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Apr 13, 2009 09:48 PM

Lunch help - Working on Sheppard between Brimley and McCowan

Hey all, I know requests like these are like weeds and because of this I have done my due diligence and searched the board for ideas and I've bookmarked quite a few but I still need some help. Got lots and lots of asian food ideas but does anyone know of a good burger joint in the area, greasy spoon, or just favourites of anyone here that I can get to and back within a lunch run. I love asian food of all kinds but a change everyonce in a while would be great.
Thanks a lot chowhouds!!

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  1. Roti Hut - 351 Pitfield Rd. Great Roti I usually go for the potato but I love the chicken as well.

    Babu - 4800 Sheppard Ave unit 201. So many dishes to try, they've got some inexpensive lunch deals!

    Jesse Jr. - 4415 Sheppard Ave E. I liked their fresh Lumpia and BBQ sauced pork on a stick (not sure what you call it). Adobo was decent as well. In the area you can try Remely's and Barrio Fiesta as well (they seem to be spoken of highly but I haven't been).

    The Real McCoy - 1033 Markham Rd. The Real McCoy springs to mind for burgers, they've been around for years. Solid home burgers but I though their fries and gravy were pretty 'meh'. I haven't tried the pizza.

    St Andrews Fish and Chips - 1589 Ellesmere Rd. has a loyal following, I haven't been in years however.

    A little bit of a stretch would be the following:

    Highland Fish & Chips at Conlins and Ellesmere, good fish and usually dependable fries.

    Shamrock Burger in the Highland Creek Village has a very solid home burger and onion rings (skip the fries).

    Cheetal Indian Restaurant at Military Trail and Old Kingston Rd have lunch specials of either chicken vindaloo, butter chicken, goat biryani served with rice or a naan for around $6.

    1 Reply
    1. re: Dr Butcher

      Thanks Doc, Already done, Roti hut, Jesse, Babu, and many others. If these are the closest decent burger places close to my work I might be out of luck. Don't know if I've got the time to get there, eat it then get back to workwithout rushing the whole process. Someone needs to open a burger joint near my work. ;-)
      Thanks again Doc!!

    2. There used to be a Vic Hong in the strip mall at the intersection. Is it still there? Great vietnamese, and amazing sate soup.

      2 Replies
        1. re: sweetie

          Green Bamboo on Sheppard near Midland is pretty good for Vietnamese.

      1. Joey Bravos at 4050 Sheppard (halfway between brimley and McCowan on south side) is a pretty good place. They are on the list for Summerlicious this year. They do good pastas (big portions) and authentic thuinc crust pizza.

        Babu catering is a very good sri lankan place at 4800 sheppard (north side in a non-descript business mall). Good curries, etc.

        2 Replies
        1. re: Finnegan

          Markham Station at south west corner of Markham/Sheppard (in Food Basics plaza) is a diner-like place

          1. re: berbere

            I'll check their burger out, thanks berbere.

        2. I used to work in that area but recently moved...there are so many good places!

          have you tried Francesca? its on McCowan across from the Shell gas station (close to Roti Hut) They have really great Veal Sandwiches and Sausage Sandwiches. if you go, go early (before 1pm) as they run out of stuff!!! they also have tons of pastries, bread, a deli counter, pasta/lasagne, rice balls, gelato and really good cappuchino!!

          If you like wontons, theres a wonton place right at Brimley and Sheppard. i can't remember the name right now but they're famous for their wontons...

          I second the Real McCoy but would skip Markham Station. Real McCoy is fairly close to you if you have a car...maybe 5 minutes max from where you are.

          For viet and chinese bbq pork i like going to chartwell's food court. The bbq pork is from dragon dynasty's takeout counter.

          There is a cheap india place (silver spoon) at Sheppard and just east of mccowan but i prefer Tandoori Pearl at McCowan/Nugget. At Tandoori Pearl, they have a great Thali (?) plate if u like indian food.

