Most people argue that summer is BBQ season. But why should something as delicious as BBQ have a season? We think any time of year is a good time to dig in. Toronto is a great town for this sweet and smokey delicacy. If you’re into it, visit these local restaurants for the best BBQ in the city.
Barque (287 Roncesvalles Avenue) makes some of the best low n’ slow smoked BBQ in the city and serves it to hungry patrons in a relaxed and comfy atmosphere. Note that the low temperature of their smoker (between 150°F and 325°F) means that the meat is served warm, not piping hot. Also, their slow cooking method means that once they’re out of meat for the day, they’re out!
The Meet Meat Platter ($99) is perfect for a group of four. It offers a good selection of their best meats. The platter consists of 12-hour beef brisket, Pommery pulled pork, smoked lamb shoulder, southern fried chicken, BBQ chicken and baby back ribs.
The Sampler for Two is $59 and includes your choice of appetizer or salad, three choices of meats, and two sides. You can add dessert for $5 per person.
If you want to enjoy the ultimate Barque BBQ experience, you’ll want to order The Smoker’s Choice. It’s a large, shareable platter big enough for the whole table. It includes Caesar salad, smoked chicken wings, cajun mac n’ cheese, hush puppies and all their BBQ meats. Dig into beef brisket, BBQ chicken, and baby back ribs. If also includes Tableside S’mores for dessert. This incredible meal goes for just $39 per adult or $21 per teen.
They also serve diners free popcorn which is a nice touch!
Carbon Bar, at 99 Queen St East in the Old City TV building, is a world-class BBQ joint with a full-service bar that serves excellent cocktails. Even if someone in your party isn’t into BBQ, there is a lot to love about this place. Their Hot Smoked Trout and Seafood Boil dishes are amazing. There are great sides including Jalapeno Cornbread ($8) or Mac & Cheese ($13) made with vintage cheddar, gruyere and chipotle. It’s perfectly crisp on the outside and creamy inside. But the real star is, of course, the BBQ.
The Pit Master Platter ($34 per person, minimum 2 people) from their Bar Menu is a must. It includes St. Louis cut pork ribs, beef brisket, buttermilk fried chicken, fries with chipotle mayo and dill pickles.
Eat at the bar, or get comfy in one of their plush leather booths, and get ready to enjoy some upscale, yet unpretentious eats!
Reservations are recommended.
The Stockyards Smokehouse and Larder
The Stockyards, at 699 St Clair Ave West at Christie Street, serves up wood-smoked BBQ at their small diner counter. They may be a small place, but their food is outstanding and they offer a full take-out menu. Take your meal home or have a picnic two blocks down Christie Street on the Wychwood Barns grounds (76 Wychwood Ave). Remember to grab plenty of napkins – it gets pretty sticky!
Their wood-smoked BBQ is amazing, but their Buttermilk Fried Chicken is out of this world. Most meals come with fries which are perfectly crisp and well seasoned.
Gyu-Kaku Japanese BBQ
Gyu-Kaku Japanese BBQ (81 Church Street) offers authentic Japanese yakiniku (grilled barbecue). Japanese BBQ is all about large plates of shared food. There is a personal charcoal grill installed at every table, so you can cook your meats just the way you like them. This is not an All-You-Can-Eat establishment. This restaurant is all about quality, not quantity. There are set prices for set meals, and the portions are more than filling. The atmosphere is warm and the staff are very friendly. If you’re new to Japanese BBQ, the staff are happy to offer meal suggestions and guide you through the menu. You can’t go wrong with their 21-Day Aged Harami Skirt Steak in Miso Marinade, or their Certified Angus Kalbi Short Rib with a Tare Sweet Soy Marinade.
With over 700 Gyu-Kaku restaurants worldwide, we’d say they’re doing something right! The Church Street location is not an overly large space, so it’s usually pretty busy. Make reservations to avoid long wait times.
Cherry Street Bar-B-Que
Cherry Street Bar-B-Que has two locations to choose from in Toronto. Their flagship, namesake location is located in the Port Lands, at 275 Cherry Street. They also have a stand at Assembly Chefs Hall, at 111 Richmond Street West. The Cherry Street location may be a little out of the way, but it’s housed in a historic former bank building with a great atmosphere and an enormous patio that offers exceptional views of the city. It’s worth heading down for some of their classic Southern pit-smoked meats, including brisket, baby back ribs, turkey and pulled pork. They’ve got some great sides like BBQ beans, mac n’ cheese, and even quinoa salad. They also offer a good selection of craft cocktails, local beers and a carefully curated selection of bourbon. Everything on their menu is market priced.
This is a casual, laid back restaurant. After you’ve been shown to your table, you order what you want at the counter, get a drink from the bar and enjoy. Go ahead, get saucy – nobody will care!
We hope this post inspires you to take a fabulous BBQ tour of Toronto!
Greenrock Property Management Limited loves to share the amazing flavours and experiences that your city and community have to offer. For information on Greenrock Communities in Toronto, including Greenrock at Davisville Village (77 Davisville Avenue, 45 Balliol Street and 225 Davisville Avenue) and Village Green (50 Alexander Street, 40 Alexander Street and 55 Maitland Street), please visit our website.