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Aug 2, 2009 05:53 PM

English Guests

I have been a silent chow reader for quite some time now reading and absorbing everything you all have to say ... in fact several times I've followed your advice and it is always spot on. Now I have a problem and I need your help.

In a couple of weeks time my mother and father in law are coming to visit for 2 weeks. During these two weeks they will both have birthdays so we wanted to take them somewhere nice for food.

Here is the problem, my mother in law has very simple tastes ... she only likes very plain and simple food! Do any of you have any ideas of somewhere nice that serves english food "unmessed" with (or at least offers this as an option on the menu). Don't mind about the price at the moment just trying to get some ideas ... anywhere suggested would be very welcome as I'm struggling.


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    1. What area? Some fish and chips shops are respectable, and offer plain food, well cooked.
      Highland is one, in the east end, but there are others.

      1 Reply
      1. re: jayt90

        What about The Keg? Will she eat a steak or prime rib

        Barberians might work as well, they have quite a few non steak items on the menu that are pretty plain.

      2. Take them to the Brazen Head in Liberty Village (King and Dufferin) visiting British friends loved it...Fish&Chips..or The Irish Embassy...great Pub food...Miranda

        2 Replies
        1. re: miranda

          My UK relatives love Le Paradis.

          1. re: miranda

            skip the Brazen Head, poor service and poorly executed food

          2. Thanks for all your suggestions so far ... the Irish Embassy and any form of fish and chips sounds good but if anyone has any ideas for somewhere more memorable that would be great as this is the first time they will have been outside of Europe.

            Sorry I forgot to mention we live down by the St. Lawrence Market so somewhere downtown ish or we are willing to travel anywhere on or near a TTC stop of some sort (we don't have a car).

            3 Replies
            1. re: MrsCooke

              Starfish they do great cooked fish and steak, not overly fance yet special and memorible.. with a bit of a canadian twist..

              1. re: OnDaGo

                Take them to Bibiche, they'll get on well with Harry !!!

                1. re: OnDaGo

                  i would go with starfish too. they do classic well but they'll also have more interesting items on the menu for yourself.

                  it's also very close to your neighbourhood and has a very neighbourhood feel while still being a good blend of upscale and casual.

              2. If we are talking 'meat and two veg' then Prague Restaurant would be good. Might take a little too long to get to via the TTC.


                While they are here you should take in breakfast. Make sure they sell pea-meal bacon and recommend that.

                I would take them for a walk round Chinatown. Remember there are a lot of Indian and Chinese restaurants in the UK. You can always settle for a Jumbo empanada which is pretty close to a Cornish pasty.

                7 Replies
                1. re: Paulustrious

                  I love Prague Deli, but its Czech food would be "foreign" food to most plain eaters from England.

                  1. re: Paulustrious

                    Thanks, yes we are talking meat and two veg ... we may well travel to Prague even if it is tricky on the TTC!!! Any one else got meat and two veg options?

                    1. re: MrsCooke

                      Be aware that Prague is only open until 6 pm on Saturday, and 7 pm during the week- but it's a great place to eat during the day.

                      It's more of a deli than a restaurant.

                      The Queen St streetcar, westbout stops close to the restaurant, so it shouldn't be too tricky on the TTC- subway to Queen, and streetcar to Prague Deli;)

                      1. re: phoenikia

                        Hi Phoenika, I think you are confusing Prague Deli with Prague Restaurant. Check the link in my previous post.

                        Pardon the rude question MrsCooke, are your parents fully mobile? By that I mean, can they stroll through an area like Queen West, Danforth, Little India / Portugal / Korea or Chinatown? In which case a little menu shopping would not go astray.
                        Would they like to eat at the top of the CN tower? Someone mentioned Houses on Parliament. If they are pub-food people then that's a good suggestion.
                        There are a couple of pleasant reaturants on the East end of the Danforth, Melanie's Bistro and Bistro Camino, both of which have value-for-money reasonable food - and will have at least one thing on the menu she recognises.
                        I also suspect that a greek meal - possibly one with lamb chops - would make the grade.
                        And how would your mum feel about traditional English food like pizza, tandoori chicken massala, coq au vin, beef stroganoff and spaghetti bolognese? And to disbelievers out there - these are traditional !

                        1. re: Paulustrious

                          Oh- I completely was confusing the two. Sorry Paulustrious! My apologies!

                          Didn't know about Prague Restaurant. It does look like it might be a little more challenging to reach via the TTC. Will have to give this place a try one of these days- always looking for good options for Mittleleuropean food. Thanks for the correction.

                          1. re: Paulustrious

                            Thanks Paulustrious ... yes, they are mobile so maybe menu shopping is the best idea.

                            Herein lies the problem ... we were planning on the top of the CN tower but when I reviewed the menu there was too much stuff on there that would have been considered not plain enough ... chicken (fine) shitake mushrooms (definite no no)!!

                            Yes I do agree that pizza, tandoori chicken massala, coq au vin, beef stroganoff and spaghetti bolognese are all considered traditional fair but I believe my mother in law would actually term them as anything but ... although pizza could just about squeeze through so long as it had nothing on it but tomatoes, cheese, ham and pineapple ... and I mean nothing no herbs nothing!

                            1. re: MrsCooke

                              We have English family too, and I completely agree with your assessment of what plain food is. Try the old mill, they have a traditional sunday dinner, or if you would like to do a brunch, any of the big hotels serve a buffet weekend brunch that is pretty traditional. The four seasons or the King Edward would be good choices.
                              I sympathize, I find choosing a place to eat for this type of palate is a real challenge (i.e. pain!)