Barberian's Steak House

Barberian's Steak House is a downtown Toronto steakhouse located at 7 Elm Street, close to Yonge-Dundas Square. It was founded in 1959 by Harry Barberian (1930-2001) and is now owned by his son, Arron Barberian. The restaurant includes two main dining rooms, two private dining rooms, and a two-storey underground wine cellar housing over 20,000 bottles[2] in 22 foot tall racks, with antique chandeliers, and a dining table for exclusive parties.[1]

Barberian's Steak House
Location7 Elm Street, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Coordinates43°39′27″N 79°22′56″W / 43.6576°N 79.3822°W / 43.6576; -79.3822
OwnerHelen Barbarian, Arron Barbarian
TypeSteak house

Harry Barberian was the youngest of four children born to Armenian refugee parents. After working as manager-chef at Le Baron steakhouse, Barberian bought a cottage at 7 Elm Street for $6,000 and founded his own restaurant.[3]

Patrons over the years have included Robert Morley, James Beard, Rudolf Nureyev, Veronica Tennant, Mick Jagger, Denzel Washington, Eminem[3] and every Canadian prime minister since John Diefenbaker.[1] Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor were engaged at the restaurant in 1964.[3]

The restaurant houses a collection of rare Canadiana including original paintings by the Group of Seven.[3]

Current proprietor Arron Barberian has become a minor YouTube celebrity due to two incidents: the first, in which, during the Toronto Blue Jays 2013 home opener he comically wielded a bat which had flown into the stands after Cleveland Indians' second baseman Jason Kipnis accidentally let go of it during a swing[4] and the second when security cameras filmed him chasing and fighting back against a would-be mugger who had attempted to rob him.[1] He is also well known in Toronto for having been one of the catalysts behind the redevelopment of Dundas Square, which is close to the restaurant, and for his fundraising efforts for local hospitals and other charitable causes.[1] Arron Barberian has managed the restaurant since 1993 when his family bought back a controlling share twenty years after his father, Harry, had sold a majority share of the establishment and gone into retirement. The younger Barberian expanded the restaurant by building the wine cellar[1] at a cost of $1.5 million.[5]

In 2014, Barberian's opened a spin-off take-out sandwich shop, TLP Sandwich Co. at 15 Elm Street, a few doors down from the main restaurant.[6] The menu includes steak sandwiche and peameal bacon sandwiches,[7] a chicken-thigh club and a fried-calamari sub among other offerings.[8]


  1. ^ a b c d e f "Second-generation Barberian is about much more than steak". Toronto Star. December 27, 2014. Retrieved December 27, 2014.
  2. ^ "Barberian Steak House Toronto Business Story". Retrieved 29 December 2014.
  3. ^ a b c d "Obit: Harry Barberian, restaurateur (c1930-2001)". Retrieved 29 December 2014.
  4. ^ "From Barberians to 'crazy bat dude': Toronto restaurateur hit by wild baseball bat". CityNews. April 3, 2013. Retrieved December 27, 2014.
  5. ^ "Barberian's shock and awe". National Post. December 30, 2006. Archived from the original on February 27, 2015. Retrieved December 27, 2014.
  6. ^ "Barberian's Steakhouse is opening a spin-off sandwich shop". Toronto Life. October 16, 2013. Archived from the original on January 3, 2015. Retrieved January 2, 2015.
  7. ^ "Three Little Pigs serves Toronto's best steak sandwich". Toronto Star. August 26, 2014. Retrieved January 2, 2015.
  8. ^ "Introducing: TLP, a $10-lunch counter from the team behind Barberian's Steakhouse". Toronto Life. June 20, 2014. Archived from the original on January 3, 2015. Retrieved January 2, 2015.