You may be familiar with Yelp Toronto as a place for people to rave about Black Hoof, spurn the Pickle Barrel, and get confused over whether they’re eating at the 360 Restaurant in the CN Tower or the one in Niagara Falls.
While restaurant reviews are certainly the site’s artisan bread and goat’s milk butter, its users also are known for documenting and rating unusual urban fauna familiar to any city resident.
Here are some unexpected reviews that turned up in recent Yelp Toronto searches:
Jesus Guy at Dundas Square, Rating: 4 Stars
The consensus: The northwest corner of Yonge-Dundas Square wouldn’t be the same without his unexpected cries of “Believe in the Lord.” Even when you know it’s coming, he can still make you jump. He also reliably startles your out-of-town friends. Some Yelpers don’t appreciate his dedication seeing as there are a few one star ratings, but the four star overall rating tells you that Toronto Yelp has a generally positive view of Jesus Guy.
Exhibition Place Wind Turbine, Rating: 2.5 Stars
Photo: David Dodge/Flickr
The consensus: Users appreciate the wind turbine as a back-up landmark when the CN Tower fails to orient them. It could be “spinnier” though.
Private Restrooms at the Bayview Village Shopping Centre, Rating: 5 Stars
The consensus: The mall goes the extra mile in making the restroom experience special for every shopper. You won’t want to settle for the ordinary mall restroom once you’ve enjoyed the cleanliness, privacy and decor on offer here.
504 King Streetcar, Rating: 2.5 Stars
The consensus: Wait 20 minutes during rush hour, three packed cars arrive simultaneously, get on, feel like a sardine, watch even more people pile on as you pass by Liberty Village, feel relief when they get off at St. Andrew Station, hear announcement that car is going to short turn imminently, get off and walk the rest of the way.
Michael Lee-Chin Crystal, Rating: 3 Stars
The consensus: Yelpers can be harsh architecture critics too, though most professional critics wouldn’t begin a review with the word “HATE” in all caps. The Yelp Toronto community is divided on the Crystal, with two five-star ratings, two one-star ratings and a two-star and a four-star rating sitting in between. One user calls it a tumour while another says he’d take a Libeskind over a Gehry any day.
Toronto Public Labyrinth, Rating: 4.5 Stars
The consensus: Great for quiet reflection “as long as there aren’t too many homeless people milling about,” writes Yelper Shane E. The common thread through the Toronto Public Labyrinth’s seven reviews is that it’s a great hidden gem in Toronto. “The only thing that could make this Labyrinth any cooler is if David Bowie were there waiting for you at the end of your walking journey,” says another user.
29 Dufferin Bus, Rating: 2 Stars
The consensus: For three years in a row, Dufferin has been named the worst road in Ontario. Unsurprisingly, the bus that drives up and down this road every day doesn’t have a great reputation either. “I hope the heavens open up and smite this bus one day,” writes one poetic reviewer. Another reviewer was shocked by the TTC’s lacklustre customer service response to the backpack that she left on the bus. “Call in tomorrow,” the operator said. “I don’t get any info on today until tomorrow after 2pm.” Not great Dufferin Bus, not great.
Hula Girl, Rating: 5 Stars
The consensus: Hula Girl only has one review, but she sounds solid.