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Real Veal Cutlet Sandwhich

  • k

One thing that has apparently disappeared from Toronto is the real veal cutlet sandwich on a bun. Not some flattened, formed piece of choped meat mixed with saw dust, but real veal. Twenty years ago, there were lots places like of Bittner's and other little Eastern European deli that served them. The European delis are now largely gone, replaced by sushi and noodle places.

Is there any place that you can get a real veal sandwich. anymore? (St. Lawrence market is out since its so much trouble to get to.)

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  1. Many people rave about California Sandwiches.

    Also, there's a place on Victoria Park just North of Sheppard in a little house next to a mall that has really good veal sandwiches, meatballs, etc. I can't think of the name, but it's on the West Side of Vic Park, and it's pretty hard to miss.

    26 Replies
    1. re: Jacquilynne

      As mentioned above-for Italian style (sauce, peppers, onion cheese)California's can't be beat. The newer locations-St. Clair, Dufferin, Chesswood are great but the original on Claremont is still the best. For European style schnitzel sandwiches-The Scnitzel House or Schnitzel Place at Steeles just west of Yonge is great. The sandwiches are served on thick slices of white rye loaf and I ask for tomato, mayo, and fresh squeezed lemon. The Cutting Board at Davisville and Mt. Pleasant serves a schnitzel on a kaiser that's pretty good-however the schnitzel is cooked early in the morning and nuked when you order a sanwich. Not a crunchy schnitzel like the place at Yonge and Steeles. The St. Lawrence Market place that people rave about stinks!!

      1. re: rob

        Thank you
        Another person who thinks Mustachio's at the market stinks. I was a voice crying in the wilderness.

          1. re: Goober

            California's is great I fourth it. As is Commiso broths. and Racco. What I like about that place is that you actually go to the bakery and get to choose the bun on which to have your veal.

            Its unfortunate that Ciccio Sandwhicio closed down because amazingly that had them both beat!

            1. re: MC

              Although open 24 hours a day-you can't compare the quality of a Comisso sanwich with that of a California's, and I've tried. Comisso's veal cutlets are dry, dark and sit for hours. After a night of heavy drinking these things become much less important, however with a clear head and empty stomach there really is no-on that can touch California's.

              1. re: rob

                ...and you pay for it.

                California makes a tasty sandwich but it's overpriced.
                You are right however about Comisso's quality which can be hit or miss. Their hours however are great.

                Cheapest sandwich I have found is at a place called Gippino's -- a grocery and tavola calda -- on Dufferin one block north of Glencairn. $2.99 a sandwich including mushrooms, sweet and hot peppers, and onions. Sandwich is good and high turnaround means they are fresh or fresh out. No chopped veal here either. Real meat.

              2. re: MC

                Another nice thing about Commiso's is that you can pick up great sides....gnocci, olives, etc. they have a decent selection of authentic Italian foods (more of a market).

                California is tasty but set up as a take-out style restaurant (some locations have seats)

            2. re: Maureen

              My friend recommended Mustachio's at St Lawrence market, so I had to try it, when I got there, I couldn't believe the line up. I was thinking damn! this is gotta be good, but as I was moving up the line, I noticed about a 1 foot high mound of cooked veal just sitting there. And finally when I got my veal and started eating it, it was already cold and the breading was soggy, it tasted just terrible, I had trouble finishing it to be honest, I threw about the last quarter in the garbage. The price is good though, and I think it would taste a whole lot better if I had a fresh one, but I went back a few times later, same thing, big line ups and cold soggy veal sandwiches. I only buy California sandwiches but they are so out of the way for me, but the absolute best veal I've ever had is in Pickering at a place called Bellagio's ( Kingston rd / Whites rd ), I will sometimes make the trip all the way out there just for their veal sandwiches. Pure heaven.....

              1. re: ramseywannabe

                Ramsey, you have now accurately described the most-overated sandwich in Toronto...Mustachio's! Even when served hot, although not soggy, it is quite bland and boring. Never again no matter how good it looks!

