Axis Gallery and Grill (website, Twitter)
3048 Dundas Street West, Toronto ON M6P 1Z3 (on the north side, at the corner of McMurray Avenue, the nearest major intersection is Keele Street and Dundas Street West) 416-604-3333
A lovely patio in the Junction.
During the winter, the Axis, which is a pub in the loosest sense of the word, is warm and dimly lit by candles. While in the summer, the patio is packed, the inside is deserted, and every customer seems to either have a child or a dog in tow. The interior is decorated with photographs and art for sale and there is a party room downstairs with a ping-pong table.
On my most recent visit, a woman — presumably the manager — was standing in the patio entrance glaring at our server, willing him to be quicker, but had she come out to the busy patio herself to clean the empty tables and distribute menus, he would have been able to serve more people more quickly and everyone would have been happy. They also have those mobile credit card units without the disclaimer about the tip percentage option being based on the total including taxes, not the subtotal excluding taxes.
If meeting up with friends, keep in mind that there is the Axis Gastro Pub, located on Bloor near Bathurst.
Number of visits by yours truly: three or four times, most recently on a Saturday afternoon in late May 2011. I doubt I’ll be back anytime soon
TTC information: take the Dundas West (Junction) bus north from Dundas West Station (seven-minute journey)
Booze selection: 13 beers, including Strongbow cider (no Pimm’s)
Food selection: straightforward with pasta and sandwiches. The menu is poorly edited. I have never eaten there as our foodie friends live nearby. What’s the point in eating at Axis when you can dine on dishes lovingly prepared by superb cooks, food that would make angels weep?
Service staff: v-e-r-y s-l-o-w (see above)
Prices: expensive for booze, mid-range for food
Toilets: the dead spider entombed in its own cobweb had been removed since my last visit
Patio: on the west side with trees, but they offered scant coverage from the sun
Wheelchair accessible: no way!
Televisions: four and two behind the bar
Live music: open jam on Tuesday nights, dee-jay on Friday night, patio playing during weekend brunch, Saturday has live music
Piped-in music: jazz
Rating: three and a half pints (out of five)