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Oct 7, 2009 05:02 PM

Lunch at DonMills and Lawrence

I'm meeting a client for lunch tomorrow at DonMills and Lawrence.
Any suggestions? I open for any kind of good food.

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  1. You're going to be right at the Shops of Don Mills. Linda's is there, though I haven't visited it since it moved from downtown. But it used to be really lovely Thai food. Reviews have been very mixed, however.

    1 Reply
    1. re: TorontoJo

      For a wannabe-higher-end mall, Shops of Don Mills really is slim pickins in the way of decent restaurants. Agree with TJ that Linda may be your best bet, even though I've found it inconsistent. I've been a handful of times and although the service has been excellent each time but one, the food has ranged from very good (mieng kum, beef penang, thai islamic noodles) to OK (golden curry beef, rib steak thai style, pad thai) to horrible (crispy duck - dry, overcooked).

      There are a couple of chains in the mall (Jack Astor's, which I would not rec, esp for a business lunch, and Joey's, which I have not tried but their menu makes me leery of trying). Avoid Prairie Ink - my worst experience ever.

      If you don't mind driving a bit, there are some nice places 15-20 mins away: Marvellous Edibles (on Laird), Amaya (on Bayview - though I don't know if they're open for lunch), Aoyama (on Vic Pk).

    2. Shops on Don Mills - I have not been to the Linda's there, but the one downtown was good. I have been to the Prairie Ink Restaurant inside McNally Robinson recently and it's really very good for lunch. They were not that good when they first opened, - but I think the absolutely horrible review in The Star this summer gave them a kick in the ass and made them fix a lot of things. From recent reviews - I'd think that Prairie Ink is getting better and Linda's is getting worse.
      The food at Prairie Ink is generally health and the menu is constantly changing - using recipes from current cookbooks.

      2 Replies
      1. re: kayehm

        I was at Linda last night, and the food was excellent quality.
        The Pumpkin Soup was sensational (I don't recall better anywhere outside Thailand) and the flavours in the Emerald Curry were perfectly balanced - layers of spices.

        The ribeye steak, Thai style was perfectly cooked, but didn't have the excitement of the more traditional Thai dishes - on the positive side, that means that people who don't like spicy food do have options.

        1. re: estufarian

          Thank you all for your recommendations. After having read your suggestions, I was all set to recommend that we meet at Linda's, however, my client 'highly recommended' Prairie Ink so we ended up there. Overall I would rate my lunch experience as 'ok' for food and 'poor' for service. I ordered the crab cakes and the spinach salad. Both were credible, but nothing special. I am meeting with this client again next week so I am planning to suggest Linda's.

        1. re: DUH CAR

          Yep.. the food is average, but the waitresses are the best looking i've ever seen at a restaurant... nice ambiance for business lunches/dinners..

          i recommend!

        2. Digging this one up rather than starting a new topic -

          I am taking a client for lunch tomorrow and they are at DonMills & Eglinton - I figured given I need to head north we would go somewhere at the Shops at DonMills - is Linda's still the best bet there? If there are any superior surrounding establishments I would be open and appreciative of suggestions.

          6 Replies
          1. re: Sadistick

            You might consider Fabbrica (north end) as well. Although I MUCH prefer the food at Linda's it depends on the client.
            Fabbrica is more corporate and traditional, hence safer.

            1. re: estufarian

              Luckily my client is fairly adventurous, and the idea of Thai is appealing.

              Any specific dishes you suggest there, estufarian?


              1. re: Sadistick

                I have been particularly impressed with their ‘fusion’ dishes (probably not what they would call it, but certainly different from what one can find in other Thai places).

                Their menu changed late summer, so I’ve lost my favourite (duck breast in red curry sauce), and their Thai ‘Fish & Chips’ has also gone (occasionally appears on their tasting menu (if it still exists) – not currently shown on their website).

                But the Thai Lobster Bisque is one of my favourites, and all of the Thai curries are solid. The Penang and Green are both standouts. Thai Islamic Curry is also good.

                AmuseGirl likes both the Larb and the Mieng Kum – although I find the bitterness in the latter to be a bit disconcerting.

                The fish curry paper hotpot (dinner menu only) is spectacular (visually) but I find its texture deteriorates over time. If one orders that, eat it quickly while the fish is still perfectly cooked – if you wait it tends to became a bit mushy (mentioned for people browsing this thread).

                1. re: estufarian

                  The Thai LB sounds interesting, I was also curious about the crispy beef penang curry.

                  Is the Thai Islamic Curry the same curry sauce as with the beef, just a noodle based dish?

                  1. re: Sadistick

                    I think it is - however I haven't had the beef penang!
                    I usually have the green curry.

                    1. re: Sadistick

                      The sauces in the Thai Islamic Noodle and Panang Curry are quite similar. I've ordered both at the same meal, and told myself I'd choose one or the other at future meals.

                      If the pumpkin soup is available, I recommend it.

                      I also enjoy Linda's monthly prix fixe, and their green mango salad.