                1. re: deelicious

                  deelicious, I know, I keep trying to tell my friend mustachio sucks, there's gotta be a good one in little italy somewhere, I remember when I was a teen, we used to drive to a place called jackgino's ( dundas & euclid area ) but probably long gone now. I am still in search of a real good veal sandwich, I can't drive out to Pickering all the time.

                  1. re: ramseywannabe

                    Sure RW--the original California on Claremont is excellent. Cooked fresh for each order. Last time I went, though, I just missed the last veal of the evening and had to order chicken. It was very good too. There's also San Francesco a block north on Clinton. Get a slice or panzarotto from Bitondo's across the street too.

                2. re: ramseywannabe

                  Is Bellagio's veal in sauce, or cooked fresh and crispy? Do they have a sit-down area? Also, where is it at KR and White's?


                  1. re: CeeQueue

                    Mine was cooked to order (fresh) and they asked if I wanted a little sauce or a lot. They have a few small tables. I tried to google the address but can't find it. When I met my friend, she gave me the address, but I don't have it anymore. I remember exiting off Whites Road, turning left, and at the major intersection, I turned right. Sorry, I know that's quite vague ...

                  2. re: ramseywannabe

                    I met a friend in Pickering and she suggested Bellagio's. it was good.

                    I guess I've had good luck at Mustachio's because I ask for the fresh ones that they just fried up, so they're quite tasty in my opinion.

                    I like California sandwiches, but they're too far for me as well. I used to frequent the Finch/Keele area location, when I worked in that area.

                    1. re: ramseywannabe

                      Can anyone tell me exactly where Bellagio's is? I was in the area today and tried to find it, but couldn't.

                      1. re: CeeQueue

                        There used to be a place in Weston called SanAntoion Foods. They cooked there veal fresh for all sandwiches. They were the best. Does anyone know if they are still there?

                        1. re: CeeQueue

                          CeeQueue, It's beside the LCBO in the plaza with Lone Star and Big Boy Burgers.

                    2. re: rob

                      I've been meaning to check out the Schnitzel place at Yonge/Steeles for a long time and was finally able to the other day.

                      Great crunch. Very tasty and very huge! They have about 8 or so varieties which varies in price from $7 to $10 or so at lunch. Comes with potatoes/rice/dumplings and bread/butter.

                      Highly recommended.

                    3. re: Jacquilynne

                      That place on Vic Park is ok, but not "The Best Veal Sandwich" as pointed out on their billboars.

                      A much better place is Francesca's Bakery on the eastside of McCowan just south of Sheppard.
                      Real Italian women making real Italian food.

                      1. re: KSS

                        Does Francesca's have a sit down area?
                        And what are the prices like?


                        1. re: muffin03

                          I haven't tried Francesca's veal, but I can report that it's the type that sits in sauce until you order it. Their chicken cutlet is premade, but not presauced (same as at Agincourt Bakery). I don't dislike that type of veal -- it can be very tasty and tender if all the other components of the sandwich come together. But I would love to find a place in Scarborough that does a crispy-breaded, non-soggy veal sandwich (as I suspect is what the OP is looking for).

                          1. re: CeeQueue

                            Tried the veal sandwich at Francesca and was not impressed -- bland, bland, bland and the crusty bun was so hard in spots that it hurt my mouth to bite into it. Also not crazy about their set-up on a busy lunch hour; line up for food, line up again to pay (although to be fair, the lines went fairly fast), no condiments on the tables (pick up S&P shakers from an awkward table where cutlery is, but napkins are somewhere else). I bought a small salad, but there was nowhere to set my tray down while I tried to figure out what was in the unmarked dressing containers.

                            I'd rather go to Calabria, which also has a nicer eating area.

                      2. re: Jacquilynne

                        The place on Vic Park jsut south of the Van Horne plaze used to be called Delicioso....It hink the name has been changed though. I think the original owners sold it.

