Weird... Great Milestone's Experience!
Normally, I am anti-chain restaurant. But we were starving after having done some shopping at Bayview Village and were unwilling to try another Oliver - Bonaccini restaurant, so soon after the Canoe experience yesterday (see earlier posting). SO we drove over to Yonge street and the Bellini beckoned!!
Skipping the mains on the advice of someone we know who used to work there, we went with several apps to share and martinis. IT WAS GREAT! Lots of flavour, lots of texture - even the salsa and chips had three different salsa's (corn, regular and guacalmole) with plenty of cilantro and onion and kick (without being painful). I was flabbergasted! Quesadillas? Also good. Hubby had the potatoe and corn chowder, which he loved, and we also had kaffir lime leaf chicken skewers with three dipping sauces. It probably won't win any awards but even the waitress said: eat during the week there and you get consistency (vs. the weekend) because they are less busy and you have the same sous and chefs working Mon-Fri. good tip.
I've had great food at Milestone's, and the quality is always consistent.
Some of their mains ARE really good - the chicken and ribs are both flavourful - the chicken tender and well seasoned, and the ribs meaty and sauced well.
The grilled chicken salad is great, as well. We sometimes order it as an appetizer for the table, but usually have it as a main.
The desserts are phenomenal. All in all, Milestone's is probably the best chain restaurant in the GTA - better than a lot of more upscale independents.
I haven't had similar experiences. Every time I have ever been to Milestone's it has been a disaster! The last time I went, it was so bad, that Milestone's has been permenantly blacklisted. Both the service and the food were atrocious. I've been to both the John and Richmond one and the Yonge and Empress Walk one 2-3 times each. My experiences ranged from OK to worse to just plain BAD. My last time at Milestone's Yonge, the waitress did her introduction, then disappeared for 45 min (2-3 pm and completely empty). We asked several other waitresses if we could order with them instead, but they insisted that they would go find our waitress for us. At the 45 min mark, we just got up and left. We met our waitress at the doors, she came in smelling of cigarettes. Her reply was, "oh, you're leaving?"
My last time at Milestone's John, the waitress was friendly enough, but she spent all her time with a large table of her friends. She was sitting down with them on the patio. So getting her attention was difficult. Also, she must have forgotten about our orders, because when they arrived at my table, the ribs were STONE cold. And my BF's rare steak, had sat under the lamp so long, it was well done. We asked for a new one. The steak was a new piece (oddly grey coloured rare meat - nasty! serving highly oxidized old meat is NOT acceptable), but they took my original ribs and stuck em in the oven/salanmander for a few minutes (outsides dry and hot, insides cold). My original test bite mark was still in it. New sides would have been a miracle at this point, but they never even bothered reheating the sides. Just plopped the meat right back down on the original plates with cold congealing sides. We have vowed never to return, not even for the tasty bellinis.
Well you arent missing much by not revisiting! I have never enjoyed any of the food there and I am one to accept Montana for beef ribs once in a while and I truly LOVE the pork chop at Canyon Creek as I think it is the best in the city.
But from the burger to the spinach dip to the chicken, I cant eat at Milestones. Palomino for bellinis and cocktails - great fun.
I get laughed at when I admit I like Milestone's... but I do!
I end up dining with a lot of people who won't go any place out of the norm, and Milestone's is acceptable to their notion of a "familiar" place to eat. There's more than enough on the menu to keep me happy. And I like their brunch a lot - the corn hash is amazing.
The drinks also impress me. Their own beer, fresh mojitos, tasty martinis; all surpass the usual chain.
However, I have found their prices to be creeping upward the last couple years and it is not worth the dining experience anymore, for me - if it is my choice, I will go somewhere else 100% of the time. But when I'm forced to bow to the dining decisions of others, Milestone's is a place I will gladly settle for.
I admit I like Milstones too. I ended up going there a twice in a week before Christmas since it was the once place that would please a group of conservative eaters. Much better than Montana's across the street (John and Richmond).
The seafood salad is very, very good and the burgers are okay.
The drinks at Milestones are the best! I love collecting those little plastic animals from the Bellini's! ( That way the next morning you can count them to see how many drinks you REALLY had! )
I find the food to be pretty good as far as chains go, and have never had any problems with the service.