In the first of Goodwin Smith’s exclusive travel series, we speak with Canadian-based GS Ambassador, Adam Chase. Asking a series of questions, we wanted to delve into the real experience of visiting Ontario’s capital city. Forget the travel guides. This is a legit low down from somebody living there. Without further ado, we asked Adam to introduce Toronto in a way only a resident could...

“Toronto hustles. It's not uncommon for people to work a full day then hit up an art event or brand release party. Being the biggest city in Canada means that every day and night will always present new places to go and events to attend. My favourite part of Toronto is that, although it's vast, it’s still small enough for you to cover the whole place in a long night. The best restaurants and events are all within a small walking distance.”


Toronto is one of the most vibrant cities on our planet, a must-visit for any bucket list.


Best places to eat in Toronto

With a population of 2.8 million, Toronto is a thriving hub of shops, bars and restaurants. So much so in fact, that deciding where to go in a short stay might become rather difficult. You can’t visit them all, right? Thankfully, having spent many a night in the vibrant streets of Toronto, Adam has already vetted many of them and gives us some unique insight into the best picks of the bunch:

“One night in the city to wine and dine...hmm. I’d recommend a few options, depending on the time of year. In the winter I'd say hit up Patois at 794 Dundas Street West. These guys know how to serve up some mean Chinese-Jamaican fusion food and drink. Then I’d say head over to the Scotiabank Arena and catch a Toronto Maple Leafs game.”


Toronto’s Alo Restaurant serves gourmet French food.

Apt. 200 on Queen street west for some drinks is a must, and maybe some old school arcade games. I’d definitely recommend Alo Restaurant at 163 Spadina avenue one night too. It was voted best restaurant in Canada for the second year in a row this year, and has an amazing French tasting menu - done by the fantastic chef Patrick Kriss. Some of the best food I've ever eaten was from here.”

But where to eat the next morning?

“I’d say check out One Restaurant at 118 Yorkville avenue for some brunch.”

How to spend summer in Toronto

With the summer months ahead of us, we then asked Mr. Chase what kind of activities Toronto presents to anyone looking to soak up the sun.

“If you’re into sport, then it’s worth going over to the BMO Field to catch Toronto FC of the MLS play. Afterwards, both High Park and Centre Island are awesome choices to host an impromptu picnic, but there are a whole bunch of great outdoor picnic spaces in Toronto. For evening drinks in the summer, you should try the rooftop patio at the Thompson Hotel at 550 Wellington street west. Fantastic setting.”


The spectacular Thompson Hotel rooftop bar in Toronto, Canada.


“My top tip for anyone visiting would be to talk to the locals. There are so many sweet spots that the travel guides don't tell you about. I’ve found some amazing hidden gems just from asking people.”


The Final Word

To summarize, Adam told us why Toronto is somewhere you definitely need to add to your bucket list as a place to visit...

“The cultural mix of art galleries, shops, restaurants and bars can set you up for a crazy time in TO. In a small area you can get from one of the best restaurants in the city, to watching a sporting event, and then still get a nightcap with a great view of the city. This is all without driving or spending 100s of dollars on Ubers. Even as a major city, it still has a small city feeling - where just walking down the street people will say hello or compliment you on your shoes… especially if they are Goodwin Smith!”

And rightly so. If you’re thinking of heading to Toronto, we hope we’ve added some notes to your ‘must visit’ pad. Feel free to reach out if there are any other cities you’d like us to cover in this series, and we will reach out to our Ambassadors the world over.

One last thing...

The shoe Adam is holding up in the main image is the unique and bold Liberty Jade loafer. Fashionably fringed, the Liberty Jade features a burnished leather upper with brogue toe cap and tassle detail. This is Adam's pick of the Goodwin Smith range, as it makes him stand out from the crowd - even at all of the fancy restaurants he recommends. 


June 27, 2018 — Bonnie Jackson