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Another Yorkville legend Passes.. Michael Carlevale

"RIP Michael Carlevale of Prego Della Piazza, Bersani & Carlevale, etc. One of Toronto's great characters, bon vivant to the end."

about 11 hours ago
pourboi in Ontario (inc. Toronto)

Sotto Sotto gutted by fire tonight!

Insurance will cover the cost of their 20yo equipment not replacement value but what the street value of it is now for 20yo junk. They will not get lost income.. They will have to build to current codes for accessibility and Fire ie accessible washrooms, sprinklers ... When sassafras burnt they even had to put in an elevator to open the second floor. None of these extras are covered by insurance... Plus they will be closed 8 months minimum with no income..

Sotto Sotto gutted by fire tonight!

Could just be random arson as in several other areas of the city this year...

Sotto Sotto gutted by fire tonight!

Toronto Fire Services responded to a 3-alarm fire Thursday evening that has caused extensive damage to notable Yorkville restaurant Sotto Sotto.

Emergency crews were called to the Avenue Rd. building at 7:24 p.m., according to a Toronto police spokesperson.

The 2-alarm fire quickly escalated to a 3-alarm and firefighters were ordered out of the building as they took defensive positions. Approximately 20 fire trucks and 80 firefighters are on-scene fighting the blaze.

Is Carman's steakhouse really back?

Not compared to NAO on Avenue Road: "$110 for a 5-oz strip loin all the way up to $460 for a 24-oz rib eye" - http://www.blogto.com/restaurants/nao...

Robber no match for the owner of Barberians this morning...

They never said if the lady in the fur hat gave the money back... but I assume she did.. She should be applauded!

Robber no match for the owner of Barberians this morning...

Guy tries to rob the owner of Barberians this morning of the cash drawer... instead he gets thumped!

https://www.youtube.com/embed/xGf-JBw...

Centro is now Vita Sociale

and it is now closed... they were not paying rent or their suppliers for months...

2014 Restaurant and Food Store CHANGES and CLOSINGS

Vita Sociale (the old Centro) had closed - locked out- rumour is that they owe hundreds of thousands to the landlord and suppliers....

Automatic gratuity - what % is normal?

One table of 16 does not require 2 dedicated servers. Also MANY people will complain if a group sits down and the wait staff immediately starts asking for orders as it feels they are being rushed. Any good restaurant should let the table settle get the initial chit chat out of the way before interrupting to take orders.

Automatic gratuity - what % is normal?

That is easy! you take the total number of natchos on the plate and divide the price by the number of chips you ate but multiply it by the ratio of toppings and condiments that you consumed less what was left on the plate which would be divided amongst the group as per their proportion of the total natcho bill.

Dec 19, 2014
pourboi in Not About Food

Automatic gratuity - what % is normal?

That is a normal auto grat for a party of that size

Dec 18, 2014
pourboi in Not About Food

VOSS water?

You are replying to a post that is almost 10 years old... prices change.. that was the height of the fancy water era when they could charge anything they wanted.. now many new player have come on board and pricing is more competitive plus people are seeing it (hopefully) as wasted money...

Great Restaurant for Group of 16-20

What night are you inquiring about? Location preference? Food type preference? Age range? Type of event: Family / coworkers/ friends / birthday?

2014 Restaurant and Food Store CHANGES and CLOSINGS

No, the Empire space is not being "gutted" it is being renovated, there is a new patio put in and lots of work fixing up the interior. With the area being at the crossing of 3 subway lines there is no need to drive to the area IMHO especially to visit a restaurant as that usually involves alcohol. Out of any area in the city I think Bay Bloor Yonge is the most suitable for intensification.

2014 Restaurant and Food Store CHANGES and CLOSINGS

The block around the old Cookbook store (Yonge & Yorkville) seems to be closing up. There is a sign on the Mexican place on Yonge that its last day will be Feb 28th and the Café around the corner on Yorkville beside the already closed vegan Italian place now has its windows papered up.

American Thanksgiving celebrated on Canadian Chowhound Community Boards Ontario (inc. Toronto)

"veers wildly from the traditional" I guess you don't get to Texas much for Thanksgiving...

http://www.stmaustin.org/smoked-turke...

http://www.centralmarket.com/Blog/Pos...

American Thanksgiving celebrated on Canadian Chowhound Community Boards Ontario (inc. Toronto)

No, someone who is a regular on chowhound and claims to not understand how Smoked Turkey is an appropriate dish to serve on US Thanksgiving seems to be someone who is trying to start a fight...

Quote: estufarian 1 day ago

I love smoked turkey.
But what does it have to do with Thanksgiving?
It's a BBQ item (especially in Texas).

' La Croisee ' - Leaside's new French Bistro with cozy, romantic ambiance and delectable Burgundian Food!

