Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >
HOME > Chowhound > Ontario (inc. Toronto) >
Feb 29, 2008 05:58 AM

15 Min from O'Connor and Donlands

I'll be near my soon-to-be new home tomorrow and I need a place where I can stop with my Mom for a quick lite lunch. I want it to be under 30 min type of meal and relatively healthy choices. I know a few places I like on the Danforth, but they are too busy at that time. Any suggestions closer to O'Connor from say Pape to the west and St. Clair to east?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Right at St Clair & O'Connor - Jawny Bakers. A 30-min meal is do-able and they have salads, soups, sandwiches, etc. Cheerful efficient service.

    Jawny Bakers
    804 O Connor Dr, Toronto, ON M4B2S9, CA

    1. We love Thai Fusion (I think thats the name!) at the corner of Coxwell and O'conner (north east corner, just south of LCBO). Inexpensive relatively healthy meals, and very, very tasty. I think their combos run from around $7.00 which include mango salad or hot & sour soup and spring rolls, and your choice of mains. I love their green curry beef on rice with mango salad. Delicious!

      3 Replies
      1. re: torontogal

        Good to know there's a decent Thai restaurant nearby.

        1. re: pescatarian

          I can't agree. I heard good things about this place and am in the area regularly. Everything I've tried there has been very sweet and not spicy. Been there several times. Not going back.

          1. re: embee

            Not surprising what embee reports regarding the sweetness (and I personally think he knows his stuff.) I drive by TF almost every day and wonder about giving it a try but now I don't have to.

            Agree with the other posts on Sweet Indulgence. Great soups there too, if you are into it.

            On the same stretch of Coxwell, Eden is very typical Chinese Canadian -- not bad but not fantastic either.

            The one time I was in the Pho place across from TF I liked it and I will return.

      2. On Coxwell just south of O'Connor is Hollinger's. I've not been there, always seemed just a bar to me. But apparently since its make-over, it is appealing to a broader clientele, still pub fare but salads, pita, etc, on offer. See this thread -

        Also further south on Coxwell at Sammon, kittycorner from the hospital is Last Drop Cafe, which serves soups, salads, sandwiches, etc. It's a small place though.

        Last Drop
        549 Sammon Ave, Toronto, ON M4J, CA

        1026 Coxwell Ave, Toronto, ON M4C3G5, CA

        1 Reply
        1. re: JamieK

          forgot, also on that little stretch of Coxwell just south of O'Connor - Sweet Indulgence, little cafe/bakery that serves sweets of course, but also things like sandwiches, salads, quiche, meatpies, etc

          Sweet Indulgence
          1040 Coxwell Ave, Toronto, ON M4C, CA

        2. Thought of a couple of more (can you tell I live in the area?). If you go north along Donlands, north of O'Connor and cross the Millwood Bridge to Laird (five minutes), you'll find a few tasty spots where it's possible to have a relatively quick meal, with healthy choices -
          Marvellous Edibles

          Olde Yorke, believe me they have way more than fish & chips on the menu (however no website), it's not just a take-out place, nice restaurant.

          Mikado -

          Leonards (closer to Eglinton), a family restaurant

          Marvellous Edibles
          120 Laird Dr, Toronto, ON M4G3V3, CA

          Olde Yorke
          96 Laird Dr, Toronto, ON M4G3V3, CA

          114 Laird Dr, Toronto, ON M4G3V3, CA

          220 Laird Dr, Toronto, ON M4G3X2, CA

          10 Replies
          1. re: JamieK

            Mmmmmmmmm Marvelous Edibles. Love it. That's the wrong location though. The one on St Clair one block east of O'Connor is:
            Marvellous Edibles
            2781 St Clair Avenue East, East York, ON M4B 1N1
            Telephone : 416-285-6505

            1. re: Googs

              I've actually been to Marvelouse Edibles and I's awesome!

              1. re: Googs

                To clarify, the location on St Clair is basically their bakery (yum cakes), not a restaurant. There are maybe two stools along the front window for coffee and snacks/sweets. No tables.

                The location on Laird is the actual sit-down restaurant, holds up to 30 people seated -

                1. re: JamieK

                  oh, thanks. I've been to the restaurant on Laird, not the bakery - yet

                  1. re: JamieK

                    Having lunched there many times I can assure you there is a small supply of small tables & chairs. It isn't simply a bakery. They have wonderful, hearty, delicious meals during the day. I wouldn't take a party of 20 there, but certainly the OP and mom can have a very healthy lunch.

                    1. re: Googs

                      Just an update. I was at the Marvellous Edibles outlet on St Clair today. There is a wooden bar along the front window, six high stools along the bar. No tables. There was one tiny plantstand-sized table squeezed into a corner, unused and with no suitable chairs available.

                      I've travelled along the Donlands-Millwood-Laird route almost every day for more than 10 years and I can tell you with certainty that it's four minutes from the intersection of Donlands & O'Connor to the ME Laird location (this of course is driving time only, not time spent looking for parking, walking, etc).

