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Terrible Experience at Ghandi on Queen

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As I'm walking by, I go in to grab something to eat, remembering they supposedly have an amazing butter chicken roti. I decide on one of the butter chicken rolls instead as I'm not so hungry. The lady working the register appears to have never touched a till before, entering 1 number at a time in a very reluctant and scattered manner. Next she throws the roll in the microwave, not such a big deal, though i hate microwaving food, and proceeds to take another order of 6 guys (which takes all of about 10 min just to order), completely forgetting my roll is in the microwave though i am standing right in front of her being patient. i quietly remind her as i am waiting after she has accepted payment from the other group. so with the 20 bill in hand from the other party she removes the roll from the microwave with the same hand as the moneys in and proceeds to add some chutney onto the plate WITH the 20 bill rubbing all over my fucking butter chicken roll. i have never been so disgusted in my life. never will go back there and hope you guys dont either

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  1. I'm sorry you had such a bad experience. Frankly I'm shocked, I've never seen anything like that happen. I hope they were just having a bad day and this isn't an indication of a slip downwards.

    I do think their rotis made fresh to order are likely to be more tasty than the pre-made rolls. I don't think the butter chicken qualifies as amazing (I prefer some of their vegetarian fillings), but it is still pretty good for take-out. I do think the price is getting a little silly though and I don't go there often anymore.

    If you change your mind about going back, FYI you can call your order in ahead so you don't have to wait as long.

    1. I just checked, and they've had no health violations in their inspections.

      That being said, I don't really understand the thrill of Gandhi. All of my friends and my partner rave about the place, but the few times I've been there, I've been underwhelmed: decent flavour, but not excellent, and a roti is just too much of the same taste to eat entirely. Nothing really wrong with the place, but I'm surprised that it gets as much hype as it does.

      1 Reply
      1. re: vorpal

        An $8 chana roti fills me up for lunch and well into dinner, and when split with a friend it's an economical Indian feast compared to what Raosee (the other Indian choice in the area) can deliver.

      2. I have been told that they are winding down this location, as they own the building on Queen West, and will eventually move all operations there.
        I did have the butter roti at Mother india, their new restaurant, and it was good, but not a "wow".
        There is much competition in the west end, and their prices are the highest, so I am wondering if they will survive.
        The new place is clean.
        Lady Roti, is in my opinion, the best in Parkdale, and cheap, but I do question the cleanliness.

        2 Replies
        1. re: erly

          Mother India failed as a more traditional Indian restaurant, so I was surprised when they re-opened as a roti place, and completely bewildered when I saw their prices.

          In a neighbourhood with Ali's, Bacchus, Roti Lady, Island Foods, and a couple of other cheap roti joints, I can't see how they can hope to survive with such a high price point. The fact that there is rarely anyone in the place when I walk by suggests that they should seriously rethink their strategy.

          1. re: gregclow

            Last time I ordered a butter chicken roti from Mother India (about a week ago) I got a roti packed with potato and sauce, with several small pieces of chicken. It was like they had inverted the normal potato/chicken ratio. I guess I was paying for all those exotic and expensive spices?

            Having tried Mother India at least 5 times now, I can say it's a lackluster, watered down version of Ghandhi. Even though Mother India is five minutes from my house, I'll be picking up my rotis at the Gandhi location. Despite it's varying degrees of cleanliness and service, I have a much better record with them. Call ahead and arrive 20 to 30 minutes later and you're in and out in 5.

            Erly's post about them winding down the location as they own the building on Queen West is a little confusing. Ghandi is winding down or Mother India?

        2. I had the same lousy portion issue at Ghandi about 2 months ago as Pantz had at MI, so little chicken and a huge pile of folded up roti stuffed under in the tray, bad/sad enough that I called and asked if they changed theri portions when they recently upped the price a buck. The response was "no" and to mention it next time I was in...the dream is over, I haven't been back...on the brighter side, I have taken to buying roti shells at Indian shops and making my own, although I'm getting close, not quite the same -- but alot more fun!...you can put alot of different things in a roti....

          2 Replies
          1. re: Recyclor

            Sorry, I should have made it clear.
            They own the Mother India location.
            Are seriously considering closing down Ghandi.
            Bacchus is going downhill very quickly.
            Too bad.
            I remember when they made a great Roti.
            I work with 44 people and almost all of us ordered from Bacchus fairly regularly.
            Not anymore.
            I don't know what happened, but the roti, are awful, and have been for about a year.
            Wet tasteless mush!

            1. re: erly

              That's too bad about Bacchus. My wife and I were regulars there when they were on Close Ave., and semi-regulars at the Queen St. location for many years. I was always happy with what I got there, even after my allegiance shifted more towards Ali's (mainly due to the closer proximity to our house after Bacchus moved). I know that some purists look down on them for their non-traditional ingredients like cheese and such, but their rotis tasted good, which is what mattered to me.

