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Cynthia's Chinese Restaurant in Thornhill: Any Good?

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FlavoursGal Jan 19, 2007 04:02 AM

Someone told me that he had a great meal at Cynthia's, located at Bathurst and Centre St.

Has anyone been there recently?

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    jeff75 Jan 19, 2007 01:44 PM

    I have been there several times (and take out a few times more). I think they are overpriced compared to most chinese places but I think the quality is slightly higher than most as well.

    3 Replies
    1. re: jeff75
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      FlavoursGal Jan 19, 2007 01:58 PM

      Is it standard, old-fashioned Toronto Chinese or does their menu include items that people often say "Ewww!" over?

      I love the ewww factor in Chinese restaurants, as it usually suggests that the food is geared to more than the usual N.A. palate.

      Is it Cantonese, Szechuan, or a mix of regional Chinese?

      1. re: FlavoursGal
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        Pizza Lover Jan 19, 2007 04:41 PM

        Stay away. My host ordered take out from Cynthia on Wednesday night - food court quality but the high prices sure are not. Extremely greasy food with cornstarch laden sauces.

        For example, had their "lemon chicken" which was dry and the outer layer so overdone we threw it out - and their 'lemon sauce" is cornstarch mixed with yellow food colour. As for General Tao chicken - mostly breading with a disturbingly sweet sauce. The only enjoyable part were the mixed vegetables - pretty hard dish to screw up.

        Try Congee Wong by T&T in the Promenade for authentic style dishes (ie light sauces, real ginger, garlic etc.) at good prices.

        1. re: Pizza Lover
          pescatarian Jan 19, 2007 04:47 PM

          I have never had anything from Cynthia's that was greasy in the least and I find their sauces to be very good. Hardly food court quality.

    2. pescatarian Jan 19, 2007 03:43 PM

      I love Cynthia's. I am not an expert on "authentic" Chinese cuisine, however, I have had enough lackluster North American Chinese meals to know that Cynthia's quality is very good and a number of steps above the status quo. It is a bit more expensive, but I think it is worth it.
      They have a mix of Cantonese and Szechuan.
      I can't speak for the Ewww factor, because I don't normally go for those items. I've enjoyed everything I've eaten thre, but there are a couple of standouts I go back for - Crispy OK Tofu, Chicken Balls (I know, but they are not your standard Chicken Balls, they are perfectly done and delicious).

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        FlavoursGal Jan 19, 2007 04:33 PM

        Thanks, pescatarian. I'll have to give it a try. It's pretty funny that I had to hear about it from a Montreal teenager who'd been here visiting with some friends in Thornhill.

        1 Reply
        1. re: FlavoursGal
          pescatarian Jan 19, 2007 04:36 PM

          That is funny. I know about it because my parents live across the street. By the way, if you are around that plaza, I also enjoy the japanese restaurant in that plaza (next to M&M Meats). It's not inventive or anything, but they have decent quality food, good taste and the family that owns it are very nice and appreciative for your business in my experience.

        2. superchick Jan 19, 2007 11:06 PM

          Cynthia's caters to the Cdn-Chinese food market. If you're going for chicken balls, sweet & sour pork, chow mein and the likes, it's pretty good quality. They're more upscale than your regular chinese take out and it reflects in the price.

          They will do authentic chinese dishes but at an astronomical price. They will cater traditional chinese banquets e.g. shark's fin.

          Cynthia and her husband are absolute dolls

          1 Reply
          1. re: superchick
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            FlavoursGal Jan 19, 2007 11:44 PM

            Does their Szechuan food have any heat at all?

          2. s
            ScoobySnacks Jan 20, 2007 09:06 PM

            I would have to agree with the opinion posted by "Pizza Lover". Although the service at Cynthia's is very good, the food leaves much to be desired. My family recently ordered about 6 take-out dishes, and wound up throwing a lot of it in the garbage. The dishes were absolutely soaked in heavy sauces that were either sickeningly sweet or punishingly salty. The crispy beef in particular was drowning in a sticky mud-like sauce that made it inedible.

            I think this restaurant's poularity is mostly based on the novelty of the staff dressing in traditional costumes and of course the high-end service. But that can't make up for the poor food.

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              anahit Jun 3, 2008 08:34 AM

              I have been there several times - was ok and i like staff dressing in traditional costumes, so I took my family yesterday for little birthday party. It was Monday evening - may be that's can explain why the food was so bad..was really poor food + at an astronomical price. I heard before that the service at Cynthia's is very good, the food leaves much to be desired, but never had such a bad experience. I am saying bye-bye to Cynthia today, and i will never go back again, i can tell you people - Stay away.

              1 Reply
              1. re: anahit
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                Epicure3333 Jun 3, 2008 10:03 AM

                This place is absolutly horrible

                Do yourself a favor and drive 10 minutes to the chinatown on highway 7 between baview and leslie. Any place there will be much much better

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