                        There is a place in a plaza on the East side of Pharmacy just North of Finch. This place if great. There are always city trucks there and Firemen getting their veal sandwhichs there.

                        1. re: Spot

                          I think that's Agincourt Bakery. Delicious veal sandwich, but of the variety that sits in tomato sauce until ordered.

                        2. re: Jacquilynne

                          I tried that place last week, the name escapes me, it's a uncommon name, something like Beretti or else. Sorry to say, but my experience was horrible. The veal was not made on the spot, but was deep fried previously. It was tough and chewy and the veal easily seperated from the breading. I was so disgusted that I threw the other half away. A real disappointment.

                          I think the veal/chicken italian sandwiches in the lower level of St. Lawrence Market to be good. I think the place is called Mustachios.

                          California sandwiches is good as well (Finch/Keele area).

                        3. I 2nd that choice!! . . . California Italian Sandwiches are the best!!! . . . The one I go to (I think it is the original) is located on Claremont street a few blocks west of Bathurst, and just north of Dundas . . . No need to check anywhere else... although, I'm sure our fellow foodies will come up with some more places . . . It's always good to compare.

                          1. Rocco's on The Queensway (east of Parklawn) .. great sandwich -- Sauce, Toppings, Portions and Cheaper than California's (I think).

                            1. Just moved onto the Danforth between Coxwell and Woodbine. Lovely little, and often overlooked, Italian district.

                              For Italian style veal sammiches, try Colombo's opposite the library or "Italian Bakery" (that's the name!) also on the north side near Roseheath. Both are take-outs with counters. Colombo's actually has a really good menu with a good variety of freshly made pastas and pies. We ordered the veal scalopini with marsala sauce last month and it was really enjoyable.

                              A Discovery! Recommended.

                              -Uncle Bobby

                              7 Replies
                              1. re: Uncle Bobby

                                I'm just west of you, and there are a few cafes and bakeries between Coxwell & Greenwood as well. There is a very good tavola calda/bakery on Danforth half a block east of Greenwood that has amazing veal sandwiches.. They are very busy for lunch.

                                There is also a decent italian grocery store called Jerry's Supermarket on the North side of Danforth, half a block west of Coxwell.

                                Apparently, this area used to be a very Sicilian area before most of the residents moved North of the city.

                                1. re: neuf

                                  I should have specified the name of the bakery: North Pole Bakery.

                                  1. re: neuf

                                    Besides the Veal try the Rice balls - yummy !

                                    1. re: jimbo

                                      The North Pole is indeed excellent...I mentioned it here a long time ago....absolutely packed at times...Small family run joint, bit of a hole in the wall, but it does the job

                                      1. re: Deco
                                        crepes suzette

                                        I haven't been to the North Pole in ages. If they still make their amazing sfogliatelle, you must try them. Go early - they would sell out quickly.

                                      2. re: jimbo

                                        rice balls at Columbos are great, lots of flavor and great with the sauce. Their pre-made panzo's are really good too. Everything there is great...

                                  2. re: Uncle Bobby

                                    I agree, this is an awesome area in which to savour various cuisines, esp wicked Italian sandwiches. I never bother with Little Italy (so called) because I like rapping with the little donnas on the Danforth much better.

                                  3. SE corner Keele/Wilson - newer strip plaza opposite the Burger King - 1077 Wilson #8 -Excellent Veal sandwiches

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: jimbo

                                      I should mention this place is no longer in existence. Last time I went by it was a Vietnamese restaurant.

                                    2. c
                                      crepes suzette

                                      There is a take-out place in Village by the Grange (McCaul S. of Dundas, around the corner from the Art Gallery of Ontario) that does a great schnitzel sandwich. It's more Eastern-European style (as opposed to Italian). The schnitzel is cooked to order and served on huge pieces of rye bread. They've been there for over 20 years! The name has "gypsy" in it - I think. It's at the southern end of the little food court area. Not to be confused with Helena's Magic Kitchen that makes pirogi.

