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Paulette's in Leslieville - any info?

I saw this storefront in Leslieville on the weekend, right next to Mercury. Looks promising. Does anyone have an inside scoop on what it's going to be like?

"Paulette's - Original Donuts and Chicken. Opening Summer 2012"

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  1. yup - Just went to Delica Kitchen (Yonge & St.Clair) for lunch and they seem to be advertising it as an offshoot! yum!

      1. re: coronah

        All I wish is that the chicken will taste like Gus's World Famous Fried Chicken in Memphis. Is that asking too much?

      2. I just walked by here and saw a sign indicating that they're opening on Monday. I'm very curious to see how this place turns out -- particularly the doughnuts, since we really do have a dearth of great doughnut shops in the city.

        4 Replies
        1. re: Michael N

          Had a sampling of two kinds at The Stop's Night Market last week - thought they were pretty good. They lean toward cakey donut, but they're not toooo cakey. I liked both flavours; garam masala and maple cinnamon. Would bother (moreso than before) to check 'em out based on that sampling.

          1. re: jlunar

            I am more keen to try out their frid chicken. Stockyards is too far away and their fried chicken doesn't travel well.

            1. re: jlunar

              I agree based on my sampling of their donut holes at the same event. Curious about their other donuts.

            2. re: Michael N

              I knew that they were opening in June, I just wasn't sure of the date. So it's tomorrow for sure? I cannot wait for this place to open. If, in fact it is opening tomorrow, I am so there!!

            3. I'm keeping an eye, and following them on twitter. Very excited for this place to open. Should be opening this week!

              3 Replies
                  1. re: justxpete

                    Thank you so much! I'm going to start following immediately.

              1. Just drove by - it's open (and packed).

                3 Replies
                  1. re: petek

                    Wanted to go so badly, but I couldn't make it. If they're open next Monday (holiday Monday), I'm going for sure!

                    1. re: petek

                      i might go today but, to be honest, not sure what i can check out. at $2.75/doughnut, i can't really get a good sample of what they do.

                      i do want to try their chicken and see how its stacks next to Buster Rhinos or Stockyards

                    1. re: b.craftie

                      Sounds good...too bad it's take away only though :(

                      1. re: b.craftie

                        Came here to post the same link... Making me hungry looking at the pics!

                        Looking forward to more reviews on the fried chicken but I am definitely putting this on my list of places to try.

                        1. re: b.craftie

                          So, I grabbed a couple pieces today and a donut and headed to a park with the dog for lunch.

                          I thought the chicken itself was delicious - but the chicken is encased in a "batter shell", which I'm not sure is for me. The chicken skin, though, was delicious, and the meat was tender, juicy, and flavourful. I also had a donut which was probably one of the best donuts I've head.

                          I'll give it one more try. I think the problem was that the sauce I ordered didn't provide any acidity to cut down on the grease/richness. I also had the mac'n'cheese side, which was good, but didn't help.

                          1. re: justxpete

                            What do you mean by "batter shell"? Also, what kind of donut did you try?

                            1. re: kwass

                              I dont know how else to put it - it had a 2-3mm layer of crispified batter on the outside of the chicken.

                              I had the rootbeer float donut.

                              1. re: justxpete

                                Do you mean it was like fish and chips batter as opposed to breading (whether cornflakes or bread crumbs/panko)?

                                  1. re: justxpete

                                    Looking at the pic on blog.to it does look more like a batter, albeit a light, tempura-like one, and nicely browned. But I generally prefer breading as well.

                                    1. re: julesrules

                                      I'm not saying it's bad, just maybe that it's not for me.

                                      1. re: justxpete

                                        Understood. I'm sure it's tasty but not my idea of fried chicken perfection either. So I appreciate the info because it saves me running down there immediately and likely being a little disappointed. Thanks :)

                                        1. re: julesrules

                                          I think they'd appreciate the business - and you have to try it once anyway! I'm actually kind of craving it right now... oddly enough... despite the 'shell'!

                                          1. re: justxpete

                                            Oh I will definitely have to try them out, and soon. The donuts look fun and the chicken plenty tasty - now I just know what to expect.

