The Donlands Diner

One of Toronto’s few remaining authentic, old-school diners. Everything here is excellent.

📍417 Donlands Ave, East York

Fish & Chips: A Donlands Classic

A long-time favourite and one of Toronto’s few remaining authentic, old-school diners. How good is it? Well, we live in the Junction, don’t own a car and once a month we get a car share and drive over to Donlands Diner for a great experience.

Everything here is excellent. The decor is legit retro. It’s not the fever dream of some interior designer striving to create a retro aesthetic. This look and feel is the real Donlands, and has been for a long time; makes a visit here worth it on its own.

But of course the food has to be good, or they wouldn’t have been around and successful for so long. And the food is perfect diner fare. Great quality, huge portions, all at a great price. Some of the highlights to seek out: fish and chips (killer); clubhouse sandwich (slather the mayo and dive in); and, any one of their hot sandwiches (the hot beef is probably our favourite). And be sure to get the coffee. It’s not fancy, but it’s a perfect bottomless cup of classic diner java that takes us back every time we have some.

Finally, there’s the warm, welcoming vibe and always friendly service. Pro tip: when things are a bit slow sit at the lunch counter and chat with the folks as they go about their work. You’ll have a blast!

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