Where to go this weekend: El Ray!

Knowing what’s happening in town or where the hottest spots are has always been a priority to me. There’s a certain feeling of pride that erupts in me when I can recommend a place or event to coworkers, friends and acquaintances. That’s how I got my gig at Spotted by Locals – which I sadly had to stop because of well, life. Despite losing the outlet, people continued to ask me where to take their spouse, date, friend and what to do that weekend. I began to understand that this might just be a passion or at least a need.

friendly note: There are weekly updates on BlogTO, Daily Hive and Torontoist and it covers all the events taking place that coming week/weekend. However, if you want my honest take, I will be sharing it on this blog moving forward.

This week’s recommendation is El Ray!

Nestled in the depths of Dundas past Spadina, this little place is owned by the great Grant van Gameren who, if you don’t know, owns Bar Isabel and Bar Raval. (side note: if you haven’t been to those two places, alter that situation ASAP!)  

Back to our sweet, quiet corner in the most vibrant Toronto neighbourhood! Is it the afternoon? Oh my dear, well, you look like you could use a Mezcal-based mood-lifter! What’s Mezcal? It’s an alcoholic beverage you should drink with caution. I say this after I down my second Mezcal-based drink and watch the room get just a tiny bit blurrier. That’s when I get this sudden glee-full feeling of gratefulness for living so close! “I can just walk home”, I think, as I place another order…for a drink. Don’t be concerned. It’s summer, it’s the weekend, it’s a great drink and I just love this place. This third one really is my last though and off I go. As I walk past the bar area, out the door, onto the patio, I take in the crisp air of say mid-May and remember that I live in Toronto and drinks aren’t cheap and how much did I just drop in that bar? What! You don’t say!

So, yes. Go prepared. Be warned. The drinks are strong. The drinks aren’t cheap. The food is served in small portions – it’s mainly bar food but good bar food.

You’re here for the atmosphere. Maybe try slow-sipping that drink to make it last longer?

Here’s a real tip though: after your drink go for a walk around Kensington Market. The fresh air will awaken whatever sobriety you have left in you. Either that or the crisp air will awaken you – period.

Oh, and it wouldn’t be a Toronto-inspired blog post unless we signed off with a you can…

“Thank me later.”

Live from The Six, this is a Berlin vibe!


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