                        2. If anyone goes in, can you ask if they are open on Canada Day..

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: ylsf

                            They're closed. I sent them a tweet to find out. They're open on Sunday however.

                            1. re: kwass

                              Thanks.. Wonder how busy their first weekend will be!

                              1. re: ylsf

                                I imagine it will be VERY busy!

                          2. I went in to try it today. As mentioned before, the batter is very crunchy. Almost too crunchy. Like a hard shell. The chicken was moist and flavourful though. I also tried the root beer float doughnut. It was good but I didn't detect any root beer flavour. Both things are a bit on the expensive side. $2.75 is out of line for a single doughnut. I'm sure they're aiming at the gourmet cupcake crowd . And even worse is $8 for 2 pieces of chicken with no sides. $13 for 4 is more reasonable but still no sides. At least at Stockyards you get fries.

                            5 Replies
                            1. re: sbug206

                              It is expensive for a doughnut, but if memory serves me correctly, Glory Hole Doughnuts is/was charging about the same amount.

                              1. re: kwass

                                Gloryhole was closer to $4 a donut!

                                1. re: jlunar

                                  I remember them being around $3 a donut, but you're probably right!

                              2. re: sbug206

                                Perspective, please.
                                Mass-produced Tim Hortons doughnuts are what? $1 each?
                                so immediately double the price for something made at a smaller, single location.
                                i'd bet that the flavouring ingredients cost a heck of a lot more than what Timmy HoHo's uses for their doughnuts.
                                and cupcake fans are paying $3/cupcake.

                                so the price is about right. just don't go buying a dozen for yourself.

                                1. re: atomeyes

                                  I'm not complaining about the price and I don't think jlunar is either. But you're always going to find people who ARE shocked about the price just because they are used to paying next to nothing for a donut @ Tim Horton's.

                              3. Went this morning just after 11am. It wasn't busy at all, no line when I first entered and then someone ordered while I was looking at the donut selection. I mean, there was constant people coming/going for the 10 minutes I was there but no "line" longer than 2 or 3 minutes. I was a bit worried about the wait time for their first weeekend so I just wanted to point it out for those thinging of going on Sunday.

                                Anyway, my review.... The staff was super friendly and nice.

                                I originally ordered a Balsamic Blueberry donut and a snack pack of chicken (2 peices of chicken) but then after paying I saw them bring out an order of "strawberry jammies" for another customer and decided to order one of those as well. I took everything and walked to a school down the street as they had a picnic table there. I saw two containers of "sauce" from Paulette's sitting on the table so I guess others have done the same thing (but hopefully others clean up their mess!).

                                Anyway, on to the food. even though I saw people mentioned it was "cake" style donut I was a bit surprised by the "jammie" . I thought there would be jam all the way into the centre but their wasn't. It really did taste like a piece of cake in the shape of a donut with jam on the top. It was good, but, I probably wouldn't order it again. I ended up keeping the Balsamic Blueberry donut for a couple of hours and eating it later. I really liked the flavour on that one and it wasn't "overly sweet" as I saw some yelp/other reviews say of their other donuts. I would recommend that one and get it again myself.

                                On to the chicken.... Even having read the reviews saying it was a "hard" skin/crisp on it, it was still very unusual. I guess it has been described as "korean style". I guess the disconnect for me comes from the way they seem to market it as a more traditional/old fashioned place but the fried chicken method is very different from most places I have had fried chicken. I am glad I tried it, and the honey/herb sauce was very good, but, I don't think it would be something that i will crave... Vs. Stockyards for example.

                                Anyway, overall I would say I enjoyed the one Glory Hole donut I had more (lemon ) and the bacon doughtnut from Beast (booth set up at a food event) but I still will probably try some other flavours when in the area.

                                I ended up deciding to go to Leslieville Pumps too, review of that in their thread but brisket was great!

