Buvette Pacey: A Toronto gem with a global flair

By Elspeth Chalmers –

Nestled in Toronto’s Downtown East, Buvette Pacey is more than a bar; it’s a vibrant cultur­al intersection with a casual, friendly vibe.

Owned by the dynamic Shabri Kapoor, Buvette Pacey is a spot where patrons can expect the unexpected – a place that en­capsulates European casualness while offering top-notch prod­ucts.

Hailing from Montreal, Ka­poor has a rich background in the restaurant industry. Her father still owns and operates the oldest Indian restaurant on the eastern side of Canada. Al­though Kapoor originally ven­tured into academia, she found her true passion for hospitality amidst the pandemic.

“I realized that my favourite thing in the world is to sit at a bar with a glass of wine and my book or my journal, and just be,” says Kapoor. After mov­ing to Toronto from Amsterdam in 2019, Kapoor was missing the European vibe, something that offered a “really elevated quality of product, but was still casual and fun.” It was the kind of bar she’d also known in Mon­treal , and in 2023 she’s decided to bring a piece of her vibrant hometown to Toronto.

The colour palette inside Bu­vette Pacey gives the place a fun, relaxed vibe. “It’s named after my dog Pacey, so I decid­ed to make it kind of whimsical and fun.”

But the drinks are more re­fined. “Drink-wise, we’ve got selections of wine, both by the glass and bottle, with a goal to balance Old World and natural wines.”

Patrons can also choose from high-quality cocktails and a wide selection of local beer. “Our female bartender is phe­nomenal. We do everything in-house, from infusions to milk punch making, offering a di­verse range of flavours, includ­ing Asian-inspired ones like In­dian mango chai.”

But it’s not just about the drinks at Buvette Pacey; it’s about the experience. Kapoor emphasizes, “We’re all focused on being genuinely friendly. We really want to create that East End neighbourhood environ­ment.”

Looking for the best location to bring her vision to life, Ka­poor decided the Downtown East felt like a perfect fit. It re­minded her of growing up in Montreal’s evolving neighbour­hood of Little Burgundy. “I’ve been part of gentrification on both sides, and there’s some­thing kind of exciting about that to me.”

Buvette Pacey is a celebration of diversity, a blend of global in­fluences with a local touch. Ka­poor has crafted an experience, an oasis where the communi­ty converges, stories unfold, and friendships are made over whimsical decor and carefully curated beverages.

Visit it at 141 Berkeley Street, just south of Queen Street East, from Thursday through Tuesday evenings.