              Anyway, since moving from Close over to King & Dufferin, Island Foods is now our default, and we have yet to be disappointed by them.

          2. Your experience sounds nothing like what I've ever dealt with at Ghandi, but I've always called ahead and picked up my lunch and have seen other people's food being made to order. I do know that they're busy and need to work with a less disorganized operation than having one person take all of the orders, the monies and negotiate the takeout ops over their cold case counter, but I've never been told a horror story like yours.

            I'd like to ask why didn't you call the cashier on her food handling error? You did mention that she was busy and while her error was inexcusable, it could have been easily corrected and you could have been far happier with your snack.

            1 Reply
            1. re: eller

              i tend to agree - never had a bad experience there ever and been going since inception...
              some of the best in the city methinks

            2. I am personally a big fan of Ali's. Found it to be the cleanest of the bunch and like that you can change up your regular roti (chicken. goat, etc) with the addition of any one of their numerous veggie options (pumpkin, beans, channa, spinach...).

              I know that several people swear by it, but I have never really understood the Island Foods obsession. I personally find the fillings to be too runny and oily... almost like the fast food version of the roti. Good in a pinch, but much happier with Ali's, Bacchus, etc.

              9 Replies
              1. re: jgloverwork

                I like the west indian style of roti better than Ghandis; my girlfriend and I argue about which is the better roti all the time. Island Foods beats Ghandis any day.

                1. re: acd123

                  I've only had Island Foods roti once, but I loved it. I also found it better than Gandhi's, but then again, like you, I'm biased as I I strongly prefer the West Indian style of roti.

                2. re: jgloverwork

                  You've got a point there. They are heavy on the "gravy" at Island Foods. To the point where I tend to go for the dinners with rice because I find the filled roti too soggy.

                  But none of the local competition does that amazing butter spinach. :)

                  1. re: SherylKirby

                    As far as non traditional roti goes, ghandi's/mother india is pretty good and for west indian styles..i used to prefer Ali's but Ive been going to Vena's and I think they win hands down!

                    1. re: somechick

                      i've found vena's ridiculously spicy in a burning sensation kind of way while the other flavours were very muted. just not a good balance for me and was terribly disappointed after hearing so many good things here.

                      haven't tried ali's yet and am looking forward to it.

                      love the goat roti at roti lady... she cooks it so amazingly well and the flavours meld effortlessly.

                      bacchus gave me sandy sandy spinach and each bite was grating on my teeth. too bad because whatever i coudl salvage of the squash was pretty good.

                      1. re: pinstripeprincess

                        In an earlier post, I suggested that Roti lady is my favourite, but I hesitate, because of the dingy place.
                        Wish she would move to a more sanitary looking location.
                        You will find Ali's O.K., but why gritty, raw corn meal coating on the roti?

                        1. re: erly

                          I think PSP meant the spinach was not washed well and was sandy/gritty.

                          Ick.

                          1. re: erly

                            Its not corn meal, its split pea flour:
                            There are two kinds of roti you can get at Ali's
                            Dhalpouri Roti (with the pea flour in it) and paratha roti, which has no filling...

                            1. re: mgs

                              mgs.
                              Thanks for the info.
                              Do you like the taste?
                              Why is this done?
                              I find it gritty.

                  2. Roti Lady in Parkdale appeared to be closed down this evening when I stopped by. Anyone know their hours?

                    Just discovered to my surprise that Mother India and Gandhi are the same place with matching prices (guess I can be oblivious). MI appears cleaner and had quite a few customers dining in. They mentioned that he owns the building whereas at Gandhi they rent. Gandhi's chicken tikka masala roti was a full dollar cheaper than the butter chicken so I went for it, in the interests of keeping updated (I have previously slammed their saag paneer roti). I ordered medium. I received a "suicide" hot (by Canadian wing standards) product. Filling was not great. Not horrible, but not chow-ish. I ate about a third and gave up.

                    Ali's in Parkdale is my standby - but today's channa was lacklustre and the paratha was undercooked ($7 total). Normally they cook the paratha perfectly. The doubles would have been better value ($1.50) for almost the same thing.

                    I'm having a bad food month.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: Food Tourist

                      I've been going to Gandhi almost every week for the past year. A couple of weeks ago I went to pick up my office's order, and the roti they were rolling out seemed to be smaller. Sure enough, when we opened them up, they didn't even come close to filling the container like they usually do. Not only was there less filling, but less shell. When they've gone cheap in the past and cut down on the filling, I could live with the extra roti, but not this.

                      This week it happened again, and the filling was watery. I'm used to the flavour and the spiciness changing each week (it's become part of the fun), but I'm fed up with their cutting corners this drastically when I'm paying something like $11 for normally heavenly malai kofta.

                      1. re: jgo

                        have any of you tried Chicken Plus? the name is pretty bad, the shop looks a little sketchy, but I like their roti waaaayy better than ali's and ghandi.