"What the f*ck is cuffing season?"
If you're like us, that was probably your first reaction to the now widely (oddly) popular term. But what's just as surprising as the fact that you can now easily define a season by a part of a shirt sleeve? The fact that you definitely already know what cuffing season is, you just never knew the name.
We're going to pull a semi-average graduation speech move here and whip out a definition of cuffing season to kick this off. Urban dictionary defines cuffing like so,
"During the Fall and Winter months people who would normally rather be single or promiscuous find themselves along with the rest of the world desiring to be "Cuffed" or tied down by a serious relationship. The cold weather and prolonged indoor activity causes singles to become lonely and desperate to be cuffed."
Long story short? It's getting cold, your blanket seems an extra spacious these days and the idea of getting through the dark months solo just seems a little passe. It's pure biology people. But you can't just sit at home and wait for your bae to come knocking on your door with hot chocolates and some fine ass knitwear. Nor should you! We're Torontonians, we make things happen. And due to the fact we live in the glorious 6ix, there are plenty of places where you're more likely to find a bae during cuffing season that you'll actually want to go to.
And no, this isn't some speed dating, e-harmony, singles cocktail mixer pull - this is real life. Sure, people are cold and eligible bachelors and bachelorettes are still trying to look appealing under several layers, but does that mean people still aren't going to go out and have fun? Of course not. Here are some unreal places for you to head to where you can have a little bit of fun, and find plenty of singles to cuff From the cozy spots people flock to this time of year, to bumping spots you wouldn't expect would attract so many options in the winter months, we got you covered.
1. C'est What // 67 Front St. East
Social brew pub with a cozy fireplace and kick ass alcohol and food menu? You better believe that people are going to flock here this cuffing season. With huge, cozy couches surrounding a warming fireplace, live music, two bars and pool tables - head down here with your squad and get ready to meet some great new people. Another pull is that it's home to the internet radio station, whatsnext.ca, and because it's in the cellar of a historic 19th-century building in St. Lawerence Market area there are a ton of different people with different interests who head here.
2. ROM Friday Night Live // 100 Queens Park
That's right, the museum. No, this isn't some awkward school trip where you finally get partnered up with your long time calc crush for some forced scholarly activity. How about some classy champagne, a sick DJ, a club vibe, and a couple of dinosaurs? Friday nights at the ROM are remaking the way you think about what a typical night out is, and it starts every Friday night at our famed museum with a very cool, young, crowd. With priceless artifacts (and no, we're not talking about that straight 10 you're talking to) to talk about you'll always have a great way to start a conversation, and where else could you even semi-playfully/romantically use the line, hey want to go see the bat cave?
3. Get Well // 1181 Dundas West
This Dundas West gem is the perfect dive bar to get a little closer to your next significant other. Its funky decor and unreal craft beer selection attracts a fun crowd, and mix that with the abundance of seating, old-school arcade games, and comfy couches and you have the perfect set up for meeting some new people. People who are starting to realize that it's getting freezing out and who won't have any trouble forgetting about this hip bar anytime soon, or the company they had there. Grab some of their own cask beer, or a Naughty Otter Lager on top, settle into a game of pinball and get ready for cuffing season.
4. Drake Underground // 1150 Queen St. West
The not-so-hidden gem of Toronto that still feels like a VIP club every time you walk in is hitting our list for one of the top spots to find your S.O. this cuffing season. They're known for their awesome live music events, but also have some more low-key events like winter markets, movies, yoga classes, poetry slams, and probably the best event we've ever heard of- their fourth annual fried chicken battle. That's right. It's a place that showcases the best of the best local talent, so it's sure to bring in the best locals the city has, all for you to bond over in this never boring favourite of the city.
