The Riverside Public House used to be the Blue Moon Pub. Stripping down to a minimalist approach with lots of brick and wood and a decent lighting, the atmosphere was great for couple of friends and a conversation.
The greatest thing Riverside Public House has going for itself is their barstools. Quite possibly some of the most comfortable seating! However, I wish I could say the same about the food… BIG disappointment!
photo taken from their website
I am always on the look out for a new BBQ place so I made sure to head over to Triple A just about a month after it opened. Having BBQ this close to home could be really dangerous. The fact that it is also Texas themed with a Canadian flare was also intriguing.
Now I have one benchmark when it comes to BBQ. The holy grail (at least for Ontario) is Buster Rhino. I don’t want to get into a flame war over what is authentic and what is not and this review is not about that.
So we headed in around 8:00 pm and the place was empty but it looked like some regulars had already claimed their seats at the bar. The restaurant itself is very charming and really does bring a rustic Texas country feel. Everything is in wood and the lighting is dim and comfortable. You do get the smell of smoke in the air, which is pretty good considering they don’t do meat smoking on site.
Hrvati Bar had a lot going against it even before we walked in. Having grown up in a house where my father is a trained chef from Dubrovnik and having had enough schnitzel and chevapi on my dozen trips to Croatia I have pretty keen sense on what authentic Croatian food is.
Based on what I read online I was expecting the place to be much bigger than it was. There is one huge communal table that dominates the middle of the room and about a half dozen smaller tables at the front.
Last Friday, a bunch of us went to the Smiling Buddha Bar. A friend’s band was playing so we wanted to support him as well as check out a new place in Toronto.
The bar itself is a chock full of bric-a-brac but it is still a really charming place. This is more of a local spot rather than a destination spot so I can see why I have never heard of it. True to its name though, there are plenty of smiling buddhas around the place as well as local art for sale lining the walls. The Smiling Buddha Bar can pass as a dive bar but there is something about it that keeps it away from being seedy.
Standing by the wall of rather unique art