Bier Market - Esplanade
Taps: - / Bottles: -
Cask: N / Beer-to-Go: N
Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 23 | Reviews: 22 | Show All Ratings:
4.53/5 rDev +22.4%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 5 | food: 4
Possibly my first place to go where there was a dress code. The sign out front said no ratty jeans allowed, and I couldn't decide what mine were so, I took a chance and entered. This restaurant looked very flashy and up scale, in comparison to most bars I have been to. Overall I felt very comfortable for just wearing a hooded sweatshirt and jeans, this seemed like a dance club with louder music. I put aside all of the afflictions about dress code, once I saw the beer menu I felt right at home.
Our waitress was very good to us, she was upfront about her beer knowledge, but she offered to help us in anyway we needed. The bar was full of taps ranging from your belgiums Hoegaarden, Chouffe, Stella to Fuller's London Porter their special. A wide variety of beers macro to micro to just about anything. They even had some Victory products in the menu. You could be here just about all day and not spend as much as you would in an American wannabe beer bar.
We ordered some oysters and flatbread with smoked chicken and portebello mushrooms. My girlfriend and I really enjoyed the flatbread. The menu was not the most extensive, but they did have mussels steamed with beer "a true belgium style delight". Very well done in the food category.
Overall I was very pleased, and I also became acquainted with a bar that cares enough about their beer to order authentic glassware. My Aventinus Wheat Dopplebock was amazing in its quite strangely shaped glass.
02-17-2003 07:38:13 | More by WVbeergeek
4.4/5 rDev +18.9%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 5 | food: 4
I checked this place out during a short stay in Toronto and I must say I was most impressed. The beer selection seemed endless; it took me 20 minutes just to decide what to have first. I was extremely impressed by the extra step that the establishment took to serve each beer in it's own appropriate glassware. The servers could have been a little more knowledgeable about the beers they were serving, but each beer had an individual description in the menu. I guess that made up for the lack of knowledge. There wasn't a large variety of food items on the menu, but what they did have was delicious. I would most definitely suggest adding the Esplanade Bier Markt to any to-do list if visiting the Toronto area. While you're there, be sure to pick up a copy of the beer menu, it makes a great souvenir.
12-02-2002 08:56:01 | More by Scooter77
4.38/5 rDev +18.4%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | food: 4.5
It had been a few years since my last visit to the Bier market but seems as if things have changes somewhat.
On Friday eveing the after-work crowd is huge. The place is pretty much packed by 6pm. The tables are full and people are standing at the bar and everywhere in between. And it's loud.
On this particular day we stayed for dinner which was better than in the past. I had the schnitzel and my wife had the mussels. And of course there were a couple orders of frites involved here too. The entire meal was very good. The frites have improved greatly.
The beer seelctio was not the best around but it was hard to argue with what they were offering. My only complaint, i ordered a Rochefort 10 and they were all out.
A great Belgian sytle bar/restaurant to visit but be careful on wknd evenings & nights. It gets so busy, there may be a line up out the door. And be prepared for NOISE. This turns into more of a meatmarket then a bar on wknds. For a more relaxing, strictly beer drinking experience, head to Smokeless Joe.
06-21-2003 06:23:56 | More by Popsinc
4.22/5 rDev +14.1%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$$
Located just around the corner from C'est What?, I almost missed this place entirely and would have surely regretted that. Although the atmosphere does seem just a little new, corporate and sometimes clubby, it's one superb beer bar and restaurant.
Large dining area with an outside patio and a bar area deeper within the building, quite spacious all around even when crowded. The menu is limited but the food is excellent. Servers are also very well-trained and prompt, even when busy. Zagat rated.
About 40 taps and 100 bottled offerings, all kept in absolute pristine condition. Whomever owns this place seems fanatical about keeping the best beers in the best serving condition possible. Excellent worldwide selection, all with proper glassware and (surprisingly) even proper coasterware.
This place has the best beer menu I've ever seen. It's full color with photos, spiral bound, complete descriptions of beer listed both by national origin and by beer style -- the menu has a freakin' index! When was the last time you saw that? Do not overlook the "last call" listings on the back page, a list of limited editions or leftover bottles.
06-20-2006 21:47:59 | More by assurbanipaul
4.15/5 rDev +12.2%
vibe: 1.5 | quality: 5 | service: 4 | selection: 4.5 | $$$$
Had a chance to stop by this place this weekend on a trip to Toronto. The inside is warm, cozy, dark and elegant. I gave it an average rating because at about 9:15 a security guard told me that we were going to have to get up soon. The stools were going to be removed to prepare for "the crowd". Hmmm... alright?
20 minutes later:
The place is full of club-ish douchebags.
People making mixed drinks using beer. People ordering Bud Lights (which are like $6.25). Bartenders not being able to hear over the over-privileged, under classy, desperate for a one-night-stand, late night asshole patrons. Terrible.
So anyway... back to the beer. The beer was great. Several awesome selections not common or readily available in the States. Hoegaarden Grand Cru, Cuban beer, Leffe Brune, etc.
The prices were obnoxiously high.
