City of Toronto seeks to extend CaféTO program by allowing portable heaters on outdoor patios

In an attempt to maximize patio season this fall and provide further assistance for struggling restaurants, the City of Toronto has announced plans that will allow portable heaters, such as fire-fuelled appliances (e.g., propane heaters) on outdoor patios, including CaféTO sidewalks and curb lane closures.   Good news! Portable heaters will be allowed on patios,

How this Toronto restaurant was able to open a new patio on Yonge Street through CaféTO

Restaurants across the city are continuing to open new patios as part of the CaféTO program. With indoor dining still prohibited in Toronto, the initiative has been a lifeline for restaurants that previously had limited or non-existent outdoor dining space in which to serve customers, such as midtown’s Little Sister restaurant. Jennifer Gittins, co-owner of

Indoor dining in Toronto will not reopen this weekend as planned

In another tough blow for Toronto restaurants and bars, the city announced yesterday that indoor dining will remain closed for at least another month. The news came as an unpleasant surprise for Toronto restaurants, with Ford having previously announced that the city would move into the restrict (orange) level of the COVID-19 response framework, allowing

City council looks to create a protected bike lane on Yonge

Toronto city councillors are looking to restructure roadways in another of the city’s neighbourhoods creating more bike-friendly routes, but accessibility advocates worry the approach could be problematic. At Toronto City Council’s Infrastructure and Environment Committee meeting on Sept. 17 , councillor Mike Colle introduced a recommendation to develop a protected bike lane on Yonge Street

How Toronto’s hidden bars and speakeasies have changed since the pandemic hit

Inspired by the 1920s prohibition era, speakeasy-style “secret” bars have been gaining popularity in Toronto’s nightlife scene for years. Whether fronted by a completely different kind of business like a barber shop or just reminiscent of the romantic, dimly lit bars of the flapper’s decade, speakeasy bars have all the appeal of an anonymous secret

How international outposts Café Boulud, Momofuku and Eataly are coping with Toronto’s dining guidelines

Over the last couple of months, a number of restaurants across Toronto have been forced to close their brick-and-mortar locations, unable to survive the significant loss of revenue, high cost of rent and staffing shortages caused by the coronavirus pandemic, not to mention the added difficulty of learning to navigate the long list of seemingly

City programs that expanded restaurant patios and bike lanes could be extended for years

Social distancing has confined many Torontonians to the small apartments and condos in which they live, with limited access to outdoor space. To combat this, the City of Toronto has been enacting new policies that convert road space into pedestrian-oriented spaces such as patios and bike lanes. These initiatives are part of the city’s CaféTO and

All patios all the time as Toronto Distillery District adds touch of Europe with new outdoor seating area and art exhibit

Restaurants across the city have taken advantage of the CaféTO program to expand patios by using public spaces, sidewalks and parking lots to allow for physical distancing for their patrons. One area of the city that has an advantage is the Distillery District. The area is closed to vehicle traffic, so the district has transformed

Ontario further loosens rules for opening restaurant patios

Ontario continues to make it easier for restaurants to open their patios for dine-in service. With indoor restaurant dining still prohibited, there was some confusion about whether covered patios were allowed to reopen with other outdoor dining areas this month. Today, the provincial government amended the emergency order to clarify that patios with a roof

How five Toronto restaurant owners plan to reopen their patios

With the announcement that Toronto will move into phase two of reopening on Wednesday, June 24, restaurants across the city are getting ready to reopen their patios to dine-in guests. Five Toronto restaurant operators share how they’re preparing for the new normal of patio dining.   Gusto 101 and Chubby’s Jamaican Kitchen Juanita Dickson, President

A drive-through food truck festival is coming to Toronto this weekend

Food purveyors are continuing to find innovative ways to serve diners in the era of physical distancing. The latest contactless concept to hit Toronto is Street Eats Market, a food truck drive-through event slated to launch at Yorkdale Shopping Centre on June 19. The two-day event will bring together 12 local food trucks, including Jerk

Toronto launches a number of new initiatives to help residents enjoy the outdoors this summer

Mayor John Tory has announced a host of initiatives that aim to get Toronto residents outdoors this summer, while staying safe, healthy and maintaining physical distancing protocols. Outdoor aquatic amenities currently remain closed due to COVID-19 public health measures, but city staff are currently preparing so they’ll be ready to open Toronto beaches, pools and