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“Fantastic location, average otherwise” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Balzac's

Balzac's
Ranked #95 of 8,404 Restaurants in Toronto
Certificate of Excellence
Cuisines: Cafe, Canadian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Families with children
Dining options: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner, Free Wifi, Outdoor Seating, Seating, Takeout
Neighborhood: Downtown
Markham, Canada
Level Contributor
49 reviews
26 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Fantastic location, average otherwise”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 29, 2013

We've been to Balzac's many times, primarily because of its great location in the Distillery District, but we haven't been for a while and have lost interest. The coffee is average, the service is unremarkable and it is often crowded. Still, on the right day (when there aren't too many people) it can be a great place to sit and rest. I recommend taking your coffee upstairs ... if you can get a seat.

Visited December 2012
Helpful?
Thank edojidai
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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177 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    88
    69
    18
    1
    1
Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Portuguese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Level Contributor
68 reviews
49 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
“A buzzing environment.”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed March 17, 2013 via mobile

Gotta love the atmosphere. Great coffee, amazing muffins and people everywhere.
Be prepared to wait if you want seating. Well worth it.

    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Crctrip
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Manchester, England
Level Contributor
213 reviews
96 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 158 helpful votes
“Best coffee place in Toronto”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 18, 2013

The coffee is excellent, the cakes and cookies are good, and the atmosphere delightful. Set in an old distillery, it is decorated with lots of antiques, and has a high-ceilinged spacious feel. Never really noisy. This is a good place to meet with colleagues, or go and do some quiet work (no wifi though - that would really increase my visits if they had that. Perfect place to stop if you are sauntering round the Distillery District. But worth a visit in and of itself..

  • Visited June 2012
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank helidjha
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sheffield, England
Level Contributor
43 reviews
25 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
“The ONLY REAL COFFEE IN TORONTO”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed February 6, 2013

As the title says. Everywhere else is like a caffeine mouthwash. This is real coffee with a bite. The only downside is that the staff (and we tried three different Balzac's) were unenthusiastic and seemed bored. This is quite a contrast to most places where they greet you like an old friend although too much of that can seem overwhelming. There must be a balance somewhere but Hard Rock Cafe and Balzac's are at either hand of the pendulum. The cafe's are unpretentious and set mostly in old buildings with at least as much atmosphere as the coffee (except the Ryerson Uni one which is bland, unlike the coffee)
Don't miss. Try them all, I think there are seven dotted around the Toronto area.

Visited February 2013
Helpful?
Thank Cybermouse
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
91 reviews
36 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
“Amazing café, unique location !”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 23, 2013

One of my Top 5 best café destination in Toronto. An original concept inspired by an iconic French writer, Honoré de Balzac. Located in an ancient whisky warehouse in the heart of Distillery District in Toronto, you can feel the history of this amazing building. On the second floor, a lounge/art gallery features nice paintings from local artists for sale. There is also a little mezzanine for a couple of people overlooking the café. The atmosphere is really nice..
The food is very tasty, fresh quality pastries, cafés are delicious, from the simple brewed black coffee to the latte, double espresso, really good !
There is no Wifi but I guess it is desired on purpose in order to keep a clientele who is looking forward to enjoying a nice coffee break without ipad or laptop.
Service is fast, professional and efficient even at rush hours.
I always stop there at least 3 or 4 times in the month.Not to be missed !

Well done Diana Olsen (President Founder of Balzac Cafés), a great idea and a successful business !

  • Visited January 2013
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Food
Helpful?
Thank Igal A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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