunately, wasn't very impressed with either of them.

The menu had a pretty good selection of food. I had a salmon wrap, and my friend had a lamb burger. Both were pretty good, but not anything to get excited about. Service was quick, but there were only about four or five tables occupied at the time.

If I'm ever in Toronto again, I'll probably stop by C'est What? again, but only after visiting some of the other brewpubs - C'est what is pretty good, but I refuse to believe that it's one of the best pubs that Toronto has to offer.

 1,129 characters

Photo of beertooth
3.55/5  rDev -14.5%
vibe: 3 | quality: 3 | service: 4 | selection: 4

I stopped by this place a few times the last time I was in Toronto.

It was never crowded and most of the time my friend and I were the only people there. We stumbled in one rainy cold night not knowing anything about this place.

I found this place to be comfortable with large leather chairs and couches, a fire place, and a game room. The bartender was extremely friendly and prices were reasonable.

I didn't get a chance to try the food, but we usually ended up at Pizza Pizza afterwards.

The beer selection was decent. They offered some locals on tap and various bottles. I couldn't get enough of the Dennison's Hefe they had on tap.

I'd really like to see how this place is now. I wouldn't mind going back if I find myself in Toronto any time soon.

 757 characters

Photo of talbotjf99
3.6/5  rDev -13.3%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.75 | selection: 3.75 | food: 3.25

Photo of CAMRAhardliner
3.63/5  rDev -12.5%
vibe: 4 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3

This bar is in a basement and has two seperate large rooms each with their own bar. There are lots of tables and room. Theres a large collection of old and rare bottles on shelves and lots of other brewiana(sp) on the walls. The music is a good mix of 60s rock, trendy alt and ambient electronic at about talking level. The clientele is a mix of college kids, art types, and capitalist casualties (businessmen).

The focus of the beer menu is Ontario and Canadian Micros. They have a small import beer menu with only Maredsous 10 catching my eye. The coolest thing about the beer selection is the cask ales. Theyve got Als Ale (which is one of the 5 house labels they sell) and Wellington County Ale and Arkell Bitter on cask. This is very cool because cask ales are so damned rare in the beer backwater that is Toronto. The casks tasted fresh and seemed well maintained.

The food is mediocore, I had lemon grass chicken with noodles and my friend had chicken masala, mine was kind of bland tasting and both appeared to be frozen at one time or another.

overall definitely one of the top 5 bars in Toronto in my opinion

 1,127 characters

Photo of sullenbee
3.65/5  rDev -12%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3 | selection: 4 | food: 4

Stopped in Toronto to pick up some friends on the way to Montreal. Decided to at least go out and check out one place in town.

C'est What? was in a basement setting, atmosphere wasn't really my cup of tea. However, the beer list was decent, and I ended up with a cask conditioned Russian Imperial Stout. Ordered a burger that came with fresh jalapenos.

I only actually had one beer, as the price was a bit more than I'm used to paying. Food was good, and it was a worthwhile stop. Just not really my cup of tea as far as atmosphere goes.

 541 characters

Photo of Beer-Fetish
3.75/5  rDev -9.6%

Photo of BrewSomerville
3.75/5  rDev -9.6%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 3 | selection: 5 | food: 3.5

This will be my first time reviewing, but not my first time @ C'est What?

The front entrance is easy to miss if you aren't paying attention. The inside looks pretty cool, but they could use some better lighting in my opinion. Some nice stone work on the walls. Interesting decorations.

Food was tasty; I usually have the lamb burger. My friend had the club and said that it was the best club that she had ever had.

I don't think that I saw one Beer on the list that wasn't brewed in Ontario that is great; they should get a tax break or something for supporting fellow Ontarians.
I had the F&M Stonehammer Dark on cask. I think they had the biggest selection of cask Beers that I have ever seen, so they are getting extra points for that.
My Beer was served at the right temperature and in a suitable glass, so I was perfectly content while I was there.

Even though it is of no fault of C'est What, I just want to mention that from the parking garage at the end of Church St. to C'est What?, my friend and I were approached by three different shady looking characters asking for money. I wouldn't mention it but it's hardly even five minutes away walking at a leisurely pace... so just make sure that you don't have any loose change audibly bouncing around in your pockets.

Overall, our meal, service, Beer, and everything else was great. Just not the walk there from the parking place.

 1,403 characters

Photo of SgtStout
3.75/5  rDev -9.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 2 | selection: 5 | food: 4

Been going here frequently lately, one of the best beer selections on tap in Toronto, usually with lots of Canadian as well as international offerings.
The atmosphere is great. It's in the basement of an old building so there's lots of exposed brick and wooden beams. The food is good, nothing exceptional but reasonably priced. My main gripe would be with the service. I've been in when the place is packed and there's a line out the door, and it looked like there were only 2 or three people serving. It took a good half hour before someone took our drink order, and then when they did, the waitress couldn't tell me anything about the beers on tap.
On the other hand, I've been here on slow nights during the week and sat at the bar, and the bartender really knew his stuff and was more than happy to talk at length about the selection.
Not the best for downtown dining, but a required stop on the Toronto beer circuit.

