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Good restaurants in Scarborough.

My family lives near Scarborough, so we often don't feel like going downtown when we go out for dinner. We're tired of the beach and we've exhausted the Danforth....Scarborough is HUGE, so there must be some good restaurants somewhere? We're not too picky on cuisine as long as it's good, has vegetarian options (one of us is veggie) and has a liquor license. TIA!

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  1. The standout in Scarborough is Zen Japanese. Exquisite quality and of course they're licensed. In Scarborough you may as well not open your doors in the first place if you can't hand over a beer.

    1. My "good food" places in Scarborough unfortunately aren't restaurants. They're take out joints, small eateries, and many places I'm not sure qualify as "restaurants". However, when I want dim sum in the area, I go to Dragon Dynasty in the mall on Brimley & Huntingwood (but 15 mins north will open up better (and more expensive) options).

      Fratelli Village Pizzeria is also a good family resto.

      I also like Gumi for Korean food.

      They all are LLBO and have veggie options. As you said, Scarborough is huge. How about a intersection to center the recommendations?

      3 Replies
      1. re: Wandering Foodie

        Thanks for the replies so far. I'd prefer southwest scarborough, but would travel further north for anything out of the ordinary.

        1. re: Wandering Foodie

          I agree, Scarborough isn't the sort of place for sit-down dining, but, for take-out there are some good joints.

          Burgers: I hear lots about Johnny Burgers and Real McCoy which are both good, but for my money, there are few better than a complete hole in the wall at our local strip plaza called Maple Garden restaurant. The chocolate shakes are made with real ice cream and are smooth - the best chocolate shakes around. The hours of the restaurant are weird but Paul makes a good burger, fries and onion rings, and, did I mention the shakes? Meadowvale and Dean Park Road.

          Chinese: We're still looking on this one. Green Tea Restaurant on Island Road is our "go-to."

          Greek: Friendly Greek (it's two person platter feeds our family of five - admittedly small kids). It's much better than Mr. Greek Junior - the tzaiki is fresh and the meat flavourful. Morningside/Lawrence.

          Thai: Not quite Scarborough (but close) is Linda's in the newly renovated Don Mills Centre. There you can order the best Thai dish ever - Golden Curry Chicken. This is a restaurant that used to be located above the enigmatically named and legendary Salad King near Ryerson U. We also have gone to the Thai Orchid in Pickering, which is good, but doesn't really compare to some of the downtown fare.

          Middle Eastern - Ok, there is one of these in the Scarborough Town Centre food court, but, the best to be had is the Medina's in the Pickering Town Center. Their combo plate is a great Chicken Shwarma and Beef Tawouk (I think that's what it is). Anyway, easily one of my favourite take out meals.

          This is a great thread! I've got it bookmarked.

          1. re: scarborough

            I would never eat at Medina's. They're somewhere in the middle of Mediterranean and middle eastern and food court quality through and through. There are plenty of good Lebanese joints for some real sharwarma, tawook and falafel experience near Warden/Lawrence. My fav is Farhat (NW corner of Warden/Lawrence strip) and you'll find one of the best Lebanese experience in T.O. If you're closer to Pickering, there is one place (sorry, I forget the name) at SouthEast corner with No frills, Mandarine buffet, Tim Hortons' complex. They're not even close to being as good as Warden and Lawrence but it will have to do in Durham region.

            I live just off Island Rd but if you want real Chinese, stay away from Green Tea Restaurant. Instead, trek over to Sheppard and Brimley where you will find many better options like the Perfect Chinese Restaurant (open 24hrs) or more tame version, Asian Legend.

            There is a decent Thai place on Port Union rd and Lawson that just opened up a little over a year ago.

            2020 Lawrence Ave E, Toronto, ON M1R2Z1, CA

        2. I recently tried Hopper Hut in the plaza at the north-west corner of Kennedy and Ellesmere; it was our first experience with Sri Lankan food, and it was excellent. Two words: crab curry. So much flavour... gorgeously intense. I thought about it for days. Can't remember if they have a liquor licence though.

          6 Replies
          1. re: Olivia

            Hmm I'll definitely give that a try....I don't think I've ever had Sri Lankan food and I love trying new cuisines!

