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Jun 30, 2009 08:40 AM

Toronto Night Market ---> Night It Up! night market??

It seems that the organizers of the big night market held at Metro Square (Steeles & Warden) every summer has a new night market called Night It Up!

According to their website this event is held at Metro Square, July 10th (7 pm - 1 am) and July 11th (1 pm - 1 am).

Any CHers interested in going?

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  1. Yeah maybe!! I heard its really expensive though?

    1. Is there going to be more stuff there than during the normal daytime market? Because when I went it was mostly takeout lunch type food (not bad, but nothing too exciting) and a few stalls of radically overpriced fruit and veg (I guess the farmers think those city folk'll pay anything).

      The best food in the vicinity is the Caribbean place in a booth close to Wellington (it's called "Lemonade" or something like that) which is open every day in the summer, nothing to do with the market. They have good doubles, jerk chicken wraps, and lemonade/lime-aid drinks.

      2 Replies
      1. re: Gary

        Hi Gary.. I think you are thinking of a different place, as this is Metro Square at Steeles and Warden, and is nowhere near wellington. It's a take on the Taiwanese night markets (oh how I loved thee) and has a bunch of the surrounding restaurants and businesses setup stalls in the parking lot.

        I've been to previous ones and there has never really been much outside of the realm of what you can get from the individual restaurants on a daily basis though, and you have to deal with huge crowds and higher prices, so I will probably end up passing. If you don't mind crowds (which I really really do) and if you've never been to a real asian night market, it can be a fun experience and I would recommend it to others.

        1. re: elrik

          Ha! Yes my apologies, I thought the park beside Metro Hall in downtown TO was called Metro Square. I need to read more carefully before replying, sorry about that.

      2. Just so everyone is aware, this Metro Square is at Warden and Steeles in Markham. I was excited at first, because I thought it was going to be downtown by Metro Hall.

        1. I went last year. Stinky Tofu always had lines, even in the downpour! There are several places that had Takoyaki, none of them very good IMO. The food is more interesting than superb, though there was a Malay stand with Murtabak which I thought both tasty and of value.

          Sampling of what I had:

          I may go back again this year - it was fun to hit all the stalls. It's not quite the same, but other than returning to Asia, it's the closest we get to true night markets!

          8 Replies
          1. re: jlunar

            Stinky tofu does seem to always have the longest line-ups. But it really is an item I normally wouldn't find or eat in Toronto...

            They seem to have more variety of food this year, some really interesting ones like "Coffin Board Cake", "Car wheel pastry" and "Stir Fry Ice Cream" which I found on their latest blog update:

            And it's true that they're the closest thing Toronto has to Asia's night markets. For those of us not lucky enough to go back to Asia that frequently, this is a summer event that should not be missed. I should be going just to reminisce Asia =)

            1. re: jlunar

              what does stinky tofu smell like? and why is it stinky?

              1. re: duckdown

                It's just a smell, the flavour is actually quite mild. It stinks because it's fermented. You actually get more flavour out of the sauces you put on top.

                I grew up with it so it doesn't smell strange to me at all.

                1. re: aser

                  I didn't grow up with it, but I enjoy it. It doesn't smell as bad as people make it out to smell. Also, I was a bit disappointed the first time I tasted it. I was expecting it to taste strange, but it doesn't.

                  1. re: tjr

                    Hi tjr, it can actually be very stinky. The one in the night market is a relatively mild one. There is a stall (one of the best one) get sued in HK because it is too stinky and was ordered to tone down the 'smell'! haha.

                    1. re: skylineR33

                      It actually had a good proper stink tonight, no doubt helped by 3 separate booths selling them. I didn't bother since the stinky tofu lines were consistently the longest, up to an hour.

                      I had a murtabak ($8).....not very exciting, same stall as the pics on the nightiup site. The spicy squid ($4) on the other hand was quite tasty. Didn't try anything else as the murtabak took up too much stomach real estate.

                      I parked on a side street in the residential area south of the plaza, did not even want to attempt the madness that is the parking lot. All night I heard the mc's on stage reading off license plates of illegally parked cars. They were ticketing apparently. Another tip, bring small bills and change, quite a few vendors were low on change.

                      For the person asking for updates, people are tweeting (dumbest word ever)....



                      1. re: skylineR33

                        I'll have to try it at some point; I'm planning a week in HK next time I visit Japan!

                  2. re: duckdown

                    It smells like garbage left out to rot for a few days.......a familiar smell for Toronto residents nowadays.....but when you eat it,it just tates like normal fried tofu....atleast thats my interpretation.....

                2. If you go, you should go early.. It's a complete zoo there when it gets busy. People are literally shoulder to shoulder and it's hard to even move an inch.

                  I waited 45 minutes for "bing tong wu lo" and ended up getting nothing. the vendor kept telling me 5 minutes, 10 minutes on top of another 5, 10 minutes and so he continued and alas they couldn't produce anything....

                  But I absolutely love bing tong wu lo and will try to brave the crowds again this year to see if they have it - or if more vendors have it this time..

                  Food is okay priced - cheaper than rib fest at least. The normal and most reliable foods will probably be lamb skewers and stinky tofu.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: hippotatomus

                    I'll be going to try the stinky tofu and takoyaki. Does anyone know what are the prices like?

                    1. re: jtamin

                      Can't remember.. either $3/4 bucks for the sitnky tofu? Think it was 4 last year....
                      I would say around $3-4 bucks an item

                    2. re: hippotatomus

                      i actually love the crowds and line-ups, even if it the wait is a little long. if you've been night markets in asia, it's the same, if not worst. haha, it's not so bad if you go with friends