There’s just something wonderful about waffles. What could be better than a fresh, fluffy, hot-off-the iron waffle? How about an Egg Benedict Waffle ($13)? Or a Spicy Chicken Sandwich ($15) — complete with jalapeno, salsa and sour cream on seasoned waffles? Have you tried Waffle Bacon ($7)? You read that right — waffle battered bacon cooked in a waffle iron! No, you’re not dreaming. There’s a borderline magical place in North Toronto where you can enjoy these weird and wonderful creations. It’s called Starving Artist and it’s everything you hope it will be and more.
Starving Artist is an all-day waffle restaurant. It serves all your breakfast favourites on waffles. And they go beyond breakfast — serving sweet waffles, savoury waffles, and waffle sandwiches. You can enjoy a B.L.T ($13), or a Monte Cristo ($17), or mini-waffle Grilled Cheese sandwiches ($6) –all made with waffles instead of bread. You may never eat a traditional sandwich again!
You may be wondering why it’s called Starving Artist. This place is part modern waffle house and part modern art gallery. The restaurant supports local artists year round. You can expect to find an array of artwork adorning the walls, and the collection changes frequently. They showcase a new artist every 6 weeks.
We caught up with the founder and Chef of Starving Artist, Bryan Jackson, to find out why he opened his amazing restaurant.
Bryan, we love your concept! Why waffles?
Because everybody loves waffles! Actually, prior to opening Starving Artist, I was an interior designer/event producer, and I was planning on making espresso and waffles for my clients. The idea blossomed from there, and we ended up opening a waffle joint!
That’s amazing! We’ve got to know — what is your most popular savory waffle menu item? Same question for sweet menu item?
Our most popular savory waffles would be the Benny – 2 potato waffles, topped with caramelized bacon, poached eggs and hollandaise. Can’t go wrong.
Our most popular sweet waffles would definitely be our Waffle Bacon starter. It’s like bacon being hugged by a waffle. Served with icing sugar and maple syrup. It’s a crowd-pleaser.
You had us at bacon! What’s your busiest day of the week, and the slowest?
Weekends are always packed. We have a line-up out the door every weekend between 10am and 2pm. If you want to avoid a wait, visit us during the week. On Tuesday/Wednesday/Thursday you won’t have to wait.
Good to know! Please tell us about the art mission of Starving Artist.
We look to provide a contemporary artistic atmosphere with the best of breakfast food all served on waffles. We support local artists by switching up the art on our walls every 6 weeks, and strive to serve reasonably priced food, with great service resulting in a fun experience for all of our customers.
Starving Artist opened it’s original location, back in June of 2009 at 584 Lansdowne. Next came, 1078 St. Clair Avenue West, then 810 College. The original location has since been shuttered, which is actually good news for those who call the Davisville neighbourhood home, as a third location was opened at 505 Mount Pleasant Road (close to Davisville Village greenrock). All locations are open daily from 9am to 6pm. Come on in and support your waffle habit and support your local art community at the same time. Bryan Jackson and Starving Artist have elevated the waffle game to an artform.
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