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Late night Chinese options in Markham

v
villainx May 8, 2010 09:07 AM

Hey all, I'm going to be around Toronto, specifically Markham end of May weekend, was wondering what's open late for Chinese.

I'll likely be trying many of the non-Chinese options, but since most of the vacationers will be Chinese, I'd like to find out what's available and good. Below is a list of the main targets, whether any should be must tries, avoids, or are open late would be helpful. Along with alternatives, if any. We'll be a mix of adventurous eaters, and non adventurous eaters (aka, fast food nation youngsters).

Yau Kee - wonton noodle
Yang's - dim sum
Din Tai Fung / Northern Dumpling Kitchen - soup dumplings
Peaktop / John BBQ - roast meat
Graceful Vegetarian - vegetarian
Maple Yip / Magic Wok / Tanchikee / OMei - restaurant and seafood
ala Kitchen - Shanghai

thanks!

-----
Tanchikee Restaurant
360 Hwy 7 E, Richmond Hill, ON L4B, CA

Northern Dumpling Kitchen
550 7 Hwy E, Richmond Hill, ON L4B3Z4, CA

  1. skylineR33 May 15, 2010 06:58 PM

    There is a new 5pm-5am restaurant just opened up in First Markham Place. It is call "Seafood King Counter". It has quite a good selection of seafood from their House Special wok-fried vancouver crab, fresh geoduck, razor clam, lobster, BC spotted prawn, to XO sauce kangaroo, house special "Ching Yuen" chicken, soy sauce steamed sea grouper on sugar cane ... with many different ways of preparation. Food is quite good with good wok hay. Space is very tight in there with the style of HK Dai Pai tong (kind of, in a enclosed space). You may want to check it out at late night during your stay in Toronto.

    1. Chester Eleganté May 10, 2010 01:11 PM

      what the...

      This is Markham/Richmond Hill we're talking about here. Of course there are places open late. Just at Times Square, Northern Dumpling Kitchen (best choice) opens till midnight, while Judy Cuisine (standard canto dishes + good congee/rice noodle rolls), Fantasy Eatery, and Richmond Court are all open till 2am.

      Big Mouth Kee in the next plaza is open way late (maybe 4am?); head there if you want some of that HK feel.

      At Chalmers & 7, Saigon Star (viet curry crab) and Dickens (baked HK rice dishes) close at 11pm, while New Choice (not recommended) looks to be open all night.

      At First Markham Place, head to V2 Noodle (11pm) for your beef brisket lo mein. Even Congee Wong's always open late.

      Anyway, I'm sure there are more -- these were just off the top of my head.

      -----
      Fantasy Eatery
      505 7 Hwy E, Richmond Hill, ON L3T7P6, CA

      Big Mouth Kee
      280 West Beaver Creek, Thornhill, ON L4B3Z1, CA

      Judy Cuisine
      550 7 Hwy E, Richmond Hill, ON L4B3Z4, CA

      New Choice Restaurant
      324 7 Hwy, Thornhill, ON L4B1S1, CA

      Richmond Court Restaurant
      328 7 Hwy, Thornhill, ON L4B1A1, CA

      12 Replies
      1. re: Chester Eleganté
        sweetie May 10, 2010 01:15 PM

        I second Fantasy, that is always my first choice for after midnight dining. I just don't have the opportunity to make that choice very often these days lol.........

        1. re: Chester Eleganté
          skylineR33 May 10, 2010 01:31 PM

          If V2 or any other places you suggested close at 11pm, not sure why you suggest it as it is probably not a option for OP as he/she wants something after 10 or later. Plus, V2's noodle is pretty bad, the akaline taste is way too strong. Suggest to stay away from it, same with Fantasy Eatery, had some bad meal there and the overal quality of both Fantasy Eatery has been going downhill pretty bad.

          1. re: skylineR33
            Chester Eleganté May 10, 2010 01:57 PM

            Well, if they're heading out at 10pm, I'm pretty sure they can finish a bowl of noodles by 11. Anyway, the OP mentioned that they were going looking for food "early, often, and late", so the options are there if they want to take them.

            Fantasy - I haven't been in awhile, so that may be. V2 - the alkalinity is variable. I've had it often when it was fine. Doesn't it partially depend on how well they rinse it? Anyway, the quality of the noodle itself is better than at other places.

            1. re: Chester Eleganté
              skylineR33 May 10, 2010 03:07 PM

              No, V2 miss or mess up a very important step when they make the noodle - the "akaline elimination" step.

