Toronto Life - The Dish

The latest buzz on restaurants, chefs, bars, food shops and food events. Sign up for the Dish newsletter for weekly updates. Send tips to

New Reviews


Review: Buonanotte, Charles Khabouth’s clubby Italian resto-lounge

Buonanotte  2 stars
19 Mercer St., 416-599-7246
We’ve updated our star ratings system since this article was first published.
Read more about the change here, and
find the up-to-date rating in our restaurant listings.

Charles Khabouth does two things very well: pounding nightclubs and fancy restaurants. This new resto-lounge, the Toronto counterpart to Montreal’s Buonanotte, highlights his knack for both. The place looks like one of Khabouth’s King West clubs, with underdressed female wait staff and low-slung lounge furniture, and the kitchen turns out confident classic Italian food. Ridiculously moist beef and veal meatballs in a puddle of tangy marinara sauce are a terrific start, followed by lusciously al dente tagliatelle sautéed simply with mushrooms and olive oil. A Neapolitan pizza comes out of the wood-fired oven with a perfectly scorched rim, chewy centre, and flavourful rosemary, pancetta, brie and potato toppings. For dessert, a crisp, creamy floral mille foglie layers airy sheets of pastry with wine-poached pear slices and vanilla custard. The well-chosen Italian wine list has options for misers ($13 flutes of bubbly) and millionaires (a $1,000 Brunello). Come 11 p.m., the music thumps, the dance floor fills up and the Grey Goose flows.

How we do it

These restaurants are recommended by our anonymous reviewers. Restaurant bills are paid by Toronto Life; reviews have no connection to advertising. Stars are awarded for food and wine quality, as well as presentation, service, atmosphere, ambition and originality. All of our restaurant reviews can be found at

What the stars mean

star Good
star Very good
star Excellent
star Extraordinary
star Perfect