Yes food is the most important but it is not the only consideration you still have to pay the bills. BUT Batifole has a niche.. they were the first in the neighbourhood and do you know how many homes over $800k there are between Danforth and Dundas from Broadview to Jones? There are many families in the area who want to go out for something "not Asian" in the area but don't want to travel downtown. Batifole is part of the community, I would not call it a huge destination restaurant but more like a local gem. The quality may be up and down but when you have been around so long and are a local spot, and treat the locals right, people forgive some inconsistencies. And like Lexi says right now they are back on top of their game. BUT even in the down times low rent makes it so that they can survive...

' La Croisee ' - Leaside's new French Bistro with cozy, romantic ambiance and delectable Burgundian Food!

You answered your own question in your original post: "Rent in that area of town is just too high" BUT rent in the "middle of a run down old China town" is dirt cheap...

LOW overhead goes straight to PROFIT...

My friend just opened Mr. Ciao at Broadview and Gerrard and I can tell you the rent they pay for 2 floors with 40 seat patio and side parking for 8 cars is less than what many people pay for a tiny hole in the wall in the core.

' La Croisee ' - Leaside's new French Bistro with cozy, romantic ambiance and delectable Burgundian Food!

Maybe not now, but when he started at the Monarch Tavern he was smoking and brining all the briskets himself and creating the menu and working the kitchen...

' La Croisee ' - Leaside's new French Bistro with cozy, romantic ambiance and delectable Burgundian Food!

I would say YES Jack Astors and McDonalds, and Wendy's and Milestones have some great chefs... because the people who come up with that food on their menus KNOW the food that their demographic customers want and produce it at the price point they can pay. Now the people who actually cook it are not chefs they are food assembly line workers.. :-)

I did not mean by "experience" the one to one with the customer but more the intelligence of the complete menu, the theme of the food, the style of plating...and how it relates to the feel and décor of the restaurant. Buca is an Italian Restaurant and so is Sotto Sotto but if you switched the two menus to the different rooms I do not think either would succeed. Just like Buca Four Seasons is not a clone of the King St location... different room, different clientele, different atmosphere ... different menu..

' La Croisee ' - Leaside's new French Bistro with cozy, romantic ambiance and delectable Burgundian Food!

That is why there is just not one restaurant in the world (Taco Bell)... everyone has different tastes and perceptions. Things that you like others hate and things you hate others like. Neither is completely wrong people just have different tastes...

' La Croisee ' - Leaside's new French Bistro with cozy, romantic ambiance and delectable Burgundian Food!

A restaurant fails because of bad business practices BUT it is not successful because of good business practices... it is successful because of the food and "experience"... and a lot of that is usually do to the chef..

' La Croisee ' - Leaside's new French Bistro with cozy, romantic ambiance and delectable Burgundian Food!

Oh how could I forget Grant van Gameren at Bar Isabel, Zane @ Caplanskies, Colin Tooke at the Electrics, Robyn Donio & David Haman at Woodlot...

' La Croisee ' - Leaside's new French Bistro with cozy, romantic ambiance and delectable Burgundian Food!

Rob is a Partner in Buca not an employee. Same with David Lee (Carbon was his concept), and I know they both have a lot to do with the business plans and the business success. A chef knowing enough the you need people with deep pockets is a sign that he does have the business smarts.

Susur has had more success when it is him and his wife then when he has "smart business people" running the show i.e New York...

' La Croisee ' - Leaside's new French Bistro with cozy, romantic ambiance and delectable Burgundian Food!

10 years is an eternity in the independent restaurant business...

But some successes: Franks Kitchen run by Chef Frank with his wife running the front of the house, a guy named Susur Lee seems to run some good restaurants with his family, Chef David Lee (along with some business partners) has a pretty good run as well. Same with Rob Gentile and the Buca gang, Lynne Crawford, etc..

Also if a business person with no cooking skill can make a successful restaurant by hiring a good chef then a chef with no business experience can make a successful restaurant by hiring a good business manager.

' La Croisee ' - Leaside's new French Bistro with cozy, romantic ambiance and delectable Burgundian Food!

From my experience, if you cant cover your monthly costs after 3 months chances are you never will as if you don't get that initial opening hype and business from being the new kid on the block you will not get the word of mouth required to build an established clientele.

Also when a place is Owner operated the costs are less as you do not have to pay a Chef and chances are their at home expenses will be less as they will eat at the restaurant many days. The combination of which saves them thousands a month.

American Thanksgiving celebrated on Canadian Chowhound Community Boards Ontario (inc. Toronto)

Leslieville Pumps also served Smoked Turkey for American Thanksgiving...

Plus turkey is served everyday in diners & truck stops across Canada does that mean that everyday is Thanksgiving (or Christmas)?

Looks like you are just trying to pick a fight so I will not reply any more...

American Thanksgiving celebrated on Canadian Chowhound Community Boards Ontario (inc. Toronto)

So you are saying that you do not understand the connection between thanksgiving and turkey? Well it is a traditional dish that people eat on the holiday... It can be cooked many ways roasted , deep fried and even smoked.