COVID-19 Pandemic in Toronto

Opening Soon in Etobicoke... On The Move Fresh Kitchen

The brown paper has been removed from the windows... On The Move Fresh Kitchen is about to open on the Queensway! It takes the place of Lucky's Cafe which did not survive 2020; it closed not long after the first pandemic lockdown. This corner has been dreary for awhile so it's wonderful to see a new restaurant about to open its doors.

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On The Move Fresh Kitchen used to be a very popular food truck serving absolutely amazing Caribbean food. Just take a peek here at their Instagram feed to get an idea of their mouthwatering dishes like honey spicy shrimp and lemon pepper wings mac & cheese. Good luck getting yourself off that page, the food pics are fantastic. On The Move Fresh Kitchen is located at 715 The Queensway just east of Royal York. Rosie :)

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Opening Soon in Parkdale... Gus Tacos

Well this is exciting. There is the original, beloved Gus Tacos in Kensington Market, on Augusta. Then owners Emilio Morales and Augustine Morales opened another Gus at Bloor and Dufferin, on Gladstone (this location opened last year in the middle of the pandemic, with a focus on takeout and food delivery.) Now a third location is coming to Parkdale, on Queen West just east of Roncesvalles. There's the brown paper. It's happening!

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The Gus Tacos Instagram page is an glorious feed of colourful taco joy, check it out if you need a distraction and a reminder of better things to come... chilaca tacos, beer and margaritas on a sunny patio. Rosie :)

Opening Soon in Etobicoke... Meza Resto Bar

Toronto restaurants that opened their patios a couple of weeks ago had to quickly close them again as the third wave of the pandemic fills up ICUs. It's a terribly uncertain time, and tough to watch so many businesses close down in the city. On a hopeful note, there's also many "coming soon" signs spotted in windows. It's always exciting to see that encouraging brown paper, signaling something fun and new is on the way to the neighbourhoood:

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With that in mind, the Scoop is going to highlight new restaurant openings in Toronto, so these new businesses are on our radars and we can support them when it's time. Meza Resto Bar is a Mediterranean restaurant that will be serving up seafood, steaks and live music at 664 The Queensway. The exterior of the building was recently painted a beautiful white with blue accents, replacing Luci restaurant that closed in 2020. It already has a great vibe, can't wait to visit. Rosie :)

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Patio Dining Returns to Toronto

It's hard to blame people for wanting to enjoy some fresh spring air and the simple pleasure of having a drink on a patio after a miserable year of being cooped up. These were some very happy diners in Mimico last weekend, at Dakota's on Lakeshore at Third Street. As Ontario enters a third wave and businesses begin to open up again, the number of Covid cases that are variants of concern in the country is rising. If you do choose to go out be careful, wear a mask or two... sanitize if you can't wash your hands right away... don't touch your face... and wash your hands with hot water and soap as soon as you can. And register for your vaccine. Click here for a list of pharmacies in Ontario offering the COVID-19 vaccine. Take care, Rosie :)

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Martino Manor: On Hold for Halloween 2020

If you live in the Parklawn/Queensway area of South Etobicoke and take your kids trick or treating, you've probably enjoyed the spooktacular house just south of Mamma Martino's Italian restaurant. The Martino family loves Halloween and have been transforming their home for years into a terrifying yet somehow also family-friendly spectacle of frights that the kids absolutely love. It's terrific and so much fun. A couple of years ago, the Martino's decided to take their love of scaring the hood up a notch and opened an indoor haunted house and outdoor maze just off the Queensway at 7 McIntosh Ave, directly behind their famous restaurant. It's called Martino Manor.

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Unfortunately, the MM Haunted House is closed this year because of COVID-19. But the spirit is definitely there and will hang on until 2021, when we can hopefully enjoy being scared by non-virus things once again. Rosie :)

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Mamma Martino's | Toronto Restaurants with Patios

Ontario reported over 200 new cases of COVID-19 again today. That's the highest single-day increase since June 29, when there were 257 cases reported. The weather is cooling, there is no avoiding that, and it's concerning for restaurants and bars that have no outside seating. As the pandemic stretches past the six month mark there is no denying that many are tiring of the isolation and missing the things we did regularly in our "normal" life, including going out to eat. For the restaurants that are fortunate enough to have patios, many like Mamma Martino's have created beautiful, physically distant spaces that allow us, for even a short time, to forget how difficult a time this is. It's important to continue to support our local communities as best we can while staying safe, so even if your favourite restaurant doesn't have a patio, considering picking up dinner one night instead. Wear your mask and hang on, hopefully in a few weeks we'll see those numbers drop back down again. Rosie :)

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