I won’t lie to you, it’s hard to differentiate what the suburbs look like in a city like Toronto. The way I see it; instead of the simple, picket-fenced houses stacked up along one line (although places like that do exist in certain areas in the city), the suburbs of Toronto are more so a street of homes and apartments off the strip of a lot busier intersections.

Across Toronto, there's neighbourhoods like that in Yorkville, Little Italy, or in found within the Beaches. They are areas where the hustle of downtown is less extreme, and where skyscrapers are replaced with city parks. And while the downtown core is scattered with restaurants that gain the most spotlight, it’s in the less busy areas where you can find something even better - and we’ve compiled a list to exactly prove it.

READ MORE: The 40 Most Important Restaurants In Toronto

Adamson Barbecue

Where: East York

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Ask anyone I know, and they’ll tell you how (annoyingly) obsessed I am with the country. Country music, country beer, and country food. And the Adamson BBQ restaurant in East York proves exactly why my addiction is well-put.


Ninja Sushi

Where: Scarborough

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Located in Scarborough, Ninja Sushi is one of those places that serves your loaded sushi onto one large plate, instead of ten small plates (*cough* Spring Sushi *cough*).


Maha's Restaurant

Where: Little India

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If you like leaving restaurants stuffed and satisfied, then Maha’s Fine Egyptian Cuisine might be your ultimate spot. Located in the city’s “Little India”, this place doesn’t kid around with it’s portions.


Brooklyn Tavern

Where: Leslieville

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A laid-back spot for those to enjoy any meal ranging from breakfast to late-night snack, the Brooklyn Tavern is yet another city gem hidden in the neighbourhood of Leslieville.



Where: Danforth East

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Situated along Danforth Avenue, Rendez-Vous Restaurant Bar and Cafe is an Ethiopian-inspired restaurant that offers exotic, refreshing and traditional dishes of Ethiopia.


Alchemy Coffee

Where: Markham

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Okay, so Markham isn’t exactly in Toronto - but general GTA counts, doesn’t it? Either way, I’m not sure your Toronto pride will keep you from visiting this one. Located within the community of Unionville, Alchemy Coffee is something worth venturing for.


Schmaltz Appetizing

Where: The Annex

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One point for local Toronto bagel shops, although another loss for Tim Hortons. Located on Dunpont Street, you will instantly dismiss your citizenship loyalty of the great TH once tasting the heavenly bagels at Schmaltz Appetizing.


Marinella Simply Italian

Where: Little Italy

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I was raised by Sicilian immigrants, so I know even more than Gordon Ramsay on what the perfection of Italian cuisine tastes like. In terms of Italian cooking, it’s easy to impress a “mungiacake”, though you know it’s legit when the restaurant impresses all of Little Italy - and that’s exactly what Marinella Simply Italian does.


Thrive Organic Kitchen And Cafe

Where: Etobicoke

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Located on Lake Shore Boulevard, Thrive Organic Kitchen and Cafe is dedicated to organic salads, brunches and various other menu items. A modern healthy-living hot spot, the tastiness of it all instantly makes you forget you aren't eating a few pounds of sugar.


Local Public Eatery

Where: Liberty Village

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Described as a relaxed eatery within the neighbourhood, Local Public Eatery is exactly how it sounds - something for the locals to enjoy. With an outdoor patio and delicious food, this adorable Liberty Village gem is bound to become your next go-to friends bar.


Yumei Sushi

Where: The Beaches

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There’s a lot of reasons to visit the Beaches, and Yumei Sushi should be in the top five of that list. I mean, there’s a lobster tail in that sushi roll. I’m not the only one who sees that, right? RIGHT?!


Eastside Social

Where: Queen Street East

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If you don’t like seafood, I’m suggesting you skip this one. From freshly shucked oysters to fish tacos, this Leslieville gem is definitely worth something venturing for.


Goods And Provisions

Where: Leslieville

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A rustic, dim-light tavern that serves the basic delicacy of most global foods, Goods and Provisions is considered to be one of Leslieville’s most popular restaurants - and for good reason #puns


Barque Smokehouse

Where: Roncesvalles Village

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Me: “Can I get a Hallelujah?” You: “Can I get an Amen?” Another country tune for yet another country-inspired smokehouse, and boy do the lyrics make sense. Located in the neighbourhood of Roncesvalles, this meat-heavy eatery will make ya’ll never want to leave the village!



