Places to try near Eglinton/Don Mills
We drive to the Eglinton/Don Mills area twice a week and would be interested in any suggestions for casual restaurants in the area, lunch or dinner. We're open to any kind of food--but would prefer not to have to park near Yonge/Eglinton.
There's Congee Star at 900 Don Mills, just a piece north of Eglinton, on the west side. Also, within the next week the new plaza at Don Mills & Lawrence is supposed to open with some restaurants in place. I understand that Linda, by Salad King, will have a location there; their original location downtown is said to be one of the best Thai restos in the city, so that should be worth a try.
Sorento's is in the same plaza as Congee Star. It's pizza and pasta but the food is good and honest.
My absolute favorite in Bamiyan Kabob. It is at Thorncliffe and Overlea, so a 2 minute drive from Don Mills and Eglinton and well worth it. It's incredible Afgani food - fresh and wholesome. Salad, brown rice, an Afgani naan (different from Indian naan) and meat if you wish: Lamb, Filet Mignon, Tandoori Chicken, etc... the prices run you from $6 for a wrap sandwich to $12.00 for the full meal with tons of food. You will not be disappointed!!! Only thing is, it's not formal... tile floor, you order at the back and sit until they call your number but it just doesn't matter - the food is sooooo good! Oh, and it's clean, too.
62 Overlea Boulevard, (416) 429-7514.
there's a couple posts somewhere that you should search for that will have some interesting suggestions. for now i can recall:
palm something? it's in the flemingdon plaza and offers a carribean buffet for lunch for about $7. go during prime lunch hour because the freshness will be much better. it's cheap and reasonably tasty but most of all i think fun. ok variety.
bamiyan kebab - i can't recall where exactly this is right now but it is in the area. look up reviews, i think there was a very favourable thread all about it a couple years back.
iqbals - in the same area as bamiyan kebab and offers indian thali type meals beside the grocery store. i thought it was just ok but is recommended by others who enjoy indian food more than i.
i would consider travelling a little distance north to lawrence east for awesome middle eastern options and my favourite baklava and fried chicken (fritou)... yums!
i'm not a huge fan of armenian kitchen as they do things a little different and so i miss some ingredients at times. i wouldn't go for the shawarma there but have enjoyed the falafel and kibbeh.
shawarma empire - there are lots of people who love it and i know someone who nearly insists on going every lunch. i thought it was really nice but i wasn't a fan of their fluffy pita. really powerful spicing to the meat. i do want to try their falafel though as they fry it fresh.
i would have suggested farhat in the past but they've fallen off my radar hugely since they seemed to have stopped caring one ounce about the food.
i can't recommend fattoush... i just don't really eat it! though i'm sure if you asked someone would likely have suggestions for the lawrence east area.
just wanted to add onto my suggestion of fritou because it's really such an odd gem. the chicken is lightly breaded, crisp and spicy but not terribly so... more in a good layered warmth kind of way. the chicken itself are always legs, large, and very moist.
but the location that sells it is called sinai cafe and they serve up a limited menu of somali food. they do some great goat. they have the meal options listed on a piece of postercard by the counter and a laminated menu on the tables. the goat really intrigued me and was perfectly cooked... moist, tender and good meaty flavour. large amount of meat on what appeared to be pieces of leg. it comes with a boring iceberg salad but you also get a gigantic plate of rice (the whole meal is $11 and easily feeds 2) that is tinted with some cheap saffron, a few spices and medley of canned vegetables. this is a very bizarre instance of the whole being better than the sum. it's not gourmet, it's not even amazing but it's actually quite tasty and fitting... i wouldn't hestitate to get it again and we ate it all.... if you saw how large this plate of rice was you'd be amazed. the guy working the counter was surprised we didn't need a container to take the rest away. i noticed a bit late that one of the options was with injera that they seem to make in house and fresh... much thicker than the ones i've had at ethiopian places but looks quite similar. i'll be tempted to get that next time.
lastly, a jug of sugary juice and bowls of soup that i can only describe as what was in the bottom of the medley of veggies can were given complimentary. odd, yet fitting but both ok.
oh... and if you are a fun of hot sauces... this place has a wicked one. it looks like they do it up in house... it's a green, fruity, thick concotion that is quite potent. we mixed it into the rice so we didn't burn our tongues out but it really added some great heat along with a nice fruity undertone. we took a container of what we had left in the bowl to go! one of the best hot sauces i've had in a while.
There's a place in Flemingdon Plaza (Don Mills just north of Overlea) called Caribbean Palms...really nice jerk chicken, rotis etc. I believe they have a buffet at lunch...never tried it but their other stuff is good and the owner is super nice guy.
I also like Bamiyan and Iqbal that other's have mentioned...
Another place in the same Flemingon Plaza is Shaheen Tikka and Kabab House. We stopped there the other night and really enjoyed our meal. We tried seek kababs, (ground beef), chicken tikka, the spinach and cottage cheese paneer, chicken korma, rice pulau, and naan. The food was dedently presented, and medium spiced upon request. The chicken korma (with bones) had a very tasty sauce but next time I would order boneless. Generally I prefer chicken on the bone but there was so little meat in the dish it was a bit disappointing. Oh and of course kulfi for dessert and mango shakes. I am not very familiar with this cuisine so have little to compare it tobut we certainly enjoyed it and would go again. The standout for me was the naan. Hot , light and delicately crispy on the outside. I particularly enjoyed the sesame seed variety. I assume they serve lunch, there are picnic table outside, and they advertise weekend breakfast which I plan to try sometime. The plaza is under construction, and this restaurant is next to Caribbean Palms tucked back in from the parking lot.
747 Don Mills Rd, Toronto, ON M3C1T2, CA