Looking for the original Bar Towel blog? You can find it at www.thebartowel.com.

We have a trivia question in order to register to prevent bots. If you have any issues with answering, contact us at cass@bartowel.com for help.

Introducing Light Mode! If you would like a Bar Towel social experience that isn't the traditional blue, you can now select Light Mode. Go to the User Control Panel and then Board Preferences, and select "Day Drinking" (Light Mode) from the My Board Style drop-down menu. You can always switch back to "Night Drinking" (Dark Mode). Enjoy!

Bar Volo 2.0

Discuss Ontario's brewpubs, pubs, beer bars and restaurants here.

Moderators: Craig, Cass

User avatar
lister
Beer Superstar
Posts: 2071
Joined: Wed Feb 16, 2005 2:33 pm
Location: Toronto

Bar Volo 2.0

Post by lister »

The girlfriend and I stopped in for a pint during our Nuit Blanche romp on Saturday.

The space looks really nice. It's divided into two. The main area with the bar and seating and towards the back on the left additional seating and standing areas plus the washrooms. Similar A-Z taps as before and up to six casks. Beer selection is more broad than the College location. Didn't try any food but there's more food here than at the College location. Service is at the bar which I hate. Especially since people still hang around it after getting their drink. That's irritating as fuck. GET THE FUCK OUT OF THE WAY!

The casks chalk board needs work. It was really hard to read. I wish more bars would go with digital screens. In this case also for the taps listings. Some people should not be writing with chalk (I'll call out the Tequila Bookworm chalk writer too, yes, yes fancy writing that looks cool but it's really hard to read!)

The music really needs to be lowered. It doesn't have to be at library levels but it would be nice to be able to talk to someone without having to raise your voice significantly especially given the type of music typically played.

We will be back on a less busy night. Despite the nitpicky criticisms I'm glad Bar Volo is back. 8)
lister

User avatar
Gleemer Imports
Posts: 67
Joined: Thu Apr 20, 2017 4:41 pm
Location: Toronto
Contact:

Post by Gleemer Imports »

arguably the nicest beer bar in the city.
The Moranas do it again
Visit us at http://www.gleemer.ca or follow Gleemer Imports on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter!

User avatar
Belgian
Bar Towel Legend
Posts: 10033
Joined: Sun Jul 04, 2004 7:15 pm
Location: Earth

Post by Belgian »

lister wrote:Service is at the bar which I hate. Especially since people still hang around it after getting their drink. That's irritating as fuck. GET THE FUCK OUT OF THE WAY!
^ I like your way of putting things, LOL. And sounds like V2 need a designated bar service area.
lister immediately thereafter wrote:The casks chalk board needs work. It was really hard to read. I wish more bars would go with digital screens. In this case also for the taps listings. Some people should not be writing with chalk (I'll call out the Tequila Bookworm chalk writer too, yes, yes fancy writing that looks cool but it's really hard to read!))
Totally valid 'nitpick' and actually a big one for any bar. The tap list chalk board at Kingston Brewing is abysmal, doesn't show half of what they got, and the bartender refused to tell me what else they had, just gave me the snarky 'what style do you like?' That day I walked out and haven't returned in 4 years.

It's the opposite of advertising if they obscure what the bar is selling. I really think half of going out somewhere is not just the beer but the experience so details matter. (PS: I'll for sure go to KBC again, I would not write off this venerable spot just for a few annoying, contemptuous staff.)
In Beerum Veritas

User avatar
lister
Beer Superstar
Posts: 2071
Joined: Wed Feb 16, 2005 2:33 pm
Location: Toronto

Post by lister »

This is a pet peeve of mine. When I ask what the rotating tap selection is I want to know the brewery and either the beer name or the style. Don't ask me what style I like. Don't mumble a couple of brewery names and that's it or "Oh a saison, a sour, ..." The most recent time this happened was at Belfast Love. I had to ask the guy three times for specifics but he kept rattling off the most vaguest things. Fine, you don't know what they are, go find out. Have them written down, read the list if you have to, I don't care. I just want to know what other taps you have that's not explicitly listed.

I understand it's probably annoying to rattle off the list often. Ask management to do something about that, have a board that gets legibly updated often with those tap rotations, preferably digitally.
lister

User avatar
cratez
Beer Superstar
Posts: 2284
Joined: Mon Mar 15, 2010 8:29 pm
Location: Brantford, Ontario
Contact:

Post by cratez »

Personally, I found my first visit to be very enjoyable. Sitting at the side of the bar, which seems to be the spot if you want to be at the bar, I received excellent service from all of the staff, and Tomasz in particular. As expected the tap list was superb, rivaled only by Birreria. Got to try Hair of the Dog Adam, Oxbow Venacular, and Sawdust City Numerals, and left a happy camper as a result. Also tried the Bruschetta and Salsiccia plates, both of which were delicious. The music was loud but still allowed for conversation, and I had no trouble reading the tap list from the bar. They also have an extensive wine list (my wife will like that). Overall it was a great experience, and I'll definitely be back. Nice to see Bar Volo leading the way again.
"Bar people do not live as long as vegan joggers. However, they have more fun." - Bruce Elliott

