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ASIAN LEGEND Yonge north of Sheppard - Is it any good?

  • Googs Nov 12, 2011 07:23 AM
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Wondering who's been.

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  1. Been to the ones on Dundas, Sheppard/Brimley, and North of Empress Walk.
    They all taste the same. Acceptable.

    1 Reply
    1. re: smfan

      I have been to all of the above as well. However, I find the Sheppard/Brimley one to have the better food of them all. (Followed by Yonge/Sheppard, and Dundas). The Sheppard/Brimley one seems to have high fast turnover, so the food tastes fresher.

    2. The food is decent and the service is very friendly.

      1. Compare to some of the better ' Northern Chinese Cuisine' places in the Richmond Hill, Markham and Scarborough. ALL Asian Legend are only So-So, irrespective of locale!!! They are just NOT authentic enough! Especially when nowadays there are so many new ' authentic ' dumpling.Northern Cuisine places run by new immigrants from Mainland China sprouting out all over the place! !

        5 Replies
        1. re: Charles Yu

          Which is strange because most of these Chinese cuisine places around Richmond hill are half empty. Went to Judy's Cusine last saturday, plenty of empty tables, walked by the dim sum place next to it, also tables available, as is the case with most restaurants in that plaza as well as the Commerce Gate Plaza where Asian Legend is located.

          But, try to get into Asian Legend on a Saturday night. The place is PACKED, no tables available. Half hour wait. 90% Chinese clientele. Wonder why all these Chinese families are lining up for tables at Asian Legend when all the so called "authentic" restaurants in the area have plenty of tables available.

          I have been to the Hwy 7 location of Asian Legend with a Chinese person visiting from Hong Kong and not only did they find they food enjoyable but completely authentic.

          Btw, the food at Judy's cuisine was nothing special.

          1. re: ManAbout

            In an environment of heavy competition, Chinese restaurants are usually popular or busy at dinnertime for one of two reasons. The first is that they are perceived to offer something unique and special (example O'Mei or Maple Yip in Scarborough or Lee Garden downtown). The second reason is that they offer great value (ie inexpensive - add example of cheap restaurant here). This is why many really decent restaurants suffer from slow business at dinnertime (example Regal Palace on 7). As for Asian Legend, I think it is popular because they offer tasty food in a more upscale environment (read "Western friendly" or cleaner) than the competition.

            1. re: T Long

              T Long, it seems to me, has the Asian Legend chain assessed accurately: tasty food in a clean, slightly upscale atmosphere, at acceptable prices. Also alert service from a good young staff. If you know the menu, you'll do quite well there. Mind, I'd much rather be at Maple Yip or some of the good joints in the northeast part of town where the indefatigable Charles Yu takes regular sustenance. But I can't bear the thought of another tortuous 45-minute drive to where they're located. Not when the north Yonge St. locale of Asian Legend is just an easy 10-minute drive away from my abode, and the Finch and Leslie outpost - which I prefer because it's easier to park for free in the plaza there - is a mere 15 minutes away. Both branches, which are almost always busy, are smoothly run and the tastes, if not exactly revelatory, are satisfying enough at the price. As someone has pointed out, about 90 per cent Asian clientele. Solid Northern Chinese appetizers, pretty good hot and sour soup. I know what to expect at any Asian Legend and I've rarely been disappointed. Though if I've got the time - and the patience - I still try to get to Yang's or Judy's occasionally.

              1. re: T Long

                T Long, you hit the point exactly!

              2. re: ManAbout

                If you take a closer look at the Asian Legend patrons, they are mostly of the 'younger' crowd. A lot of them have not been exposed to the 'real, genuine' stuff from the motherland! I am pretty positive that Chinese cuisine aficionados like skylineR33 or Aser do not have AL on their radar screen when it comes to the type of dishes AL is serving. Besides, the decor and ambiance of AL is definitely a notch above most dumpling houses like Northern Dumpling Kitchen in Time Square, not to mention the really 'hole-in-the-wall' seedy look of say the 'Old Place' in Scarborough. AL is a better place to take a 'date'! Ha!

                When I eat at Judy's Cuisine, I always order dishes that are the chef's forte, which, in most cases are surprisingly, 'wok-hay stirred fry'!!

                As for 'busy'?! The weirdess example must be O'Mei! With them serving expensive mega-bucks dishes like the giant lobsters and over-charged Goeduck clams and live French Turbot, they are often ' packed' on a week day, even Wednesday and Thursday! Go figure??!!

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

            2. What are some dishes to order at the north of Sheppard location?

              2 Replies
              1. re: garfield

                Crispy duck skin in wrappers and minced duck meat with chopped veggie in lettuce are 2 dishes to try if you are not on low fat diet. Xiao Lung Bao is now tasted more like the popular Taiwanese version very thin skin and bite size.

                1. re: smfan

                  Hope their pot-stickers follow the improvement of the XLB!! The first and last time I ate at AL, the 'super thick skin and 'sans broth' dumplings were BAD!!!!!

              2. Okay gang, I get it. It's the The Keg of Northern Chinese cuisine. Fair enough. I had read some nice posts about them so I thought I'd ask.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Googs

                  Great analogy, Googs!!

                2. Totally inauthentic but I LOVE their General Tao chicken. Only when they are not busy, otherwise they tend to overcook/burn the coating.