You crazy kids have been hitting the 2012 edition of this post so much (there wasn’t one last year), my site stats are going to be pitiful come December 26th. But it seems that there are an awful lot of you out there who have no intention of sitting around with the family wearing those silly hats that come in the Christmas crackers, and who instead want to have someone else do the cooking and cleaning for you on the big day.
I have concentrated on downtown Toronto, but if you’re in the burbs, I think David Ort of Post City is planning a list with a wider range. Even though my list is cross-referenced and confirmed, I’d still recommend calling to book a reservation at anything other than the most casual places, and reservations are required for any of the hotel restaurants.
Restaurants (Casual and Mid-Range)
7 West (7 Charles Street West) stays open 24/7/365 and will be serving their regular menu on Christmas Day as well as a traditional Christmas dinner special.
The Bagel House All locations (1548 Bayview Avenue, 1438 Yonge Street, 235 Lakeshore Road East, 450 Eglinton Avenue West) are open Christmas Day.
Caplansky’s Delicatessen (356 College Street) is open on all statutory holidays (including, or especially, Christmas) from 10am – 8pm, offering their menu of traditional Jewish deli food such as smoked meat sandwiches, latkes, gefilte fish and more.
Destingo (741 Queen Street West) will be serving brunch from 9am – 3pm, and then a 3-course Christmas Prix fixe dinner for $32 that includes butternut squash soup, turkey, cranberry, and stuffing or ricotta-stuffed ravioli, and apple strudel.
Dhaba (309 King Street West) is open for dinner, serving flavourful Indian cuisine, starting at 5pm.
Fran’s has two locations (20 College Street and 200 Victoria Street) that are open 24/7/365, and the business district location (33 Yonge Street) will be open from 6am – 10pm. All three Fran’s will be serving their regular menu of diner fare plus a Christmas dinner special.
Hemingway’s (142 Cumberland Street) will be open from 11am – 3am, and will be serving up a Christmas Dinner special.
Insomnia (563 Bloor Street West) will be open 8pm – 2am, serving their regular menu.
The Lakeview (1132 Dundas Street West) is open 24/7, and usually has some seasonal specials on Christmas Day.
Marché Brookfield Place (181 Bay Street) is open from 8:30am – 10pm, offering a variety of prix fixe holiday menus.
Mideastro Yorkville (27 Yorkville Avenue) opens at 5pm, serving Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisines.
Sauce (1376 Danforth Avenue) will be open from 5pm.
The Swan (2205 Bloor Street West), a Firkin pub, will be open for brunch from 10am – 3pm, and for dinner from 5pm – 2am.
The Thompson Diner (550 Wellington Street West) is also open 24/7 and will be serving their usual upscale diner grub on Christmas Day.
What A Bagel has three locations open on Christmas Day (973 Eglinton Avenue West, 421 Spadina Road, and 2275 Yonge Street). All open at 7am, with closing hours that vary.
America Restaurant,The Trump Hotel (325 Bay Street) offers a 2-course prix fixe Christmas dinner, with turkey or ham for $70.
Annona, Park Hyatt Hotel (4 Avenue Road) has prix fixe meals for both brunch and dinner. The 4-course brunch is $70 and includes a variety of options, such as lobster bisque, ham and waffles, roast turkey, prime rib and a dessert table. Dinner is 5 courses for $98 and includes many similar dishes as well as crab cakes, lamb ravioli and lobster thermidor.
Azure, Intercontinental Toronto Centre (225 Front Street West), offers a Christmas brunch buffet with the best of brunch and Christmas dinner combined (pancakes AND turkey!) for $70 from 11:30am – 3:30pm, and a four-course Christmas dinner (choice of turkey or beef tenderloin as a main) for $75.
Bosk, Shangri-La Hotel (188 University Avenue) is serving a 2-course brunch for $55 (add dessert for an additional $7) that includes burgers, egg dishes, and turkey. At dinner, choose from the 3-course dinner menu at $85 with a choice of turkey or lobster, or enjoy the 5-course tasting menu for $95.
Café Boulud, Four Seasons Hotel (60 Yorkville Avenue) will be preparing a three-course prix fixe menu (with menu items such as lobster bisque, fois gras, turkey with stuffing, and roasted venison) for $95 per person.
The Courtyard Cafe, Windsor Arms Hotel (8 St. Thomas Street) will be offering a brunch buffet from 10:30am – 3:30pm. Cost is $65 per person for adults and includes “all-inclusive Morning Glories”.
Epic, Royal York Hotel (100 Front Street West) offers a four-course Christmas Day dinner for $105. Or check out the buffet in the Imperial Room (seatings at 2pm or 6pm), for $115.
Lai Wah Heen (108 Chestnut Street) is open for lunch and dinner, serving their regular menu.
One, Hazelton Hotel (116 Yorkville Avenue) will open for regular service starting at 10:30am for brunch.
Signatures, Intercontinental Hotel Yorkville (220 Bloor Street West) has a 4-course dinner Christmas Eve and Christmas Day at $58. Also on Christmas Day, there’s a Lobster Buffet Brunch for $58 (2 seatings: 10:30am or 1pm).
Toca, Ritz Carlton Hotel (181 Wellington Street West) will be offering Christmas dinner (seatings start at 5pm) for $98 per person with dishes such as foie gras and smoked chocolate, filet mignon or sea bass, as well as a brunch buffet with breakfast items, oysters, turkey, and lobster tails.
Victor Restaurant, Hotel Le Germain (30 Mercer Street) Chef David Chrystian serves a 3-course Christmas dinner featuring roast beef or confit turkey leg for $65.
Victoria’s, King Edward Hotel (37 King Street East) has an extensive Christmas Day brunch for $89 per person that includes a salad bar, beef wellington with foie gras, turkey and fixings and a breakfast selection. Or wait until later and have dinner at $99 per person, the menu is similar with a few more entrees.
Most restaurants in the 1st Chinatown area (Dundas & Spadina) are open on Christmas Day, but openings become sparse as you move away from this intersection (for instance, Mother’s Dumplings at College & Spadina is never open on Christmas). My advice is to just head to your favourite spot and have a second choice in mind in case they’re not open or really busy. Popular dim sum places such as Rol San (323 Spadina Avenue), Dim Sum King (421 Dundas Street West) or King’s Noodle (296 Spadina Avenue) usually have a line unless you’re an early riser.