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Apr 23, 2006 10:06 AM

Help! Hound moving to Ajax; Reccommendations needed for Durham.

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Due to a growing family and desire for change, we're moving out to South Ajax this summer. We know very little about restaurants in Durham region and I could only find 'Pimentos' as a good high-end Italian place - while searching online.

Any reccommendations on great restaurants as well as family places and good take-out regional cuisines (Jamaican, Thai, Chinese, Sushi, Pizza) would be greatly appreciated. Really, anything you know from Pickering out to the Shwa would be a great help.


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  1. I moved from Ajax a couple of years ago...all I can say is SLIM PICKINGS!

    There was a cute Sushi place on Kingston Rd/Church St in Pickering that I actually do miss. Also, there's a place called "Rendevous" on Baley(?) was pretty good most of the time. There's a good fish and chips place in the strip mall at Westney Rd, and Kingston Rd.

    I cooked alot more when I lived in Ajax, which is great for saving money, but I was usually disappointed with the restaurants there...sorry...

    10 Replies
    1. re: kathleen

      More like, slim pickerings :) Rendezvous is closed "until further notice" unfortunately, according to their web site.

      1. re: Ben Reiner

        Slim that...

      2. re: kathleen

        Okay, I moved from Ajax 4 years ago but visit Mom and Dad often. If you want fine dining - you're going to want to go into Toronto...but:

        - Pimento's in Whitby for not bad food.
        - Pepperberries Bistro in Whitby food is usually good, service is spotty, ranging from excellent to downright horrible.
        - Mainly Cheese at Harwood and Westney for deli, salads and prepared European foods.
        - Teddy's Family Restaurant in Oshawa for great deli meals (yes there's always a line up but the food is good and filling and no, they don't serve alcohol). Save room for the coconut cream pie!
        - Texas Burger on Harwood Ave N. for burgers, gyros and homemade milkshakes - nothing fancy but cooked fresh and topped to order.
        - The little sushi/korean joint at Church St. and Kingston Rd (southwest corner beside the appliance part store).

        1. re: Mike

          I can second the Mainly Cheese recomendation. Try the schnitzel on a bun. THe last time I had it it was still excellent!

          1. re: otonabee

            Schnitzel on a bun, schnitzel cordon bleu or schnitzel parmesean. Made on Thursday's all good. Most of their meats are Brandt and cut to order...

            1. re: Mike

              Mainly Cheese sounds like a real bonus since it's close to where we'll be living. I'm always up for a good schnitzel!

              Do they have a website?

              1. re: Oxtail

                Not that I know of. Keep in mind that they are not a restaurant but a specialty food store, specializing in European foods, deli and prepared salads...take out only.

        2. re: kathleen

          Roti/curry...try rotiliscious at north end and behind harwood plaza, geat falafal in harwood plaza too (these are both the north plaza)
          Roti/curry again - caribbean nights in pickering at brock and 2 NW
          Also most eatern outpost of popeye's when you want grease at brock and 2 SE, but not open late
          Great Pita's in Whitby at Thickson and Consumers NE corner, or beside Pizza Pizza in Thickson plaza....
          To sit down there is Thai in "Whitby Centrum" that is good, or at Valley Farm and #2 in Pickering....

          1. re: kathleen

            I highly recommend Brother's Ristorante in Whitby (East of Garden and HWY 2, at Lupin). Very small, but the food is excellent and well priced. Their House Fettucine Alfredo with chicken, mushrooms and onions is incredible. Check their website or call for information - as a small restaurant, they are sometimes closed on holidays and open a bit later than others.

          2. WHITBY:
            Nice Bistro = French - MUST TRY!!!! Not cheap but really, really good food - Chef (Owner) is from France - They love kids - Daily blackboard specials - Owners are very friendly. On Brock Street (Hwy 12) just north of Hwy 2 on the East Side.

            Two Really Good All You Can Eat Sushi = Kyoto House is just north of hwy 2 on Brock Street on the east side and the other (which is better) I have forgotten the name of is just east of Garden Street off of Hwy 2 on the south side.

