The Good Kind of Loud

143 Danforth Avenue
Dinner for two with all taxes, tip and beer: $90

The hot new thing for restaurant critics these days is to complain about the volume at the places they’re reviewing. Having to scream across the table to be heard is never a good thing, and the more, um, mature, our ears get, the harder it is to like a place that makes us work so hard. Not so at Allen’s. Yes, on the night we were there for the A Taste For Life fundraiser for Fife house, the place was packed and loud, but it’s the first restaurant I’ve been to where the loud volume added to the atmosphere.

Allen’s website states that “Allen’s stands as owner John Maxwell’s loving tribute to the Irish-American saloons of his native New York.” He’s made a homey, comfortable place with blue-checked tablecloths, a tin ceiling and warm oak floors. The tables are arranged so there is actually space between them – the volume is not because the place is over-packed, but from customers actually having a good time.

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