Founder is a contemporary bistro serving globally-inspired dishes and award-winning cocktails.
We opened Founder in June 2018 and quickly became known for our expertly crafted cocktails (voted Best Cocktail Bar by NOW Toronto) and globally-inspired dishes. Today, with an expanded food program and the same award-winning cocktails, we’re proud to serve our community in the heart of Toronto’s Little Portugal.
Owner and Head Chef Kendall Collingridge is one of Toronto’s under-celebrated culinary experts, having spent over a decade planting his roots all across Toronto’s rich food scene (Hooked, Spirithouse, Buca, Crush Wine Bar). Famous for his green curry fried chicken, Chef Kendall brings into every dish an eclectic mix of flavors that crosses borders and cultures. There’s a reason we say it’s the most Toronto menu you’ll ever taste.
- Surfaces sanitized between seatings
- Common areas deep cleaned daily
- Digital, disposable or sanitized menu provided
- Sealed or wrapped utensils used
- Limited number of seated diners
- Distancing maintained in common areas
- Extra space between tables
- Waitstaff wear masks
- Diners must wear masks unless eating or drinking
- Sick staff prohibited in the workplace
Went for anniversary and they gave us sparkling wine on the house! We were impressed by Ash's service and the quality of the food. Try their cocktail with beets and also their tandoori cauliflower.
This was my first time at Founder to celebrate my graduation. Everything from the cocktails to the last bite of food was absolutely outstanding. I will definitely be sharing my experience with my family and friends and will be back again very soon!
Incredible time! We had a fabulous experience from start to finish. Thank you to the entire team who made our evening such a memorable one. Love the cocktails!
Great food, inventive cocktails, attentive service. Will definitely be back!
Excellent food.. The freshest, tenderest oysters ever, delicious Japanese-style fish and a chocolate mousse to die for..
I have eaten here numerous times now, and with every refresh of the menu I am blown away by the flavours and presentation of everything the culinary team put together. Love the addition of the multi-course meals because it was getting hard to decide on just a few dishes per meal, now we get to taste a little bit of all our favourites. The grilled mushrooms are the best mushrooms I have ever had in my entire life, and same goes for the gnocchi (both regular and with braised beef).
The cocktails are wonderful, and even though the bar team at Founder are more than capable of doing classics, I find myself wanting to try everything on their menu. Big fan of the current drinks "Revenge of the Bees" and "Room 217".
It's tough to go out for food in the area now, because whenever it comes time to decide we almost always vote for Founder immediately. Great staff, and good vibes. Cheers!
Would be better if the dishes are served faster.
I had the pleasure to dine with my partner on Valentines Day and it was super romantic with great ambiance and incredible service! We were treated incredibly well but also given enough privacy during our night to have an intimate dining experience. Unfortunately, our server was not a usual there so they were not able to give us recommendations for the menu but they were still very thoughtful and helped us where they could. Would definitely go back for drinks with some friends next time.
The cocktail service was great - the bartender was highly skilled
The food was well balanced, good portions and creative!!
The ambiance lacked at the beginning due to sitting under waaaay too much light however, later they dimmed and it felt much cozier. The finishes and textures of the room were lovely!
I would certainly dine here again!
My bf and I love trying new and different spots, and love kitchen creativity as done by the pros. This is why we agreed on this 2-star rating, symbolic of our love of FOOD (it is a restaurant after all), though lots of little nice things to enjoy at this place so read on...
Both my date & I chose the Chef’s Experience, where the chef prepares 3 courses of their choosing for you to enjoy. However I was rather disappointed to be honest... some dishes lacked flavour and some had bizarre flavour combos making up the dish. And for the attached price tag neither of us left really satisfied or impressed by anything we tried. The best thing we ate was the loaded oyster appetizer, and the bartender made a meeeeaaannn plum gin & tonic! Our servers were incredible and were the best part of the night (aside from my company! Lol) If we end up there again, and that’s a big if, we will get something off the set menu instead. And def the oysters & g&t!
Good cocktails and nice ambience. Cassaundra provided friendly service. The two dishes we ordered (duck and roasted cauliflower) were brought while we were still enjoying our cheese plate with cocktails. They were not as hot as they should have been, but delicious nonetheless. Perhaps they were prepared and waiting while we were still eating the cheese. A nice neighbourhood spot.
A great spot with a menu that offers a delight to your palette. Great for sharing as well. The chef is creative and the staff is very knowledgeable about each mene item and friendly w no pretentious attitude. Big time recommendation!
Great food, great atmosphere! The staff were lovely! Just reopened after their renovations. So great
Very happy with our visit. We were a group of 12 and all opted for the 6 course menu. Quality and quantity of the food was great, as was the service.
A couple lower prices options on the wine list would do well to round out a very good selection.
Wait staff was friendly and attentive, helpful in making choices. Cocktails were very yummy and original. Food was delightful.
Great food, interesting dishes, fabulous environment.
Great cocktails, and the option for customized cocktails ;)
Tasting menu was fantastic, and offered a wide selection of options.
Cocktails are a must-have, whether you’re ordering a house feature or a custom concoction. For dinner, the chef’s experience offers a great range of the best dishes on and off the menu (the grilled oyster mushrooms, fried chicken, and octopus are to die for). Definitely one of the most underrated chefs in the city.
We had the Roasted Cauliflower and Duck Rye-sotto, they are amazing. Great mixture of seasoning and flavour on the cauliflower. Love the hearty play on the risotto, will definitely order again. The bartender mixed a fantastic drink for the season on ginger that I regret not having a second. The ambiance was lovely, perfect for any occasion and suitable for the mature, sophisticated crowd.
Great bar service. The food had outstanding flavour. The decor was cozy and comfortable. Come for a drink and stay for the food. Enjoy a unique array of dishes.
We celebrated a birthday at Founder and it was perfect. The birthday boy wanted a cozy, laid back vibe with good food and cocktails — and that’s exactly what you get at this place. The interior is snazzy, but not over the top. Service is attentive, with detailed presentations of the food (definitely try the fried chicken!) and drinks. Someone from our party asked the staff if they could “do something nice” for the birthday boy and they brought out a nice little dessert with candles! Class act all around.
Toronto needs more places that serve quality food late night! great experience
Hmm... cool ambiance, minimal decor, small but tasty selection of dishes. The service was friendly but super-relaxed. However, I'm not sure whether the Founder Bar wants to be a bar or a restaurant. Or something in between? On a Friday evening it didn't seem to attract either crowd. Which is a shame because the food was rather good.
Founder offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (647) 348-1282.
Founder is rated 4.8 stars by 24 OpenTable diners.
Yes, you can generally book this restaurant by choosing the date, time and party size on OpenTable. Due to local restrictions, this restaurant may not be accepting reservations at the moment.