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Ghali Kitchen Open!!

Leslieville May 31, 2007 10:12 AM

Drove by Ghalli Kitchen today and they are now open. They also have signs up for drivers, so perhaps those waiting for home delivery will finally get their wish!!! Personally, I would like to see them using their patio. I'll have to go get a jerk chicken sandwich soon.

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  1. vorpal RE: Leslieville May 31, 2007 10:40 AM

    Fantastic!!! I'll go check them out this weekend. Thank you for letting us know.

    3 Replies
    1. re: vorpal
      professor plum RE: vorpal May 31, 2007 11:59 AM

      where is it located?

      1. re: professor plum
        Leslieville RE: professor plum May 31, 2007 02:18 PM

        They are just above Queen Sreet East on Greenwood. In fact, you can just about step off the Greenwood bus into their storefront!! I think this time I'll have to try the Rasta Pasta and the Jerk Chicken pizza. Anyone else have some recommendations?

        1. re: Leslieville
          Vise RE: Leslieville May 31, 2007 06:47 PM

          In their first incarnation on Greenwood I only tried the shiraz jerk pork pizza (several times) and thought it was great, definitely recommended. Looking forward to trying it again now that George has returned to his rightful home. :-)

    2. t
      tomgrrrl RE: Leslieville Jun 1, 2007 06:48 PM

      Do they offer vegetarian items?

      2 Replies
      1. re: tomgrrrl
        julesrules RE: tomgrrrl Jun 3, 2007 06:56 AM

        I don't think so, and while they do include a lot of different veggies on their pasta & pizza, a lot of the flavour of most items comes from the jerk chicken/pork.

        1. re: julesrules
          julesrules RE: julesrules Jun 4, 2007 07:46 AM

          never mind I appear to be misinformed per post below... If I see an actual menu anytime soon I will take a look for veggie items

      2. o
        outofit RE: Leslieville Jun 3, 2007 03:52 AM

        Sorry, I am a bit confused (easy to do) - is Ghali back in its original location? If so, I guess this means the place he opened on Queen W. is closed.

        12 Replies
        1. re: outofit
          charmoula RE: outofit Jun 3, 2007 05:34 AM

          Yes and yes.

          1. re: charmoula
            thegory RE: charmoula Jun 3, 2007 09:12 AM

            Tomgrrrl, they have loads of vegetarian items. I just went last night thinking it was supposed to be open and at 7:20 they were clearly closed. Wish we had more info on the "official" launch date but I'm just happy they're back. Also cool to see they'll be open for breakfast (!) and lunch too. I missed this place so much.

            1. re: thegory
              vorpal RE: thegory Jun 3, 2007 12:41 PM

              Does anyone know the hours of operation for this place? My partner went at 8:30 last night, too, and they were closed. I wouldn't mind going today but I'm not going to bother unless they're open. (I'd call, but I have... ick... Vonage, and as usual, it's down.)

              1. re: vorpal
                piggywiggy RE: vorpal Jun 4, 2007 01:49 PM

                I drove by yesterday as well and saw it was closed.

                This from Now online: Open Monday to Friday noon to 9 pm, Saturday 5 to 10 pm. Closed Sunday

                1. re: piggywiggy
                  Edith S RE: piggywiggy Jun 4, 2007 02:15 PM

                  And you wonder why he's gone under twice? Showing up doesn't seem to be high on George's priorities. Great food, tho', when he does! His saltfish & ackee pasta rocks!

                  1. re: Edith S
                    childofthestorm RE: Edith S Jun 6, 2007 10:44 AM

                    I got takeout from there last night. I asked for a jerk chicken dinner and got pasta, and was a bit underwhelmed with the "pizza" which is really "flatbread with stuff on it" - but the overall taste was pretty good. Curious to try the sandwiches.

                    1. re: childofthestorm
                      GIRL555 RE: childofthestorm Jun 7, 2007 02:18 PM

                      I talk to him and they are posting hours tonight but they are:

                      MONDAY – FRIDAY
                      7:00AM – 9:00PM

                      5:00PM – 9:00PM


                      Bring on the goodness!

                      1. re: GIRL555
                        embee RE: GIRL555 Jun 7, 2007 06:49 PM

                        7:00 AM??
                        I can't imagine eating breakfast there. Noon to midnight makes more sense to me. What am I missing?

                        1. re: GIRL555
                          piggywiggy RE: GIRL555 Jun 7, 2007 06:51 PM

                          Ordered dinner there last night. Jerk chicken dinner and half a jerk pork pizza, $9+13=22. Both jerk chicken and pork options seem to be tasty stew concoctions as opposed to grilled pieces of meat. The pizza is basically the stew scooped onto some flatbread and fired up. Delicious!

