I stumbled upon these 4 of Toronto’s best Italian stops for foodies! Italian food is arguably the most beloved cuisine of them all. More approachable than French cuisine. More accessible with pizza slices available in every city across Canada. It’s most often our first favourite International food as kids. But I really didn’t realize the wealth of Italian restaurants and shops Toronto had until my first visit.
Toronto is a hub for I stayed in Yorkville purely to be in walking distance of Eataly Toronto. I first experienced Eataly in New York in 2012 and since then there are now multiple locations around the world. At Eataly Toronto you can find a market, restaurants, cafes, and a bar across 3 floors. With our AirBnB it was the perfect place to stock up out kitchen for a few days. Freshly made pasta, sauces to pair, meats, veggies or just lunch to go could all be found. I was also excited about the range of Italian wines and beers on offer to top off a day of exploring. If you want to get hands on there are also culinary classes that range from sweet to savoury.
If you’re a foodie in Milan, New York, Las Vegas, LA or Toronto (among other locations), then you must make Eataly a stop on your bucket list. It is easily one of Toronto’s best Italian stops.
Ya’ll! While wandering the streets of Yorkville, just after our visit to Eataly, I stumbled upon David Rocco’s Bar Aperitivo. AND David Rocco himself was there! I seized the opportunity to mic him up and get him on camera for what would be our YouTube video: 48 Hours of Eating in Toronto (make sure you subscribe!).
He was such class and really didn’t have to give me the time of day but instead lent me 5 minutes.
His bar is modelled after the Venetian bars that serve menu items like cicchetti to pair with aperol spritz, a classic negroni, wine and so on. Dishes like lasagne (I use his recipe to this day), eggplant parm and plenty of beloved Italian classics.
And finally, if you don’t have enough time to stop for a quick glass and a bite you can order a gelato to go and it is quite popular as he explains in the video. It very well may be Toronto’s best Italian location for authentic gelato!
The Michelin stars have finally reached Canada! Toronto is home to 12 one star Michelin restaurants and one two Micheline star restaurant. Don Alfonso 1890 in the Westin Castle has one Michelin star and has been named the best Italian restaurant outside of Italy. Don Alfonso is a name to know in Italy with the original location being a renown restaurant and cooking class on the Amalfi Coast.
The Don Alfonso experience in Toronto is just that, an experience. Each meal ends with a tour of the kitchen with the head chef explaining the concept while on your way to a sweet ending. The espresso bar offers coffee, limoncello or a quality grappa to be paired with prime chocolate and biscotti.
Because we could only get seating in the lounge area we had access to a limited menu experience including but not limited to two appetizers – a wagyu carpaccio and tempura lobster, both absolutely sublime – there is a tasting menu to garner a full scope of their culinary genius.
Buca Osteria & Bar
Buca, again in Yorkville, offered one of the most memorable desserts called the Pizzelle. A layered dessert of Pizzelle waffles, strawberry preserves, white chocolate ganache and whipped creme topped with a downpour of crema inglese. A showstopper of a dessert and definitely one of the best sweet ends to a meal I won’t soon forget and earning its place as one of Toronto’s best Italian restaurants