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“Good food, staff needs training”

Boland's Open Kitchen
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Ranked #763 of 8,898 Restaurants in Toronto
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $23 - $39
Cuisines: Seafood, Steakhouse, Wine Bar
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Restaurant details
Good for: Local cuisine
Dining options: Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Neighborhood: North End
Description: Christopher Boland brings an impressive pedigree spanning more than three decades and including ownership in Telfers , Trappers, The Tasting Rooms and now Boland's Open Kitchen.On any given evening Christopher will be seen out front meeting each and every guest, as well as joining the kitchen staff in the centrally-located kitchen - the heart of the restaurant.A recent review noted that "eating at Boland's is like being invited to Christopher Boland's home for dinner", which is just what Christopher is striving for.Manager Ricardo welcomes you with his signature smile and old world attention to service and detail.
Reviewed May 30, 2013

Food was well prepared and very fresh. The owner is inviting and very personable. However, the wait staff and their lack of training do not do the food justice. Not bad service, just not good. Reaching across the entire table to pour wine. You will be refilling your own water, bread for some tables not others, 15 minutes to bring our wine etc...

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Thank HeliHo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chris B, Owner at Boland's Open Kitchen, responded to this reviewResponded October 1, 2013

We are dedicated to providing the freshest and well prepared for our guests! We love to impress our guests to provide an unforgettable experience with a great atmosphere and delicious food. We apologize for the service. We have spoke with the staff about the incidents you described to ensure they do not happen in the future. We hope that you will join us again soon! Best, Chris Boland (Owner)

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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56 - 60 of 61 reviews

Reviewed March 14, 2013

We had read great reviews of this place and were eager to try it. Three of us attended, and found the servers very warm and accommodating. The place is small, and the tables somewhat closer together than we would have liked, but the at atmosphere was pleasant overall. An amuse bouche was provided - on this occasion, wild mushrooms in a Bearnaise sauce, served in a little china spoon. We loved it and were provided with another round, which we enjoyed all over again. Because it was out first time there, we wanted to sample as much as we could, so we ordered several starters and mains to share. The portions were really much to small to share, offering only a mouthful really. And while they were tasty, in general we agreed that the prices were excessive for the nature and size of the portions. Will we return? Don't know. Probably not.

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Thank drjps
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 4, 2013

We were here on a cold January night. The staff was trying hard to be friendly, earnestly so. The menu was a bit earnest as well, trying desperately hard to be trendy/sustainable/green. But the menu was pretty good, the soups interesting, the mains served in interesting ways with al dente veggies. Worthy of a return visit, but i'm not sure i would take someone i was trying to impress.

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Thank Mark16
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 13, 2012

After a complemtary tasting of food from this restaurant at an event we decide to try it out when a guest from out of town offered to take us out for dinner. We could not get a reservation until later on a busy Saturday night which suiited us fine. We were sat promptly and offered good attention. The many is varied and intersting and changes on a regular basis. We ordered the carrot soup with white cheddar, the blue crab salad with avacado and frisee and the three cheese fondue to start. Our host ordered the Atlantic Salmon - sorry were sold out - so both the host and my partner ordered the Halibut and I the Short Ribs. The waitress returned to tell us that there was only one serving of the Halibut so my partner ordered the Rack of Lamb.....third choice. We were served our wine, still water, and a complimentary appetizer of greek salad on a crostini; albeit tasty, was soggy from the greek salad so the crostini disintegrated and fell on the table cloth when you picked it up; and a porcelin spoon with potatoe salad made with egg white mayo - quite good and well presented. The soup receive great reviews, the salad featured the frisee and not the crab and avacado and the fondue was served with bitter crostini becuase they were baking the baquettes, as the service person ran by with several 'fresh baked" baquettes from the grocery store up the block.... When the bread arrive for my fondue it had congeled into a salty lump of cheese. I also found it tinteresting that other tables were recieiving plates of bread and butter with their meals and I just got it with my fondue.
And then came the main courses....well two of them... the Halibut and Short Rib were served. The portion of Halibut was generous and well presented. The Short Rib although braised for hours had a bitter edge and I thought on the tough side for something that has cooked so long. Both the host and I stalled as much as we could and I protested to the staff and finally after two or us were finished our dinner my parters Lamb was delivered by the Chef/owner - all too late. We were offered free dessert and our wine was complimentary, which I thought was an admirable and excellent recovery. The jury is still out if I will return but the variey and diversity of the menu has perked my attention. I opted to face the open kitchen and see the Wait Staff and Cooks interact and with my good hearing could see and hear everything going on. Chalk it upto a bad night however a good kitchen should never run out of steam or food for that matter particularilyl on a busy Saturday night.

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2  Thank Robert O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 4, 2012

Overall, It was really "average" at best for us. The service was friendly but EXTREMELY slow - we finished an entire bottle of water before they asked for our drink order. The white sangria was the best I've ever had, so that's a plus. My husband had the roast beef for dinner and said that it was good - not "special" but good. I had the salmon with the mango salsa and sweet potato "patty". The salmon was huge (too big) and really over done. The potato patty was burnt. When the waiter (who was very lovely) finally came around we'd finished eating and asked if there was anything wrong with my salmon. When I told him he made a big deal that he was going to give me a "gift" (though I kept insisting it wasn't necessary). He handed us an envelope and when we opened it on the way home it was a FLYER for 15% off ONE entree on a Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday. We laughed and laughed at this "gift". With so many other restaurants to choose from in the neighbourhood, I don't think we'll be back.

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Thank CelesteToronto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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