          Merino's pizza (beside roti hut) used to be the best but i heard its gone downhill since they switched owners.

          theres an Asian Legend really close by as well.

          if you go up to midland/sheppard, theres a viet/thai place called green bamboo that looks ok (this is the only place i havent been to yet but i've heard good things!)

          i'll try to think of more places...hope my list helped!

          11 Replies
          1. re: helen0505

            Hey Helen0505,
            Thanks for the list, I do go to Francesca at least once a week and I agree with your review. Have not tried the wontons but it is on the list for new places to try. Done tandoori pearl and again I agree with your review. Merino's pizza didn't do it for me so you're probably correct about the new owners. I've been to other asian legends and have enjoyed it so it too is on the list, I've been waiting for it to open and now that it is, here I come.

            The Real McCoy is exactly what I was hoping to hear about from my fellow chowhounds, it seems like a good burger is the only thing I couldn't find in the area.

            Had fish and chips today from St Andrews and once again it hit the spot.

            Thanks chowhounds for all the suggestions, especially for the burger choices.

            1. re: Tor.hound

              Francesca's has the best eggplant Parm.. EVER!!!

              1. re: Tor.hound

                hey Tor.hound, can you comment in more detail about St. Andrews? i've searched the board for previous reviews and they are not too detailed -- in other threads, people have raved about Olde Yorke and I wonder how it compares (not having been to either place myself) - since I drive by St Andrews everyday, i'm curious about its quality...batter, greasiness, quality of fries and slaw....thanks in advance!

                1. re: berbere

                  I'm not Tor.hound, but I've been to both places. :) Both pretty solid for a fish and chips fix - I prefer Olde Yorke, but St. Andrews is closer to home so I've been there more often. St. Andrews is fairly greasy - the batter is more the crisp outside/chewy inside type than the light and crispy tempura type, and the fries are thick and soft. They're both similar in style, but I think everything just tastes better at Olde Yorke - I think they just do a better job with the fryer, since it's also less greasy. I don't think I've ever had slaw at SA, but the slaw at OY is...fine. Pretty much exactly what you'd expect. SA also has deep-fried Mars bars on the menu, if you're into that sort of thing. If you're regularly in the neighborhood, I'd recommend it. It's a good neighborhood chippy, not destination food. :)

                  1. re: Wahooty

                    Thanks, Wahooty! sounds like St. Andrews deserves a visit at least !

                    1. re: berbere

                      Hey berbere,
                      I like St Andrews fish and chips. Everything Wahooty said is bang on. This last batch wasn't nearly as greasy as my last 2 visits which made it more enjoyable.
                      Fish and chips is one of those things I find very very very subjective. Even my self find myself in differing F&C style moods. I live in the St Lawrence market so busters is what I crave when close to home, but sometimes I want the thick crunchy batter of Harbord fish and chips then other times I want the thin crisp batter of Reliable, etc etc etc. Chippy's has never really done it for me BTW. Never been to Olde Yorke.
                      Hope my rantings don't confuse too much.
                      So in the end if your in the area try SA but if you have to travel far just to try it, there are comarable places in each part of the city.

                      1. re: Tor.hound

                        Thanks, Tor.hound, I appreciate the added input! I find that chowhounders often give great detail about the great stuff and the really awful stuff but not much on the middle-ground stuff -- or maybe that's just part of the mediocrity of any meal: to be worthy of no real comment ! ;-) anyways, I was curious about SA and will give it a try since there must be something good about it if it's been around for more than 20 years (according to their website)!

                        I agree with you on the subjectivity of fish and chips, dependant on one's moods - I find this to true of chicken wings, fried chicken, meatloaf, all the comfort foods which soothe us in different ways on different days...;-)

                2. re: Tor.hound

                  re: Tor.hound helen0505 Apr 16, 2009
                  Glad to hear that you agree with my review! Speaking of Francesca, have you tried the italian bakery at markham/ellesmere? i havent been but i heard its good. Its called Bona Via at painted post rd.

                  Also at painted post, theres a Bombay Palace. I heard they have a good lunch buffet but I've never been as I went for dinner once and wasn't too impressed. The food was good but the restuarant was empty the night i went and food was lukewarm as a result.