            1. re: kweenshaker

              Just asked a friend, and it's unlicenced. It's too bad as a beer (or three) would be amazing with the foods we had. Still worth a visit though.

              1. re: Olivia

                That's a shame. Do you know if they're open for lunch?

                1. re: kweenshaker

                  I only ever go there for lunch, so that one's covered. It's really good stuff, though last few times I have been it wasn't as incendiary as I remembered.... maybe I just ordered the wrong things!

            2. re: Olivia

              Was the crab curry spicy? I can take mild to somewhat moderate spicy, but that's about it.

              1. re: red dragon

                Sorry, it's been a few months, so I can't remember if the crab itself was particularly spicy. When I go back I'll make a note of it and post again.

            3. Despite what the regulars say, (they are so jaded!) I like the husband/wife team at Aoyama 2766 Victoria Park, for realistic Japanese food, especially sushi and sashimi.

              For me, the seafood has has been excellent, and the service by Caroline superb,

              It is best to go at non-rush times.

              3 Replies
              1. re: jayt90

                i really liked Aoyama as well!

                My other suggestions are:
                - Fratelli's (def check out this place!)
                - Federicks and Lin Garden for hakka chinese food
                - Cafe Michi
                - Roti Hut (they renovated the place and it now has a pretty big dining area)
                - Real McCoy (great burgers and donut onion rings)
                - Asian Legend
                - Tandoori Pearl (i've only been there for lunch but its really good)

                there are tons of places to go in scarborough...it really depends on what you are looking for.

                1. re: helen0505

                  Thanks for the suggestions! We really just like food (lol) so fire away any more suggestions you may have! We just haven't explored Scarborough much, mainly because of the (unfair) bad rap.

                  1. re: helen0505

                    I used to go to Aoyama all the time when they first opened, but haven't been for a long time. Their quality went down when they were getting a lot more people. Not sure if they are better now, will go back and check them up sometime.

                    Some more suggestions:
                    - Pho Vietname(Kennedy and Ellesmere) is good for Pho and Vietnamese rice dishes.
                    - Kenny's Noodles at Midland and Shepperd is good for certain dishes(some can be crappy), they have the best Ox Lungs with Vermicelli in the city.

                2. Vincent's spot, Midland on Kingston Road.

                  1. Lin Garden, Pharmacy and Sheppard. Great Hakka.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: Brain of J

                      Ugh, you serious? not to judge your taste but Lin Garden is straight garbage, there's no flavour, just heat

                      1. re: Bobby Wham

                        I disagree with Bobby Wham. I like Lin Garden. It's like Hakka comfort food. Their chili chicken is so much better than the place at the corner of Kennedy and Lawrence (Spicy Dragon?) or the other one i tried on Lawrence E. (K......?).

                    2. Dumpling King! there's so much good stuff in Scarb

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Bobby Wham

                        where is dumpling king?

                        also, i disagree about lin garden...i think the flavour is great! but i still prefer federicks.

                        1. re: eco987

                          is this place still open? i tried to go a several months ago, and there was a sign on the door saying that this location was now closed, and to go to the st. clair location

                          1. re: tygrr_lily

                            Hmmm. I don't know. I haven't been for over a year now. Maybe call the number on the website? Too bad...

                        2. Armenian Kitchen on Vic Park north of Eglinton (perhaps techinically in North York), Pho Saigon at Warden and Eg, and Krispy Roll at Warden and Eg -- these places are all casual, reasonably priced and have tasty food (including some veg options).

                          1. I'd recommend Ruby's (McCowan and Finch) for dinner (they have a great vegetarian selection - try the Buddha's Delight with soft tofu, and vegetable soup with fresh bean curd sheets). A veg place that I've enjoyed is Lotus (Midland, south of Steeles) -- not the biggest fan of their (or anybody's) faux-meet, but their other dishes are delicious.

                            1571 Sandhurst Cir, Toronto, ON M1V1V2, CA

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: Yum2MyTum

                              They used to be good, but had problems with quality and pests. Now they're closed for good.

