11 Legendary Stores & Restaurants That People In Toronto Want To Bring Back From The Dead

Which one would you save? 🤔

Editorial Assistant
11 Legendary Stores & Restaurants That People In Toronto Want To Bring Back From The Dead

Toronto has changed a lot over the years — especially during this pandemic — and so many iconic restaurants and stores have had to close up shop for good. But what if you could hit the rewind button and bring one back?

Narcity reached out to readers on Instagram to ask them just that. If you could only bring one long-lost restaurant or store back from the dead, which one would it be?

We all love a good blast from the past and there are some long-gone buildings in Toronto that are still fondly remembered by the true Torontonians who have seen the city grow and rapidly change over the years.

So buckle up for this trip down memory lane and see if you agree with the 11 spots locals said left us way too soon.

Frankie Tomatto's

The restaurant said arrivederci to its long-time customers back in the summer of 2020, having served communities across the GTA for over two decades.

Their Italian all-you-can-eat buffet was perfect for birthday celebrations and bringing families together on special occasions.

Honest Ed's

This iconic spot had the most name-drops from Narcity's readers. If you live in the 6ix, you've probably heard its name mentioned at least a dozen times either in casual conversation or in online articles about the history of Toronto.

Opened in 1984, Honest Ed's was home to what used to be some pretty awesome discount deals and was widely known for being a savings haven that sold everything from clothing to housewares items.

Around six years ago, it was demolished to make way for a high-rise project worth around $200 million.

Crocodile Rock

In the early stages of the pandemic, Toronto lost this popular bar-nightclub right in the heart of the Entertainment District. For almost 30 years, Crocodile Rock brought thousands of people together with their cheap drink specials and thumping bass.

Zellers

Zellers is a blast to the past for millennials and Gen Z alike. This signature retail chain in Canada is a true early 2000s treasure. Even its in-store restaurant with its pasty white walls and diner-style aesthetics are missed among the masses since the chain closed up shop across Ontario in early 2020.

And although Hudson's Bay brought us a pop-up store inside the Burlington Centre mall, it just doesn't beat the real thing.

Pick 6ix Sports

Drake's former restaurant, just steps away from the Scotiabank Arena, closed down back in 2019 for a myriad of issues, like flooding damage and unpaid rent. But, Torontonians are still hoping this modern sports bar will open back up someday (maybe for the next Raptors' championship?).

Sears

Luke Wendling | Dreamstime

Sears opened up in 1953, and was known as a department store staple in many Ontario malls where you could shop for outfits, baby accessories, home appliances, and so much more. But, according to CBC News, Sears Canada shut its doors for good in 2018, after 65 years in the business.

Lee Garden Restaurant

This Chinatown staple used to be a go-to spot for classic Cantonese dishes like roast duck and chow mein, up until it shuttered its doors back in 2017, according to the Globe and Mail. Now 331 Spadina Ave. has been taken over by an all-you-can-eat dim sum and sushi chain, August 8.

Mr.Greenjeans at the Eaton Centre

According to the Toronto Star, Mr. Greenjeans closed down in 2014 after 34 years at the Eaton Centre. Narcity readers are hoping this family-friendly restaurant in the middle of one of Toronto's most popular malls will make a comeback sometime in the future.

The Disney Store

bargainmoose | Flickr

Since the famous entertainment and animation studio announced it would be cutting back on in-store retail and focusing more on e-commerce sales, Canada saw all of its stores closed last year. So, if you were hoping to buy some new Encanto merchandise, you'll have to try and grab it online.

Fring's

Another Drake-endorsed spot made it to the list of lost gems. Co-owned by celebrity Susur Lee and his sons, the restaurant closed down back in 2018, according to NOW.

And while it may be missed by some, the restaurant was not without controversy. Fring's had reportedly received some backlash after two owners were accused of withholding tips from their staff back in the day and also had its liquor license briefly suspended, at one point.

Marché 

With its Toronto location closed, Marché Mövenpick sat smack dab inside of Brookfield Place and will be missed by those who liked to frequent the Scotiabank Arena and travelling international tourists alike.

Sophie Chong
Editorial Assistant
Sophie Chong is an editorial assistant for Narcity Media and is based in Toronto, Ontario.
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