                      Today I timed the drive from Donlands & O'Connor to the ME St Clair location -- 6 minutes.

                      So yes the St Clair location is within the OP's time paramater and a relatively healthy lunch is available (sandwiches, pasta salads, pastries). However, there are no other options nearby if all the stools are taken, for instance. The Laird location is a tad closer, takes reservations and there are other dining options in the neighbourhood if necessary. Plus it's a sit-down full-service restaurant (and licensed to boot -- just my little bonus point ;-> )

                      When you walk into the St Clair location, the coffee bar is to your left and the rest of the space is taken up by a large cake/pastry counter behind which are industrial ovens and preparation areas for what is their bakery and catering business.

                      1. re: JamieK

                        Where did they put the picnic style tables that were there?

                        1. re: Googs

                          I think I've seen small bistro-style tables and chairs there around Christmastime when they used the window bar to pile on gift baskets. No more than two tables though, there isn't really that much room.

                          1. re: JamieK

                            Anyone try Gonzo's mexican on O'Connor and St. Clair?

                            1. re: smr714

                              Gonzo's is now closed, drove by last night the new sign up reads the "four brothers restaurant". Don't know what type of food or when they are opening.

              2. Thanks everyone, this is all very helpful.

                6 Replies
                1. re: pescatarian

                  Some good suggestions here. I agree with most of them.

                  - Jawny Bakers isn't special, but it's comfortable, reliable, and has a huge menu.
                  - Sweet Indulgence on Coxwell has good sandwiches and decent pastries that I believe are housemade.
                  - The Ritz on Donlands is a greasy spoon and is only open for dinner one or two days a week. They have some very good food at extremely low prices and some interesting Philipino dishes. Good milkshakes too.
                  - I have actually eaten at Marvelous Edibles on St Clair, though not recently. Their place on Laird is very good.
                  - Earth Grounds on Coxwell has good coffee and atmosphere. Ed is a great host and a very interesting guy. (They close at around 4:00 and aren't open on Sunday.)
                  - Many people recommend Paul's Spaghetti on Cosburn as a good neighbourhood place. No personal experience.
                  - There's a San Francesco franchise on Coxwell. Sandwiches are not nearly as good as they were for many years, but are still satisfying. Yummy olives. Crappy pizza.
                  - La Grotta on Pape near Mortimer is another good neighbourhood spot. Decent mains and good small pizzas.
                  - Hollinger's was a popular neighbourhood hangout for years, but I've heard awful things about them recently. They are trying hard to revive it since their makeover, complete with live music. I've no idea whether they are succeeding.

                  1. re: embee

                    all good points, but just in light of OP's question about a lunch spot, I'm fairly certain Paul's Spaghetti is only open for dinner. No website (that I know of) so not 100% sure.

                    1. re: embee

                      - jawny bakers is good for what it is I guess. never had a bad meal, but its really just a nice family spot.
                      -I went to Pauls Spaghetti recently and just loved it. Great little neighbourhood spot for pasta. And yes , its open for dinner.
                      -La Grotta is also lovely, have had some delicious thin crust pizza there and the service is really attentive
                      -Hollingers I actually visited recently and had a fairly good experience. You can definetlly see how they are trying their hardest. Honestly, there was some minor thing forgotten on one of the dishes and it seemed as though when I mentioned it the owner was going to cry. I felt really bad for her as we were the only ones in the place. But since its in the neighbourhood I will try it again since we had a fairly good meal for cheap and apparently they have jazz starting on sundays now.
                      -also LOVE sweet indulgences, I visit for lunch at least once a week. All the pastries are lovely (especially like the pumpkin tarts, sausage rolls and banana brulee tarts) and the sandwiches are made to order. And yes, I went downstairs to use the washroom once and saw all the baking supplies and equiptment so I can assure you everything is house made.

                      1. re: embee

                        Driven by The Ritz for years and finally went in for (Philipino) breakfast. Very oldeskule yet very clean. Looking forward to returning for dinner. This is definitely a CHOWFIND.

                        1. re: neighborguy

                          Based on what we'd read on this board we too stopped at Ritz, the day of the TTC strike. Went at lunch time. I had the Philipino breakfast. A real deal for $4.95....choice of marinated sliced beef, fish or sausage, with garlic rice, a bit of salad (it appeared to be the bagged type) with a vinagerette, dipping sauce for the meat and coffee/tea/juice with two fried eggs! A nice change from the traditional breakfast I thought. My son had the French dip beef (au jus) with side fries and salad. He loved it but he's 11; but that said has pretty grown up taste. My husband tried the pork and chicken adobo with rice. He enjoyed it but thought the chicken was a tiny bit salty (maybe that's authentic, he's never had it before). Next time I might go for the eggs with bernaise sauce and smoked salmon. It was busy when we arrived at 1:00; they sat us at the counter where we ordered and moved us to a table before our food was ready. Kinda kitschy diner decor, relaxed neighbourhood spot.

                        2. re: embee

                          I second the RITZ!! BEST EGGS...they buy them directly from a farm outside the city.