              1. re: skylineR33
                Chester Eleganté May 15, 2010 03:05 PM

                I hear ya. Have you been there recently at all, or are you talking about from awhile ago?

                1. re: Chester Eleganté
                  skylineR33 May 15, 2010 03:09 PM

                  I was there earlier this year, do you mean they have change hand/chef ?

                  1. re: skylineR33
                    Chester Eleganté May 15, 2010 04:08 PM

                    Nope, I just find that the alkalinity has decreased from the past, so was just seeing if you were still referring to experiences from earlier.

                    1. re: Chester Eleganté
                      skylineR33 May 15, 2010 06:47 PM

                      ... have you been to Kenzo in this half year (either the North York or the downtown location) ? And if yes, how do you find their alkalinity level ?

                      1. re: skylineR33
                        Chester Eleganté Jun 23, 2010 09:53 AM

                        Ya I tried v2 again - the alkalinity was pretty strong this time. I may just stick to the plain brisket.

          2. re: Chester Eleganté
            v
            villainx May 10, 2010 02:12 PM

            Just want to say thanks again for continued attention. The group is coming from NYC area and Chicago area, so there is with Chinese and Canto eating. Though I have high expectation for Cantonese in Toronto area, as I'm thinking it's still a draw for a lot of HK cooks/chefs. And we'll be sampling the various other Chinese regional styles too.

            I hesitate to repeat that I'll only be in the area for about 3 to 4 nights, but again, some Chinese folks don't consider it a good day without noodles or rice, so I know I'll be hitting a lot of the places ya'll been nice enough to mention. Especially as good eats beat channel surfing in the hotel. Though now I'm starting to worry if we can limit it to one place per late night.

            If the 11pm or midnight closing places were the only options, I'd consider those places. But as skylineR33 mentioned, I'd worry about the staff's motivation to turn out good dishes if we were like the stranglers to their cleaning and leaving home. And I always feel a bit rude for keeping them too. But sounds like those won't be the only options, as there are things open til 2am or later.

            Right now, the target list includes:

            Bowl Kee
            Big Mouth Kee
            The Royal Chinese Restaurant
            Perfect Chinese Restaurant
            Chinese Beef and Lamb House
            Best Chinese Restaurant
            Judy Cuisine

            Are there definite goes (or don't go) out of that list? Or alternatives? It doesn't have to be strictly Cantonese style, though it seems those are the ones that like to burn the late night candles.

            -----
            The Royal Chinese Restaurant
            4128 Sheppard Ave E, Toronto, ON M1S1T3, CA

            The Bowl Kee Restaurant
            8360 Kennedy, Unionville, ON L3R0W4, CA

            Big Mouth Kee
            280 West Beaver Creek, Thornhill, ON L4B3Z1, CA

            Judy Cuisine
            550 7 Hwy E, Richmond Hill, ON L4B3Z4, CA

            1. re: villainx
              skylineR33 May 10, 2010 03:24 PM

              There is no "definite goes" on your list, some of them provides mediocre cantonese food, some of them provides average to good one. One exception is Chinese Beef and Lamb House which provides Nothern chinese cuisine (non-cantonese). But make sure your party is ok to eat lamb if you decide to go there because there is one time that I bought my friend there who is not into lamb, and he ordered a beef noodle. His beef noodles is all filled with the taste/smell of lamb meat.

              There is a special menu at Big Mouth Kee for more economical dishes after 10:30pm or so, again, don't see any thing special there. It's food is ok and fills up your stomach if you are in for a late dinner or want to have some stir-fly dishes/noodle/etc dishes to eat at late night.

              On the list, Royal Chinese Restaurant is your best bet for some good wok-hay stir-fly dishes (either dinner or late night), but I won't take a trip to go there. Judy Cuisine is also good but I would rather go at regular hours.

              There is a thread about "Best Eat" in Richmond Hill/Markham recently (not for late night though), maybe you want to reference it.

