Opinions on the "other" Red and White falafel?
- Ediblethoughts Mar 27, 2008 03:39 PM
At the advice of chowhounds, I visited the 519 Yonge R & W and really enjoyed the falafel and the salads. Probably would be more enjoyable on a less chilly day but still, good stuff. So my question is: I noticed that there is another R & W on the other side of Yonge a few blocks down a bit N. of Dundas. Anyone know how this one ranks compared to the 519 Yonge location?
I should start by saying I had the falafel plate--not the falafel wrapped in pita. My companion had the falafel in pita; I think she had everything that was on my plate except for the chick peas in her falafel... and now that I think of it, I don't think I got hummos on my plate but I'm sure she did in her falafel. My plate had: Tabbouleh for sure; chickpea salad (vinegary I think)--chickpeas a bit too firm for my taste; red cabbage salad; white onion salad; a very tasty, tangy tomato salad. The lettuce was kind of meh. The falafel plate also included a yellow rice that was nice but I'd rather have had pita instead; my companion chose the falafel in pita with the salad side (so she got a nice mix of some of the same salads that were on my plate). Next time, I'm having what my companion had.
Of late I've tried falafel from Tov Li, Mezzetta, and the Jeruselum, I've enjoyed all of them and I'm not at the stage where I could rate but I think this falafel was more tender and less crisp than the others. Maybe a little more flavour than the others.
I went to Red and White at 519 yesterday and had the falafel sandwich. It was very good! I loved the balance between the crunch and soft and vinegary and spicy.
It wasn't anything special or unique but if I'm looking for a quick (and cheap!) lunch in the area that will be my place.
When I lived at Yonge & Wellesley I was a weekly visitor to the 519 Yonge location of Red & White. My usual was the chicken shawarma plate with extra tabouleh. Sadly, I think things have gone down hill since the owner opened the second location closer to Dundas. He spends most of his time down at that location and at home with his family (which is understandable since he used to work all hours of the day and night).
I really enjoyed the salads (but then I like things that are very vinegary) and I think their pickled turnip is the best in the city. The rice is OK but can sometimes pick up a chemical taste in their take-out containers. The chicken which used to be awesomely tender and wonderful can sometimes be over cooked and crunchy. It largely depends on the time of day and how busy they are.
Still, if I lived in the neighbourhood I would probably be stopping by there regularly on my way home from work.
I'll answer my own question--since I have now been to the Dundas R & W a couple times now. I find the service to be very friendly and helpful (my one experience with the 519 was less responsive service--and I had to repeat a couple times after officially ordering what I'd ordered--though that might be partly because the 519 was so busy). But I tried the falafel with all the salads in it this time and it was quite good. 519 might be a little better but I'd have to return to be sure.
And if you want to eat in, especially in chilly weather, the Dundas location is much better because the tables are at the back of the store (so no draft) and the line of people doesn't get all cluttered with people eating in. (And if you order a plate to stay, they are china plates--which makes me happy.)