The Best Indie Cafes To Work From In Toronto East Side

The Best Indie Cafes To Work From In Toronto East Side.

East end Toronto is changing rapidly with its three major master planned developments from Regent Park to West Donlands, from Riverside to Leslieville. Commercial rent on the east side is still relatively lower than the west. For this reason artisan coffee shops have chosen to open along the East corridors of King St, Queen St, Dundas and Gerrard St East.

Coffee shops are everywhere in Toronto. Indie cafes help shape and give character to our neighbourhoods, it is also an important extension of the modern day work space. There are cafes that attract the morning grab 'n' goers, some with a cult following, and others that are more laid back and under the radar at the same time has their own specialty. I like to frequent ones with great coffee, subtle sweets, small bites, and thoughtfully designed spaces with some privacy seating, good music, free wi-fi and laptop friendly. I can sit, contemplate, meet friends and work out of during the day.

Below is a list of my top picks for cafes to work out of. Each has its own unique character and is worth the visit if you are taking an urban stroll in the neighbourhood:

Boxcar Social

[4 Boulton Ave | Riverside]

Boxcar Social is a coffee bar with a hybrid concept operating as a cafe during the day and bar in the evening. The original brick and beam space used to be a former library in historic RIverside before becoming a furniture store. The lofty interior is lined with enormous windows, exposed brick, salvaged timber, and industrial fixtures which makes it a great place to lounge.

Neo Coffee Bar

[161 Frederick St | King East Design District]


Neo's freshly made artisan roll cakes keep me coming back. The front space has an open area where customers can view the pastry chef making the cakes behind the display area. The space is modern with polished concrete floors, bespoke lighting and high design millwork details. Weekdays are more laid back and a good place to hang out, but weekend line ups can get quite long.


[514 King St East | Corktown]

The best combination of music, architecture and a good cup of espresso- the quintessential hipster cafe. A Nordic themed cafe with award winning architectural design, Odin offers a day and night menu - espresso bar, brunch, lunch and drinks at night.

Hailed Coffee

[801 Gerrard St East | Riverdale]

A cozy cafe with a Middle Eastern Twist, a welcoming addition along the derelict strip of Gerrard St East. They serve espresso infused with cardamom, arabic coffee, premium tea and date bar.

Check back for the growing list as more creative businesses joins the East Side artisan cafe movement!

Interested to find out more about East Side living in Corktown, Riverdale, Distillery District, Canary District, Leslieville and St Lawrence Market Area? Request for a neighbourhood report here.

East Side Mid-Rise Loft and Condo Buildings:

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