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Hong Kong-style Western Food (HK-style "cafes")

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In the General Discussion forums, someone mentioned wanting locations to HK-style cafes in Toronto and GTA, so I'll start off a short list of the places I go to and people can add on from there

Maydoh Restaurant (Denison & Kennedy, Markham ON)- It's located in the plaza with Honey & Garlic Cuisine. A very small, hole in the wall sort of place with pretty decent prices, a good milk tea and decent specials. There's one waitress who's really bad... quality of service is a bit of a lottery.

Hollywood Cafe (Market Village, just outside the food court on the north side)- A "fancier" place that has a more "western" menu. The French toast wasn't great (no PB), but some of the items I noticed looked interesting.

New City Restaurant (Peachtree Centre, Hwy 7 & Kennedy)- My favourite for french toast. Very filling and good. IIRC, the lunch specials were far less impressive. "Good" breakfast, used to be very busy at that time, I don't know how busy it is now

Victory Restaurant (Same plaza)- The breakfast I felt was somewhat inferor to New City, but less drabby.

Rural Restaurant (Glen Watford & Sheppard, the plaza on the west side)- I go there quite often, two rotating and a list of set lunch specials, one "western" and one more traditionally "Chinese"... though the rotating lunch specials are cheaper and a better deal. Better service than Maydoh.

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  1. That was me, Thank you!

    4 Replies
    1. re: orangewasabi

      You've been warned... I personally feel this genre of food is very subjective in taste :). However, I do recommend you go during afternoon tea and order french toast, it is like no other french toast around.

      1. re: Blueicus

        What makes the french toast different/special? Inquiring minds want to know... Thanks!

        1. re: cookbook

          Hong Kong style french toast is made with the white bread usually found in Chinese bakeries and deep fried. It doesn't have the feeling that you're eating bread pudding as much as most other french toasts I've eaten. They are also sometimes/usually two slices of bread with peanut butter sandwiched within.

        2. re: Blueicus

          yeah, I'm gathering that it's a bit 'idiosyncratic'.

          I like the weirdness of it -- maybe in concept more than in reality once I've tried it. Nonetheless, I'm glad to be able to try it without getting in a plane.

      2. it's not idiosyncratic! ox-tongue spaghetti with the red sauce is awesome!!! as is the baked porkchop and egg rice dish.

        there are certain things you can get at western style hk places (the classics) that you don't get anywhere else, and they're super tasty.

        1. LOL, oh my!

          if you don't consider ox-tongue spaghetti with red sauce idiosyncratic, then we must have different meanings for the term.

          I don't mean it to be derogatory, I mean it to be specific to a particular, unusual taste palate. Idosyncratic usually means super-tasty to thems that like it too.

          1. I agree that this type of food is hard to "grade" since it's pretty much chinese comfort food for most chinese places. 90% of the places are semi-hole in the walls which seems like it's mandatory for these places :) Not that I mind, I grew up on this stuff! I also find that most people find a favourite in their area specifically. I know that most places are int he 'burbs, not as many great ones in the core. That being said, I always go to Ho Garden at 16th and Woodbine (in the All Star Wings mall) cause it's close and good. I find it amazing how the lunch specials are cheaper than McDonald's "value" meals with drink and soup! Ho Garden is also good for their ox tongue, many places suck at making this (waaaay too chewy or hard) but they are good, and their HK style tea (strong black tea with evaporated milk) is above average.

            1. Any good HK cafes downtown? Chinatown doesn't seem to have any that aren't literal holes-in-the-walls...

              13 Replies
              1. re: artificialard

                Hong Kong Harbour Restaurant, 472 Dundas West, 2nd floor, has been there forever. Decor is plasticky but not a "hole in the wall".

                1. re: Teep

                  Can any recommend any good Hong Kong style cafes these days? So far the one that I like that I have gone to recently is Phoenix. Even then, I find that the one by Unionville is better. I like how these places have lots of set menus and specials for the day.

                  1. re: babybluepowder

                    I am fond of the one in the Splendid Mall (the dead mall south of Pacific Mall).

                    1. re: szw

                      What's the name of the cafe or is there only one? Is it an actual restaurant or part of a food court?

                      1. re: babybluepowder

                        Cafe in splendid China - there is one - i think it's a Maydoh as well. Next to it is the Asia station cafe. But I have not been there in the past few months.

                        -----
                        Maydoh Restaurant
                        1661 Denison, Unionville, ON L3R6E5, CA

                        1. re: caitlink

                          Thanks!

                          1. re: caitlink

                            Maydoh at Kennedy and Burloak (just north of 16th ave.). This location seems better than the one at Kennedy and Denison.

                            -----
                            Maydoh Restaurant
                            1661 Denison, Unionville, ON L3R6E5, CA

                            1. re: theel

                              I'm working in HK at the moment. Every day I take a break for a 'yeet lai cha', the strong smooth milk tea. Any chance of finding a decent one south of the 401 in Toronto? If it comes with a decent 'bo lo bao', all the better.

                              1. re: koknia

                                A few of the bakeries around Spadina serve milk tea, like the venerable Kim Moon, Furama etc.

                                BTW it's "yeet nai cha". Some people make it a lazy habit to say "lai" instead.

                                1. re: Teep

                                  Thanks!
                                  I would be one of those lazy people...

                    2. re: Teep

                      I'm probably gonna try this place Hong Kong Harbour Restaurant on 472 Dundas West, 2nd floor, over the weekend for some noodles and milk tea.

                      Anyone know of these type of HK style cafes in the Gerrard-Broadview area in East Chinatown? Do any of them even exist there???

                      1. re: YummyYummy

                        Please report on your HK Harbour visit. Want to know if they are still as good as in the past.

                        1. re: T Long

                          They have changed owners, it's now called the Hong Kong Bistro or something. Still serving the same cuisine, but the milke tea I had recently was not good - it had a bitter taste and not much flavour, as if it's been boiled for too long. Maybe you'll get a better batch.

                          There is another place called Canteen in the Dragon City Mall at Dundas and Spadina on the second floor, all the way to the right at the top of the escalator. Haven't tried it yet.

                  2. GTA:

                    Firefly @ first markham place, hwy 7/woodbine
                    Goldsor @ times square, leslie/hwy 7
                    Leslie cafe @ leslie/finch plaza
                    Galleria @ commerce gate (i believe they closed down but they used to have amazing curry! another cafe replacement there?)
                    theres another one called cafe 68 or something thats apparently really good for the price around world bowl off leslie and 7 but i cant seem to pinpoint atm, if anyone can remember thatd be great..
                    Fifty-nine aka superstation at midland/finch plaza (decor is nothing but u gotta get #58 or #59, and deep fried ice cream here... spicy fried rice mmmm.... plus they are opened late) definitely a post clubbing joint, and warning if u go at night... to the sensitive lungs if u know what i mean..
                    there are so many in the plazas on hwy 7, just dont rmb the names!!

                    they all have their pro/cons with certain dishes but definitely got the milk teas..