                            2. Some of the best Cantonese food is available at Maple Yip (Brimley/Sheppard). The service is hectic and you might have some difficulty with the menu (there is some English but not everything is translated) but the food is excellent. Divine Wok (Birchmount/Finch) is also pretty good, though the neighbourhood is a bit sketchy. Also, Hunter's (Birchmount/Huntingwood) has one hell of a good Greek salad and the pizza is pretty good too. I also frequent Ming's Noodles (Kennedy/McNichol) [try the French Toast] and Pho 88 (Warden/Bamburgh Circle) for a cheap, yummy meal.

                              1. Some good recommendations here, I do mostly takeout and there are some very solid options in Scarborough. My faves are:

                                Middle eastern- Shawarma Empire, Ibrahim BBQ and Pizza - both on Lawrence just west of Warden.

                                Fish and Chips- Malt 'N Salt on Lawson Dr and Highland Fish & Chips at Ellesmere and Conlins.

                                Indian- Cheetal Indian Restaurant at Military Trail and Old Kingston Rd.

                                Thai- Red House Thai (it's actually in Pickering at Kingston Rd and Whites Rd).

                                Pizza- Fratelli Village Pizzeria On Old Kingston Rd in Highland Creek (it's a real hidden gem!) Calabria Bakery (Thursday and Fridays only) on Midland Rd.

                                Homeburgers and onion rings- Shamrock Burgers on Old Kingston Rd at the Highland Creek overpass. Inexperienced cooks can overcook the burger, keep an eye on them! The old guy with the lazy eye is the best.

                                Roti- Roti Hut on Pitfield Rd.

                                Hakka- Lucky Chinese at Scarborough Golf Club and Lawrence. The Crispy Beef and the Kan Shu green beans at Lin Garden at Pharmacy and Sheppard are great though.

                                Avoid Johnny's, it's pre-fab crap with a low price. In this case you definitely get what you pay for.

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: Dr Butcher

                                  Middle Eastern - lots to choose from around the Lawrence, Vic Park - Warden area.

                                  Fish and Chips - I agree Malt 'N Salt hands down

                                  Indian - Indian Spice Kitchen on Markham Rd., just south of Painted Post on the West side is strictly vegetarian

                                  Vietnamese - Pho Dau Bo (Lawrence and Markham- north east side)

                                  Italian - Fratelli's definitely. Great atmosphere, great service, excellent food.

                                  Shamrock's - what Dr. Butcher says about the old guy is true, but added to that make sure you order the HOME BURGER or was it called the Shamrock? Anyway just make sure it isn't the pre-fab "bear claw" type of burger.

                                  Black Dog Pub- good atmosphere, good service, good variety of dishes (carnivores and vegetarians) and the quality is very good. Located on Island Rd. just east of the No Frills (south of the 401 off of Port Union Rd.)

                                  1. re: scarberian

                                    Definitely agree about Black Dog. Quality is much better than most pubs.

                                2. here are a couple of places we frequent... decent restaurants, easy on the wallet, and tasty... (not all are in Scarborough proper... I am assuming you are looking for good food to eat... in the nabe...)

                                  Zen Sushi - Eglinton & Midland - my favourite sushi place (also have set meals & non-sushi meals which are equally fabulous) - need a reservation on Fridays & Saturdays for sure... it's always busy.

                                  Krispy Roll - Thailand / Viet place - on the east side of Warden just half a block south of Eglinton. Cheap & cheerful..

                                  Arkadia - Greek food (I saw a recommendation for Mr. Greek's I thought) - Eglinton & Birchmount

                                  Bistro Camino - not in Scarborough but close - Main & Danforth - delicious & really chowhound worthy (CH'ers love it)

                                  Congee Queen - on the westside past the Shops on Don Mills

                                  Bamiyan Kabob - for Afghani- no licquor licence - kind of a take out feel but different type of cuisine... (located on Overlea)

                                  7 Replies
                                  1. re: Apple

                                    Better than Krispy Roll is 7 Star Thai Cuisine just about a block south of there at 781 Warden Ave. Very reasonably priced. You have to coach them to make your dishes "Thai spicy", but aside from that they deliver value for the money.

                                    7 Star Thai Cuisine
                                    781 Warden Ave, Toronto, ON M1L4C2, CA

                                    1. re: Googs

                                      Can I get more info on 7 Star? What kind of Thai dishes do they have? How authentic is it? Do they have northern dishes, like Khao Soy? Any good spicy salads? Thanks!

