Located in Toronto’s Waterfront Communities C1 neighbourhood, the Fashion District was historically the main hub for the city’s textile and garment industries. After major revitalization, the area has transformed dramatically and is now known as a hip-and-trendy area filled with countless shops, restaurants and entertainment options.
Here are some spots we recommend checking out in the area. For a complete neighbourhood guide of the Fashion District, click here.
Restaurants and bars
Fring’s has garnered much fame and notoriety after opening its doors in late 2015, as rumours swirled that Drake was part owner of this Susur Lee run restaurant. Specializing in bar snacks and comfort food with an Asian twist, Fring’s is frequented by celebrities including Drake himself, so it’s worth checking out if you’re into star gazing.
Auto garage turned trattoria, Gusto 101 (or simply Gusto, as locals call it) specializes in southern-Italian classics. With a large front patio and open-air second floor, this spot is a favourite among residents and is well-known for their $1 per ounce house wine special.
Ramen, a Japanese noodle soup dish that’s become increasingly popular among Torontonians in recent years, is this restaurant’s speciality. With five locations across the city, Kinton Ramen offers a lively atmosphere with an open-concept kitchen.
Serving fair trade coffee and tea, Jimmy’s Coffee is a neighbourhood favourite. The first of now six locations spread around the city, its Portland location offers a cozy, eclectic setting to enjoy a simple, quality cup of coffee.
Quantum Coffee is located on the ground floor of the newly-restored Toronto heritage building at the corner of King and Spadina. With a wide variety of premium coffee and tea beverages, Quantum believes in connecting people and ideas and shares a space with Brain Station (a global leader in digital skill training).
Portland Variety is located at the south west corner of King and Portland. With a full-fledged cafe at the front, Portland Variety’s interiors transition into a sit down restaurant and bar at the back. Known for their espresso beverages and pleasurable aesthetic, they also offer scrumptious baked goods from Toronto favourite, Le Gourmand.
The largest and only name-brand grocer in this area, Loblaws at the corner of Queen and Portland has it all. With a large specialty cheese section and tons of prepared food options, this could be considered one of Loblaws’ more ‘fashionable’ locations.
Catering to those who ‘live to eat’, The Healthy Butcher sells a wide variety of fresh, organic meats and gourmet-prepared foods. With friendly and knowledgeable staff, this shop strives and succeeds in being a good old-fashioned butcher.
One of two Toronto locations (the other is in the Distillery District), SOMA is a chocolate staple in the city. The King outpost offers their full selection of world-class chocolate, 26 varieties of truffles, gelato and a coffee bar. This location is also home to their experimental kitchen where recipes are created, tweaked and tasted.
- Graffiti Alley (laneway stretching from Spadina to Augusta Avenues, between Queen and Richmond Streets)
Graffiti Alley, a favourite amongst tourists and locals alike, is the perfect spot to take a stroll and snap some photos of the stunning street art lining this alley.
Photo: Louis Jones/Flickr
Whether you’re looking to enjoy a good meal, sit and savour a cup of coffee or walk around and enjoy the neighbourhood’s hip vibe, the Fashion District has got you covered.