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Toronto Offsite Design Festival in Ossington Village

Toronto Design Offsite Festival logoThe annual Toronto Design Offsite Festival (TO DO) brings design to untraditional spaces across the city, including places right here in Ossington Village. The festival runs from January 16-22 with events and exhibitions. Here’s what to do at TO DO Ossington Village.

Local events are detailed below.

 

 


ALMA at Toronto Offsite Design Fest Ossington VillageAlma at Saudade

Dundas West Portuguese design shop Saudade gets involved in TO DO with authentic handmade needlepoint in the Portuguese historic style. The wall coverings will decorate Saudade as of Tuesday, January 17 through the end of the festival, Sunday the 22nd.

Information: Saudade, 1191 Dundas Street West. Opening Reception: January 17 at 7pm, RSVP here

 

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Make New Year’s Eve Plans In Ossington Village

New Year’s Eve is the biggest party night of the year, and Ossington Village is a great place to celebrate it! It’s a few weeks away: we have a rundown of the events that are already planned. A lot of venues haven’t released their schedules yet, so we’ll update here, and in our calendar.


catl nyeThe Dakota Tavern, catl New Year’s Eve, 10PM

Toronto blues-rock band catl is back for another rocking New Year’s show at The Dakota Tavern. Two sets by catl, plus Eamon McGrath and DJs will have you dancing through the countdown. Buy your tickets now for $20 and you’ll be assured a good night of music and fun at one of Toronto’s best music venues.


The Garrison, Chronologic New Year’s Eve, 9:30PM

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Where To Watch the MLS Cup in Ossington Village

mls cup logoFinally, a Toronto team makes the championships of something! And where are you going to watch the MLS cup, featuring our very own Toronto FC, this Saturday? Well, if you’re not going to the game at BMO Field (tickets sold out super fast), there are quite a few Ossington Village bars who would love to have your company.

 

MLS Cup Game Details

Toronto FC plays their first ever championship game against the Seattle Sounders this Saturday at 8PM in Toronto.

Where to Watch

Wherever you do go to watch the game, make sure you arrive early for a seat. This is the first time Toronto – any Canadian team – has made it to the MLS Finals, so the whole city should want to watch this game.


The Contender MLS Cup OssingtonThe Contender

As the biggest sports bar in the neighborhood, The Contender, located at 1166 Dundas West, will have a lot of room for the game. That doesn’t mean it won’t fill up, however. We’ve been there for some pretty crowded Raptors games! Go there for a big space, draft beer, games and competitions and a sports bar menu.


MLS at LAS OssingtonLAS

Located at 229 Ossington, LAS serves a variety of sausages and craft beers with their sports.


The Dock Ellis

The Dundas West sports bar isn’t just for baseball or basketball or football – The Dock Ellis also follows soccer. Enjoy some Ontario craft beer, a burger or even a salad with your soccer cheering.


Opera Bob’s

A great place to watch English soccer, Opera Bob’s will likely have a big screen on and a lot of footie experts out for Toronto’s first chance at winning a championship in ages.

Local Business Charity Fundraisers in Ossington Village

Ossington Village businesses are always charitable, and as the holidays approach, there are already a few fundraisers scheduled in the neighbourhood. We’ll keep posting in our calendar, but here’s a few that are coming soon.

THE DAKOTA TAVERN CONCERTS FOR ALZHEIMER’S IPOD PROJECT

Alzheimers Music ProjectWhen: Multiple events starting Monday November 21st

Where: The Dakota Tavern, 249 Ossington Avenue

To celebrate their 10th anniversary this December, The Dakota Tavern is hosting a series of concerts to raise money for The Alzheimer Society of Toronto and Perth County’s Music Project and Ipods for Memories program. Tickets went on sale this morning for Matt Mays on Monday night; other shows will include The Beauties and Flash Lightning.

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Anniversary Parties at Dock Ellis and Churchill

Two Dundas West nightlife hotspots celebrate their business anniversaries this weekend with Sunday night parties. Congrats to both Churchill and Dock Ellis! Both are holding anniversary parties that are open to the public as they invite their customers and community to share in the success. Longevity in this business is a success. We wish many more years in the ‘hood to both businesses!

Churchill: 6 Year Anniversary Party

It may not seem like it, but Churchill has been serving cocktails for 6 years at 1212 Dundas West. They’ve also had a number of different pop-ups serving food in their kitchen throughout those years; the current provider is Almighty Bao. Join the party this Sunday night for drinks, DJs and general fun times.