                                1. the doughnuts leave a lot to be desired. Before I put it to rest, I'll definitely try the fried chicken but I wasn't impressed. It's a lot of style, very little substance. The place is cute, all turquoise and the servers are all kitted out with little paper hats and white aprons, like old soda shop servers. The branding is fantastic. Oh that the food tasted as good! The outfit is small, one lady takes your order and two other people behind the small counter grab your doughnuts (from a rolling rack) and your chicken (from some kind of oven/holding device). Even though all the food is prepared and ready to go, it takes a loooong time to get it. I went 4 days after they had opened though, so I'll forgive them as they iron out the kinks. Of the 6 kinds of doughnuts offered, we got 5 (they were sold out of the strawberry jammies). Blueberry balsamic, root beer float, mango-yuzu, and the D'oreo. Now this is where things start to go awry: ALL THE DOUGHNUTS ARE THE SAME CAKE BASE AND THE ONLY FLAVOUR DIFFERENTIAL IS THE GLAZE! Now, if any of you have ever been to Doughnut Plant, you know that they do cake AND yeasted doughnuts and the glazes, cake doughnuts, and the fillings differ, offering different flavour profiles and experiences. Not so Paulette's. It's all the same nutmeg-flavoured white cake doughnut base. The doughnut itself is nice - tender, good crumb, nice amount of nutmeg. But it's not $2.75 nice (the size is the same as a Timmy Ho's). Then they make the criminal mistake of DOUSING the doughnut in saccarine, unbalanced, and one-note glazes.

                                  So yes, the Root Beer Float doughnut tastes like a root beer float, but do I want that in a doughnut? I'm not sure. The mango yuzu tastes (and I lOVE yuzu) tastes like the concentrated mango puree straight outta the package with barely any hints of yuzu. The D'Oreo one actually didn't taste at all like an oreo - the flavour was really muted. The best one was by far the blueberry balsamic - it wasn't too sweet and the balsamic acidity cut through and allowed the other flavours to shine. That was the only doughnut where I could eat the whole thing. Everything else, I took one bite and had to put it down.

                                  I'll reserve judgement until I try their fried chicken, but since they only do two things, the fact that one of those things was disappointing doesn't bode well.

                                  10 Replies
                                  1. re: vox

                                    With the big caveat that I haven't tried this place,
                                    I feel like the donut "trend" (such as it is) has missed a stage. What Toronto really needs IMHO is decent standard donuts, maybe with the odd seasonal flavour tweak. If one is just looking for a vehicle for root beer ( or more 'gourmet') flavoring, we have cupcakes and macarons galore. Give me really good yeast donuts with real jelly, cream and custard fillings. I guess I will get my annual fix in Elmvale. I think the fact they keep selling out of the strawberry Jammies is telling.

                                    1. re: julesrules

                                      Gotta agree with your sentiment. We have gone from the city being Donut dead zone to "gourmet" donuts which are hardly gourmet except for the prices. Hearing about great branding and disappointing flavor is the cupcake trend being relived all over again. OY!

                                      1. re: ThoughtForFood

                                        I agree 100%. If they put as much effort into the substance as they do the style this place will be a great success. I like crispy batter but theirs is almost break your teeth hard.

                                      2. re: julesrules

                                        I agree with your premiss that we don't have any "Standard" style donuts that are great the simple fact is, there's not a market for it here. Everyone will complain that they're just plain old donuts. We're a city that loves to take the simple and over complicate it. For better or for worse. Take Burgers Priest. Simple cheeseburgers and what happens. People complain about the cheese or the bun or only standard condiments.
                                        That said, they are doing well.


                                        1. re: julesrules

                                          Have you tried the pastry cream-filled ones at EpiBread? I get jam-filled doughnuts at Vienna Fine Foods on Birchmount north of Eglinton. Also, sugar doughnut twists are really good at the in-store bakery at Galleria (Don Mills & York Mills).

                                          1. re: Full tummy

                                            Those are all off my (admittedly limited) beaten path. What I'd like to be able to do is hit a donut shop and buy a dozen with a variety of flavours. I don't mind creative/gourmet/whatever flavours, I might even like them, but there should be a foundation in the basics before you start putting oreo pieces or whatever on them. OK rant over. I go to Elmvale bakery next week ;)

                                            1. re: julesrules

                                              What do they have @ Elmvale Bakery?

