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May 31, 2009 09:18 PM

Good Eats on Oakwood

We were driving midtown this weekend around Eglington. We don't go to this area much.

But we saw line up at a Portugese BBQ place and stopped by to pickup some cod and octopus. Long line up for some grilled meats which came with rice and mini potatoes.

Next block down there was a bakery - 'Jack's' (?) I think - where we picked up some custard tarts, almond croissants and gelato.

Got me wondering - are there any other hidden gems in this neighborhood to explore? Thanks.

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  1. I'm assuming that the Portuguese place was Coste Verde??

    If not, that would be one of them.


    1. Rap's and Spencer's both offer great jerk chicken. They're open late late late.

      1541 Eglinton Ave W, Toronto, ON M6E, CA

      1 Reply
      1. re: aser

        What time do they usually start serving their jerk chicken? Stopped by both tonight on my way home from work, probably around 6:30 and neither had started up yet. I'm new to the neighbourhood and completely un-savvy when it comes to jerk, so I know not of how it works.

        Settled for some fried chicken from Spencer's instead. Chicken was very good. Rice and beans and cole slaw were all right. I think the ones at Ackee Tree might be more to my liking.

        Ackee Tree
        170 Spadina Ave, Toronto, ON M5T2C2, CA

      2. it's been a few years since I've been but there used to be a place on the east side of oakwood (north of st clair, south of eglinton) called Oakwood Cafe - owned by Ethiopians or Eritreans that served some of the best injera, tibs and steak sandwiches in toronto, imho. I don't there there was a menu to speak of and it looks more like a bar/pub serving drinks only but lo and behold, you will see a taxi driver or two saunter in and order an injera platter or steak sandwich. I ordered both taking cue from the other patrons and wow, they were good. In fact, I think that was all they served. Very fresh salads served with the injera, freshly cooked tibs and the steak sandwich was always served on fresh crusty Italian rolls. The place looks hardly inviting, like it's barely in business but once inside, the servers are quite friendly. I have not tried Uhuru Sports Bar, also just a few steps north of Oakwood Cafe on the west side but given its popularity among Ethiopian/Eritreans, i would guess that it probably has pretty good food to offer.

        1. Funny, I just discovered Jack's last week, while looking for a quick bite for lunch while driving down Oakwood. (I walked in to Costa Verde, hoping to buy a Portuguese chicken sandwich but, surprisingly, they don't sell them.

          Then I saw Jack's bakery/pastry shop on the next block south and it looked gorgeous from the outside. I couldn't believe it, but the sign says it's open 24 hours a day! The inside is just as beautiful as the outside, filled with lovely-looking Portuguese breads (of sizes and shapes I'd never seen here before), huge showcases of pastries (not just egg-y Portuguese ones, although the "cream"-filled pastries appeared not to have real whipped cream), croissants, stuffed baked rolls, deli meats and a small hot-table.

          I bought a ham and cheese sandwich in a pada bun, which was simple but very tasty, a chorizo-stuffed roll (very good), a savoury cheese croissant (just okay), and a sweet-cheese-stuffed pastry that was delicious. They also had gorgeous looking doughnuts.

          I'll definitely return. And it's great to know it's open in the middle of the night! You never know when a chorizo or pastry craving will occur...

          3 Replies
          1. re: Tatai

            Jack's used to be a Nova Era bakery - I haven't been since the name/ownership change but you basically describe what it used to be like.

            1. re: Tatai

              we had the custard tarts, a great tasting almond croissant and some gelato.

              all the pastries looked delicious. We are definitely going back. They had some family size desserts in the opposite case - some custards and flans. have you tried those?

              the napoleon and eclairs also looked very tempting.

              1. re: caitlink

                No, I haven't tried the family-sized desserts, but I'd imagine the custards and flans would be good since custards are so much a part of Portuguese sweets. As I mentioned, however, the cream-filled desserts had the appearance of being made with fake whipped cream.

                How was the gelato? It looked tempting.

                I'll definitely go back to try more.

            2. A must try is Randy's Patties on Eglinton for by far the best Pattie and Coco bread in the city. I would stay away from the food though.

              As far as Jerk goes the best of the bunch is Spence when he is cooking outside. Overall though for as many Jamaican restaurants there are on the Eglinton strip its a shame there are so few good Jamaican restaurants in the area.