Coffee time: The Dark Horse, Toronto
Dark Horse Espresso Bar, John Street, Toronto I'll admit, I am a bit of a coffee fan. Technically a tea and coffee fan, but years of working local news means I have become inured to bad cups of tea. Coffee, however, I am a big fan of when made well. As a result, I have begun an unofficial search for the best cup of coffee I can find. For those of you wondering, so far the winner is Burgundy & Black in Dorking. But while in Toronto for work recently, I felt I had to try out what the locals had to offer. Like any self-respecting conference, the FDFA event I was there for had coffee on tap, supplied by Starbucks, no less. But during a quiet moment at work I popped round the corner to try out the Dark Horse Espresso Bar. The small chain has six outlets around Toronto and boasts stocking beans from two locations to offer a variety of taste.
For those wanting more, the firm has lively Instagram and social media accounts and has recently celebrated its tenth birthday.
The John Street coffee shop is set back from the street and below street level. The awning sits just above the pavement with stairs leading down into the bar. The decoration is simple and urban, like so many popular new coffee shops. Staff are friendly and efficient, and the coffee is good.
On my first visit I had an Americano which was strong and invigorating without having a particularly mind-blowing flavour. The espresso I had on my next visit fixed that quickly. It was a sharp kick of flavour and caffeine. I certainly got my buzz back.