                                              1. re: kwass

                                                It's an old-school bakery in Elmvale, Ontario. They make great donuts with jam or cream filling, chocolate glazed or apple fritters. Probably sugar donuts too. Very simple, very good.

                                                1. re: julesrules

                                                  By coincidence a friend who lives in ABQ just showed me this, which is exactly what I would like to see here:
                                                  And I hate that I have posted so many times in this thread without trying Paulette's. Sorry, Paulette. You're not trying to be what I crave in either chicken or donuts. That's okay.

                                        2. re: vox

                                          The donuts seem to follow the Krispy Kreme model of "take a base donut and put stuff on to get the different varieties" - in Paulette's case, a cake donut is used as the base.

                                          I agree with vox, the doreo donut doesnt taste much like an oreo. The fruity flavours are the most distinctive - some bites seem fine, others are way cloyingly sweet - but try convincing other people to eat a fruit-flavoured donut.

                                        3. The good is the service, that they seem they are trying and $21 for a whole chicken (a decent sized one too) isn't a bad deal.

                                          The bad is the sides are really pricey ($7 for a medium coleslaw really?), and/or not that good (mac&cheese was kind of bland). I don't know, I guess the sides at Portuguese places are kind of expensive considering it's just rice and potatoes. Speaking of bland, the chicken could really use a brine or a buttermilk soak because it didn't taste like much. And I'm not crazy about the crispy carapace of batter. I would prefer something more traditional.

                                          Verdict? I'm not saying I won't go back. It'll be a spot to go when I can think of what else to pick up. However, this stance might change when I give Chik'n'Joy a belated try.

                                          5 Replies
                                          1. re: grandgourmand

                                            Donuts got soggy very quickly. I guess there meant to be eaten immediately. I found them a little too sweet for me - we had the blueberry balsamic.

                                            Hubby loved the chicken. I think I prefer Chicken Joy.

                                            Service was excellet and when we were there yesterday around 2 PM the place was hopping. They were very friendly and informative.

                                            Yes, I'd go back if even for the sauce alone. Honey mustard herb sauce is killer.

                                            1. re: grandgourmand

                                              I really wanted to try the chicken, but $9 for one piece I couldn't justify (I don't eat dark meat, and they wouldn't give me two breast pieces, even w/ an upcharge). They were also out of the sauce I wanted to try.

                                              Ended up at Leslieville Pumps instead for a brisket sandwich - very good!

                                              1. re: Truffles

                                                Interesting that they wouldn't give you two pieces of white, even with an upcharge. I was just there and the owner was serving somebody who was obviously a family friend. She told her, "normally the Snack Pack is one piece white, one piece dark, but YOU can have whatever you want." Of course, it's the owner's prerogative to be as generous as she'd like to be with friends but to be so blatant about it - and loud - in front of another customer waiting to be served seemed like a strange thing to me.

                                                When it was my turn to be served I asked if I could skip the dots and was told to take them home for somebody else since I'm paying for them anyways (it was said with a smile and was a genuinely friendly comment but I was surprised by the inflexibility). The whole experience felt vaguely off-putting to me but not unpleasant.

                                                BTW, I'm attaching what $8 will buy you. An interesting novelty but not as tasty as I'd hoped it would be. Chick N Joy will do for me the next time I have a craving.

                                              2. re: grandgourmand

                                                $7.00 for a medium coleslaw? Really? Noooo thank you. I will stick to Stockyards - the best fried chicken in Toronto.

                                              3. Tried the "1/4" chicken on Friday. I skipped the donuts as I'm not a fan in general. The chicken was very juicy and tender but the casing/crust/shell for lack of a better word needed some seasoning and was very greasy. I had the hot sauce with it and while it didn't have much kick it did have good flavour. I'm going to give it another try but I think I too prefer Chicken Joy which is also rather close by.

                                                1. We live a few blocks away and so we've passed through twice. Once was for the hot donut holes, which were really nice, we had the garam masala version and they were quite delicious. Super pricey at $4.50 for 8 little bits, but I don't mind paying for something crave-worthy.

