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Need a Guide!

I would love to hear some ideas for a real foodie weekend - from high to low - for two food-loving, overworked peeps and parents finally a away for a few days (did I mention ALONE!!!!)...Feel free to add any OT suggestions as well! We will be staying a the Sheraton City Center with no car. Thanks so much!

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  1. Is the Sheraton City Center in Mississauga?

    2 Replies
    1. re: orangewasabi

      It is on Queen Street. Looks to be in the fin/ent district. For sure we need some dim sum, indian, something wtith some Sat PM feel and more! Thanks!

      1. re: fortyweeks

        okay, cool, that's the one at Bay & Queen. You're walking distance from almost everything that would be suggested.

        Just around the corner is Terroni -- good for a mid afternoon lunch of thin crust pizza, pasta and wine or a good coffee.

        If you go to the Queen Mother, have the thai noodle dish with soft noodles sopping in curry sauce. It's their best dish!

        To just hang out, drink wine and catch up with each other, Trevor or Doku 15.

        if you want cheap eats and are walking up Yonge Street (north to Bloor), stop at Ginger 2 (half way between Dundas & College) on the east side or Sinai Sushi (on Grosvenor, one block north of College, on the west side) for an under $10 pick me up.

        I'm kinda thinking we should recommend GOOD food places that deliver, since, do you really want to get out of bed this entire weekend?

    2. Indian: you're in luck. Just a couple of blocks from the Sheraton, just west of University, is Little India, which has, IMO, the best Indian lunch buffet in town. A few doors down is Trimurti, also very popular on Chowhound (I can't believe I still haven't checked it out -- that just speaks to my devotion to Little India). And if you have a bit of time and want a REAL Indian experience, take the College streetcar east, way east, and get off in Little India, on Gerrard between Greenwood and Coxwell. Best bet there: Lahore Tikka House. Just look for the three-story building under construction. The restaurant is open in the portables next door.

      Dim sum: There have been many threads here. Take a look at this one:

      Saturday night: Expensive: Susur, Scaramouche, Chiado, Perigee. Less so: Trevor, Habitat, Kultura. Check out their websites and see which menu appeals.

      2 Replies
      1. re: estragon

        I would add Splendido to the Expensive list of estragon. I like it better than Susur, but that's my personal preference. For Dim Sum, I also agree on Lai Wah Heen as suggested by spades. There are a lot of good dim sum places in Richmond Hall, but if you don't have a car, Lai Wah Heen is probably the best choice around.

        For Sushi, Nami on Adelaide is also a good choice (though quite expensive).

        1. re: kobetobiko

          Totally agree with Lai Wah Heen recommnedation for dim sum.--but it is in the Metropolitan Hotel (unless they recently changed names) - behind City Hall.
          But for Japanese, I would go one block east to Japango (Elizabeth St I think). You'll find many posts on Chowhound about this little gem. Small, not expensive and their signature maki rolls that are as beautiful to look at as they are good to eat.

          Chiado is a great choice for Portuguese food but not as close to your hotel as some other choices. Wonderful whole grilled fish, fresh sardines etc. MMMmmmmm

          A trek to Little India could be fun, but note that many places don't open up until noon, so don't go early.

          You are also close to Kensington Market from your hotel.

      2. For dim sum, I would suggest Lai Wah Heen at the Continental Hotel on Chestnut St. You could probably walk there from your hotel if it's not too cold. For something a little more reasonable, I think Rol San in Chinatown is also a good (and cheaper) bet - on Spadina, a block or so north of Dundas.

        For Indian, Trimurti is just down the street from your hotel and probably your best bet in the downtown core. Queen/Simcoe area.

        For a Saturday PM experience... well, IMHO you can't beat Canoe with the nice views and great food. It will be expensive, but overall it's a great dining experience close to your hotel. It's on the 54th floor of the TD Centre on Wellington St. For more sticker shock but a fun Saturday experience nontheless, there's Perigee in the Distillery district, wich is near King/Parliament. A very cool part of the city.

        Worthy as well are Trevor Kitchen & Bar (Wellington/Church), Kultura (King/Jarvis), and George (Queen/Jarvis). These are all on the pricier side unfortunately, with Trevor being the most reasonable of the group.

        Also, an excellent Japanese restaurant worth checking out in your vincinity is Ematei. On St. Patrick St., just north of Queen. Hope you enjoy your stay.

