When I heard that there would be a “Harry Potter bar” opening up downtown Toronto, I knew I had to check this place out. The Lockhart (1479 Dundas Street W.) has been around for only about a year now, but it’s definitely made its mark.
I don’t live in the city, so I didn’t think this bar would be a place I frequent, but I’ve been there a handful of times, and it’s always a place I’ll return to.
First, let’s get the obvious out of the way: The Lockhart isn’t super Harry Potter-themed, but has the nuance of a Harry Potter feel. There are HP Funko Pops lining the shelves with their “Potions and Elixirs”, and if you take a walk down to the bathroom, you can see they encourage geeks like myself to contribute their HP graffiti to the chalkboard walls. But it isn’t over the top, screaming HARRY POTTER, and I love that about it. It’s still a place someone can chill with a friend and grab a drink. Which is the real reason I really go here – the food and drinks.
Take a flip through the “potions and elixirs” menu to find some great drinks named after some of my favourite nerdy characters. I’ve tried the ‘Gin Weasley‘, but the ‘Dr. Manhattan‘ is still on my to-drink list. As pictured to the left, my first drink at this stop was the Nom de Guerre (the purple drink, which includes cinnamon infused tequila, Port, Triple Sec, and ginger ale), which was honestly one of my favourites so far. And it was the only drink I needed that night.
Of course, it wouldn’t be a Harry Potter bar without Butter… er, Better Beer (Advocaat, butter washed cinnamon nutmeg infused tequila, house ginger beer, ginger ale, with a toasted marshmallow). And as seen in the photo below, one of my regular drinks is the Lockhart Caesar. I’m a fan of caesars, but they have to be done right, and I’ll come to The Lockhart forever if they continue to make their caesars this wonderfully thick and spicy.
I love that the bar puts extra effort into making these drinks as beautiful as they are delicious. Each drink comes in a mason jar or specialty vessel – the Nom de Guerre was served in a tall very Potter-like chalice, and the Better Beer looks like something out of Game of Thrones. I can’t help but want to take a million photos of everything they serve and post to Instagram, because it’s all so gorgeous.
I’ve definitely sampled more from the drink menu than the food – mostly because a lot of their food has shallots or shrimp (two things I am allergic to) – but the dishes I have tried are so yummy. The photo below is of the Royal Toast. The whipped cheese is so light, and the tomatoes just make this an amazing side to whichever cocktail you choose. I’ve also had the Evanesco Chocolate (hot caramel poured onto chocolate shatter melts with vanilla sponge cake & berries underneath), which is to die for. I’m not huge into heavy, chocolaty desserts, so this was perfect.
Besides their delicious menu, The Lockhart has regularly scheduled events to spice things up. Every Saturday and Sunday they hold brunch from 10:30-2:30pm, and every second Tuesday, the bar holds a Harry Potter trivia night!
It’s great if you want a night out with your fellow Potterheads, or you just want to catch up with an old friend over some delicious potions. This bar is such a creative space that is both down-to-earth and simply magical; I highly recommend checking out The Lockhart.