Coronaeus
Posts: 316
Joined: Thu Jul 17, 2014 3:11 pm

Post by Coronaeus »

FYI. Iris is available on the Birreria Volo site again. 1/person at $49.

seangm
Bar Fly
Posts: 607
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2015 12:44 pm

Post by seangm »

Considering Bar Volo 1.0 was my favourite beer bar in the city, it took me far too long to visit 2.0

What a fantastic place. A nice menu of snacks and smaller meal items, and of course one of the city's finest beer menus. As it was a celebratory occasion, we went for a bottle of Cantillon Gueuze because why not. Add to that 6 cask options and more draft choices than you could hope to try. The ambiance was nice, they've done a good job creating a cozy spot in a newly built space, which as discussed in the Betty's thread, is a rarity these days. The music wasn't too loud, although it was our first stop of the day so it was early (4 pm-ish).

Overall still one of the city's best spots for beer lovers- but as mentioned with a solid wine list and cocktails, still a great spot even if your group isn't all beer drinkers.

User avatar
Tapsucker
Seasoned Drinker
Posts: 1912
Joined: Fri Apr 28, 2006 6:21 pm
Location: Toronto

Post by Tapsucker »

I haven't had a chance to go back since before the plague, but I really liked it at the time. My only issue, and it's a minor one, is that it is a bit of a hard surface cave and even with the generally respectful level they have their music at, when it's crowded, people noise can take over the place and having conversations is a challenge. Someone mentioned that they had taken some steps to address this, but I have not been there to be sure. I hope so, it would make a great place even better.
Brands are for cattle.
Fans are cash cows.
The herd will consume until consumed.

seangm
Bar Fly
Posts: 607
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2015 12:44 pm

Post by seangm »

We got there around 3:30 and the music was at a reasonable volume, although I did notice that it seemed to get turned up around 6 as we were leaving. So I guess my advice is go early... I'm getting older anyway, so quite happy to start and end my days out earlier lol

User avatar
Cass
Beer Superstar
Posts: 3837
Joined: Sun Jun 17, 2001 8:00 pm
Location: Toronto
Contact:

Post by Cass »

Boy, Toronto really does go out of its way to squash not just fun, but legitimate business and culture builders.


User avatar
Tapsucker
Seasoned Drinker
Posts: 1912
Joined: Fri Apr 28, 2006 6:21 pm
Location: Toronto

Post by Tapsucker »

Cass wrote: Tue Jun 13, 2023 3:51 pm Boy, Toronto really does go out of its way to squash not just fun, but legitimate business and culture builders.

I saw it explained in the mainstream media as an issue with taking away parking. That's a parking area? I bet the only vehicles that park there are delivering to Volo anyway and probably off hours. I'm not going to shit on our city staff, because I think a lot of them are particularly competent and underappreciated, but this kind of decision clearly indicates there was no site visit.
Brands are for cattle.
Fans are cash cows.
The herd will consume until consumed.

User avatar
Cass
Beer Superstar
Posts: 3837
Joined: Sun Jun 17, 2001 8:00 pm
Location: Toronto
Contact:

Post by Cass »

It's not a parking street, at least from my memory. The Volo guys explained on Twitter that the rationale was blocking the laneway for traffic, which is pretty ridiculous since that same laneway is totally blocked at the south end due to condo construction. If I had to speculate the rationale it probably was that since the condo is blocking on end, they didn't want a bar blocking the other (even if the patio for the past years didn't).

I'm seeing various tweets of councillors bringing patio rejections up at council for a re-vote. Seems like staff is doing it by the book but that doesn't make for good politics so the councillors are trying to prop up their images with support.

anthony9
Posts: 100
Joined: Fri Dec 02, 2022 9:00 pm

Post by anthony9 »

I guess if a purely calculated political move leads to an improved outcome, it's okay.

I was surprised how empty Bar Volo's frontage was, excluding Bar Volo stuff. Barely saw anything in that lane.

User avatar
Cass
Beer Superstar
Posts: 3837
Joined: Sun Jun 17, 2001 8:00 pm
Location: Toronto
Contact:

Post by Cass »

Cass wrote: Thu Jun 15, 2023 8:33 am I'm seeing various tweets of councillors bringing patio rejections up at council for a re-vote. Seems like staff is doing it by the book but that doesn't make for good politics so the councillors are trying to prop up their images with support.
(edit) Looks like Volo got some kind of approval to find a way to get their patio.

https://secure.toronto.ca/council/agend ... 023.MM7.44

User avatar
El Pinguino
Seasoned Drinker
Posts: 1447
Joined: Sun Jan 02, 2005 6:02 pm
Location: Downtown TO / Galapagos Islands
Contact:

Post by El Pinguino »

I'll admit I pretty much stopped going to Baro Volo (and Birreria Volo) the past year or so.
Seems every time I looked them up their taps were 80% volo beers and only a few other beers.

I DO enjoy their casks at Bar Volo, but I always looked forward to trying new beers form other brewers at Birreria Volo.

Guess I just haven't come around to accepting them as a brewery more than a beer bar. (I notice they currently seem to have an ok mix between their own beers and others).

Post Reply