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Jun 6, 2011 07:15 AM

London, ON - Good Eats?

I'm moving to London in a week and interested in getting the low-down on the food scene there. I've checked the boards and most are dated. So, I'm looking for an update.

On the top of my list, I'm looking for a good Korean restaurant. So far, the only Korean places that I've heard about is Manna and Take. Please tell me there are more than 2 Korean restaurants in London!

Then, I'm looking for a diner. The kind where the food isn't fancy, but good. Homemade desserts and get the picture.

Also interested in a good pizza place. We like the crisp thin crusts as well as the doughy chewy crusts.

On our few visits there, we've found ourselves at Pho Haven on Commissioner's Road several times. The service there is great and food even better. We found the dishes to be tasty, light, and well priced. I daresay the food was better there than any Vietnamese I've had in Montreal. One big bonus for us: the place was impeccably clean!

Any other recommendations are welcomed as well. Thanks!

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  1. Welcome to London!

    This is the most up-to-date and comprehensive thread for London: Several posters have added a fair number of replies over the last 6 months. Scroll down further on the thread, to see the newer replies.

    Vietnamase: Tamarine is my favourite Vietnamese restaurant in London, for upscale (ie non-Pho and non-Bun) dishes. Approx $15-$25 per person.

    Quynh Nhi on Wharncliffe is good for pho, bun & my tho. There are also several good Vietnamese restaurants on Huron Street, as well as Viet Nam restaurant on Dundas E.

    Korean: I like Manna Grill. Haven't tried any other Korean restaurants recently. Several sushi restaurants in London are owned by Korean Canadians, and have some Korean dishes on the menu, in addition to sushi.

    Pizza in London- I don't eat much pizza, so I'm not the person to ask. But generally, P.Za.Pie near Richmond and Pall Mall for casual flatcrust, Joe Kool's for Kitchen Sink Pizza, Maria's, Tony's or Frank & Gus for greasy old school pizza, Muldoon's for pizza in Westmount, Abruzzi on King for upscale flatcrust ( - Abbruzi recently changed hands) Trichilo's is another new Italian option, that I haven't tried. Stobie's on Richmond near Dufferin is also popular. I have been meaning to try Stobie's, but haven't gotten around to it yet. Scroll to the bottom of this thread to see some fairly recent comments on the topic of pizza:

    Cheap Eats- less than $10 per person

    Barakat is good for shawarma.

    Nova Era on Egerton near the Western Fair for sandwiches, or pasteis de nata and other Portuguese sweets.

    Imperio dos Frangos or Rei dos Leitos for Churrasco chicken.

    Hot Oven in the Covent Garden Market for various burek.

    Less than $20 per person

    Richie's for standard, economical breakfasts and Greek omelettes.

    J Dee's on King, across from the market for sandwiches.

    Willie's Cafe for sandwiches (only open for lunch).Billy's Downtown Deli is known for breakfast, sandwiches and pie.

    The Bag Lady Variety is good for a lowkey brunch in a kitschy atmosphere, and serves good butter tarts, sticky buns, etc.

    $20-$30 per person

    Massey's on King for Indian. They have a lunch buffet, but I always order dinner, a la carte.

    $30+ per person

    The Only on King for local ingredients & upscale comfort food.

    David's Bistro for bistro, seafood, and splurge desserts.

    The Black Trumpet for a splurge dinner, and a great carrot cake.

    Groceries in London

    The Covent Garden Market or Remark Fresh Market (Hyde Park Rd and Oxford W) for good produce and meats. Covent Garden Farmer's Market. which is located outside the Covent Garden Market, on Thu and Sat mornings, for quality produce, including Soiled Reputation veggies.

    United Supermarket on Highbury for Asian groceries.

