Toronto's top five restaurant reviews of 2018

Food critic Joanne Kates didn't pull any punches this year


Published:

The RH Courtyard Cafe

We like our critics for their criticism, and 2018 proves it. The top five restaurant reviews are more pan than rave, more dis than delight. Joanne Kates, our esteemed reviewer, would love nothing more than to dish out endless praise, but that’s just not how the feta crumbles.

RH (formerly Restoration Hardware) did not wow with its Yorkdale Mall eatery. The RH Courtyard Cafe looks glam but Kates was unimpressed by the pricey food and “appalling” service.

Colour Kates c​onfused at Constantine. She can’t figure out how the food by chef Craig Harding and the environs can be so appealing, while the service is, you guessed it, appalling.

Here again, at BlueBlood Steakhouse, fancy decor does not a happy Kates make. That’s because dinner disappoints, so it doesn’t matter that it’s being served in a castle.

Now we get to the meat: a rhapsodic review of a steak house Kates can get behind. David Chang’s Kojin is delicious and elegant, serving the South American-inspired cuisine of chef Paula Navarrete.

A supercool Israeli restaurant with sassy flavours rounds out the top five. Kates praised Parallel’s bold take on M​iddle Eastern classics, pronouncing the Ozery brothers the new kings of tahini, and so much more.

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Joanne Kates trained at the Ecole Cordon Bleu de Cuisine in Paris. She has written articles for numerous publications, including the New York Times, Maclean’s and Chatelaine. Follow her on Twitter @JoanneKates.

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