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A cubic zirconia in the rough.

The Jem

2662 Danforth Ave.

I felt a lot of love at The Jem. Once the regulars and dealers established that I wasn’t a cop, that is.

You’ll notice the “We the North” flag.  Just to be clear, there are no bandwagoners here. They had that flag up way before they knew what it meant.

This bar is truly worth a visit. It’s on a hardscrabble stretch of The Danforth, but it’s clean, pleasant, and the prices are good. Plus, it has some unique value adds that make The Jem a real cubic zirconia in the rough that is Danforth east of Main St.

The Nitty-Gritty:

Jacksoul Poster: No

Price: Cheap. $3.50 domestic bottles.

Service: Chatty and quick. Especially as they chase down someone who tries to rip off a bottle from behind the bar.

But even the best of them can miss a master criminal, as was the case with this east-end version of Bonnie and Clyde referred to here as “Spanish and his partner.”


Toronto Reformation

Classic Toronto Tavern Tudor. The legendary Toronto Tavern Tudor Salesperson needs to be on your sales team. See Linsmore, Happy Day’s, and The Flamingo.

Washroom facilities:

Mostly clean. But they should be on the cover of Canadian Geographic for the rare moss that grows behind the toilet tank.


Very clean.  Except for some regulars’ rap sheets. 


TVs, jukebox, beer guessing contests, and driving billiard balls through the front window.


As it is with investment advisors, responsible dives always practice KYC—Know Your Client. 

Celebrity staff

ROWE Ami: The musical droid from The Mos Eisley Cantina in Star Wars.

Tall Club of Toronto Meeting Place

Despite the “We the North” flag in the window, no Raptors names were on the ceiling tiles. I guess the NBA is tall club enough for them.

Waving cat means good luck

I think it really means wave goodbye to your money.

Suggested musical accompaniment:

“Mos Eisley Cantina” by John Williams

The Last Call:

Dive Bar Mike recommends this bar for cheap beer lovers; bitter old-time Raptors fans; tall women tired of wearing high heels on dates; and, Comic-Con enthusiasts.


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