              -----
              The Royal Chinese Restaurant
              4128 Sheppard Ave E, Toronto, ON M1S1T3, CA

              Big Mouth Kee
              280 West Beaver Creek, Thornhill, ON L4B3Z1, CA

              Judy Cuisine
              550 7 Hwy E, Richmond Hill, ON L4B3Z4, CA

              1. re: skylineR33
                a
                Aleta May 10, 2010 06:12 PM

                Re: Best Chinese Restaurant, Finch and Kennedy

                Royaljelly, I'm curious which fish dish you had that wasn't fresh. I assume that you know that this is NOT Cantonese food. The sauces of this Chinese region tend to be strong and spicy. Lots of garlic and chili. I've been there with family at least 3 times and 2 more times with out of town guests (including the owners of Chicago's original "Big Happiness" - hope I got the name right in English). I usually get the huge fish head in either red chili or green onion/ginger. It's not a Cantonese preparation and frankly, my Cantonese-cuisine-only friends can't handle it. It reminds me a little of the spicy, country-style food that one would only get in Chongqing and China's other non-coastal cosmopolitan cities. Maybe it's not a good recommendation for Villainx as far as its range of dishes. I offered it mostly because it's open late and it's different.

                Re: Xiao Long Bao at Ding Tai Fung and Northern Dumpling Kitchen

                This weekend, I tried them both at Ding Tai Fung and Northern Dumpling. On Saturday, we went to Ding Tai Fung at 6pm. Big mistake. We could see a line out the door before we even parked. After some wait, we finally got to eat. The xiao long bao did not disappoint. The wrappers were thin and the meat was juicy. My husband complained (as usual) about the grease in the juice. I like the expensive ones with the crab meat. In real "crab roe xiao long bao", the filing is super-charged with a bit of the rich roe from the Shanghai hairy river crab. If you bite down too fast, you might squirt orange oil from the corner of your mouth! No such luck here in Toronto. You can taste the crab but you are not transported to Shanghai. I also like the drunken chicken but admit that it is VERY expensive for the small plate that you get.

                On Sunday, we went to Northern around 5pm (for Mother's Day!). Only 2 customers were there. They spoke Shanghai dialect, which immediately gave me hope that I would eat well. The family agreed that the meat filling in Northern's xiao long bao was less greasy and VERY, VERY flavourful. The wrapper was thicker than Ding Tai Fung's and therefore gave me a little less pleasure. We tried some other dishes and found them also very flavourful. The prices were significantly lower than Ding Tai Fung. We thought that this was a good find (since the $ amount on our usual bill at Ding Tai Fung takes our meal out of the "snack" category). Unfortunately, we all suffered from major MSG-overload on the way home. DH was pretty sure that he would soon have one of his famous MSG migraines and insomnia attacks (first his head is pounding, then he can't sleep all night -- a real bummer). He drank a ton of water and immediately put some accupuncture needles in for good measure. I guess this is not a place for the MSG-challenged. We'll have to continue saving our loonies to enjoy our regular meal at Ding Tai Fung.

          3. s
            spot9 May 9, 2010 07:59 PM

            Bowl Kee. Open til about 4:00am. Great food!

            -----
            The Bowl Kee Restaurant
            8360 Kennedy, Unionville, ON L3R0W4, CA

            1. v
              villainx May 8, 2010 03:31 PM

              Thanks everyone for replying. The restaurants I listed were stuff that I would be interested in checking out regardless of late night or not.

              I guess Chinese was going to be early, often and late. The late night part was more if we had an early dinner or otherwise had evening activities, and wanted some late snacking, a bowl of wonton, or some lo mien, or roasted meats, so something for after 10pm (and likely beyond). You know, like when we get bored or hungry at the hotel and wanted to go for a snack run. Most likely the kids would be snoozing in the hotel, while we hunt down some good eats.

              If there are better options near Scarborough, that should be okay. It's just heading to downtown Toronto that would be too far.

              I'll investigate/map out the Perfect Chinese place. What kind of food do they serve, especially late? Looks like Cantonese restaurant style from the website. Chinese Beef and Lamb House looks interesting.

              Thanks again!

              8 Replies
              1. re: villainx
                a
                Aleta May 8, 2010 05:54 PM

                Villainx, I just called Magic Wok to ask what time they close (they said "12 am"). Then I realized that it's already on your list. I ate there twice last year and enjoyed it. Cantonese style, lots of seafood options, a bit noisy, okay service. If I were staying at a Hwy 7 hotel and felt like traditional Cantonese, I might go there.

                I don't know where you are from (and what you have access to) but another option for late night dining is the spicy northern Chinese restaurant on Finch, east of Kennedy. My son says that it's called Best Chinese Restaurant. It shares a roof with the Miliken Bar & Grill. I like the Hunan smoked pork (they have a smoker out back) and the chili fish head. For non-spicy eaters, there's a pork rib dish covered in Sunchips (?) that's quite delicious. For kids, my son recommends the steamed meatballs with glutinous rice.

