Dobber@TIFF: Best spots to quench your thirst during TIFF

There’s no better way to take in TIFF than at one of the city’s most celebrated bars. Sip a cocktail at a luxury hotel’s lobby bar, nestle up next to your favourite bartender or laze the afternoon away on a patio with your glass always half full. Here are four perfect spots to people-watch as pretty him and her from Hollywood ooh and ah over the city’s top cocktails.

Luma

Festival HQ is home to Oliver & Bonacini’s Luma. Floor-to-ceiling windows wrap around the dining room and bar, offering a perfect birds-eye-view for thirsty film buffs looking to gawk down at TIFF town.

The nibbles: Warm marinated olives, lobster and shrimp BLT sliders, and spiced chicken tostada.

The sip: The Bullingdon Blind features Beefeater Gin, ginger bitters, lemon verbena, apple juice and cucumber.

El Cabalito

This Mexican-inspired tapas bar is located directly across from Roy Thomson Hall, where TIFF’s glitz meets glam gala premieres. It’s a perfect spot to pop by for a tequila-spiked thirst quench.

The nibbles: Jalapeno relleno, flank steak taco and tamarind ceviche.

The sip: The Red Carpet is prepared with Clase Azul La Pinta (a pomegranate tequila), Luxardo Maraschinio and Aperol.

The Carbon Bar

Settle into a delightful mode of relaxation at Carbon Bar while white orbs hover above, stringing together an intimate vibe in a space that feels sky high.

The nibbles: Split pea fritters with pico de gallo, crispy chicken skin dipped in sweet chili vinegar and addictive “Hot Mess” featuring sweet potato, cheese curds, pickled jalapeno and chopped brisket.

The sip: The Smokin Manhattan uses tobacco-infused oak-infused dolins and bitters.

Weslodge

By far one of the most unique spots in the city, Weslodge offers a taste of the time of yore via vintage portraits, funky taxidermy and staff uniforms that read saloon chic fashion featuring leather holster, denim apron and leather boots.

The nibbles: Crispy hen with biscuits, Scotch egg and beef tartar with foie gras mousse.

The sip: Barrel Aged Negroni is prepared with Bombay Sapphire Gin, Campari, Sweet Vermouth and orange oil.

Andrew Dobson, September 11, 2014