 923 characters

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.78/5  rDev -8.9%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 3.5 | food: 3.5

I went there on a Sunday night and only the bar section was opened. The selection of Ontario micros on tap was quite extensive with very friendly service and good knowledge of products offered. I was brought some samples without asking for them. Prices were reasonable for Toronto and food was OK. I must admit that I wasn't expecting too much after reading some reviews but I left with a good impression. Their own beers are not the best but the selection of Ontario micros more then makes up for it.

 501 characters

Photo of chrisjws
3.78/5  rDev -8.9%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 4.25 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4.5

Photo of KingSlender
3.78/5  rDev -8.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4 | food: 3

C'est What is a great little brewery located very close to the Sky Dome. We visited here during a two-day trip to Toronto and were very impressed with the selection and quality of the brews. This was by far the best brewery we hit in the Toronto area. The Chocolate Coffee Porter was excellent, along with the Hemp Ale, and Rye. The server was very kind and offered advice on many of their beers. While enjoying the great beers, we listened to some good Canadian tunes, and snacked on some appetizers that were also surprisingly tasty. I can't wait to get back next time I'm in town!

 583 characters

Photo of TerryW
3.8/5  rDev -8.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 2.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 2.5

Lots of room in place, but still tons of cozy little nooks and crannies to get comfortable in. Good place to while away a couple of hours.

Great selection of beers including some house specialties and lots of local stuff. Worth going for that alone. Reasonable beer prices mean you can sample all kinds of brews.

Service was indifferent. Not always to hand when it was time. No napkins or utensils with my yam frites. Which, by the way, were hopelessly limp and greasy.

What the hell. The beer and the space made it worth the experience and on that basis should been good for a 4.0-4.5. I'll swing by again sometime and give the help and the menu a more rigorous test. Recommended. Bring your friends.

 710 characters

Photo of MarcatGSB
3.85/5  rDev -7.2%
vibe: 3.75 | quality: 3.75 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4.25 | food: 3.5

Clearly C'est What? is a mainstay in the Toronto beer scene. And as it appears to me, is the cask ale headwaters for Toronto. After talking with people through out the week I stayed in Toronto, it seems C'est What? really pushed the boundaries of beer in Toronto from the start.

Place is kind of hard to find as well, as there is a small door that leads you into the basement of an office building. It's a cool, English Style pub feel. With center posts, low ceilings, and many smaller, broken up spaces. It's rather well lit, and very clean. It's a nice looking place.

Great selection of Ontario beers, quite a few of their own on tap. Food was pretty middle of the road...But good. Make it a point to check out C'est What? on your next visit.

 747 characters

Photo of IBUnit63
3.85/5  rDev -7.2%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

Man, we never have extra time in Toronto. It's always a weekend commando mission or something. Gotta fix that. Either way, we did at least have a chance to check out C'est What by the market...and by the way, the market is sick. Sort of like the Broadway Market in Buffalo, only on steroids and actually in a decent neighborhood. But I digress.

Atmosphere isn't something that's a strong suit here, as enjoyable as our time was. It reminds me of one of those cheesy carpeted, nondescript hotel bars with bad music piped in. No offense, but something a little more contemporary may be in order. At least fix the tunes.

Beer quality is very solid. Decent variety of house brews as well as some of the better Canadian offerings on tap - good range of style. Their house brews are solid and I didn't run out of choices from a moderately-sized list.

Food wasn't bad either. I had a lamburger, which went a little heavy on the spice. OK for me; others may get a little freaked out. I think it was chili powder with a heavy hand this time; the Beautiful Bride had some yam fries if memory served me right with a fair amount of cumin. Interesting combo.

As mentioned, selection wasn't huge but what was on the docket was quite good and showed solid range. No complaints here.

Tab was reasonable. Overall a very pleasant experience that we would have no problems repeating.

 1,369 characters

Photo of Sammy
3.88/5  rDev -6.5%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 3.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 3.5

A very good pub. Three of us had seven beers and some food and walked out for less than 50 CDN (38 USD). Smoking and non-smoking areas, lots of tables and sofas and billiard tables. Servers not beer knowledgeable, an Ontario problem, but very alert and competent in serving. Lighting dim dim. We had a good time. Food good for pub and for sampling several beers. Choice of beers by variety and peculiarity very good. Clearly they are a supporter of the microbreweries and that's the selection. Definitely worth a visit.

 519 characters

Photo of Bf_89
3.91/5  rDev -5.8%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.75 | selection: 4 | food: 3.75

Photo of StormAles
3.93/5  rDev -5.3%
vibe: 2.75 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5

Photo of yancot
4/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of liamt07
4/5  rDev -3.6%

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C'est What? in Toronto, ON, Canada
Brewery rating: 3.65 out of 5 with 132 ratings
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