                1. re: Aleta
                  skylineR33 May 8, 2010 07:41 PM

                  Yeah, Magic Wok has a lots of seafood options. I was there recently, we order 2 Alaska king crabs 2 ways (1st is steamed with garlic, 2nd is chili and pepper). The other live seafood we order is 4 lbs of geoduck 3 ways (1st is sashimi, 2nd is stir-fly, 3rd is the deep fried internal gland). And some other dishes.

                  The dishes taste average to good, some dishes of the seafood are quite plain. The way they cut the seafood and the way they cook are not refined and quite bland, the cut of the geo duck is way too big as well as the king crab is chopped in a way too hard to get the meat out of the shell . Overall quality is ok, especially the "lap mei" rice is good.

                  However for me, if I get bored or hungry at the hotel and wanted to go for a snack run at late night after the dinner, I would rather go to have a bubble tea and snack at "Go For Tea" or "Destiny". Or some chinese dessert place for a bowl of "Tofu Fa" or "Tapioca Pearls - site mike lo" at "Gi Sung Tong" in Time Squares, etc.

                  1. re: skylineR33
                    Charles Yu May 8, 2010 08:49 PM

                    Hello skylineR33!
                    How much per pound were they charging for the King Crab? When I was in Vancouver last month, it was the start of the 'season'! So, I experienced king crab specials at $12/lb!! Pretty good deal! However, instead of steaming the legs with garlic ( as most restaurants are recommending these days ), we opted for steaming with ' Fa Dew wine' and chicken fat ( Similar to the 'Chairman' in HK?! ). Very often I find the excessive use of garlic tends to 'mask' the fresh sweet taste of the seafood! O'Mei's way of steaming the giant lobster claws in garlic is a fine example!
                    When I was working in the oil industry years ago, the oil rig loaded thousands of pounds of live king crab on board from Anchorage, Alaska. Some of us just took some, dunk the whole live ones in boiling sea water! When ready, we just break the leg off the body and ate the legs there and then with a bottle of beer! Yum!!! So sweet!!! And they are huge!! At least 12-14 pounds! not the common 7-8 pounds one tends to finds in say, T&T!

                    1. re: Charles Yu
                      skylineR33 May 8, 2010 09:37 PM

                      Hi Charles, it is per king crab, I did not pay for the dinner, but if I remember correctly from what I see on the seafood price board, it is one hundred something (~$150 ?) per king crab, much cheaper than Omei, but it is not cooked as good as Omei and it is only 2 ways. It is not big, maybe around 8 pounds, most of the big ones go to Vancouver ! You are right, I also prefer a simpler way to prepare the king crab. Speaking of lobster, I got a huge 11 pounds lobster from T&T last week with $4.99/lb !!

                      1. re: skylineR33
                        Royaljelly May 10, 2010 05:12 AM

                        I also saw the owner from O'Mei walk about of the T&T on Warden/Steeles walk about from the front door w/ a cart stuffed w/ 2 large styrofoam boxes of seafood. I always wondered where they got their giant crustaceans from.

                        As for Best Chinese Restaurant, I tried it awhile back when they first opened and it was pretty bad (fish not fresh, sauces way too heavy, other dishes tasted like it was microwave reheated). Albeit, that was when they first opened... they even had a hand written sign on the front door roughly translated to "please forgive us as we have just opened". Hopefully they've fine tuned things a lot since then.

                        There's one more late night place called Royal Chinese on Sheppard, east of Kennedy (after the train tracks). I think they open til 1:30 or 2am. Some decent seafood dishes (I always remembered their steamed oysters were good deal), also oil fried chicken and sweet n sour pork, stir fried veggies etc are all pretty good. I used to go often after work when I used to work in Scarborough, haven't been lately (nowadays we drive a bit further to Maple Yip anyways).

                        1. re: Royaljelly
                          Chester Eleganté May 10, 2010 01:23 PM

                          Speaking of T&T, I picked up a few live canner lobsters last night there and the quality was surprisingly good. Each were about 3/4 lb, and the meat was resoundingly substantial, springy, and sweet. Mind you, the batch looked rather listless when we were poking through it, but they soon brought a fresh pile and we got first dibs on those. $5 per lobster, you can't go wrong. Sale ends tonight though.

