Toronto Café Tour: Alternative Grounds

June 5, 2011

Today’s Toronto Café Tour outing had me taking a nice bike ride out west to TO’s wonderful little Polish neighborhood known as Roncesvalles and the wonderful little coffeehouse there known as Alternative Grounds. Here’s my quick review.


Latte: Oh my gosh it was so huge. The photo may not show it, but this cup was literally the size of a chowder bowl. Thankfully, the latte itself was excellent (as long as you’re into foamy lattes) and I had no problem sipping the whole thing down. Plus, at $3.45 for a double, this is an incredibly good deal.

Wifi: Yes, but problematic. Instead of just having one shared WEP key for everyone, you have to create a unique username and password in order to login, which is a hassle in itself, and moreover resulted in the network continually logging me out whenever I was inactive for too long, thus requiring me to sign in again. And even when I was online, the signal was spotty and slow. Needless to say, this was all very disappointing.

Atmo: Excellent—if you need some indication of how much I liked being here, let’s just say I arrived around 2:30 and didn’t leave until shortly before 7, when the café closes. The interior sports lots of seating and seating options (including a backyard patio), lots of people quietly doing work around me the whole time, and a nice selection of music playing in the background. Great for relaxing, working, or meeting up.

Food: They have a big menu that I didn’t even attempt to explore. Sandwiches and other fresh kitchen creations complement a wide array of baked goods, which includes several vegan options.



I ended up opting for this little vegan chocolate cake, which was wonderfully moist and tasty.

Final Verdict: Alternative Grounds is wonderful. Its only downside in my opinion is the wifi, which they will hopefully someday fix. If this place was closer to me I’d come here all the time, but it is definitely good enough to make me want to return to the neighborhood just to stop in.

Until we eat again,



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