Churchill 6th Anniversary Party

Dock Ellis: 3 Year Anniversary Party

Relative newcomer Dock Ellis has been serving up craft beer and elevated bar food alongside their sports viewing for 3 years already. Stop by 1280 Dundas Street West, also on Sunday night, for beer specials and a chill vibe, as always!

Dock Ellis Anniversary

As always, keep an eye on our calendar for these and all local events.

Ossington Businesses Awarded “Best in Toronto”

Now Toronto released their annual readers’ choice lists of top businesses in Toronto, and lots of local businesses ranked high. Here’s a recap of the bars, stores, restaurants and people to be voted best by Toronto locals. Congratulations to all!

Now Best of Toronto

 

Toronto Cityscape

  • Trinity Bellwoods Park ranked as runner up for Best Park (High Park won)
  • Congrats to Mike Layton – runner up as Best City Councillor

Shopping and Services

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Tocino Boys Will Bring Filipino Flavor to Ossington

Tocino Boys are moving their popular Filipino street food kitchen to La Porte on Ossington.

tocino-laporte

About Tocino Boys

Tocino Boys is run by chef John DeBlois, and serves street food with a Filipino twist, including tacos, burgers, poutine, and more. Located out of the kitchen at Midpoint on Queen West for the last couple of years, the move to Ossington is for more space, and a great location! They’ve been lauded with good reviews from Now Toronto and are part of a burgeoning Filipino food scene in Toronto.

About La Porte

La Porte, generally known as one of Ossington’s clubby bars for drinking and dancing, hasn’t served food in the entire 3 years they’ve been in business at 214 Ossington. The addition of this kitchen to their space changes their hours and, probably, their clientele to an extent.

Tocino Boys on Ossington

According to their Facebook post, the kitchen will be open from 6-10PM (days are not specified) and late night from 10pm-2:45am on weekends. Location is 214 Ossington, on the west side of the street near Dundas. No word on when exactly the grand opening will be, but we’ll stop in for some Filipino eats and post about it here.

Ossington and adjacent Dundas West, is a snack food capital of Toronto, and the addition of this well reviewed kitchen to our hood is only making it harder to not eat out every single night.

 

Ossington Street Festival Ossfest July 23

See Also: Ossfest Recap and Photos;  What to Expect During Ossfest

ossfest logo

On Saturday, July 23rd, Ossington will be closed to traffic for the first ever Ossington street festival.  Ossfest will highlight local businesses and the community and features Toronto’s only city bike races, outdoor music, and a lot of patios and partying. Mark off your calendars for Ossington’s first – but hopefully not last – street festival. In addition to the major events listed below, sidewalks will be open for shopping, drinking and dining. All of this is being organized and executed by the Ossington BIA.

The Ossington Street Festival

Ossfest is a local street fest in which every business can participate. Details of each business’ activities will be updated to the BIA’s Instagram account. To give you an idea, expect lots of outdoor patios for food and drinking, sidewalk sales, and activities for kids as all of these and more will be along Ossington on July 23rd. We’ve been informed that Pizza Libretto, The Painted Lady and Mamakas will have extended outdoor patios. Get ready for a great day and night! We’ll post here as we find out what other businesses have in store for the 23rd!

Oss Fest Free Live Music

An exciting component of the Ossington Street Festival is the live music stage at Ossington and Dundas. The music starts at 2pm and continues with various great local acts through until approximately 11pm. With acts ranging from the reggae stylings of Bredren, to Saul Torres’ Latin music, to a brass band parade featuring The Heavyweights Brass Band, and roots rock from Samantha Martin and Delta Sugar, everyone should be entertained. These are bands you would normally pay a cover to see at local spots like The Dakota Tavern or Painted Lady. More details on the musical line-up in the poster below:

Ossington Street Festival Live Music

Ossington Street Festival Live Music

The Ossington Crit

A key component of the Ossington street festival is the Ossington Crit. From 11am to 6:30 pm, you can watch and cheer during this series of bike races officially sanctioned by the Ontario Cycling Association. The races begin with kids races, by age group, at 11am so be there by 10:30am with your kids and their bikes and helmets so they can join the fun!

After the kids races, it’s all licensed adult riders from 12 noon. Participants will ride as many laps as they can within their allotted race time. The early races are shorter races for beginners, and they build up to the elites who race for 90 minutes, with the final race ending at 6:30PM. The map (below) shows the race route: along Ossington, east on Halton, south on Givins, and west back to Ossington along Rebecca. It’s a short and narrow route and should be exciting to watch the races!