5. Reservoir Lounge // 52 Wellington St. East
What's more romantic than hustling into a stunning, historic building downtown from the world, and warming up with some unreal jazz? That's right. You just entered the real life version of a perfect meet-cute setup. The lounge has a romantic atmosphere, perfect for reminding people that the winter always feels a lot better with someone by their side. Head here for dinner and drinks with your friends, and after why not head to the brick-walled performance space with cozy red booths and red lights? It's where a young Micheal Buble (ie. the man whose voice is liquid romance) sang, and they also have live music featuring a different band and sound every single show. Smooth crowd to you to slide right into those DM's.
6. Hemingway's // 142 Cumberland St.
The perfect place to feel extra classy even though you may be heading towards a more trashy vibe. This Yorkville gem is a welcome break from the high-nosed, botox crowd that frequents a lot of the near by bars and gives you a chance to mingle with some people who won't just ask you where you "summer". The crowd is really friendly here, and with a great food and alcohol menu, it's a chill place that attracts tons of young professionals and laid back millennials a like. Grab a drink and enjoy some the live music every Friday night, or find yourself someone to sing you through the winter months at their open mic night every Monday.
7. Head to a conference // Various Locations
That's right, get your fancy pants on and your notepad out to take notes and numbers. Let's face it, you're going to be wasting your time if all you're doing is going bar to bar looking for someone this cuffing season - people are already doing that anyways! Toronto is conveniently one of the up and coming cities in so many industries right now, movies, music, theater, and so much more. With conferences for just about anyone going on weekly in this city, you'll find someone and something here, that will definitely interest you. You'll bond over mutual interests and the best part? Conferences are designed to meet people and spread ideas. And when it's the time of year when people are wondering who they're are going to spend these frost-full months with, connecting over something that interests you both may extend your cuffing season a little longer.
Check out upcoming ones here!
8. The Madison Avenue Pub // 14 Madison Ave.
Whether you describe it as that place on frat row, the one in the university district, or that place you will always get lost in, we can all agree on one thing; you will run into everyone you've ever met and their second cousin there. This is a Toronto staple for the young University crowd waiting to get their stress out. In the summer the patio is packed back to back and in the winter that space only gets cozier. With vintage decor and tunes that will never disappoint, come here to rekindle an old love or find a new one. It's the staple bar of the University district that you'll always have a good time at, and now heading there with a fresh perspective, you may even find someone who is looking for someone equally as cool and comforting to get through the winter with.
9. Rotate This // 186 Ossington Ave.
Sometimes love comes right back around, and that's exactly what happened when this classic record store left our lives from Queen St. and showed up again on Ossington. Can you imagine bumping into your future number while searching for a priceless indie record? Not just your typical bar story that's for sure. And if you really hit it off they sell tickets from major concerts promoters in Toronto, meaning you already got a second date. Find your favourite track among the amazing independent record store, and maybe you'll find someone looking for the same thing.
10. Pour Boy // 666 Manning Ave.
This eclectic, hip space in the middle of Korea is packed with 20-30 somethings afternoon and night, and for good reason. The owners of this gem are also the owners of the equally cool bar, The Green Room, so what does that mean? You're getting a chill, non-judgemental, and cheap environment that is the perfect place to mingle and meet new people. The best time to go? Their trivia nights on Monday's are a great time to whip out your competitive side and maybe even recruit an extra teammate for that bonus question. The best part? 10% of the sales go to Horizons Children Centre in Ghana, it's a win-win.
11. Round // 152a Augusta Ave.
SHAKE WHAT YOUR MAMA GAVE YOU! Terrified or excited? Both? Good, because that's where life starts. Round is yet another winning spot out of Kensington market that's known for its legendary events, which switch vibes nightly. One night it'll be a chill, relaxed place to meet some people and if it's still early enough to grab a bite to eat at the restaurant open during dinner hours and the next night? You're downing a chocolate mousse shot listening to some head banging EDM dancing like an idiot and keeping nice and warm all winter long. Either way? It's a cool place to head that attracts a variety of people, and with music like they have? You're bound to have a great time.