                                      7 Stars
                                      88 First St, Orangeville, ON L9W3J6, CA

                                      1. re: capiscum

                                        Not pandering to the neighbourhood would be death to any place anywhere. You'll get the experience you request at 7Star. In other words, if you ask them to make it as they would serve to themselves then, yes, you can get a pretty tasty experience there. If you're dining with your grandma and make no special requests you won't have to ask for extra water for the table. Here's their dinner menu.

                                        1. re: Googs

                                          Funny - I hit krispy roll almost every week without fail- but I have wondered about 7 Star... will have to check it out...

                                          7 Stars
                                          88 First St, Orangeville, ON L9W3J6, CA

                                      2. re: Googs

                                        Is 7 Star the spot in the old Embers location? Interesting! I will have to check it out. I have driven by there a ton of times but always assumed the worst. Glad to hear I am wrong.

                                        1. re: Otonabee

                                          7 Star is no more. The whole Embers complex is up for sale. It's too bad really.

                                          1. re: Googs

                                            Totally did not look at the date on this thread. Thanks for the update Googs! Too bad I missed it.

                                    2. Here are two really good Indian restaurants in Scarborough that I learned about through Chowhound. Have now been to both and highly recommend them.

                                      Anjappar Chettinad (around the corner from Zen Japanese, at Markham & Eglinton)


                                      Karaikudi is on Kennedy, east side, between Lawrence and Ellesmere.


                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: Full tummy

                                        Karaikudi is by far my favourite Indian restaurant in the GTA so far.
                                        I found some of the food to be really spicy, but I like it hot so it suited my tastes.

                                        1. re: Ginga

                                          Have you tried Anjappar Chettinad? I enjoyed it more, though I would eat at Karaikudi again, for sure.

                                          Anjappar Chettinad
                                          3090 Eglinton Ave E, Toronto, ON M1J2H1, CA

                                      2. In Scarb, it's all about the takeout - you can find amazingly amazing delicious cheeeap food, but always, always under fluorescent lights.

                                        In terms of Hakka, I vote for Lin Gardens over Federick's, but my favourite is Tangerine, at Markham Rd. and 14th, in Markham.

                                        I love the Pakistani takeout at Shahi Karahi (Markham and Lawrence). The chicken tikka rolls are amazing, as is the saag paneer.

                                        Lin Garden
                                        1806 Pharmacy Ave, Toronto, ON M1T1H6, CA

                                        Shahi Karahi
                                        3630 Lawrence Ave E, Toronto, ON M1G1P6, CA

                                        1. I second Indian Spice Kitchen (near Markham and Lawrence). I've heard they've added a meat section to their traditionally vegetarian buffet. Great deal for buffet. Helpful servers to guide you through the dishes.
                                          For more Indian (dinner, take out, desserts, samosas, etc) try the Embassy (aka Samosa King) at Middlefield and Finch. Their samosas are my favourite for both taste and price!
                                          I've also heard good things about Bamiyan (Afghani) in Thorncliffe Park.
                                          It's a little family run hole-in-the-wall, but my family really likes Tabaq, a Pakistani restaurant on Danforth Road just NE of Danforth Avenue.

                                          Tabaq Restaurant
                                          50 Danforth Rd, Toronto, ON M1L3W4, CA

                                          1. the crab curry at hopper hut is okay but a better place for some much better crab curry is a place around eglinton and brimley beside the huge dollar store.

                                            1. Hi Kweenshaker,

                                              Do try Mandalay Restaurant (Markham/Lawrence area):


                                              It may well be the only casual, yet elegant dining option in Scarborough. Friendly, unobtrusive service, a warm atmosphere and medium-priced selections of Southeast Asian fusion dishes should please your palate - bon appetit!

                                              2 Replies
                                              1. re: susan_e_webb

                                                As an FYI - Mandalay has a group deal on today on http://www.swarmjam.com/

                                                1. re: pakmode

                                                  Thanks, pakmode! I wasn't able to go for the group deal myself, but perhaps others were...

                                                  Cheers and bon appetit!

                                              2. I just reviewed a new Italian restaurant called Belfiero. Check out my review:


                                                Excellent freshly made Italian food from the bread (baked in house) to the pasta to the meat dishes. It's now our Italian go to place.