                          I was trying out a couple of dishes, but I figure that half a pizza for my wife and me for $13 is a good deal with leftovers. And George is a cool guy. And why did I see three hot chicks there in the space of 10 mins? Is there something I don't know?

                          1. re: piggywiggy
                            Vise RE: piggywiggy Jun 7, 2007 08:10 PM

                            Is it that the ladies love George? I mean, I can understand why if so.

                            That dude is cool! :-)

                          2. re: GIRL555
                            julesrules RE: GIRL555 Jun 8, 2007 06:41 AM

                            Any word on delivery?

                            1. re: julesrules
                              GIRL555 RE: julesrules Jun 13, 2007 09:26 AM

                              I guess you were right - breakfast is no longer (canceled) just lunch and dinner again - the good stuff. He said he is looking for drivers right now so delivery is coming soon - yay!

            2. vorpal RE: Leslieville Jun 14, 2007 10:47 AM

              Despite my clamouring for weeks that I was going to check this place out, due to a chronic health condition, I kept putting off visiting. My partner, however, surprised me last night by bringing home Ghali Kitchen takeout, namely the jerk pork shiraz pizza and the jerk chicken sandwich. Both were spectacular, and while I thought the taste of so much jerked meat would get quickly repetitive, the flavours between the two were delightfully unique and kept me eating way more than I should have. I really can't think of a single thing I would change about the food; it was just through and through excellent.

              Overall, a fantastic meal, and my only regret is that I've been living in the vicinity of this place for almost two years and this is the first time I've tried it. I will definitely and enthusiastically be back.

              Now, if you'll excuse me, the leftovers are beckoning from the fridge...

              10 Replies
              1. re: vorpal
                leslievillian RE: vorpal Jun 14, 2007 12:11 PM

                There seems to be so much praise for this place. I have to check it out. What is the hype all about?

                1. re: leslievillian
                  Edith S RE: leslievillian Jun 14, 2007 12:22 PM

                  Delicious, creative, and relatively inexpensive food is my guess.

                  1. re: leslievillian
                    vorpal RE: leslievillian Jun 14, 2007 01:32 PM

                    Agreed with Edith S. The food was relatively cheap ($28 bought enough for two with enough leftovers for another meal), and was unlike anything I've had before. I don't know that I'd go so far as to make a special trip to eat there, but it's in my hood and it's probably the best and most innovative place in my price range here (that I've discovered so far)!

                    1. re: vorpal
                      childofthestorm RE: vorpal Jun 14, 2007 01:56 PM

                      I don't know, some store-bought flatbread with some stew dumped on it and baked for five minutes is not really my idea of innovative. But he obviously does care about the food he's serving - drizzling herbed oil on the "pizza" when it comes out of the oven springs to mind - and the value is good. The 1/2 pizza at $13, my girl and I couldn't finish it and had leftovers. I was kind of bummed it had no cheese on it at all, though, and I had to grate my own parmesan back at home and rebake it for a couple of minutes to get it where I wanted it.

                      I'll go back as it's in my hood, for sure. But I wouldn't go too far out of my way.

                      1. re: childofthestorm
                        vorpal RE: childofthestorm Jun 14, 2007 02:31 PM

                        It may be store-bought flat bread (I didn't know that, as it was my partner who picked it up), but I found it was *really* good store bought flat bread. And it kept nicely in the fridge, staying soft and tender.

                        Any other recommendations for the neighbourhood that aren't really expensive? I used to swear by Siddhartha in Little India for the general area, but lately their quality seems to have slipped and so I'm looking for new places just to grab some tasty take out when I'm too lazy to cook.

                        Agreed with your last line, for sure.

                        1. re: vorpal
                          childofthestorm RE: vorpal Jun 14, 2007 03:41 PM

                          Well, obviously sushi isn't cheap, but Sushi Marche is fantastic. Queen Pita is decent and cheap, but I'm not really a fan. If you can get to Logan, I would say Cajun Corner is the best non-sushi option in Leslieville for takeout, the po-boys are amazing and sometimes my girl and I just split a gumbo and an order of fried chicken.

                          It seems to me that everyone is rushing to Leslieville to open yet another bistro/gastropub/small-plate-o-rama - and serve weekend brunch while they're at it of course - to the point of over-saturation. But I imagine a casual place with some tables but also an efficient takeout area would do really well around there. I'm thinking specifically of places in Montreal's Plateau where I lived most of my life, spots like Euro Deli for Italian and Coco Rico for Portuguese. In Toronto, maybe a place like Fusaro's is a good template. Leslieville needs a place like this next...maybe next after a proper bar, but that's another thread.