I had never had a Rogue Brutal Bitter and it was my friend's favorite rogue beer. We didn't think to ask what they cost as they popped the tops on our 22 oz'ers. Flipping through the beer guide we saw that, in the back, there was a price by each beer offered: My rogue bomber (that I pay $6.39 for in the US) was fucking $16.15. yeah, $16.15. Plus GST. Plus tip.
I picked up the first round and it cost me $40!
01-14-2008 01:52:07 | More by Rudgers73
4.13/5 rDev +11.6%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 4.5 | selection: 4 | food: 4 | $$$
A cool upscale-like cellar atmosphere. It is completely different when not on a Thursday to Saturday night. Those weekend nights turn the place into a party bar with live entertainment that can be fun if you are in that mood.
Very good selection of beers from around the world but I've sometimes had trouble getting the "best-of-the-best" beers.
A limited but interesting food menu of good quality (I like the poutine).
I've always had very good service. The bar staff have been helpful in particular.
12-15-2009 04:13:16 | More by ecoastman
4.1/5 rDev +10.8%
vibe: 3.5 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | $$$
I had a whirlwind tour of Toronto Saturday. Esplanade Bier Market was our starting point. We sat at the bar and were handed beer menus, and proceeded from there.
I'd consider this an upscale bar/restaurant. Curves seemed to be the architectural theme. Very few straight lines. There are a couple televisions on the back wall, showing the Leafs/Habs game during my visit. The volume level was slightly loud, but not club level earbursting level. It's definitely on the trendy side of things, but I was still comfortable.
The beer selection is very slanted towards Belgium. Canada's brewers are second in prominence, then a sampling of the rest of the globe. I was most interested in the local beers. I started with a Denison's Weissbier, and finished with a St. Amroise Pale Ale. The belgian ale selection is the most remarkable aspect of the Bier Markt.
Service was solid and friendly, but nothing incredible. We got our beer, in proper glassware, quickly. One of the bartenders made affirming coments about our selections, but being a busy Saturday night, we didn't converse in depth.
I enjoyed this place. If you're downtown Toronto craving Belgian Ale, this is a good place to get your fix.
12-17-2007 21:32:41 | More by frazbri
4.06/5 rDev +9.7%
vibe: 4.5 | quality: 4 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | $$
I visited this establishment for the first time on August 10, 2007 (Day 1 of Toronto's Festival of Beer). The beer menu is a fine book. It contained 129 beers from around the world of many different styles, heavy on the Belgians. The atmosphere is upscale casual on the inside, with an ample sized patio. The service was very good, no hovering, and knowledgeable about the product. The value was excellent, the prices were slightly less expensive than some of the other beer restaurants in the city.
08-11-2007 04:23:50 | More by cyrenaica
4.04/5 rDev +9.2%
vibe: 3 | quality: 4.5 | service: 4 | selection: 4 | $$$
Went on a Thursday night, with a live band and music that was way too loud. Lighting was too dim, and this was more of a club on this night than it was a beer bar. Wasn't at all the setting to enjoy some of the fine beers they offered.
Most of their stuff is available at the LCBO, but a good portion of their belgian selection is not. Selection at this time of year wasn't as good as I've seen during other times. Particularly, selection from the States was very poor (only Anchor Steam and Liberty). In the past, they had stuff from Rogue, Victory, Smuttynose, SN etc. Maybe I'll go back later in the winter.
Service was good, as was their attention to glassware, although they tend to pour all the beer into dripping wet glasses, which bugged me.
My advice, if you want to enjoy the beer, rather than have a rowdy good time, is to sit either in the dining area or outside on the patio. One of the better bottled selections in town. Prices are higher than places like Volo caffe and C'est what, but less than Smokeless Joe.
09-10-2004 22:16:50 | More by baiser
4/5 rDev +8.1%
vibe: 4 | quality: 4 | service: 3.5 | selection: 4.5 | $$$
Walked in on a recommendation by a waitress at another beer site in Toronto, and I was not disappointed by the selection. Heavy emphasis on European brews, which usually means "hard to pick anything over the Belgians" for me, and that's what I did. Got an Urthel Hop It on tap, then the honorary Belgian, Netherlands' Trappist Konigshoeven Quad. We met a terrific girl named Sue who introduced us to Jager Bombs, so my friend and I left lit and primed for the Pearl Jam show that night. It was a wonderful place to spend some time, and the selection was one you could explore for days on end, if you were a Torontonian or regular visitor. We wouldn't have that opportunity, but we made the most of it.
Atmosphere is very European in character, matching the selection. Feels like a big German pub, several rooms and a large outside area in front, beckoning those on the sidewalk to come on in. Service might have been better. We were perusing the beer list, it was a formidable one, so I told the waiter "just need 2 minutes." I meant literally "2 minutes," but I guess he thought I said "10 minutes," because that's how long it took him to come back. But, once we were served the first time, he was attentive to our needs thereafter.
While everything is a bit pricey here, we had a great time and drank some truly top-notch beer too. Not much more you can ask for, really...
09-14-2011 16:24:26 | More by Metalmonk
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Bier Market - Esplanade in Toronto, ON, Canada
86 out of 100 based on 23 user ratings.