        1 Reply
        1. re: spades

          Unfortunately, Canoe is closed on Saturdays.

        2. The highs and lows have been pretty well covered. A short walk from your hotel, along Queen West is the Queen Mother Cafe. Mid-priced, eclectic and with good food. If you keep going west to Spadina and then head north, you are in Chinatown with lots of choice (been covered here many times). Depending on your time, the Distillery distict is worth a visit and as a foodie, you would love the St. Lawrence Market on Saturday morning.

          1. When are you visiting Toronto? Winterlicious occurs Jan 26 to Feb 8, 2007 (http://www.toronto.ca/special_events/...) with bookings starting Jan 11. Winterlicious and Summerlicious have become semi-annual events in Toronto and feature promotions at a number of restaurants. The great news is many restaurants including many top notch establishments make it very affordable - the not so good news is some of the resturants serve smaller portions. The other not so good news for those willing/wanting to pay full price and order from the regular menu, is the popular restaurants get very busy. It varies by restarant as each restuarant does things a little differently. This Board has many related Winterliciciou/Summerlicious postings.

            1. I was at Habitat this w/e and it really is a lot of fun. The Kaiseki plates (either 3, 5, or 7 little dishes) are their versions of a tasting menu. They are served together on a platter. I had the cauliflower soup as a starter (divine) & the Kaiseki 5. It was all very interesting and delicious. There was a deconstructed French onion soup, Indian greens with a little papadum, a mini Moroccan "calzone" on a bed of delicious tabouli, a piece of excellent seared tuna, and a delictable conconction of cauliflower soup with white truffle. Wow! If you like variety and teasing your tastebuds, this is a fun way to go. The 5 choice plate is only $25 to boot!

              The service and servers are excellent and informative. The atmosphere is modern and funky (as is the neighbourhood).

              Have fun!

              1. I took a peek at your favourite restaurants. You do set the bar high. Hope Toronto can live up to it.

                If romance is on the menu, Starfish is nearby and great for seafood. http://starfishoysterbed.com/

                Since you seem to be a seafood lover I'll stick with the theme and suggest Omi for fantastic sushi. It's very casual, as in jeans are not just okay, but rather welcome. I recommend going Omakase for the full experience. No website, but here's a link to a local magazine about it. http://www.torontolife.com/guide/rest...

                Many local hounds love Romagna Mia. You may too.

                Me, I like Fieramosca, but a) it's much further from your hotel than Romagna and b) I have a preference for southern Italian cuisine. Fieramosca does seem to have more seafood choices though and it's relatively easily accessed via public transit. Check out http://www.fieramoscatoronto.com/

                1. Cute, re the delivery but we do plan on getting out and getting to know the town! I love the Little India suggestion (lunch on Sat) and also we both were into the idea of hanging at the oyster bar at Starfish (sun PM). And Dim Sum on Sunday AM. Still mising my key Sat PM place...And inbetween working out (ya know, to make it all balance out in the end!) and maybe a spa and museum visit. All ideas welcome...Thanks to ALL for your help -- and happy, happy new year. Let me know how I can return the favor re NYC or DC!

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: fortyweeks

                    This is a little off the chow topic, but you might want to try the Elmspa. I like it because it is very low key and Zen-like. Not the usual "wanna-be-seen-scene." It's on Church St at Gloucester. (To keep this even slightly on chow, they also offer packages with a light lunch--but I've never tried it). Their Deep Thai "herbal" massage is just heavenly.

                    Good luck on your Sat dinner selection. You have many good recommendations and really can't go wrong with these. Personally, I'd choose Chiado because true Portuguese restaurants of this caliber are few and far between. Canoe has never been a fav of mine, I find it too stuffy, but it is a good place to stop for a drink and enjoy the view. Perigee has been on my must try list for quite a while. Starfish is excellent for dinner and worthy of more than just an afternoon oyster stop.

                    You'll have to report back when you return and let us know where you ended up. Have fun!!

                    1. re: dinin and dishin

                      In the same building as the Elmwood, there is Bangkok Garden, for thai food. They've recently reopened and if you go for lunch, the AYCE includes the delightful noodle bar.