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: crepes suzette

                                        Yep. This the place I was going to add as I was reading thru the thread. Its fantastic! I like this style of breaded crispy veal like L'europe and Country Style used to be. On rye with mustard!

                                      2. Hey TM18, that's a great concept, if you have a few hours for lunch. But if not, California Sandwiches is definitely not the worst. In fact, it's one of the best, along with Sanfrancesco, Vinnies, and a few others. Personally, I like Trezanno Bakery at Dufferin and Wilson for a delicious lunch sandwich. Oh, by the way, I do make my own at home, too--just not when I'm in a hurry.

                                        1. Check out "The Prague" on Queen St. W. if you're looking for a great Weiner Schnitzel sandwich.


                                          1. What about Quattro Ragazze?

                                            I think it's what you're looking for, and it's prepared fresh, reasonably priced, and really quite good.


                                            2 Replies
                                            1. re: Full tummy

                                              Full Tummy, you just responded to a 2 1/2 yr old thread. Next time I need to revive the dead, I'll call you.

                                              Has anyone eaten a veal sandwich at Commisso's recently? I have a friend coming in from BC and he wants to eat there.

                                              1. re: foodyDudey

                                                Hahaha, you're funny. There's been some activity this month, up above, so I thought I'd add my two cents, which was more a response to the original question than participating in the subdiscussion that's been occurring recently.

                                            2. There's the schnitzel s'wich in the deli in Cumberland Terrace, downstairs. It has Vienna in the name . . . Vienna Gourmet maybe. But like a lot of schnitzel it's not veal. (Don't you find the schnitzel's usually pork or chicken these days?) Crispy tho' and rings in around $5. Dire, gloomy enviro. They don't have proper rye ... they like to push the kaiser. Too bready for me: I go for whole wheat and a bit of German mayonnaise.

                                              3 Replies
                                              1. re: cinnamon girl

                                                I must say I used to work in the area and that Vienna place always looked strangely appealing. The whole Cumberland Terrace is depressing as hell but it get's the job done.

                                                1. re: food face

                                                  Maybe b/c it's licensed and they have their own enclosed seating area? Back in the day while smoking laws were morphing, it was permitted in there. So there were always billows of smoke pouring out of the place . . . the severely disillusioned, ashen-faced, hunkered down over their beers in the middle of the afternoon . . . lol . . . but yes, not as depressing now, food face!

                                              2. The Blue Danube in Etobicoke does a good sandwich. Have it with the garlic mayo
                                                Just great

                                                1. How come no one has mentioned San Francescos? Not good enough? They always seem to fit the bill. But recently I found another place that I believe is the best I've ever had. I like them hot, and this place really knows their hot.
                                                  The place is called MIlano Sandwiches on the east side of Woodbine just north of Steeles. For a hot veal, they spread a kind of prepared pepper sauce on the bun, then add the veal cutlet (cut in half cuz it's just sooo big) and then sauce and I also like mushrooms. Excellent with a Brio! Highly recommended. Nice people too.

                                                  2 Replies
                                                  1. re: jacquieF

                                                    I agree that this is a very large sandwich however I found that the veal was tough and the sauce was far too sweet for my taste. I'll stick with teh Agincourt Bakery on Pharmacy & Finchf or a quality veal sandwich.

                                                    1. re: Foodright

                                                      Tried Agincourt Bakery, and it was OK - passable, not great, and of the soggy hot-table variety, not the freshly-fried crunchy California style - just FYI.

                                                  2. I can attest to Bellagio's Gelato in Pickering (in the big, brown plaza on the S-E corner of Whites and Kingston). The sandwiches are generously piled with three layers of thinly sliced veal, encased in a white keiser bun. It's about the same size and thickness of a California sandwich. Taste-wise, the veal has good taste and texture, comparable to California. Price-wise, $6 with one free topping (50 cents per extra topping). The place is spacious and clean with a sitting area. I attached a photo of my partially-eaten sandwich.

