Ontario Downtown Toronto Beer Bars

Discussion in 'Canada' started by montrealbcr89, Nov 30, 2012.

  1. montrealbcr89

    montrealbcr89 Oct 31, 2011 Quebec (Canada)

    Headed to dt T.O. Friday-Sunday for a wedding. Wondering if any BAs know of any good beer bars? Cheers!
     
  2. SebD

    SebD Nov 24, 2010 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    Beer Bistro and Bar Volo
     
    mtomlins likes this.
  3. J_D_Rivers

    J_D_Rivers Nov 29, 2012 Ontario (Canada)

    Bellwoods Brewery has the best local beer in Ontario in my opinion. Beer Bistro has many beers that are not available anywhere else in Ontario.
     
  4. TheSevenDuffs

    TheSevenDuffs Jan 20, 2010 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    I am partial to Bar Hop these days.

    If you don't mind a bit of a trek, Bellwoods is the place to go.
     
  5. hopsolutely

    hopsolutely Oct 12, 2010 Ontario (Canada)

    Although I'd also highly recommend Bar Hop, C'est What remains an OCB legend (in my mind).
    Haven't been in a while and think they were looking to increase their beer selection, but 35 Ontario craft taps and 5 cask choices in a totally unpretentious (basement) pub have always made them "a destination" for me...
     
  6. liamt07

    liamt07 Jul 26, 2009 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    I'm going to further recommend Bellwoods, Beer Bistro, C'est What and Bar Hop. WVRST is awesome as well, I always find myself at one of these joints (and WVRST always has Peche Mortel on nitro).
     
    mtomlins likes this.
  7. peensteen

    peensteen Apr 3, 2010 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    Also Volo will be closed for a week starting Dec.2 so if you want to go there Friday would be your only shot at it. All the other places these fine gentlemen have suggested are all good too, but go to Bellwoods if you can.
     
  8. montrealbcr89

    montrealbcr89 Oct 31, 2011 Quebec (Canada)

    Thanks a bunch, guys. Seeing as I only hve a couple hours free, I'm going to hit up Beer Bistro. It's only 10 mins from my hotel. Score! Cheers!
     
    SebD likes this.
  9. FEUO

    FEUO Jul 24, 2012 Ontario (Canada)

    Bar Volo is good, but found selection to be a bit spotty. In my naive days I thought the Bier Markt on Esplanade was good but the last few times in the had about 1/3 of what their menu listed. That, and it was packed with young-ins.
     
  10. dgilks

    dgilks Jul 14, 2008 Australia

    Volo and C'est What are my must visits every time I get to Toronto. Beer Bistro is good but pricey and busy.
     
    Zimbo likes this.
  11. atomeyes

    atomeyes Jul 13, 2011 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    as a reference for anyone reading this thread in the future (i.e. time travellers):

    Volo has over 30 taps. bottle list is being cut down and specialized.

    it is the best draught bar in toronto. hands down.
     
  12. TheSevenDuffs

    TheSevenDuffs Jan 20, 2010 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    I would re-word that to say that it has the best draught selection in Toronto hands-down.
     
    cratez and cmadd like this.
  13. atomeyes

    atomeyes Jul 13, 2011 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    nah.
     
  14. TheSevenDuffs

    TheSevenDuffs Jan 20, 2010 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    Volo is a great beer bar but is not without its faults. I haven't even considered venturing there the last 4 or 5 times I have been downtown.

    It is a matter of opinion of course.
     
    cratez and kjyost like this.
  15. liamt07

    liamt07 Jul 26, 2009 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    My sentiments exactly. Used to be my regular, haven't been in at least a year now...
     
  16. shopshopshop

    shopshopshop Aug 17, 2011 Ontario (Canada)

    Given the choice between Volo and Bellwoods, Bellwoods wins hands down.
     
  17. FEUO

    FEUO Jul 24, 2012 Ontario (Canada)

    Volo and Bistro are bars.
    Bellwoods is a brewpub.
    C'Est What is a bit of both.

    Am I right on this?
     
  18. liamt07

    liamt07 Jul 26, 2009 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    Bellwoods and Volo brew on site.
    Beer Bistro is just a bar.
    C'est What has their own line of house beers, but they're contracted out of Durham.
     
  19. FEUO

    FEUO Jul 24, 2012 Ontario (Canada)

    Thanks for the info. Volo brews on site? That little place?
     
  20. atomeyes

    atomeyes Jul 13, 2011 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    Blichmann set-up. small quantities.
    might contract out for certain beer in the near future.
     
  21. FEUO

    FEUO Jul 24, 2012 Ontario (Canada)

    Cool.
    I just liked the setup and atmosphere. I prefer holes to uppity banker bars (Bistro).
     
  22. dgilks

    dgilks Jul 14, 2008 Australia

    I clearly need to check out Bellwoods next time I'm in town. That said, while Volo does have a great list, I can't beat the combination of C'est What for quality and nostalgia and Against the Grain for location, a patio and a half decent list. The fact that my usual digs when in Toronto are in the St Lawrence area.
     
