Dark Horse

Dark Horse (website)
2401 Bloor Street West, Toronto ON M6S 1P7 (on the south side, just east of Jane Street) 416-769-4696
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The place to go for a decent meal and a touch of English pub charm.

It might have been an anomaly, but my friend and I were the only women in Dark Horse pub (is it A or The Dark Horse?) for the two hours we were there for lunch and the place had about a dozen customers. The waitress was friendly and answered all my questions without getting annoyed. I thought it was an excellent pub. However, while researching this write-up I stumbled across a number of negative online reviews about the establishment, mainly concerning the serving staff, but I enjoyed myself and found the staff to be very good.

The décor was fancy with some Old World charm, there were glass chandeliers and wall sconces, dark wood and old prints and the kitchen was slightly exposed, which I always take as a good sign. There is a coin-operated breathalyser downstairs and a selection of chips/crisps behind the bar.

There is a Black Horse pub near Bloor and Ossington, and there are three Dark Horse Espresso Bars scattered across Toronto, so keep that in mind if meeting with friends.

Number of visits by yours truly: my first, on a Wednesday in early February 2011 for lunch, but not my last
TTC information: Jane Station. Be sure when crossing Bloor West to or from the TTC station that you cross at the lights as the intersection can be dangerous
Booze selection: about 15 on draught, including Blackthorn cider (no Pimm’s)
Food selection: rather small menu in terms of items, but generous portions and very yummy
Service staff: excellent; very friendly, pleasant, and patient
Prices: expensive (I was treated)
Toilets: they smelled nice. One of the cubicles in the ladies had a broken lock
Patio: on the street facing north. There is an office building to the west, so this might not be the place to go for a suntan or to enjoy a sunset
Wheelchair accessible: no
Televisions: two that I could see and they weren’t intrusive
Live music: no
Piped-in music: REM, Depeche Mode, the Beatles, nothing too annoying

Rating: four pints (out of five)