                                                  Tonight we had the "half" chicken combo and the coleslaw. Just bad. Really bad. I don't usually like slamming places in Anonymous Internet Commenter mode, and thus I do hope they work on their chicken recipe, because I want the place to succeed. First off, it wasn't a half chicken. Two cut-up pieces of breast, maybe totalling 2/3 the actual breast, the wing with a one-bite chunk of breast attached, and the thigh. Where'd the leg go? No one knows. But at $14 - and again, I don't mind paying for quality - this was not that cool.

                                                  But the old Borscht Belt joke, "The food was terrible! And such small portions!" probably applies here, cuz I didn't like the chicken. Paulette's is supposedly riffing on Korean fried chicken, which I like, have eaten lots of it in NY. But good Korean chicken is crispy, not hard-as-hell crunchy, which this was in parts. The meat itself, I don't know if it's brined, but they need to up the salt in the brine. Kinda tasteless, albeit moist. Luckily we got the sumac salt which was actually really terrific, and then we had the chili maple sauce which would have been better with less maple and more chili.

                                                  Anyway, I won't eat the chicken there again, no way, a waste of calories and a huge personal bummer as fried chicken is the once-in-a-blue-moon treat I look forward to the most. I really like Chick n Joy and it's half the price plus you get a bunch of excellent fries, so I'll stick with them.

                                                  15 Replies
                                                  1. re: childofthestorm

                                                    I felt kind of the same. We didn't dislike the chicken, but I don't think I'd rush out to get it again. We don't eat fried chicken very often, so at least I'm not tempted. But I did like the donut and I love the idea of donut holes.

                                                    1. re: SusanB

                                                      When they first opened, i couldn't wait to try this place. Now with all of the negative reviews, I'm having serous 2nd thoughts. I also love the fried chicken @ Stockyards, and I think I would try the fried chicken @ White Brick Kitchen, before I run to Paulette's. And In terms of the doughnuts, from what I've heard, the flavours don't sound particularly appealing.

                                                      1. re: kwass

                                                        It's not a huge risk to try one piece. YOu might like it. Last I checked, I think the place keeps selling out, so they have fans.

                                                        1. re: grandgourmand

                                                          True. It's just that Leslieville is completely out of my way. I wouldn't mind making the trek if it were worth my while, but if it's not...

                                                          1. re: kwass

                                                            OH, wasn't aware of your location. Yeah, then skip it, I guess. Not worth a detour.

                                                          2. re: grandgourmand

                                                            Grandgourmand, in response to your previous post, how does chik'n'joy compare with stockyards?

                                                            1. re: kwass

                                                              in my post i meant to indicate that I meant to try chik'n'joy at some point, which hasn't happened yet. my wife has, and she likes it more than paulette's. different style though. paulette's is deep fried whereas I believe chik'n'joy is "broasted" so similar to KFC but better.

                                                              1. re: grandgourmand

                                                                Hmmm...sounds like I'm going to have to give it a try. You're the 2nd person I've heard talk positively about chik'n'joy. Let us know when you finally try it.

                                                                1. re: kwass

                                                                  I like chick 'n joy but it is not like stockyards. It is more a KFC style bird but a few steps up in terms of quality.

                                                                    1. re: JennaBean

                                                                      after years of driving by it i finally tried chickn joy today. if people are saying it's better than paulette's, paulette's must be serving literal fried crap. i don't know if i've ever had worse fried chicken than at chicken joy. wet skin, dry chicken, no seasoning on the bird or the breading - complete garbage. i still think popeyes has the best bird in town, i mean stockyards might be better but it's outta my way

                                                                      1. re: disgusti

                                                                        no, i think popeyes' fried chicken is better than stockyards. but i think the fried chicken at church's is better than both of them. on the other hand, i'm pretty ecumenical about fried chicken ... most of the time even run of the mill fried chicken is pretty damn tasty.

                                                                        1. re: disgusti

                                                                          you must have went to chicken joy on a bad day, which ive never had. popeyes is sooooo greasy and stockyards is all batter no flavour.

                                                                    2. re: grandgourmand

                                                                      And like I said earlier, I'd also like to try the fried chicken from White Brick Kitchen. If anyone's tried it, again, let us know!

