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May 11, 2004 02:41 AM

Georgian, Azerbaijani, and Armenian Food

  • j

Does anyone know if there are any Georgian, Azerbaijani, or Armenian restaurants in Toronto? I would love to give all 3 a try.

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  1. I've never been able to find Georgian food in Toronto, but the next time you're in New York you could try out a few Georgian restaurants in the Brighton Beach area.

    Don't know about Azeri restaurants.

    Armenian Kitchen is at 1646 Victoria Park Ave. in Scarborough.

    7 Replies
    1. re: membrillo

      There's a place on Sheppard Ave. West, somewhat west of Bathurst St., called Aragvi, that bills itself as a Georgian resto. It's a smallish joint - about 30 seats or so - in a crowded, raggedy-ass strip plaza on Sheppard's north side. Driving by, I never gave it a second look. But a friend took me and a few others there a year or so ago. It's a family-run spot - I recall the chef (the father) saying he was from Azerbaijan. The menu seemed to be a mix of Georgian, Russian and Middle East dishes, along with something called Armenian potatoes (the only Armenian mention on the menu). I'm not sure how authentic the Georgian dishes were, not being able to compare it with anything else, but the nosh was, overall, quite tasty. Soups were superb, appetizers seemed better than main dishes (if I recall - we had a lot to drink). Lively atmosphere. Heavy markups on wine. But that didn't bother the Russian emigres at the other tables. They seemed quite happy with vodka shots. Though I promised myself to go back, I never did - limited parking at that plaza is quite nasty. Modest prices that are similar to any Middle East resto in town.

      1. re: juno

        Huh. Interesting! Just ate at Kargi Gogo in Portland and loved what I tried there. Would be interested in checking this place out. Thank you!

        1. re: jlunar

          I've been there, as well, and thought the food was pretty great. It's been a few months, so I'm fuzzy on the details, but I recall that we particularly liked some of the bread items, and there was a kind of stewed chicken and garlic dish that was really good, as well.

          We went early and were pretty much alone, but the place did fill up later, and most of the customers seemed to be from that general region -- it definitely seems to cater to an ex-pat crowd.

        2. re: juno

          Aragvi is delicious. Reminded me of the Georgian food I've had in Russia, and they have lots of vegetarian stuff.

          1. re: juno

            My Georgian friend also mentioned Aragvi is quite good. I haven't been yet.
            Here's a review from The Grid : http://www.thegridto.com/life/food-dr...

            There's also Georgia Restaurant on Finch. Haven't heard anything, good or bad, about it.

            1. re: juno

              Enjoyed the dishes I tried with some friends at Aragvi, esp the dumplings and giblets. Will be back to try the grape leaves and pelmeni. We had a late Sunday lunch, and there was plenty of parking available, in case you decide to return on a Sunday, juno. :)

              1. re: prima

                Highlights for me were the Georgian-Style Eggplant Roll, Izpanahi, Herring and Khinkali. Will need to return to try the rest of the menu!

          2. Arz Bakery on Lawrence E. includes a cafe with a few Armenian specialties. I'm not sure if the Armenian Kitchen is still Armenian -- for a long time it was run by a Palestinian family. There's a grocery store in the same plaza called the Armenian Bakery -- whether Armenian or not, it's still very good. For Armenian church music, try Joyous Light by Isabel Bayrakdarian (CBC Records).

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