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“Carmen Cocina a gem for tapas”
Review of Carmen

Carmen
Ranked #941 of 8,771 Restaurants in Toronto
Price range: US$ 24 - US$ 40
Cuisines: Spanish
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Dining options: After-hours, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Neighbourhood: Queen Street and West Queen West
Cross street: Shaw St.
Transit: Queen St. W. @ Shaw St. Queen St. W. @ Strachan Ave. Ossington Ave. @ Queen St. W. N. Side
Reviewed 17 June 2017

Sitting at the bar with Cesar, this tapas restaurant was definitely a highlight of my visit to Toronto. While I stuck to wine to accompany my choices of tapas, Cesar looked to be an inventive and talented mixologist. My highlight: the jicama wraps, with creamed avocado, a touch of pico de gallo, and a hint of black pepper with the crunch of finely chopped jicama. The olives and almonds included a variety of olives with stones, while the almonds were dry roasted and salted. My third was the roasted Brussels sprouts, which included wedges of well cooked bacon, which was not indicated on the menu. I was then old that the fried artichokes would have been the choice toward keeping to a plant-based mean. The bar had a nice selection of brandy, offering a Troncas Reserva to cap a great evening.

Thank Ken C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviews (67)
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8 - 12 of 67 reviews

Reviewed 2 May 2017

I pre-booked for six people and paid in advance.

I don't know if it was because they got my money, but the service was just lousy. The amount of food was incredibly surprising... in a bad way. It barely fed two people, much less six.

I talked to them about it afterwards, and they agreed to rectify it. Except after contacting them over and over and over again, nothing was ever done.

Very disappointing.

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank Sol O
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 April 2017 via mobile

Came here based on the reviews. Sadly we were extremely disappointed. They make a fantastic manhattan. Unfortunately that's all I enjoyed.

First, it was extremely understaffed. Servers were frantically trying to serve everyone.

For appetizers we ordered the mussels and artichokes. The mussels were out of the shell and didn't taste fresh. They were also over cooked and chewy. The deep fried artichokes were a great concept but poorly executed. They were extremely salty and unpalatable.

The paella del Carmen was over an hour wait and at 65 dollars, we were hoping it would change our minds. The fresh basil and green peas were a great touch. The shrimp, clams and mussels were fresh. However, we found it too salty and not at all worth 65 dollars.

If you want authentic Spanish food save your time and money and try La Vinia on lakeshore. Far better food. Far better value.

Won't come here again.

Thank BillyTaha
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 21 March 2017 via mobile

Called this place at 515 on a Saturday night as different websites gave different opening times. One said 530 and one said 6.

My son had had surgery a few days before and this was his first time out and we didn't want to have him walk too far. We were in Toronto visiting family and he wanted tapas so we looked on TA to find a restaurant close to where we were at the time.

So we called and the lady said they were actually open already. We were a couple of minutes away so we drove straight there located the restaurant, paid for street parking and went in.

The place looked lovely. There were maybe 3 booths that were filled. The barman looked at us and said "do you have reservations?" I said no.His response was "you will need to talk to the lady over there".

I walked further in and asked the lady for a table. She looked at me, looked at my son on crutches, my daughter and my husband and said "no we don't have anything". This was the same lady I had spoken to on the phone as I recognized her voice.

Now i will add we were dressed casually in jeans and as I say my son was on crutches. I sincerely hope neither of the above were reasons that she said she didn't have anything.

I just find it strange that if someone calls up and asks if you are open if you have no seating available would you not tell them that on the phone to save them the trouble of turning up?

The place looked nice but as I say it was very empty and it was pretty early. We left disappointed. Based on the way we were treated I'm not inclined to go back in the future.

1  Thank vicky e
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 March 2017

We went for a birthday dinner on a Sunday evening, after had made a reservation.
We ordered several tapas, all delicious ( especially the dates with bacon and almonds, the tomatillos and the ceviche. We also shared a paella that everyone enjoyed ! As a surprise, they brought some amazing churros for the birthday ! It was our first time there, and I know we will be back !

    • Value
    • Service
    • Food
Thank klaire2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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