                                                            2. re: childofthestorm

                                                              Just moved to Leslieville and seems that there is no shortage of fried chicken options! Embarrased to say (kind of) that I tried the fried chicken at the Starbanks convenience store at Queen and Broadview (called Chester Chicken) and find it pretty damn good! Really good quality meat, not greasy, moist and flavourful. Have picked up a breast or wing about 5 times in 8 days as a snack. Always great, even at 3 am.

                                                            3. The whole aesthetic of the place screams southern stye fried chicken done well,so we were confused by it - very small pieces of chicken (my husband said possibly anoerexic chickens?) and that strange crispy batter. We loved the honey garlic sauce and i did like the mac n'cheese - super creamy, but the batter was odd - very confusing - have to say i was hoping for a nice salty buttermilk style batter, this was not it. We will probably stick with chick n'joy for the chicken, but why can't people just make straightforward southern style fried chicken and make it really good and forget this whole korean style batter thing - if i want korean style fried chicken I'll go to a korean restaurant - but i'm not even sure i've had that style batter in korean restuatants, which i do go to?

                                                              4 Replies
                                                              1. re: pippineast

                                                                keep in mind that most supermarket chicken is chicken on 'roids and/or is pumped full of water.

                                                                1. re: atomeyes

                                                                  Are they claiming to serve naturally raised chicken? Or anything other than standard supply?
                                                                  Also, if you mean "seasoned" chicken, I wouldn't say *most* supermarket chicken is seasoned. Maybe the frozen stuff but the whole chicken and pieces wrapped in store should not be seasoned (and it is supposed to be labelled if it is). Or are you referring to some other process?

                                                                  1. re: julesrules

                                                                    From http://www.torontolife.com/daily/dail...

                                                                    ...But since her chicken isn’t a freezer-to-fryer kind of thing (it goes through a 24-hour process of brining, battering and double frying), there can be a bit of a lag in replenishing exhausted stores....

                                                                    ...Connell explains that it’s the vital double-frying step that gives the naturally raised, free-run birds their fearsome crunch...

                                                                    1. re: mstestzzz002

                                                                      Ok then that helps to explain the pricing to some degree :) I do think it's fair for people to post that the pieces are smaller than average, it's a data point that can help people figure out whether the price is worth it to them.

                                                              2. Lipstick on a pig. Take some really boring cake doughnuts and tart 'em up with an assortment of fanciful flavors. Never will go back. Wish I didn't have to go to Michigan to get a dozen spudnuts.

                                                                4 Replies
                                                                1. re: TorontoTuna

                                                                  Spud nuts? What and where? I do get to Michigan from time to time. Please share!

                                                                  1. re: Full tummy

                                                                    These are the best spudnuts in the states...in a suburb of Cleveland on a really big beach. Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and a bag of warm spudnuts. Yowsa!

                                                                    1. re: TorontoTuna

                                                                      So was the Michigan mention above a typo? Will bookmark this for future reference!

                                                                      1. re: ylsf

                                                                        Alas, after the initial post, I phoned my niece in Ann Arbor to arrange for a care package of the local spudnuts. The old mom & pop shop is, sadly, closed. The Ohio joint is just as good though, and closer to Toronto. For anyone who hasn't tasted these retro. delights, well, prepare to be blown away,

                                                                2. btw, they are closing on Mondays now.. Just in case anyone was planning on going tomorrow... They said "new flavours" coming soon on their twitter... I wonder if they will ever introduce yeast style donuts...

                                                                  1. I finally tried the chicken here for the first time, and I have to say, I'm a bit baffled by all the "too crispy" talk. Yes, it's on the crispier side, and no, it's definitely not southern-style fried chicken, but for what it was it was quite tasty. It's possible that they've adjusted the recipe due to all the negative buzz, but the chicken I had featured skin that was satisfyingly crispy, and not at all overly hard. It almost reminded me of the crispy skin on a roasted pig, or Peking Duck. There's no doubt, however, that it's pretty far from southern style fried chicken, which is what I suspect a lot of people were expecting and where the bad buzz is coming from.

                                                                    I also had the blueberry balsamic doughnut, which was quite good, though I wasn't a fan of the doughnut dots (they were a little bit too chewy for my liking).

