The top restaurants for New Year's Eve dinner in Toronto aim to make 2013's last meal especially memorable, no matter if it's the main event or just the precursor to a wild night to come. While many restaurants are promoting over-the-top themed events, planned and priced for champagne tastes, there are a number of promising parties with a more laissez-faire attitude too.
Here are the top 20 restaurants for New Year's Eve dinner in Toronto.
The Gladstone Hotel (1214 Queen Street West)
Big Top NYE is a circus themed celebration featuring jugglers, acrobats, carnival games, cotton candy, themed VIP rooms and "ring side seats" avec bottle service. Advance tickets are $50 ($70 at the door), or reserve a table for a 4-course dinner and stay for the festivities for $126.05.
Boots & Bourbon Saloon (725 Queen Street East)
The newly opened cowboy bar will host two bands and an evening of line dancing and party favours. Entry will be $10 at the door on a first come first served basis. The requisite toast at midnight may or may not come in the form of a tall can.
The Drake Hotel (1150 Queen Street West)
General admission to The Drake's Black & White NYE party is $40 from 8pm or $20 after midnight. The best bet to ensure a spot is to get a ticket to the Strolling Cabaret ($75) happening in The Underground that will be catered by food stations featuring signature Drake favourites. You can also reserve a spot for dinner, the first seating of which offers three courses for $75, while the second seating is 4-courses at $115.
Drake One Fifty (150 York Street)
The Financial District offshoot is offering a casual canapé menu or full dinner for $50 to $150. After midnight, admission to their Day and Night party is $10 until 3am for dancing.
Lisa Marie (638 Queen Street West)
Reservations are accepted for dinner served from 6pm to 10pm. The a la carte menu will feature new cicchetti and luxe street food specials like melted marrow and garlic tossed Lobster Chow Mein. After 10pm it's $10 at the door for a Viva Las Vegas party and a countdown hosted by DJ Carl Allen.
Momofuku (190 University Avenue)
Momofuku is ushering in the new year with something a little special at each restaurant. The Noodle Bar celebrates with large format fried chicken and caviar dinners for $90 an order, as well as, a $17 prix fixe for a choice of bun and noodle. Daishō is doing a lucky family style feast featuring 10+ dishes for $120 per person (add $60 for beverage pairings), available for parties of 2 to 10, from 9pm 'til close. Shōtō going all out with a $200, 12-course tasting menu (add $45-$120 for optional beverage pairings.
El Catrin (18 Tank House Lane)
The visually spectacular restaurant in the Distillery District is offering a Mexican tasting menu offered for $110 per person. Add cocktail, tequila or wine pairings for $60-$90. Fiesta into the night with more drinks during their NYE party.
Stock Restaurant (325 Bay Street)
Looking to splurge? The Toast 2014 in Grand Style celebration will let you do just that. The 31st floor restaurant at the Trump International Hotel is offering an ultra indulgent 9-course tasting menu for $220 dollars. Optional wine pairings are $120 more.
Big Crow (176 Dupont Street)
For NYE at the Big Crow, the backyard-BBQ will be open for dinner, but better still they're offering to cater house parties with smokey, family style feasts suited for four to 10 guests ($159-$279). Orders must be placed by 6pm on December 30th for pick-up between 4pm to 7pm on the 31st.
Ganzi dei Osteria (504 Jarvis Street)
On tap here is a celebratory 4-course dinner with a sparkling libation for $74 that'll later transition into Guys and Dolls, a cocktail soirée and dance party. An early seating is also on offer with a 3-course menu for $45.
Home of the Brave (589 King Street West)
This Hawaiian themed New Year's party features a 3-course, $50 prix fixe menu with a rum cocktail pairing and midnight toast in a coconut shell. DJ Brains4brkfst will be live-spinning eclectic tunes all night.
Bestellen (972 College Street)
The steakhouse will hosts two seatings for their New Year's Eve Bash featuring special tasting menus from chef Rob Rossi. Early evening guests will be offered a 4-course menu ($36) while tables reserved between 9pm and 10pm will be offered five courses ($79). Wine pairings are additional.
Hunter's Landing (82 Fort a York Boulevard)
Geared towards Cityplace dwellers, this New Year's Eve party is bound to be attended by revellers who don't have to worry how they'll get home. The evening offers a $50 menu starting with oysters followed by four more courses, and will later transition into a DJ'd dance party ($10) avec requisite midnight toast and late night hors d'oeuvres.
Parts & Labour (1566 Queen Street West)
Offering an alternative to exorbitant covers and special menus, this Parkdale restaurant is hosting Business As Usual, serving their standard menu at no extra cost. Eat dinner and get free admission (otherwise $15) to DJs upstairs and in The Shop starting at 11:30pm.
Splendido (88 Harbord Street)
Chef Victor Barry bids farewell to founding partner Carlo Catallo (who is opening two new County General offshoots in the new year) with a special menu featuring Catallo's favourites. Their New Year's Eve multi-course prix fixe menu costs $140 per head with wine pairings for an additional $100.
The Libertine (1307 Dundas Street West)
Ring in the new year with a dinner and show at this hidden speakeasy-style bar. Receive dinner from chef Leonie Lilla and live entertainment from The Girls Club for a $60 fee. Reservations are required.
Mill Street Brew Pub (21 Tankhouse Lane)
No Hassle New Year's at the massive Distillery District brewery bar will be offering a full menu plus chef creations, live music, party favourites, a midnight toast and snacks. Alternately, reserve a seat next door at the Mill St. Beer Hall and celebrate over a 4-course meal with beer pairings and DJ Humble Mike spinning vinyl.
Harlem (67 Richmond Street East)
Soulfully celebrate the New Year with an all-you-can-eat appetizer buffet and open bar for $70. Entertainment provided by Poetic Sound Crew featuring JR the Superstar and Larry Uptown Smooth.
Valdez (606 King Street West)
Dubbed the ultimate Latino street party, The Night Market at Valdez will be spinning old school hip hop and celebrating with all-you-can-eat food stations plus $10 cocktails and $6 beers. Tickets are $50 and available now at the restaurant or online.
OTHER RESTAURANTS WITH SPECIAL NYE MENUS
- Lee (601 King West) and Bent (777 Dundas West), Susur Lee's Toronto restaurants are each offering a three course menu for $85.
- The County General (936 Queen Street West) is planning a tasty celebration featuring menu favourites and five beverages included with each $75 ticket.
- The Beverley Hotel (335 Queen Street West) celebrates with $100, 5-course dinner with champagne toast and party favours. Come for just the countdown at 11pm for $25 at the door.
- Ursa (924 Queen Street West) is offering a 9-course dinner for $125.
- Rosewater (19 Toronto Street) four courses for $125 plus live entertainment by Take Note.
- Cibo Wine Bar (522 King Street West)is offering a $70 prix fixe menu featuring four Italian courses
- Ki Modern Japanese is offering a $60 7-course dinner. Add premium sake pairings for $35.
- Hapa Izakaya (602 College Street) hosts its grand reopening (after months-long renos) with a 7-course omakase dinner followed by a dance party for $50 each head.
- Huntsman Tavern (890 College Street) is offering a $45 prix fixe menu, opt to including wine pairings for $70 total.
- Nyood (1096 Queen Street West) celebrates with a special multi-course prix fixe dinner offered for $60
- Wind Up Bird Cafe (382 College Street) is doing a kid-friendly, 3-course family style feast. Adults can eat for $25, kids under 12 eat for just $10.
Photo of Drake One Fifty
by Liora Ipsum via blogTO