  23. mooseisloose

    mooseisloose Nov 16, 2005 Florida

    C'est What is awesome. Lamb-burger with any assortment of housebrews on tap.
     
  24. Electros

    Electros Feb 20, 2007 Ontario (Canada)
    Subscriber Beer Trader

    Ces't What.
    Bar Volo.
    Beer Academy (only 3 blocks from C'W).
    Beer Bistro.
    Granite Brewpub.
     
  25. FEUO

    FEUO Jul 24, 2012 Ontario (Canada)

    Is Volo still called Volo? I swear I drove by where I thought it was (from a previous visit) and there is something else there now. Weird.
     
  26. liamt07

    liamt07 Jul 26, 2009 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    Their house brand of beers are called 'House Ales'...
     
  27. FEUO

    FEUO Jul 24, 2012 Ontario (Canada)

    What? I was asking if the BAR was something else now, or is it still called Volo. Sorry, you lost me for a sec, boss. :)
     
  28. liamt07

    liamt07 Jul 26, 2009 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    They've got the same name still :)
     
  29. FEUO

    FEUO Jul 24, 2012 Ontario (Canada)

    Just in T.O. last week for a night.
    Hit Beer Bistro for dinner and a Cantillon. Sorry, but while the beer selection is decent enough I did not like the vibe of that place. I'm sure its great for a business lunch or if you like wearing a jacket to the bar, but I prefer quieter places like Bar Hop (which I also visited, and was around the corner from my hotel).

    Also stopped at Bellwoods for a couple. Love that place. Staff is awesome. Vibe is great.
    I will DEFINITELY be back.

    I am back in the city on the 19th if anyone wants to meet up for a beer.
     
  30. mtomlins

    mtomlins Mar 12, 2010 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    I was in T.O. for a wedding a while ago and totally agree with Beer Bistro! Went for a few late night pints at a little out-of-the-way joint that was pretty cool called Grapefruit Moon. Can't speak to the food, but they had a bunch of Ontario taps!

    I have heard so much about Bellwoods and can't wait to try, but it is oddly absent in Ottawa. Is there a reason behind the lack of distribution? Some kind of LCBO B.S. regulation I suspect....
     
  31. FEUO

    FEUO Jul 24, 2012 Ontario (Canada)

    Seems like Bellwoods can barely keep up with local demand. Right now they are not built for ANY distribution.
    Someone correct me if I'm wrong.

    I think they even scaled back the growler fills due to local demand for bottles.
     
  32. mtomlins

    mtomlins Mar 12, 2010 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    Oh, ok, that makes sense. I had heard they had signed an agreement to distribute to New York, but I don't know if that is true/happened. That made me wonder why NY but not more widely in ON, but the NY story might be more fiction that fact.
     
  33. FEUO

    FEUO Jul 24, 2012 Ontario (Canada)

    Anything is possible. After all they did collab with Evil Twin. Maybe the idea is to work with a larger brewhouse in NY and do some limited/collab runs with ET again.
     
  34. peensteen

    peensteen Apr 3, 2010 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    Bellwoods sells bottle out of the brewery only and they do in fact distribute to the US through twelvepercent or whoever it is that distributes Evil Twin. They get bottles and kegs in NY and just had a couple beers on tap at Torst in Brooklyn and they even have bottles out in California.

    You Ottawa folks get to enjoy all those oddball Beau's one off's.....thats something I guess ;)
     
    liamt07 likes this.
  35. mtomlins

    mtomlins Mar 12, 2010 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    Yah, I heard someone founds some in San Francisco! What the hell, San Fran but not Ottawa, geez.... ;)! Yah, Beau's is a nice trade-off, but I am most excited about Beyond the Pale in Ottawa. When they start bottling more regulary, we will need to set-up a trade route (Bellwoods for BTP) and skip LCBO all together!
     
  36. KeKeKumba

    KeKeKumba May 5, 2011 Ontario (Canada)

    While I have a trading partner that hooks me up with Bellwoods stuff regularly, it would be nice to see a keg of say Witchshark or a Monogamy series beer pop up in bars here every so often. Perhaps I'll mention that to a few places next time I'm out.
     
  37. TheSevenDuffs

    TheSevenDuffs Jan 20, 2010 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    Yep, that was me! Witchshark was on the shelf at City Beer in San Fran last weekend for $17.99 a bottle :confused: A friend saw some on the shelf in Chicago last weekend as well (same price).
     
  38. mtomlins

    mtomlins Mar 12, 2010 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    That must a been weird to travel all the way across the continent just to find a bottle from your 'home brewery!" Move over Anchor Steam ;) !!
     
  39. Sammy

    Sammy Dec 1, 2003 Ontario (Canada)

    Could that witchshark be bootleg
     
    peensteen likes this.
  40. liamt07

    liamt07 Jul 26, 2009 Ontario (Canada)
    Beer Trader

    No, it is actually them.
     
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