    David's Bistro
    432 Richmond St, London, ON N6A3C9, CA

    Covent Garden Market
    130 King St, London, ON N6A1C5, CA

    The Only on King
    172 King St, London, ON N6A, CA

    Black Trumpet
    523 Richmond St, London, ON N6A3E8, CA

    Rei DOS Leitoes
    706 Hamilton Rd, London, ON N5Z1T6, CA

    Billy's Downtown Deli
    113 Dundas St, London, ON N6A1E8, CA

    Barakat Restaurant
    551 Richmond St, London, ON N6A3E9, CA

    Quynh Nhi
    55 Wharncliffe Rd N, London, ON N6H2A4, CA

    Imperio DOS Frangos
    741 Hamilton Rd, London, ON N5Z1T8, CA

    Manna Grill
    276 Wharncliffe Rd N, London, ON N6H2C3, CA

    Malibu Restaurant
    1622 Dundas St, London, ON N5W3C4, CA

    Massey's Fine Indian Cuisine
    174 King St, London, ON N6A1C6, CA

    Richie's Family Restaurant
    1673 Richmond St, London, ON N6G2N3, CA

    Stobie's Pizza
    484 Richmond St, London, ON N6A3E6, CA

    Viet Nam Restaurant
    1074 Dundas St, London, ON N5W3A6, CA

    Willie's Cafe
    731 Wellington St, London, ON N6A3S1, CA

    The Bag Lady Variety
    474 Pall Mall St, London, ON N5Y 2Z3, CA

    Trichilo's Ristorante
    691 Richmond St, London, ON N6A 5M8, CA

    Tamarine Restaurant
    118 Dundas St, London, ON N6A 1G1, CA

    6 Replies
    1. re: prima

      Prima - thanks for the update! These recommendations will be perfect for the next week or so while I transition to London and get our house settled. Thank you very much!! I'll report back!

      1. re: prima

        Good list, also I really like Thai Taste at the corner of Dundas and Lyle, it's a tiny little hole in the wall and sometimes it takes forever to get your food (we always order take out) but he's a great cook! JT's Addis Ababa on Dundas at Maitland has great Ethiopian food and for something more upscale, we tried Kantina Cafe on Friday night, it's a Serbian/fine dining sort of fusion and we really enjoyed it. The "Black George" is the signature dish. For markets you can't forget the Western Fair Farmers Market run by Dave Cook of Fire Roasted Coffee. We have gone almost every Saturday for the last 4 years and he has done an absolutely amazing job of building it up. I love SO much from there.

        Addis Ababa
        1184 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M6J1J5, CA

        Thai Taste
        671 Dundas St, London, ON N5W2Z1, CA

        349 Talbot St, London, ON N6A 2R5, CA

        1. re: vittles72

          I finally tried Kantina, and I really liked it.

          Started with some Balkan style flatbread, with Serbian cheese. I ordered the veal soup, and my friend tried the Serbian fish soup. We shared a Soiled Reputation arugula, apple, pomegranate seed and blue cheese salad, then tried the stuffed pepper with amazing mashed potatoes, and the lamb and porcini risotto topped with pine nuts. I'll be back to try the beef paprikash, schnitzel, and baklava. I liked the fact they offer the paprikash and risotto as sides or mains, so it's possible to order a side if you just want a taste.

          This is some of the best Serbian (and Central European food) I've found in London, and it's great to see the chef using so many local ingredients from local farmers and producers.

          They also serve a Sunday brunch, which I hope to try soon.

          The service was very friendly and courteous.

          I can't wait to return.

          349 Talbot St, London, ON N6A 2R5, CA

        2. re: prima

          I tried Quynh Nhi over the weekend...I couldn't believe the astronimical prices! Is that the going rate for a bowl of pho in London! It was $12 and in comparing to Toronto would have been similar to a medium size that should sell for $7.

          Quynh Nhi
          55 Wharncliffe Rd N, London, ON N6H2A4, CA

          1. re: baby_tran

            I have only been a couple of times but found it pricey as well.

            1. re: baby_tran

              Welcome to London ;-) Unfortunately, many foods tend to cost more in London restaurants, because there's less demand, less turnover, less clients who dine out regularly at non-chains, higher food costs, and less competition.

              We pay up to twice as much in London for some foods Torontonians take for granted. Greek, Chinese, Indian and Vietnamese food in London often cost twice as much as similar food would cost in Toronto.

              Quynh Nhi charges more, but is located much closer to downtown, and is more convenient for me. Their rent on that corner is significantly higher than the rent would be on Dundas E or near Huron & Highbury, where the other good Vietnamese restaurants are located. The convenience factor means I'm happy to spend a couple extra dollars for pho or bun.

              We drove over 20 minutes out of our way to dine at Que Hong, after finding Quynh Nhi closed for the long weekend, so any savings were partly used up in gas money, trekking out to Huron and Highbury. Nice people run Que Hong, though, in case you're interested in giving London pho another try.

              My friend's medium pho was around $7 or $8 at Que Hong, one of the Vietnamese restos at Highbury & Huron. Viet Nam on Dundas E is also more economical, but it's a 10 minute drive east of downtown.

              Quynh Nhi
              55 Wharncliffe Rd N, London, ON N6H2A4, CA

          2. What a great, superinformative post! Just want to say, went to Rei Dos Leitoes on Saturday, awesome chicken, sort of slow service; and Imperio Dos Frangos is almost across the street but takeout only, no tables. Cheers.