After more than a decade of delivering a diverse catalogue of albums and singles that seem to evolve in harmony with both the era they were made in and the creative headspace of the artists themselves, Toronto-based art rock duo Jason Couse and Wes Marskell continue to create unique songs and vibrant videos that offer listeners an experience distinctly different than the last.
The Darcys’ latest release, “Running For The Hills” provides a glimpse into the band’s next transition, showcasing a captivating combination of sidewinding guitar riffs, an explosive chorus, and lyrics that leave the past behind in favour of embracing the unknown.
Although the Juno Award-nominated duo recently relocated to Los Angeles, whether it’s on their newly-launched podcast or through their ongoing efforts to support emerging Canadian artists, Couse and Marskell are always proud to profess that they are Torontonians for life. With that in mind, we decided to catch up with Couse to find out where the talented musician loves to eat and drink in his hometown.
The fact that there are always a handful of people waiting out front for their order is a sign that they’re doing something right. Also, whoever thought of putting a pickle on a breakfast sandwich deserves the utmost respect.
I might be a bit biased because I love all felafel, but The Haifa Room is a cut above what you usually find. Super fresh and made with care, I pick this up for lunch whenever I’m in the neighbourhood. If I’m extra hungry I definitely don’t hesitate to get an order of the Za’atar fries to munch on as well.
That said, on a regular day I’ll keep it in my neighbourhood and head over to Mattachioni on Dupont Street for a Marco Bruno sandwich. The bread is unbelievably good, the vibes are immaculate, and you can pick up something so you’re prepared when cocktail hour inevitably rolls around later in the day.
Hands down, if it’s a big night out I’m going to Quetzal. Step into this place and you’ll immediately be comforted by the smell of the most delicious campfire you could ever imagine. The grill section of the menu is the real highlight, and they even bring you some fresh tortillas on the side so it’s easy to eat up every last bit of sauce. Add a cocktail to this mix and I can guarantee a great night.
For a more casual evening, it has to be Pho Xua on St. Clair. Whether you keep it simple with some vermicelli or go all in with a family style sharing platter, you’re in for a great meal.
Bathurst Local. This is the spot. A selection of natural wine so fantastic you’ll want to try everything, and with the most reasonable prices in the city you might actually be tempted to try all of them… But if you’re not in the mood for wine they also have amazing sake, craft beers, and an entire room dedicated to whiskey. This one doesn’t miss.