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Oct 20, 2009 07:42 AM

If I eat nothing else when in Toronto - I need to try/eat

Will be in Toronto soon and like to try food from the places I visit. So I ask, if I eat nothing else when in Toronto, I need to try or eat what? I will have a car so can travel a bit to get somewhere. Can you recommend what to eat and where best to get it.

Thanks in advance

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  1. Personally, I think the one thing that's hard to get outside of TO is a peameal bacon on a kaiser. The best place for that is the St. Lawrence Market. There are a few vendors in there that sell them and it's always a hot topic as to which is better. My belief is Carouselle Bakery but others will off a differing opinion.
    One key to this is that you also get to go to the SLM. It's a great place to visit. Lots of nice food finds.
    And a little tip for you. If you're into mustard, visit Kozlik's on the upper level of the south building.

    Toronto doesn't really have much in the way of distinctive food fare. Our strong suit is multiculturalism. You can eat from every corner of the globe here practically.


    1. I note that New York is your 'normal haunt', so suggest you concentrate on two types of cuisine here: Chinese (a whole category I know) and Portuguese.
      For Portuguese the choice is simple - Chiado - I've yet to find a better Portuguese in North America - not cheap - think the Portuguese equivalent of European fine dining.

      For Chinese, you'll probably need the North/Northeast suburbs except for Lai Wah Heen which is downtown. The lunchtime dim sum is a revelation.

      And Peameal Bacon on a bun (add the honey mustard as a condiment) from St Lawrence market - it's the best tourist thing to do.

      1. How sad that the peameal bacon on a bun from SLM is usually the only thing we can come up with as a Toronto must have. The last time I had one, I had to pitch it because I couldn't stand the overwhelming margarine flavour I was tasting. My vote for delicious and unique is Ghandi Roti.

        3 Replies
        1. re: malpeque

          Is that actually unique to TO??


          1. re: malpeque

            I'd say that street meat is more unique to Toronto than a peameal bacon on a bun or an inconsistent roti from Gandhi...

            1. re: malpeque

              i;m not sure that the poster asked for 'uniquely' toronto - i thought the request was for 'must try' places. when i travel i don't only look for food i can't get here, but also for interesting, good quality places that locals enjoy.

            2. I don't know that Toronto has one single dish that defines it. You should really try some of the locally grown product (produce and meat/fish/seafood) as some of it is quite excellent.

              Go to Canoe. Canadian sourced product, excellent food, service and ambience. Arguably one of Toronto's best. Also has an incredible view of the city.

              Also, if you can get in Eigensinn Farm in Singhampton displays Canadian Cuisine at it's finest. The chef produces most of what he cooks right on the farm. It's where I tell my foodie friends to book in advance when I know they are coming here (there or Canoe).

              Aside from that, I concur with the suggestion that Toronto has world class chinese food, though it can be hard to find. I agree the best is in the northern suberbs (Richmond Hill/Markham).

              4 Replies
              1. re: JPJ

                It may be hard to get into Eigensinn Farm, but Haisai, operated by the same chef, may have an opening. Some friends of mine went up a couple of weeks ago and said it was great like Eigensinn Farm, but you got twice as more at half the price. On weekends they do 12 course menus for $120 per person. You can bring your own wine, corkage is $30 per bottle. This may be one of the best meals of your life.

                1. re: dubchild

                  If you haven't been there yet, isn't saying "this may be one of the best meals of your life" stretching it a bit?

                  1. re: TorontoJo

                    "Stadtlander, his Japanese wife Nobuyo, and seven live-in apprentices will oversee both Haisai and Eigensinn Farm, which only seats 12 guests in the dining room of the 19th-century brick house and has been named by Restaurant Magazine as one of the world's top 10 places to eat." Reuters

                    Stadtlander is considered by some to be one of the top chefs in the world. I suspect his talent has not diminished since opening Haisai.

                    1. re: TorontoJo

                      I've been to the farm twice. I'm assuming based on my experiences and what my friends told me about the new restaurant.