                  I also want to mention Federicks. its not too far from there and i love their chili chicken and pakora.

                  Are you into japanese food at all? My coworkers all loved getting the lunch bento box from Tenichi on sheppard east of McCowan when we worked in that area. I love japanese but i never order with them (because i had a bad meal there once many years ago) so i can't speak from my own experience...but i remember they really do all love it there and order from them quite often. That being said, they are all the "california roll & terriyaki chicken" eating type.

                  1. re: helen0505

                    Markham at Painted Post used to have a Cafe called Fabian's as well, they had some delicious cakes and deli items back in the day. It was always packed when I went in. The neighbourhood has changed so much in the past few years I don't know what exists there anymore.

                    Bombay Palace was fairly mediocre from what I remember. The buffet selection was limited and some tiles were falling down, exposing piping in the ceiling. I never went back. It'd be interesting to know if it has been renovated at all.

                    1. re: Dr Butcher

                      Fabian is still there! i've seen it but havent been yet. i'll have to check it out for sure.

                    2. re: helen0505

                      If you venture north to the Midland and Finch, there's a fantastic but tiny Japanese spot at the north west corner of the strip mall at the NW corner of the intersection called "Hana-Bi Sushi". We used to get 1 hour lunches on Fridays instead of the usual 30 minutes, so I could afford the extra drive.

                      I usually went with his 'chef's choice' lunch. This consisted of a basic salad with a tasty dressing, porridge, and an appetizer that varied from dumplings to tempura to sushi roll. Then the main plate arrives - an amazing array of sushi and sashimi (heavy on salmon, OK, but I love salmon, so no arguments here). During the meal, his little bonus arrives - a few pieces of a more complex roll, like dynamite or spider. Finally, you end with some fresh fruit, and a really refreshing tea of ginger and some other things that I found settled my stomach amazingly after such a huge meal. The price tag for all this? $9.95 plus tax and tip (been a year since I've visited, may have gone up). I'd usually drop $15 on the table and walk away thinking I'd gotten a complete bargain.

                3. Hey Tor.hound. Not in the area you're asking about, but if you got a car, it's worth the trip across Sheppard to Johnny's Hamburgers at 2595 Victoria Park Ave (right at the intersection). Good burgers and fries. There are no tables to sit down inside so you have to take out, which might help with your lunch time.

                  6 Replies
                  1. re: pocky

                    I grew up around there and Johnny's used to be a twice a week visit, but I have to admit that I feel they have gone downhill since their haydays in the 90's. I hadn't been in years since I moved Downtown but did give them a visit about 3-4 months ago but it just wasn't the same as I remember.
                    When I was in Highschool a good buddy and his younger brother worked there. (has no bearing on anything but just wanted to throw that in there)

                    1. re: Tor.hound

                      Bona Via used to be bang on however they hit the wall a few years ago and do not compare with Francesca,

                      Also in the same area is a Sir Lankan bakery (not sure of the name) but this place is fantastic. It's at the back of a plaza just north of Ellesmere on the east side.

                      and who could forget Frederick’s. West Indian Chinese

                      1. re: Tor.hound

                        Johnny's does a good the Real McCoy, it's one of those local dives that that you would never go to unless someone recommended it.

                        1. re: Finnegan

                          There's nothing like a good burger... and Johnny's is NOTHING like a good burger... I respect Finnegan's opinions but I struggle to understand why people continue to recommend this horrible place. It's a pre-fab cardboard cutout of a burger patty. The only rational I can comprehend is nostalgia???? Johnny’s must bring back good memories of “The Day’s”

                          1. re: Connoisseur

                            Agree 100%. Johnny's is terrible. People must remember when they were younger and hanging out with friends.

                            1. re: ghetto_scarlem

                              Absolutley Ghetto, Same thing with Weber's burgers terrible!!! But all the cool kids (LOL) stop at Weber's on the way to the cottage and rave about how great it is. mmmmm not so much