Down and Dirty: The latest venture by Black Sheep Restaurants, The Last Resort is a dive bar that’s been given the polish of a brand new penny and dropped into the heart of Peel Street.
Look & Feel: It’s small and it’s not fancy, but boy is The Last Resort fun—much like the dive bars that are a dime a dozen throughout the USA. Interestingly, though, this dive bar is a tribute to Canada, with a picture wall dedicated to Canadian “icons”—think Wayne Gretzky, Celine Dion, Ryan Renolds, and (sorry) Justin Bieber. There are a handful of two-person booths along one wall, but the place to be is the bar counter, where personable staff will chatter non-stop, happily talk you through the menu—while pointing out their favorites—and then take a shot of bourbon with you. The raucous vibes are sent into overdrive with a covetable playlist of 80s classics—seriously guys, put it on Spotify already—and three TV screens above the bar that screen old ball games, CNN reruns, and music videos.
On the Menu: Drinks are the priority at The Last Resort, and the short-but-sweet menu has exactly what you want from a dive bar, but done oh-so well. There’s beer, of course, including two Brooklyn Brewery brews and a local Ho Le Fook Dad Bod Pale Ale. The cocktails are where it’s at, though. The Whiskey Apple ($50) is a dangerously quaffable blend of Granny Smith apples and whiskey, while the Rum Sour ($50) is a delicious concoction that basically tastes like a peanut butter and jelly sandwich in liquid form—and yes, there is actually peanut butter in the drink.
To soak up all the booze, there are some bites on offer, and all of it is delicious comfort food—though perhaps it’s all bad news for your long-suffering arteries. We tuck into a heaving plate of fried chicken ($150 for half; $250 for whole), which is soul food at its best—this particular variety uses locally-raised three yellow chicken and comes in Original, Hot, or Nuclear Heat flavors. We try the Hot, which was fiery enough to require quenching with a cocktail, but not I-can’t-feel-my-mouth spicy. The chicken also comes in a Hot Chicken Sandwich ($80), if you’re in the mood for a burger-style eat. For sides, we get the Potato Wedges ($50), which comes in a massive helping and with a side of Aussie-style sour cream with sweet chilli sauce, but we’d be keen to go back and tried the Fried Scamorza (that’s fried cheese sticks, if you need the translation; $40).
Jeng: This is the kind of place where you rock up for one drink on a Friday night and stumble out of at 3AM Saturday morning (at least, in pre- and hopefully post-Covid times). It’s genuinely fun, there’s great music, personable staff, hearty food, and very good drinks.
Not So Jeng: If there’s any downside to The Last Resort, it’s the fact that it’s pretty tiny—they will certainly be at capacity every weekend and will have to turn people away.
FYI: Get here early to snag a spot at the bar.
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