Discovering Distillery – Pure Spirits & Boiler House –

I officially LOVE the Distillery District. From the cobblestone streets to the twinkling lights in the trees and the live jazz music playing in the center of the square, it truly is a little piece of Toronto which is probably so underappreciated but has so much charm and personality. Depending on how you choose to spend your time here, it could feel like New York City’s Soho, LA or the historic streets of any European city, but luckily its all Toronto and all ours! The area is a combination of restaurants, café’s and businesses all housed in beautifully restored industrial buildings that combine modern design while keeping the history of the area alive.

“The Distillery District is a national Historic Site with an incredibly rich history. The site was once The Gooderham and Worts Distillery, and represents the largest and best preserved collection of Victorian Industrial Architecture in North America”

The night was perfect, a gentle warm breeze in the air, three besties out to spend some good ol’ QT together and of course indulge in some great food, potent drinks and great conversation. Love you monkies!

We started out our night at the Pure Spirits Oyster House and Grill. The first thing we all noticed was how HUGE and spacious their patio was. Apparently voted as one of Toronto’s Best Patios, it doesn’t make for a good people watching venue but definitely caters to large groups or small intimate encounters. The menu is full of fresh seafood infused options which even non-seafood lovers like me will find delectable. I had unfortunately already had dinner so I was only checking out the drink menu but TR opted for the a fish that I can’t remember and for some reason is not on their online menu and BK went for Summerlicious – Ahi Tuna Tartar with Banyuls vinaigrette and a spicy avocado salad, Tagliatelle with goat cheese, arugula and sundried tomatoes and the chocolate Trio.

Note to Kultura – looks like ordering off the main menu and Summerlicious IS possible.

Even though the wine took forever to arrive (so long that we cancelled), my mojito was lacking in taste and the waiter looked like he wanted to stab us with a fork – the food was DELICIOUS. I’m not a huge seafood fan, everyone knows this, but from what I sampled and tasted it was fresh, full of flavor (but not so much to take away from the dishes) and appropriately portioned. Tina’s fish was draped in a smoked salmon sauce which was new to the both of us and sat on a bed of soft and flowy mash potatoes. The Ahi Tuna Tar was SO good and although the pasta was pretty standard, we all know my love for anything with goat cheese.

On the menu for next time:
Smoked Pacific Salmon Flatbread
Chili Tiger Prawns
Olive Crusted Chilean Sea Bass

Address: 55 Mill Street, 416-361-5859
Parking: Big Lot right out on Mill Street, street parking if you look around
Price: $$$
Service: 6/10
Food: 8/10
Ambience: 9/10

With our bellies full but still no wine consumed by the girls we decided to hop and skip (maybe literally) across the restaurant to The Boiler House. IS THIS PLACE FOR REAL? As you walk down the aisle which is lined with life size lit up planters from the outside entrance, you look to the left and there’s a full sized bar with tables full of people chatting and drinking away and then you look to the right and there are GORGEOUS cabana tables with huge beds all sectioned off with flowing white drapery and dim lights. There are also smaller but still cozy couches for smaller groups. The DJ blends a great mix of smooth 80s and 90s R&B and soul which creates the perfect backdrop for chilling with a drink or a romantic, relaxing night out. With martinis and wine in hand we sat back and just took in the atmosphere and were in shock that this place was not packed. Apparently it was an off night and on a regular Saturday its bumpin’! Definite re-do in store!

Note: Heading out for their Sunday Brunch which is voted Best Brunch by Toronto Life magazine, made-up of an all you can eat buffet and live jazz. Can’t think of a better way to spend lazy Sundays!

Update (08/11): The Brunch is great! Not necessarily the greatest diversity in the food, pretty much your basics but a HUGE selection ranging from breakfast favourites to lunch items. They even had a waffle bar although the chef had FML written all over his face. The best part of this brunch was by far the ambience – live jazz music, the hustle and bustle of the massive space that is the Boiler House and of course the bottomless cup of joe which is perfect after a Saturday night debacle 🙂

Address: 55 Mill Street, 416-203-2121
Parking: Big Lot right out on Mill Street, street parking if you look around
Price: n/a
Service: 8/10
Food: n/a
Ambience: 9.5/10


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