Review of Oliver and Bonacini Café Grill (Yonge St. location)

Website:  http://www.oliverbonacini.com/OurRestaurants/OBCafeGrill.aspx
Address: 33 Yonge St, Toronto, ON
When I visited: February 2014, dinner
Rating: $$, 3.5

I was attending a show at the Sony Centre and strategically choose the O & B Café Grill because of the proximity to the theatre and for the cheap parking rate. With a meal at the restaurant and a validated ticket, parking was ONLY $2 after 5:30 pm on weeknights and all day on weekends. The restaurant was beside Biff’s Bistro, also an Oliver and Bonacini restaurant with the same parking deal.

The décor on the dining side was bright with yellow hues. Since it was a busy evening and the restaurant couldn’t accommodate my requested 6:00 pm reservation, we were seated on the bar side where the clientele was full of Bay St. patrons (aka the corporate crowd).  The music level was not meant for a sit-down dinner conversations because I was shouting. Good thing I was too busy enjoying my meal and singing along to some 80s tunes.

Dining Room

Dining Room

Dining Room. Table for a large group

Dining Room. Table for a large group

As I went through their menu, I was impressed by the variety. There were many casual dining items such as pizza and burgers that were less than $20 and then there were pricier mains such as veal chop, BBQ strip loin and sea bream.

As I was pressed for time, I opted for a quick and casual fare. I went with my sister’s recommendation, which was the mac and cheese.  I was impressed!  The cheddar and Gruyère cheese provided a mouthful of creamy goodness.

mac & cheese

mac & cheese

As a bloody Caesar fanatic, I ordered my regular “extra spicy Caesar” and their house special “winter Caesar” for comparison. The ‘winter Caesar’ is worth the extra cost. It had horseradish infused vodka, red wine and scotch bonnet pepper bitters with a tasty lemon pepper rim.

Having had a bite of my family’s classic burger and folded mushroom flat bread (vegetarian), I enjoyed their dishes as well. However, the Jamaican jerk pizza was uncomfortably spicy. Having split the slices amongst our group, there was a consensus that the restaurant put a little too much scotch bonnet in the sauce.

Spicy Jamaican Jerk pizza

Spicy Jamaican Jerk pizza

To wrap up my meal, I ordered the bite sized desserts called “Sweet nothings”. They were amazing! They are only $3.25 and the portion size is perfect for one person. The caramel pots de crème and the
mini s’more were delicious decadent treats.

Mini s'more

Mini s’more

Overall:

Based on the restaurant’s proximity to the ACC, Union station and Sony Centre, I would recommend the restaurant for their location and cheap parking rate.Unless you want to hang out at the bar, I would recommend booking the regular dining room in advanced. For vegetarians, carnivores or seafood lovers, there is something on the menu for everyone! I would come back again to try their seafood and fancier food options. As for the more casual fare, I would recommend ordering the macaroni and cheese and to finish off the meal with the “sweet nothings”.

There is also an O & B Cafe grill in Bayview Village, Blue Mountain and in Oakville. This posts is reflective of the Yonge St. and Front St. location only. 

Oliver & Bonacini Café Grill on Urbanspoon

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