Name: The Whippoorwill Restaurant and Tavern.
Owner: Shawn Creamer and Tyler Cunningham.
Cuisine: Comfort food.
Signature: Breakfast and brunch.
Open for: Breakfast and brunch until 4 p.m., closed Mondays.
Assessment: In a span of mere days, popular brunch spot The Bloordale Pantry was transformed into The Whippoorwill—also a brunch spot. With new owners, but the same staff and cozy classic diner vibe, The Whip hopes to remain the ‘hood’s go-to spot for brekkie, lunch, and everything in between. The menu is a bit different, but not drastically so. The options are your usual fare—eggs, pancakes, etc.—but, across the board, are a bit more expensive than The Bloordale’s offerings. The spicy scrambled tofu—which comes to the table in a miniature cast-iron skillet, with chilies, braised beans, cilantro, and crunchy tortilla chips—is like an egg-less version of huevos rancheros. Tofu can be tricky, walking a fine line texturally between mush and rubber, but it’s done right here. Flaky buttermilk biscuits are made in-house along with the accompanying whipped butter and preserves. Buttery without being greasy, and just salty enough, the biscuits are at their best fresh from the oven, so get them early on in the day. The apple pancakes look deadly and might warrant another visit. Customers can be overheard asking what happened to The Pantry, and sound genuinely disappointed to hear that it’s gone, but nobody walks away. Creamer—who also co-owns The Dakota Tavern—plans to extend The Whip’s hours by next week to include happy hour, dinner and late-night menus.
- Conveniently located steps away from Lansdowne station.
- A small, but varied menu with sweet and savoury both strongly represented.
- Flaky house-made biscuits, butter, and preserves.
- Cocktails and pints that were first listed as costing $5 are now $6.50, and $14 for a tuna sandwich with mixed greens is a bit steep.
- Having no signage for the time being, it’s a little non-descript and hard to spot—look for the Mill Street chalkboard out front.
Bottom Line: With prices higher than its predecessor’s, The Whip might inspire some grumblings but, with few other brunch options in the area, it will probably remain a neighbourhood favourite.—Rebecca Fleming
1285 Bloor St. W., 416-530-2999.