If there’s one thing Torontonians know and love, it’s a good summer brunch al fresco. These are some of the best brunch patio spots in the city this year.
We take brunch seriously in Toronto. We wait in lines, skip other meals, work our weekend plans around it—all for that caffeinated, boozy, scrumptious meal that’s between breakfast and lunch.
I’d dare to say it may just be Toronto’s favourite meal of the day (it’s definitely mine!). So it’s no surprise that once summer comes along, we clamour to be feasting on brunch on a patio, soaking up as much warm weather as we can. These are just a few of my favourites around the city.
Maha’s Egyptian Brunch
When you want to have something more than just your typical brunch you need to head over to the Eastside’s Maha’s Egyptian Brunch. Maha’s has a great patio space that wraps around their corner location. No reservations, so come early and hungry but know that this spot is worth every minute you wait to get on their patio.
Where do I even start with this menu—it’s all so good! They serve up traditional Eqyptian breakfast street food like the Cairo Classic, foole (tomatoes and onions mixed with fava beans), with egg, falafel, homemade feta (yes!!) and charred balady bread. That’s just one of their signatures.
Other options include some of the best shakshuka in the city, a grilled cheese with dates (trust me, you need to try this), lentil soup and so much more. Go for the balady bread alone, and leave so full and satisfied from everything else.
Brunch at Sassafraz is as classy and classic as you can get. Three eggs any style, eggs benedict, steak and eggs, daily omelets, pancakes and french toast. It’s all the good things you love about breakfast on one menu. They also have soups and salads like Nicoise, a classic burger and a very hefty Ruben.
I’ve been a loyal Good Fork fan since they originally opened in Bloor West Village, and I still make my way to their relatively new, spacious location on Dundas West near Dufferin. And it’s simply because I can’t get enough of their breakfast and brunch menu!
They have a Middle Eastern flair with most of their menu items. Hummus, tahini, simits (Turkish bagels), labneh and more grace the ingredients list. Hands down my go-to is the Hummus Bowl—filled with housemade hummus, sautéed greens, pickled cabbage and their insanely good, warm pita bread (you can add eggs to brunch it up more). But you can’t go wrong with the Spanish Hash thanks to the chorizo, the Anatolian Delight and the Simit-witch. No reservations, so plan ahead.
One of the city’s favourite classic brunch spots has to be Saving Grace at Dundas West and Euclid. It’s small, but mighty when it comes to brunch.
From classics like quiche with chevre and caramelized onions to baked eggs with poblano peppers, savoury waffles topped with eggs and spicy scrambled eggs with onions, tomatoes on top of mashed chickpeas, your taste buds will be happy you make the trek to Saving Grace.
They have a no-reservations policy, so to avoid a long line (because there always is one at a place this good), arrive at opening time and you should be able to fill your stomach earlier.
Simit & Chai
The first spot in Toronto to make truly authentic simits (a.k.a Turkish bagels), this King West and Niagara spot offers up so much incredible Turkish food for brunch you’ll honestly feel like you’re in Istanbul. I head there whenever I’m missing travel!
The interior is usually cozy, but their small patio offers up a breezy option for brunch with iron tables and ample people watching on this part of King West. Try out any of their traditional simit creations like the Street with cream cheese and olive paste, or the Avocado Smash with avocado, spicy red pepper paste and cucumber.
Or go full-out brunch with shakshuka (it may just be the best in the city), or something they dub the Vegan Nest (hummus, olive paste, fava beans, salad, a simit and more. Oh, and the coffee is delicious too. Check out their sister location Pasaj, on Queen Street East for another option when they open their patio in July.
Mildred’s Temple Kitchen
Liberty Village is home to one of the city’s most beloved brunch spots, Mildred’s Temple Kitchen. Known for their traditional brunch menu, you’ve probably seen pictures of their sky-high, fluffy-as-can-be pancakes topped with blueberry and whipped cream. If that doesn’t fit in with your sweet tooth, there’s so much more.
There’s the Huevos Monty (black bean refritos and cheese flour tortillas with eggs, fresh salsa, avocado smash and sour cream) and Veda’s choice (soft poached eggs on a flakey croissant with smoked salmon, double smoked bacon, or avocado) are just two of my faves. Sides of rosemary bacon, fresh-cut fries complete the entire brunch experience. Did I mention they also have one of the prettiest patios around? Pretty wooden tables, tons of fresh greens and florals, and umbrellas for shade equal the perfect setting.