I’ve always been one to root for the underdog. From the moment I started working in a kitchen, I was at the bottom of the barrel. Cafe Loka reminds me of an underdog with a heart of gold. It’s located where Cedar Tree Cafe used to be on York, across from the liquor store. Blink and you’ll miss this wonderful new location.
What it’s like: Once I found it, I noticed the specials board outside. This is important as Cafe Loka is not located directly downtown, so it attracted me right away. The kitchen and dining room are open concept and this created an intimate atmosphere and homestyle feel.
How it tasted: I am a panini fanatic by nature, so I was delighted to see many sandwich options. The Montreal smoked meat panini, side salad and maple dressing was just the kick I needed to start my afternoon. The salad was surprising – I had never thought to make a maple flavor for a salad.
How I was treated: The service seemed to stem from a family-type organization. The kitchen was very small but the older women seemed to really enjoy their jobs and it seemed to motivate the rest of the staff. I left with a smile on my face and made sure they knew I would be back.
How much? The sandwiches were the most expensive menu item and much like the Cedar Tree you’re not going to pay over $12. It’s a good deal for a great coffee and lunch.
It’s worth your time so check it out, and don’t forget to tip your bartender!