10 Best Bars Worth Visiting in Downtown Toronto

By Jakarta100bars
Toronto, the largest city and the economical capital of Canada, is known as a multifaceted metropolis that has a lot to offer to just about everyone who stays there. Among the many reasons to visit it, there is one that stands out in particular, its nightlife. In fact, it is so fun and diverse that it is often considered the best in the country (tied with Montréal, which as a large student population).

Note: This was not written by Jakarta100bars.

10 Best Bars in Downtown Toronto
If you want to have a vibrant social life, I would recommend staying as near as possible to the south of Ossington Avenue, between Queen Street and Dundas Street. For tourists, there are plenty of nice hotels there. For long-term residents, ideally, you could rent/buy an apartment in one of the new condos in downtown Toronto such as Artists' Alley or YSL Residences. Prices are usually on the upper side, but with such a location, you are guaranteed to never get bored as you will always be just a stone's throw away from the best bars in the city.

Below are some of my favorites:

1. Mahjong Bar
Enter this retro speakeasy inspired by the Cantonese game called Mahjong to enjoy playful blends of cocktails. It is a popular spot for groups as drinking at Mahjong bar feels like you are part of a cool secret club. Be suited for younger people in their 20s. Reasonable prices.

2. Bar Raval
The covered patio of this Spanish-inspired bar is often filled with patrons sipping on sophisticated cocktails and munching on tapas. Its wooden interior is full of curving, rich wood so you can have a feel of Spain without living downtown Toronto. Do make a reservation or come early as it is almost always packed. If full, you can still go inside but you'll have to stand up or sit at the bar. Expensive but a must-do while in Toronto.

3. Shameful Tiki Room Toronto
If you happen to see blacked-out windows and a heavy velvet curtain at the entrance, you know that you are about to see a Parkdale tiki bar. Its boozes are as playful as its full-on Polynesian interior. This bar is great to visit if you are with a large group of friends as they have some huge cocktails that can be shared, including a 65$ Southern Drawl.

4. Farside
This dive bar in East Chinatown boasts drinks that vary from discounted domestic beers to elevated cocktails. Very laidback and unpretentious. They have many events during the week, including quiz nights and 80s/90s DJ nights.

5. Sweaty Betty's
People go here for no-frills cocktails and a great selection of beers and whiskeys. It keeps you fueled without breaking the bank which makes it obvious why it is Toronto’s longest-standing dives.

6. Black Dice Cafe
If you want to step back in time while listening to tunes on the jukebox while sipping Asian-inspired cocktails, then this is the place to be. Aside from the vintage vibe, people also go here for their famous line of Japanese whiskey and sake.

7. Good Fortune Bar
If you are in Toronto and you happen to miss Miami Beach, then this basement bar can be your best bet. Known for its pink walls and palm leaf motifs, this bar offers an impressive list of retro-tropical beverages that will make you feel like you are at the beach. A big plus is that you can order the food from La Carnita, the Mexican restaurant upstairs.

8. C’est What
If you want to have a drink with your friends even on cold rainy evenings, this is the bar you should be hanging out at as it boasts multiple fireplaces in addition to its 40 plus beers on tap.

9. Paris Paris
With an incredible wine list and gastronomic foods to pair every glass with, no wonder why Paris Paris made it to the top 10. Not to mention it has hosted special wine night events of famous superstars and wine importers.

10. Bar Chef
Bartenders here pride themselves on preparing cocktails that taste as good as they look. You just might want to take a photo of the drinks before taking your first shot.

Toronto’s Best Street for Bars
This ranking of the 10 best bars in downtown Toronto goes to show that there is always somewhere to enjoy good music, booze, and company in this city. Of course, there are a lot more venues for you to try, and you should not hesitate to explore on your own. It's sometimes more fun to go on a little adventure rather than just following someone's list...

A perfect location to do some random bar-hopping in Toronto is Ossington Street, just between Dundas St. and Queen St. This is the heart of Toronto's nightlife with dozens and dozens of bars and nightclubs. You can easily walk from one place to another, I guarantee you'll have a great night out!

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