                                                    1. Been going to California's on Claremont for many many years....went there on Friday when I was in the area and went again....still probably the best in the city. It was fresh, crispy, sauced, medium peppered (for me).

                                                      Only other place I like to go is Panini Italian Sandwiches, 7600 Weston Rd (Hwy 7 and Weston Rd.). Also made fresh to order. Very similar to California's in my opinion.

                                                      Panini Italian Sandwiches
                                                      7600 Weston Rd, Woodbridge, ON L4L8B7, CA

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: LUV_TO_EAT

                                                        'Schnitzel Queen' at Queen and Sherbourne. Huge well seasoned veal sandwich at a price in keeping with the neighbourhood. As I like to taste the veal, I avoid the glop and go for just the freshly squeezed lemon. Divine!

                                                      2. Pacino Panino's Veal Supreme is made fresh to order by a hardworking bunch of "nonnas" in the kitchen. California's original location is fine but overpriced. Commisso on Kincourt is good at peak times, otherwise the veal sits too long. Ciccio Sanwiccio on Yonge Street was decent.

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. re: Big Kahuna 1

                                                          I go to California Sandwiches in Vaughan by La Paloma awesome sandwich made fresh always very busy and not cheap but worth the price. hot peppers provolone and extra sauce messy heaven.

                                                          La Paloma
                                                          1 Bass Pro Mills Dr, Thornhill, ON L4K5W4, CA

                                                        2. Update - trekked out to Metro Pizza on Finch West (between Weston & Islington) and enjoyed a solid veal and meatball sandwich (Note - you must ask for it to be toasted) from an altogether delightful Nonna of the fun & flashy kind.

                                                          Pizza was great with a nice char on the yummy thin crust from resting on the stone (ask for well done if you like the toppings and cheese to be a little browned) and the sandwiches were home-made when ordered and Very good.

                                                          Terrible neighborhood, trashy plaza, but good food! - bravo to Nonna 'Ruth' & company!

                                                          4 Replies
                                                          1. re: TorontoTips

                                                            UPDATE on my Update - I'm scaling back my rating of Metro to to just "ok" based on subsequent visits recently and very inconsistent preparation. Had one good and two barely acceptable experiences recently, veal decent but soggy, sauce inconsistent, so I'm scaling back my stamp of approval, and I'm back on my search! :-)

                                                            ALSO tried Angelo's Hot Table 20 Bermondsey Rd. and was not impressed. Large sandwich, but it was the soggy overcooked variety, and the sauce has a weird beefy flavour and an odd brown-brick colour to match, like they added worcestershire or something. Not to my taste at all.

                                                            California is still my fave so far, especially the woodbridge location with rapini as a topping!

                                                            Hey CeeQueue, did you ever hit the Pickering spot? Sounds like we have similar preferences on this topic. (I'm also not a fan of Francesca's veal sammy).

                                                            1. re: TorontoTips

                                                              i've said it before and i'll say it again, via panini's in maple has the best i've ever had, good portion, nice crispy veal, awesome tomato sauce.

                                                              in brampton there's pomodorro's and a place by williams pkwy and chrysler drive.

                                                              1. re: TorontoTips

                                                                Both of these places offer a very enjoyable veal sandwich. Vienna is a deli which offers a variety of hot foods until 4pm. They are probably best known for their very tasty veal sandwiches served up with onions, shrooms, gravy etc at no extra cost (I believe they run under 6 bucks) The veal is the real deal and cooked up fresh as you order. No tomato sauce as it is more of a german schnitzel.
                                                                I've been to Bellagio once but am going back as soon as I finish typing. My veal sanwich was tasty, and not too sloppy. They are open until 9pm and have some of the best Gelato I've ever had. It is a little bit more pricey than some others, but qualitative!!!

                                                                1. re: garsigs

                                                                  Just a heads-up for anybody planning on making the trip out to Pickering. Bellagio's is closed for renovations until Monday September 26.