                      1. re: sierramum

                        Just a note. The Elmspa is the little sister to the Elmwood and several blocks away. It is only open Thurs thru Sat. While the Elmwood is more chichi, wana-b-seen, the Elmspa is very low key, quiet and zen. The Elmspa has a great Muskoka room/sunroom where you can chill between treatments and quaff their house label herbal teas.

                        1. re: dinin and dishin

                          OMG. Yes, you're right d&d! That's what I get for skimming, instead of reading properly. I've been to both for esthetics treatments, too. (I'm soooo embarassed!)

                  2. Alas, Starfish isn't open Sunday's. If it's an afternoon of oysters and something sparkly you want it would have to be Friday. Many a time I've had the same thought on a lazy Saturday only to think "Damn!"

                    I agree with D&D that Canoe wouldn't make a Sat night list of mine. Too hit & miss.

                    Can you give us some idea as to what you're looking for in a Saturday night restaurant?

                    1. Thanks for the heads up on Starfish for Sunday -- it did seem like a great hang! Oh well..so now, looks like Habitat or Starfish for Sat PM...our main "wants" are a great wine list, an inviting, interesting,warm and intimate (not cheesy or touristy) space and, of course, great, memorable food. I also prefer a two-top not stacked on top of another table, but that is often too much to ask when you are a "stranger" in town!

                      2 Replies
                        1. re: estragon

                          Great article estragon. My resolve to shed a few holiday pounds and get fit is only a day old and the dish descriptions in this rave review have shaken my commitment. Maybe if I walk to Habitat and back, I can justify a dinner. :)

                          I would have said Starfish over Habitat, but this definitely changed my mind.

                      1. Habitat is great. The price is not very esxpensive. The service there is excellent and the Alantic Wild Cod dish I had there is very nice.
                        The Kaiseki plates is not bad, but I think it looks better than it tastes.

                        1. OK With all respect to the opinions so far, I can't see why anybody visiting Toronto would highlight a seafood restaurant. You have far better in NYC/DC.
                          I know I'm projecting, but when I visit a city I want something I can't get at home. That means (in Toronto), Lai Wah Heen (for dim sum) and Susur for the splurge. Lai Wah Heen is a 5-10 min walk (& open Sunday). Susur is a 20 minute trek but under $10 by cab. In theory I add Chiado to the list, but it's not downtown (say $20 cab ride).
                          That also means lunch (or breakfast) at St Lawrence market (15 min walk) for peameal bacon on a bun (optional - add honey mustard).

                          For Indian Trimurti (a la carte) would be my choice (5-10 minute walk and ridiculously cheap) - but based on your preference for Tabla, you might consider Xacutti ($10-15 cab ride) which uses Indian spicing on more conventional dishes (rather than Indian itself). Xacutti is a bit of a "scene" - not sure if you're into that. They also do Sunday Brunch.
                          Despite the raves for Habitat (which is a good place) don't get confused by their 'kaiseki' dishes which bear no resemblance to kaiseki at all. They are just around half a dozen small items on a single large plate. I find them confused and am baffled by the popularity (if I want 5 or 7 different tastes then I'd prefer them served sequentially). But their 'regular' dishes are fine.

                          I find "Little India" (don't get confused here, some people have referred to a restaurant named Little India which is close to Trimurti; others have referred to a district which is a considerable trip to the east, say $20 cab ride; I mean the district) to be overpriced for what you get, but a fun place to visit. For your museum, trust me and ignore the obvious choices and visit the Bata Shoe Museum - I believe the only one of its kind in the world. A half hour walk (in sensible shoes) but good public transportation.

                          And if you want the 'pampered dinner' with good food, excellent service and being treated royally, the best choices are Splendido (my favourite; $15 cab ride) or Scaramouche ($20 cab ride). Both are expensive by Toronto standards but BARGAINS by NYC standards (say $450 Cdn for 2 with reasonable wine choices).

                          1. You are all so amazing...so here is the plan:

                            *Starfish for a late lunch on Sat
                            *Lee for dinner on Sat PM (they are not taking reservations until Monday but I left a message)
                            *Lai Wah Heen for Dim Sum on Sunday
                            *Little India for dinner on Sunday

                            So -- Speak now or forever hold your piece. Seriously though - many thanks. Of course, a full download to follow.

                            2 Replies
                              1. re: zoohort2

                                Thanks...Ok time to move things around a bit...