Crit Map

Map of Ossington Crit Course

 Save the date: July 23rd

Ossington between Dundas and Queen – street party, music, cycling and shopping: 11am-11pm.

Meet me on Ossington!

Toronto Jazz Fest Events On Ossington

tdjazzfestlogoThe Toronto Jazz Festival is one of the world’s biggest jazz events with music superstars performing across the city. Two local music venues are featuring some Toronto Jazz fest acts right here on Ossington.

Toronto Jazz Fest starts this Friday and runs from June 24 – July 3.  As part of the “club series” of Jazz Fest, two Ossington clubs,  Reposado and The Painted Lady, have full schedules of live music.

Many of the club acts are Toronto natives, and the jazz fest is a great opportunity to check out some of these talented locals.  You will also have the chance to hear and see performers from Montreal and further afield.

Below are some of the highlights of the local club series for Jazz Fest. As always, check our calendar for full listings of events in Ossington Village:

Reposado:

  • Parc X Trio: This Montreal instrumental jazz trio has won awards at the Montreal Jazz Fest, is influenced by rock and urban music, and supposedly puts on a lively show. Playing Reposado on Saturday, June 25 at 9:30pm. Cover $8
  • Rob n Bob Power Duo: Great Bob Scott is widely recognized as one of Toronto’s best drummers. See him perform at Reposado on Saturday, July 2 at 9:30pm. Cover is $8
  • Reposado is hosting Jazz Movie Nights both Sundays of Jazz Fest. They’ll be showing Ken Burns Jazz episodes and other vintage TV jazz. No cover

The Painted Lady

  • Elise LeGrow: A solo artist and member of Whale Tooth, Elise LeGrow’s music is pop and her voice is jazz standard. Enjoy her in the intimate Painted Lady on Saturday, June 25 at 8P for $10 cover.
  • Donne Roberts: An accomplished guitarist and singer-songwriter with roots in Madagascar, Russia and Toronto, check him out on Thursday, June 30th at 8pm. Cover is $10

As in past years and for other festivals, participating venues have extended hours during Jazz Fest. The Painted Lady usually offers a late night jam session with jazz musicians, staying open until 4am. So get out there and enjoy some jazz on Ossington.

Ossington Restaurants and Bars in The News

A lot of local restaurants are getting some good press lately. As spring and summer near, those south of the border are exploring where to travel. The neighbourhood is getting mentioned in all sorts of publications, both local and international, pointing out both the tried and true, and some hidden gems..

torontolifelogoThe annual “Best New Restaurants” report from Toronto Life praises several nearby dining spots:

Omaw, the new southern style joint run by Matt Blondin and The Food Dudes, is booked nightly and probably will continue be in the near future, is rated #3 on the list. Located at the corner of Ossington and Humbert, Omaw opened late summer 2015.

Omaw is closely followed at #4 by Imanishi, the izakaya that opened late last year on Dundas West near Rusholme Road.

Dundas West newbie Antler gets some love here too, with raves for game meats, especially venison. This spot opened last fall and has been packing in diners to the small space at 1454 Dundas Street West.

Hanmoto, the tiny spot on Lakeview, and brother to Ossington favorite Oddseoul, is listed at #15. It’s tiny, but the food packs a lot of flavour.

now logo


When it comes to bars in Toronto, a few of Now’s favorites are also located in our part of town. Local beer and arcade bar Get Well rates #7 for both of those things, plus their recent addition of North of Brooklyn Pizza. Always reliable Reposado is recognized not just for it’s stellar selection of tequilas, but it’s great live music too, with a ranking of #14 on Now’s list. Dundas West wine bar Archive, located near Trinity Bellwoods Park, ranked #15. Check out the full list: there are a lot of great bars!


Toronto restaurants are getting quite a bit of press in the U.S. media; who can blame them for wanting to take advantage of our dollar?

logo_vogueVogue just published a report on what’s making Toronto a haven for foodies, and our local hotspots are many of the reasons! The U.S. fashion mag highlights the Canadian cuisine at Boralia, the fusion at Foxley and the desserts from Bang Bang Ice cream! Not sure if we should be expecting more models in the area, or just those aspiring to be.
billboard


Another U.S. magazine, Billboard, is recommending places where their music fan readers can spot Toronto musical talent. Did you know – at least according to this piece – that The Weeknd hangs out at Dundas West and Dovercourt spot Bambi’s? Billboard probably just hasn’t been in the neighbourhood long enough to know where all our other neighbourhood celebs live.

It’s great to read these kind of stories as a reminder of what a great part of town we live in and all the fun and delicious places to enjoy!