For our ‘Best Of’ series, we will be featuring lists of the best places to eat, drink, exercise, entertain and live. With the weather warming up again, and people looking to shake-off their sleepy, winter fogs, a lot of people are flocking outdoors to revel in the warmth of the much-missed sun. Nothing goes with that warm sun-kissed patio like the refreshing taste of a cold beer. As a result, we will be featuring the best patios in Liberty Village.
There is no question that patios are hugely popular for people looking to eat and drink al fresco – and Liberty Village has some great options. So without further adieu, here are some of the best patios in Liberty Village:
As far as pub patios go, Brazen Head offers up some of the best. Brazen Head is a 3-storey Irish-themed pub which was
one of Liberty Village’s first mega-pubs. Owned by the same people as the Mill Street Brewery and Pub, the Foggy Dew and others, they clearly know what they are doing in the world of pubs.
This place is jam-packed on warm weekday evenings and all weekend and the patios are a huge draw. With one giant Patio on the first floor, two patios on Second floor, another patio on Third floor. The 2nd floor patio has amazing views from second floor, nothing on the way, so you see whole CN Tower glowing n financial district.
Note: The patios get scary busy on Toronto FC game days so expect a wait. The patios won’t always get sun evenly so make sure you get there early or you will be sitting in the shade which sometimes defeats the point of an outdoor patio.
Giving the established Brazen Head a run for its patio-dominating money is the relatively newer Williams Landing across
the street from the ever-popular
Brazen Head; Williams Landing has settled into Liberty Village and its massive second-floor patio will rival its neighbour for TFC fans and Liberty Village dwellers alike. William’s Landing’s patio, is anchored by a huge open-air bar, overlooks the Liberty Market, and is the new focal point of the village.
With 16 beers on tap, 11 by the bottle and a dozen wines by the glass, the patio bar offers something for everyone and caters to those looking for adult refreshment on a hot summer evening.
School Bakery and Cafe took over the old Warehouse Grill back in 2009 and has maintained its position as a popular
lunch and brunch destination ever since. Although not quite as boisterous and sun-splashed as the previous patios reviewed, School has two patios – one south facing and mostly enclosed; and the other on the east side that extends out from the giant retractable garage-like doors. The best time to go is around lunchtime any day of the week for the best scenery and sun. The back patio has its own bar and is completely enclosed with trees and banquettes. The east patio has less seating but is completely open, making it a much better option for people watching – let’s face it, people-watching is a big draw for patios!
Although not the largest, busiest or loudest of Liberty Village’s patios, Bar Vespa does have a unique setting in that it sits on the ground-floor of an entrance to the Liberty Market Building. This setting gives the feeling that you could, quite
possibly be sipping a drink in Florence or Paris. The cobblestones and heritage architecture is not a patio environment you see everyday in downtown Toronto. I also like that it’s a little calmer and laid back than it’s sister’s patio, next door at Brazen Head. They also offer outdoor heaters on those cooler evenings.
We are looking ahead now because Local Public Eatery hasn’t yet opened (our sources are saying it will open on August but perhaps earlier so not to lose too much of the patio season), but when Claudio Aprile closed the Liberty Village outpost of his Origin chain,
there was much speculation about what would fill the large corner spot. It appeared that Liberty Village residents and employees, it seemed, were not hungry for hoisin duck wraps and miso-glazed cod. What they wanted instead were burgers, booze-spiked milkshakes and 18 flat-screen TVs per 1,000 square feet. At least, that’s what the Joey Restaurant Group is hoping. It’s turning the former Origin Liberty space at 171 East Liberty Street into an outpost of Local Public Eatery, a rowdy Vancouver-based restaurant chain known for serving cocktails in a giant glass boot and it’s big boisterous patio. We are predicting a very busy patio when they are up and going.