As proud Torontonians, we know just how long, difficult, and cold our winters can be. However, as even prouder west end-ers, we also know that some of the city’s best remedies for winter can be found right here in our community.
Sometimes all it takes is a hot cup of coffee or a comforting meal in a cozy, beautiful surrounding to lift your spirits and help you get through the harshest weather winter can throw at you. And with winter right around the corner, we figure that now is a great time to start taking stock of some of our favourite places in the west end to do just that.
So bookmark this page and feel free to reference it anytime you need a suggestion from a west end local on where to go for some soul-soothing over the next few months. Here are our best spots in the west end to cozy up in this winter.
Pizzeria Libretto made their famous name for being the first to bring authentically certified Neapolitan-style pizza to Toronto. While their original location at Dundas and Ossington is still up and running, they’ve opened several since then, with the newest situated right here in The Junction.
Of course, in order for Libretto’s pizzas to be considered authentically Neapolitan, they have to be cooked at super high temperatures — at least 800 degrees Fahrenheit, according to the AVPN International Regulations. To get their ovens up to those types of temperatures, Libretto uses wood-fired pizza ovens imported from just outside of Napoli, the birthplace of pizza.
Now what could be more warming this winter than taking the perfect bite of a piping hot authentic Neapolitan-style pizza while sitting near a wood-fired oven that’s at the very least 800 degrees Fahrenheit hot?
Get your pizza fix in at Pizzeria Libretto’s The Junction location at 3011 Dundas Street West anytime you’re craving a true Neapolitan pie this winter.
The Junction is among the most rapidly developing neighbourhoods anywhere in the city. It feels like another top-tier restaurant, cozy cafe, or inspiring small business opens its doors here every day. Find out why this west end community is so special in our The Junction Neighbourhood Guide here.
The Ace Toronto
For the time being, The Ace is one of the west end’s best-hidden secrets. Set in a restored 1950’s diner right on Roncesvalles Avenue, this adorable little restaurant serves up dishes that are big on flavour.
Take one look at the menu and you’d find familiar diner-style dishes like Burgers, Steak Frites, and Caesar Salads, but once they’re cooked up and plated in front of you, you’ll soon realize this isn’t just any diner. Instead, The Ace’s simple-yet-stunning dishes look about as gourmet as you’d expect from a Gordon Ramsay kitchen!
So this winter, ask yourself what would really make you feel cozier than tucking into some classic French-influenced comfort food in a retro-inspired mid-century diner? Not a lot, most probably.
Stop by The Ace at 231A Roncesvalles Avenue to experience upscale diner food as you’ve never tasted before whenever your comfort food cravings strike hardest during the coldest time of year.
Make sure your home is ready to take on the worst of winter this year too. Read up on what you can do around the house to make sure your home’s ready for whatever winter throws at it in The Ultimate Winter Home Maintenance Checklist here.
AM Coffee Studio
Just up the street from The Ace is where you’ll find the next welcoming stop on our west end tour of cozy spots, AM Coffee Studio. This tranquil Roncesvalles hideout is part coffee shop and bakery, part flower shop, and part yoga studio, all of which are almost equally relaxing to us.
It’s AM Coffee Studio’s unique mix of community-focused, wellness-driven attributes that makes the space feel so serene to us, which is exactly why it earns a place on our list of cozy spots to visit in the west end this winter. For those of you who enjoy great coffee, delicious treats, and feeling part of a supportive and empowering west end community, you’ll love this little boutique business.
Plus is always helps that AM Coffee Studio’s stylish interior design and layout looks like it was practically designed for its loyal clientele to cozy up in, with large plush comfortable seating, an exposed red brick wall, and warm wood and marble accents.
If you’re in need of a little pick-me-up this winter, don’t think twice about heading over to AM Coffee studio at 2233 Dundas Street West in Roncesvalles.
Roncesvalles is one of the west end’s most in-demand neighbourhoods, and it’s for more than just its amazing restaurants and cafes. Learn more about why Roncesvalles real estate is so highly coveted in our neighbourhood guides here.
This isn’t the first time we’ve promoted Farmhouse Tavern in The Junction and it most definitely won’t be the last. This true neighbourhood favourite is one of the west end’s go-to restaurants, and with a menu that’s constantly updated to showcase what’s in-season locally, there’s always another reason to go back for more.
This winter, we plan on making a few voyages over to Farmhouse Tavern for more than just their menu, though. Their eclectic modern farmhouse meets ranch-style decor makes for a unique dining experience that provides the perfect cozy getaway from the coldest of winter nights.
Plus, Farmhouse Tavern has a decked-out patio outside just in case. At least last winter, when there were city-wide restrictions on indoor seating in restaurants, their fully-equipped patio space was able to comfortably accommodate guests because of their multiple fireplaces and powerful heaters.
If you’re in need of a deeply satisfying dinner that celebrates fresh Ontario ingredients cooked right at their prime, head over to Farmhouse Tavern at 1627 Dupont Street in The Junction to see what all the noise is about.
Are you thinking about making a move to the west end soon? Have some fun fantasizing about your dream new west end home by flicking through our collection of featured listings below. Once you’ve found the one, all you need to do is pick out which west end restaurant you’d rely on for some amazing move-in day delivery to help you sort out dinner.