Where: Little Italy

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An Asian restaurant that is situated within the heart of Little Italy, DaiLo serves a menu consisting of French-inspired Chinese cuisine, which is probably just as good as it sounds.



Where: Harbord Village

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Toronto is scattered with endless sushi restaurants, though some of the best are found beyond the city’s downtown core. Located in Harbord Village, this sushi bar is yet another reason to explore all neighbourhoods of Toronto.


The Wren

Where: Danforth East

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Here’s what we’ve got at The Wren: we’ve got over-stuffed hamburgers, a little bit of Miso roasted Japanese eggplant, and some of that crispy, smoked beef cheek. Is there anything else you need? Well, if the answer is craft beer, they’ve got that, too. I mean come on, we do live in Canada.


Ascari Enoteca

Where: Queen Street East

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A restaurant known for its fresh pasta and additional Italian delicacies, this cozy gem can be found within the neighbourhood of (you guessed it) Leslieville.


Europe Bar And Restaurant

Where: North York

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While this one is called Europe Bar and Restaurant, don’t expect it to be filled with all of the continent's classics. Though with all of the Italian and Greek restaurants to choose from, it’s refreshing to see a Hungarian-inspired spot finally get more of a spotlight. With options such as the veal wiener schnitzel and their Hungarian paprika, this place is bound is bound to end up on your foodie bucket list.


The Stockyards

Where: Hillcrest Village

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Okay, so by now I’m sure you guys are convinced that the South has some of the best food around. I mean, come on - that’s a fried chicken on a waffle. And I thought syrup and butter were the only condiments that would work with that.


Famiglia Baldassarre

Where: Dovercourt Village

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This call this one the “best pasta restaurant in the city”, and that truly has quite the meaning considering it’s competition. Located on Geary Avenue, Famiglia Baldassarre is an all-time favourite within the neighbourhood, so it’s probably a good idea to check it out and see what you’re missing.


Grey Gardens

Where: Kensington Market

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The food at Grey Gardens is the complete opposite of what you would expect considering the exterior of the building. Though similar to the dress code, the offered cuisine is classy, minimalist, and undeniably chic.


Slice N Bites

Where: North York

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A neighbourhood pizza joint that also serves sushi? Ugh.I truly do love everything about the modern day. A sushi restaurant, a pizza restaurant - you can be anything you want.



Where: Little Italy

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Leaf fans, hold off: indeed, that’s a picture of Vancouver Canucks defenseman Michael Del Zotto, but being a Toronto native and all, I’m sure we can allow him to enjoy his Little Italy cuisine in peace. At Giancarlo, this elegant and tasteful restaurant, all kinds of hockey fans are able to come together.


Terry's Bar And Grill

Where: Scarborough

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Burgers. Breakfast. Battlestar Galactica. Terry’s Bar and Grill, located in Scarborough, has everything or anyone, but don’t expect to take too much advantage of that. On most days, the spot closes in the late afternoon, so try to get there quick before it closes!



Where: Scarborough

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A small and old-fashioned Chinese restaurant, Ho Ho BBQ serves delicious pork and duck in the neighbourhood of Scarborough. With their cuisine tender and reasonably priced, this place is somewhere that you’ve got to check out.


Scaramouche Restaurant

Where: St. Clair West

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A landmark of Toronto fine-dining, Scaramouche Restaurant & Pasta Bar and Grill is an elegant restaurant that is constantly praised by food critics and enthusiasts. Serving sophisticated French cuisine in an even more sophisticated location, this upscale restaurant is a place that you’ll have to save your money for.


Cinamon Indian Bistro

Where: The Beaches

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Located in the Beaches on the stretch of Queen Street East, Cinamon Indian Bistro is a hideaway restaurant that serves the traditional Indian food in a charming, minimalist setting. With great naan bread and curry, you won’t want to miss out on this hidden Toronto gem.