                          1. re: childofthestorm
                            beanbiscuit RE: childofthestorm Jun 14, 2007 05:38 PM

                            (Coco Rico! One of my regular stops when I'm back in town.)

                          2. re: vorpal
                            thegory RE: vorpal Sep 1, 2007 06:44 AM

                            I just had Ghali for the second time since late June and it's still exceptional. The Burroti was genius! Whole wheat shell that is nicely toasted to a crisp stuffed with rice, jerk chicken, beans and potatoes. Extremely spicy just as I asked for. The jerk chicken with rice plate was great too. I"m not a big fan of the jerk chicken pizza but the ackee and saltfish pizza is amazing. Yeah, the hours are frustrating but he opened at 5 on Friday so maybe that's the starting hour. I was just happy to eat there again.

                            1. re: thegory
                              Leslieville RE: thegory Sep 1, 2007 08:07 AM

                              I'ld love to know when he is open!!!!! I drive by there frequently, and have only seen him open once in 2 months. Perhaps this is why he found the rent too expensive the first time. Mostly I've given up even trying to get anything there.

                          3. re: childofthestorm
                            koknia RE: childofthestorm Jun 14, 2007 03:28 PM

                            Yeah, I ate there a couple of times and it was OK. Nothing that special IMO.
                            (Maybe I ordered the wrong things.)

                    2. m
                      Margaret_L RE: Leslieville Sep 29, 2007 06:23 AM

                      This is the one place that I regret not going in earlier when I heard about it. I was recommended as a first time customer (not for long) and visitor to the Ghali Kitchen the Rasta Pasta. Service was quick (my bus just arrived as George was finishing up cooking my meal) and I was out of the door. The taste was just incredible. Not too spicy (exactly what I asked for) and the pasta was still al dente. I wonder what I'll be ordering next as I wait for my bus. Probably the Burroti. That name makes me smile every time I say it out loud.

                      4 Replies
                      1. re: Margaret_L
                        Fredster RE: Margaret_L Oct 5, 2007 11:23 AM

                        I work in the vicinity and whether it's morning, afternoon, early evening, etc. I have never seen this place open!!!! What is the deal?

                        1. re: Fredster
                          vorpal RE: Fredster Oct 5, 2007 11:30 AM

                          Ha - it's true! We've tried to go back a couple times during their "designated" hours since we enjoyed our first experience so much, but have never caught them actually being open! It's sort of a running joke for us now... one of us will say, "Hey, we should have Ghali Kitchen for dinner," and then the other will invariably respond with, "Yeah, but it's not Wednesday between 8:05 and 8:07, so we're out of luck."

                          I wonder how they stay in business :-).

                          1. re: vorpal
                            thegory RE: vorpal Oct 5, 2007 06:38 PM

                            Actually, he's been pretty steady with opening after 5pm. I'm pretty sure he closes at 9 or so but this week he's been open every time I've walked by at about 5:30 or so. Had it last Sunday and was still amazing as usual.

                            1. re: thegory
                              vorpal RE: thegory Oct 5, 2007 07:46 PM

                              Awesome. Thanks for letting us know... I've been craving it since my first visit and I'd love to satisfy that. We'll make a point of heading over again this week.

                      2. Jacquilynne RE: Leslieville Oct 5, 2007 04:29 PM

                        Just adding a quick place link to this thread.

                        Ghali Kitchen
                        4 Greenwood Ave, Toronto, ON M4L2P4, CA

                        1. 50firstdatesguy RE: Leslieville Dec 13, 2007 04:50 PM

                          Hey guys,

                          I popped in to see George tonight and told him he'd received some good feedback on ChowHound. He seemed pleased. I did mention that the feedback included some comments and confusion about his hours, which I agree are sometimes difficult to nail down.

                          He acknowledged that and asked me to tell everyone that for the next little while he says he's going to be open from 5-9. So, for the moment his breakfast and lunch plans are off until he gets things going a bit more but he was definitley open tonight and wanted his fans to know he's gonna try and be open for dinner consistently throughout the week. He does run the place on his own so unfortunately he's forced into 'Back in 5' mode if he needs ingredients or something.

                          The rice wasn't quite ready yet so instead of the dinner I had the Burroti, chicken sirloin and veggies.. mmmm, that and a tall glass of water and my stomach was satisfied for the evening, those things are deceivingly heavy.

                          I'm not ashamed to say George Ghali made love to my tummy lol

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