            Hot Rocks = 728 Anderson Street (Anderson & Manning) - Website


            Casa Verde = Italian - Excellent!!!! Hwy 2 & Church St. (Pickering Village
            Mount Everest = Indian - The BEST Indian food I have ever had....even in TO. It is also at Hwy 2 & Church Street. Try their Butter is AMAZING!!!!!

            That is all I can think of for now...I have since moved to the big city and they are the best ones that I can remember.

            Good Luck!!!!

            2 Replies
            1. re: zoohort2

              In Whitby, across from the Nice Bistro is a nice, not cheap Italian place - it might be Pimiento's. Pretty good, for Whitby.
              There are a number of pubs that are good, but unfortunately it doesn't get much better than 'good'.
              Good luck and please report back if you find anything decent.

              1. re: jill

                Thanks for the help, everyone. I was definitely expecting slim "Pickerings" but it's great to hear that there's at least some good Italian, Indian, bistro and sushi places. I checked out the website for that Hot Rocks Diner - and it looks pretty interesting (for Whitby!).

                I know that I won't find a Perigee or Senses there, but I'll be happy to find some good neighbourhood spots that are worth returning to.

            2. Having grown up in Pickering, but moved to Toronto 3 years ago, I can tell you there isnt much around Ptown. There is a new upscale bistro in the plaza at Dixie & Finch that my parents have tried and said is pretty good, cant think of the name right now, will get back.

              There is also Al Dente at liverpool and Pickering Pkwy, used to be Regalis...

              At the end of liverpool, right at the water is Masseys (great steak sandwhich) and The Waterfront Restaurant, which i think is great, especially in the summer now that the boardwalk has been re-done.

              On the other side of the Rouge Valley near Port Union rd is the Black Dog pub, which has some better pub/british style fare, and always has a decent band and lively atmosphere.

              In Ajax / pickering village is Safari (same as the one at St Clair/Yonge...ok, and a pool table / dance floor downstairs

              And I second Hot Rocks recommendation in whitby

              That is all i can think of right now

              1. Hi
                I was at the Burbs Restaurant on Saturday in Pickering (Dixie and Finch). It was one of the better dining experiences I have had in Durham. Check out Shrimp Cocktail in Oshawa. Good chef who makes spicy food (he's from Trinadad). For lunch, The Friendly Greek in Pickering is just as consistent as the one on the Danforth. North Ajax has Deer Creek Golf Course and they have opened a year round restaurant which is different than the burger and fries option they had previously. I hear there are some good places in Brooklin. Good Luck! (Make sure to make reservations as it is nearly impossible to get into a restaurant on a Friday or Saturday night.)

                2 Replies
                1. re: foodiegirl

                  I know it's almost 2 years late, but I will second this recommendation for Burbs Bistro. I'd say it's Durham's best-kept secret since it's a bit off the beaten path (tucked in a residential area while most Durham restaurants line Kingston Road). Definitely want to make a reservation. They even have a "licious" type promo going on, menus are on the website:

                  Burbs Bistro
                  1900 Dixie Rd, Pickering, ON L1V6M4, CA

                  1. re: TexSquared

                    Thanks so much for this! My SO and I moved out here and have really struggled to stay in the area when we eat out. We have not yet located our anniversary dinner place, we keep trying but the locations (Safari, Cafe Verde) have been so uneven as to drive us back to TO for a reliably good meal...

                2. d
                  Dinin' and Dishin'

                  Good burgers, great fries, low price and freakishly clean for a greasy spoon...try Mr. Burger on Bloor W and Park. Right at the exit to the 401 (north side of Bloor).

                  The place has been around for ages, but we just found it. It is full of Elvis memorabilia and other 50's kitch. Counter service only, but you won't be afraid to let your kids use the bathrooms.

                  Oh, and it is also licensed.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Dinin' and Dishin'
                    Dinin' and Dishin'

                    Oh, but skip the corned beef, it pales in comparison to the "real deli-style" thing.