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Does anyone remember Lichee Garden? Replacement?

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FoodJourno Mar 24, 2012 11:34 AM

It's been few years of withdrawals of heavily North American influenced Chinese food. My family went to Lichee when it was back on Elizabeth Street, and then to the Atrium on Bay, to Eglinton and then finally to Centre Street in Thornhill.
It was our default place for a big family dinner out, and I haven't been able to find a place to takes its place since it shutdown a few years back. I heard that they were trying to open a new location downtown (which should've been the old Amadeus place on Richmond), but I don't think that's ever going to happen.

Any recommendations? Was it just me or was the Atrium on Bay location not a great place? With the piano and old school formality? Anyways, any help would be great.

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    garfield RE: FoodJourno Mar 24, 2012 11:41 AM

    Where was this in the AOB? I have worked there off and on since 2002, cant say I noticed it.

    2 Replies
    1. re: garfield
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      fickle RE: garfield Mar 25, 2012 04:07 PM

      around 1992-93? It was where Red Lobster is now.

      1. re: garfield
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        FoodJourno RE: garfield Mar 25, 2012 05:36 PM

        It was actually just across from The Red Lobster, coolest old school space with a riser for raised tables around the edge on the room, all focused on the piano stage....that actually had a guy playing piano. I think we called him "red" but that could just be a bunch of movies I've seen clouding my memory. I know is was in Atrium on Bay in 1995-96 because I went there on my 13-14th birthday.

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        Herne RE: FoodJourno Mar 24, 2012 11:56 AM

        I have been hoping for Lichee Garden to reopen somewhere for several years after finally tracking it to the Thornhill location but it was closed by the time I found it. I was searching for the famous Lichee egg rolls but I have given up. I'm looking for a place with similar large egg rolls and will watch this space for the collective CH knowledge on the matter.

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          revrnd RE: FoodJourno Jun 10, 2014 10:05 PM

          A friend and I went to Lichee at the AOB in the mid to late 80s. IMO it didn't compare to my childhood memories of the Elizabeth Street location.

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            divesafe RE: FoodJourno Jun 16, 2014 11:51 AM

            Almost dropped the keyboard when I saw this post! When I was a kid my folks used to take us to Toronto to visit family that we have there. We NEVER missed going to Lichee Garden! Even took a few friends during college.

            Miss that place! Thanks for the memories!

            7 Replies
            1. re: divesafe
              foodyDudey RE: divesafe Jun 16, 2014 02:54 PM

              I think I went to Lichee Garden a few times, but in the 60's my parents used to take us to Kwong Chow. Does anyone remember that one?

              1. re: foodyDudey
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                farmgirl1836 RE: foodyDudey Jun 17, 2014 05:17 AM

                Kwong Chow was our usual downtown Chinese restaurant. A long walk up those stairs. Lichee Gardens was our special occasion restaurant. I really miss those restaurants. We followed Lichee Gardens to the Atrium on Bay and then to Eglinton near Avenue Road and then finally, to Centre Street, in Thornhill. And, if they reopened tomorrow, I would be a customer. It's true that it was never the same after their first move, but I still enjoyed it. When they were closing in Thornhill they told me they would reopen downtown in the theatre district, but that never happened.

                1. re: farmgirl1836
                  foodyDudey RE: farmgirl1836 Jun 17, 2014 06:34 AM

                  I was going to mention those stairs also in yesterday's post. It's funny how things like that stay in your mind even 50 ! years later. Yes, we were eating there in 1964.

                  1. re: foodyDudey
                    T Long RE: foodyDudey Jun 17, 2014 08:06 AM

                    I understand that Yueh Tung is now where the Kwong Chow use to be. Those stairs?

                    1. re: T Long
                      foodyDudey RE: T Long Jun 17, 2014 09:13 AM

                      It must be the same stairs unless they renovated. How is Yueh Tung? I may go and try it if anyone here says it's worth a visit.

                2. re: foodyDudey
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                  Vinnie Vidimangi RE: foodyDudey Jun 17, 2014 09:44 PM

                  There used to be a kosher Chinese food place on Bathurst St called Holy Chow. Did this one have anything to do with with Kwong Chow?

                  1. re: Vinnie Vidimangi
                    foodyDudey RE: Vinnie Vidimangi Jun 17, 2014 10:05 PM

                    Maybe, if Chow Hound has something to do with food.

              2. EpicuriouCity RE: FoodJourno Jun 18, 2014 04:20 AM

                I hear you! Wonderful memories of Lichee; crisp collared Waiters, classic decor, upstairs-hideaway location, etc. The stuff of movie sets for sure. Always a special treat to dress up for family night at Lichee. Those sure were the good old days.

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