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Jul 21, 2009 03:59 PM

Leslieville - again!

My food gf asked me to pick a spot in leslieville for dinner. I know she likes places such as C5, Splendido, Loire, Colborne lane etc....recommendations would be more than appreciated!

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  1. Nothing that high end in Leslieville (although Loire is a bistro, right?). Anyhow, if you want high end, the closest thing is The Globe on Danforth, which is not Leslieville.

    Otherwise, Citizen is good. Table 17, a bit more casual. L'il Baci, which is casual italian, Terroni-ish.

    1 Reply
    1. re: grandgourmand

      Yes, Table 17 seems like a potentially good fit with those preferences (as far as Leslieville goes). Certainly cheaper than most of them, more on point with Loire.

    2. Probably Tomi-Kro would fit the bill given her preferences.

      8 Replies
      1. re: childofthestorm

        Tomi-Kro, really? That's just for neophytes.

        1. re: captainspacefood

          Neophytes at what exactly? I've lived here a while and eaten everywhere. Certainly, in the funky-meets-upscale realm of a Colborne Lane, Tomi-Kro fits the bill, although the food is obviously not as inventive.

          1. re: childofthestorm

            We saw Jian Ghomeshi dining there the other night, and I think he's been in the area for a while...

            1. re: drjolt

              Did you happen to see what Jian ordered? I've heard that Jian likes his arugula ;) Did you notice if there are there any arugula dishes on the current menu?

              1. re: phoenikia

                We didn't. We were actually walking back from Gio Rana's and saw him through the window, did the embarrassing gaping thing for a second (partner is a ridiculous CBC fan), and then walked on. My husband even emailed him afterward to make sure it was really him. Yes, it was really him.

                1. re: drjolt

                  Cool. If Tomi Kro is good enough for Jian, it's good enough for me, even if the reviews of TK on this board are mixed;)

                  1. re: phoenikia

                    Don't believe everything you read on here. It's best to try a place out yourself if you are wondering about it. We've have quite a few good meals at TK, and I'm no neophyte. But I will say that we enjoyed it more 2 years ago than on our last visit which was last August. (wow the last year flew by.. time to try it again) Even on that last visit, it was packed solid. It couldn't have been neophyte night.

                    1. re: foodyDudey

                      Thanks for your feedback re:TK, foodyDudey- I'm almost always on the same page as you re: restos in TO, so hearing that you've enjoyed some meals there makes me even more likely to give it a try, soon!

      2. We went to Citizen recently. The service was quite good and the food was borderline perfect for what it was, but it also wasn't worth the money for what it was.

        The bread with two dips of the day (extra charge) was very ordinary bread, slightly garlicked and lightly toasted, with two TINY bowls of dip (one bean based; one oil based). Nothing wrong with it but, at Citizen's price point, this should have been included. As a starter, for a price, it should have been great bread and much more dip.

        The codfish cake starter, three tiny cakes, was crisp outside, creamy inside, and perfectly fine.

        Three pasta mains were impeccable. The rabbit ragout came with a squiggly dry pasta (rather than the gnocchi on the menu - substitution disclosed upfront) and there were two orders of the Bolognese (a penne or ziti type of pasta). Both came with that same garlic bread. Both portions were generous.

        The grilled chicken breast escaped overcooking, though barely, and the accompanying grilled half lemon added a pleasant zing. The accompanying mashed potatoes were good.

        Everything was perfectly seasoned - not over salted and not needing any extra.

        The air conditioning, despite their Restaurant Makeover, was woefully inadequate.

        All-in-all, very tasty comfort food, but it cost way too much for the simple comfort food it was.

        7 Replies
        1. re: embee

          I'll consider this a glowing review from one of Chowhound's toughest critics.

          I too find the price point too much for what it is. One time I was there and to my annoyance the dish advertised as "heirloom tomato caprese" was really "greenhouse tomato caprese". Not that you can't grow heirlooms in a greenhouse, but these were just generic greenhouse tomatoes. Had they mentioned that upfront, it wouldn't have been as bad. Also, it was in August, when tomatoes were plentiful. The rest of the meal was above average. Although I had the spaetzle side, which was a puny portion and on the dry side.

          Have you been to Pop bistro? It seems to have promise, but the other day we went at around 3pm, hoping for a late lunch and they were still on brunch (on a Saturday). the go straight from breakfast type food to dinner. The back patio is nice, shaded and intimate. It seems like a wasted opportunity.

          1. re: grandgourmand

            Pop has been around for several years now. When it first opened, we felt it had great promise. We liked the owners and found the food tasty, if not exactly exciting.

            After some initial chef problems, they settled in for a while. Then the cooking became really sloppy. The French onion soup was a weak broth with a soggy croissant floating on top. A tastily seasoned, but 'fifties housewife" style, lamb meatloaf, one of the cheapest menu items, was going for almost $20. Brunch food was banal and the hollandaise was fake. After one too many botched meals, we stopped going.

            Their prices are much lower now than they were, but we haven't eaten there in at least a couple of years.

            1. re: embee

              I agree with your assessment of Pop. The back patio is quite nice but when we went for brunch once last summer, we were the only people there. I can't remember exactly what I ordered but it was disappointing and the accompanying salad was soggy and tasteless. It's too bad - I really wanted it to be good. I'd be interested to hear some current reviews to see if they've improved.

          2. re: embee

            I agree. I like the food but not the price. I'd eat there more often if it wasn't for that one problem. It just isn't worth what they charge, but somehow it's packed each time I've eaten there.

            1. re: foodyDudey

              I feel that way about both Pop and Citizen. I haven't had a bad meal either place, but haven't found the food good enough at that price point to return on a regular basis. If I'm aiming for that range, I'd always end up at Table 17 over either of them. Or if I want food that is also "good" for a bit cheaper, I can go to Lil Baci or Barrio. They don't stand out for me enough to ensure a return visit.

            2. re: embee

              I'll chime in with another good service/nice plates/could take a few dollars off each item experience. For my hard-earned money and with all the great choices to be had out there, I doubt I will return. Next biggish night out will try Table 17.

              Maybe I should be glad to not have cable and have never seen a Restaurant Makeover episode... I'd hate to think about what these places looked like before cuz from a design point of view the 'afters' I've seen are far from being stunners. While I liked the room at Citizen I don't see what all the fuss is about. Not special at all.

              1. re: embee

                i haven't been to citizen for several months if not near a year but i often found that i tended to pick the items that were of best value and that others in my party would receive a dish that demonstrated very poor value.

                it's rather disappointing to hear that this hasn't improved at all as it's a little frustrating at times to feel as if i'm gambling with my meal. i think one such great example was that i had ordered an angelhair pasta with lobster and it came with sizable, well prepared and reasonably abundant chunks of lobster compared to my expectations for $18. across the table from me sat the most pathetic looking piece of steak (very near the recommended daily portion of meat, ie. the size of a pack of playing cards) garnished with a single strip of red pepper..... $24. a few months before that i ordered the meat special and received a porkchop the size of my head and a gigantic mound of buttery mashed potatoes....

                they did an excellent job with it all... but to be so unsure of where to find value makes it a difficult place to dine at.