Harbord Street is known for its fancy bars, but The Harbord Room totally trumps its neighbours in the cocktail stakes. At the helm is Mr Dave Mitton, a President of the Canadian Bartender’s Association, who’s scooped a whole bunch of awards for this place. They’ve got style as well as good cred, with candy pink walls, a candle-strewn fireplace and good tunes from a staff iPod.
We like The Ronald Clayton, inspired by Mitton’s grandfather. With vanilla-infused Crown Royal, organic maple bitters and tobacco tincture, it’s basically just booze… sweet and smoky booze. The Tokyo Rose also does it for us: rose cardamom syrup and yuzu, with the zing of a Bazooka Joe. After those you’ll need the aioli fries, trust us.
The crowd is smartish thirty-somethings, and the staff look like they’ve stepped out of Nylon fashion pages... with smiles. It’s packed all week, so prepare to get cozy. Reservations are recommended, and there’s a time limit on tables.