                    2. re: skylineR33
                      v
                      villainx May 8, 2010 09:03 PM

                      I'll certainly give a look at the places you mentioned. The late night snack is more of the HK or Chinatown tradition of stepping out for a meal. But you are also right, that tradition is mostly for whatever is good to chow on, so if what's best is something sweet, then that might be it.

                      Well, it's good enough for me, but the rest of my group might want their wonton noodles, lo mien or whatnot.

                      1. re: villainx
                        skylineR33 May 8, 2010 09:46 PM

                        I also want to find some good place for wonton noodles or lo mien for some late night snack !! First of all, it is hard to find good places for this kind of food in GTA. I don't think there is any in Toronto. Second, these places mostly close around 10 something.

                        Maybe you want to check out "Richmond Court" of Richmond Hill (the one at Time Square), they have a huge menu and I *think* they close pretty late. Their wonton noodle/lo mein is ok at best (at par with many places in Toronto), chinese BBQ is pretty good (but not sure if quality is still good at midnight), fried noodle such as "beef ho fun" and fried rice dishes such as "Yang Chow fried rice" are pretty good there.

                2. skylineR33 May 8, 2010 09:34 AM

                  You can cross out everything in your list, they close at standard closing hours which is around 10pm I think. Go to "Go For Tea" and "Destiny" for bubble tea and snack on Highway 7 and Leslie as late night option. I think this is more suitable for fast food nation youngsters.

                  7 Replies
                  1. re: skylineR33
                    a
                    Aleta May 8, 2010 10:20 AM

                    Too bad you'll be up at Hwy 7 and not over in Scarborough, around the 3000 block of Sheppard Ave. East (nr McCowan). There's that 24-hour Chinese restaurant in the mall. The food isn't bad and it's kind of cool that you can order anything from noodles to banquet-style Cantonese at 2am. They serve dim sum in the morning. I've only been once and the name escapes me. Maybe someone else has more information about the restaurant and its specific address.

                    1. re: Aleta
                      skylineR33 May 8, 2010 10:34 AM

                      Do you mean 雅瓊海鮮酒家 (Perfect Chinese) which open 24 hrs ? They have the $8 peaking duck too if you are looking for that kind of quality.

                      1. re: skylineR33
                        f
                        FrankD May 8, 2010 05:39 PM

                        "They have the $8 peaking duck"

                        What if you'll settle for duck that's merely ascending?

                      2. re: Aleta
                        j
                        juno May 8, 2010 10:51 AM

                        I'll take a guess that Aleta is thinking of Chinese Beef and Lamb House, in a strip mall at 3591 Sheppard Ave. East, just west of Birchmount Ave., a large and garish spot with a substantial menu, but specializing (as befits its name) in beef and lamb dishes. It's open till about 1 a.m., and often much later. I've only been there once myself, guided there by an old China hand who knows his nosh, and whose august presence at the table made for superb service and tasty menu choices. I've been meaning to return, but haven't got around to it yet.

                        1. re: juno
                          skylineR33 May 8, 2010 11:08 AM

                          Good guess juno ! When does Chinese Beef and Lamb start to serve banquet-style Cantonese and dim sum ??! I know you are kidding :)

                          1. re: skylineR33
                            a
                            Aleta May 8, 2010 12:31 PM

                            Thanks, skylineR33. 雅瓊海鮮酒家 (Perfect Chinese) is the place I was thinking of. And I like juno's description of Chinese Beef and Lamb House as "garish" :)

                            Villainx, how late do you mean actually? Sitting down after 10 pm?

                            1. re: skylineR33
                              j
                              juno May 9, 2010 07:47 AM

                              Well, no, I wasn't kidding, but rereading this thread, I also see I wasn't paying close attention to all the OP's parameters. I saw "open late", and "the 3000 block of Sheppard Ave. E.", while the other parameters merely passed before my glazed eyes without making an impression. Chinese Beef and Lamb House immediately popped into mind. That'll teach me to contribute to a thread at noon Saturday after a very, very late Friday night. But no harm done, I notice. SkylineR33, Aleta, and Charles Yu, who to my mind reigns supreme over all Asian nosh in the GTA's northeast, both straightened me out and galloped to the rescue of the OP. And I learned the name of a 24-hour Chinese joint on Sheppard Ave. E., should I ever venture that far east late, late some night. Note: the cumin lamb at Chinese Beef and Lamb House is damn good.

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