                                                                    1. I echo those in the "tooth breaking camp"... I really honestly did worry that I was going to break a tooth based on how hard the chicken was. Got it fresh out of the fryer, with the hot sauce (a mild heat, just in case anyone is wondering) and some cornbread (nicely moist and crumbly, but I'm not a fan of additions to my cornbread - I think this had some peppers in it). I was super excited about the chicken until I bit into it and worried for my dental health. Really disappointing, given that I have pretty much never met a piece of fried chicken I didn't like.

                                                                      The fancy doughnuts are pretty good (I like the vanilla nutmeg), but at $2.80 per doughnut, it puts it more in the once-a-month treat camp, rather than a more frequent indulgence.

                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                      1. re: thetempster

                                                                        I can't wait to try this chicken!! Has anybody out there broken a tooth on it yet? Is it the dark or white meat that is more likely to bust your teeth apart?

                                                                        1. re: justsayn

                                                                          tried the chicken "snack" today -- a half breast and a drumstick, plus a mini garam masala donut. i got the chicken with the sumac oregano spice rub. the drumstick was fantastic! a great extra crisp coating, with moist & tender meat. one of the best pieces of fried chicken i've had in a long while. alas, the breast was not as good; it was too dry. i don't know if it'd been sitting out for awhile and dried out, or was cooked too long, or what, but it did seem odd given the 24 hour brining they do.

                                                                          the coating on the chicken is definitely extra crispy. but i had no worries about my dental health while i was eating it. it wasn't *that* kind of crispy.

                                                                          the donut was fine, but did not strike me as particularly special, but that might be because it was closer to the end of the day. had they just come out of the fryer, perhaps i would have felt differently. it's not yet at the doughnut plant level, IMO.

                                                                          but man, that chicken!

                                                                      2. You can put me in the category of not minding the crispy batter, I liked what I had and found the chicken itself tasty.

                                                                        However I found the service situation to be a bit of a comedy of errors

                                                                        I place my order, 1/2 chicken and the Asian slaw, oops, they've taken the Asian slaw off the menu (but not updated the web site, strike 1) instead they have a chick pea and veggie salad. OK fine.

                                                                        Now guy number one tries to upsell me to a combo. I ask what's in the combo and am told its the half chicken plus mac and cheese. I actually want the salad so I decline, but it's cheaper that way he says, you save a dollar. I start to decline again but at this point there's a bit of business with getting another customers order to them through the window which of course means he stopped paying attention to me mid-sentence to do this other thing (strike 2). He then turns to guy 2 and reads my order as being the combo, guy # 2 says without making eye contact with me "oh good, we talked you into the combo" the other customer he's actually looking at reacts poorly as I think he was just buying two donuts, and then he points to me to indicate who the message was for, so now for the third time I have to repeat that I want the salad not mac and cheese, now there's some back and forth and I form the impression that I had misunderstood and I'm to get both the salad and the mac and cheese, fine I say. Somewhere in the middle of this discussion guy #2 says "I was here when you were here before", "never been here" I say and this is the best part, he decides that it's a good idea to challenge me on that "are you sure? I'm pretty sure I remember you"

                                                                        I pay, my order arrives in short order, taped shut so I can't check it and I leave. When I get home (we're not that far) and open it up I find that we did get the salad but no mac and cheese.

                                                                        Looking again at the online menu the "combo" is actually described as 4 pieces of chicken, one dip or rub and one side, no mention of mac and cheese specifically.

                                                                        So at the end of the day I actually got the food I wanted, at the advertised price, I liked the chicken fine, interesting texture and nice and juicy and well flavoured meat and the service was fast and the Abbott and Costello routine at the counter, while annoying didn't rise above the level of minor nit.

                                                                        5 Replies
                                                                        1. re: bytepusher

                                                                          Ha... "are you sure" you haven't been here before? haha.

                                                                          Just wondering though, did you specifically ask if you could substitute a salad for the Mac/Cheese or say "oh, but, I wanted a salad and not the mac/cheese" when they originally told you about the combo? That whole part sounds like a big miscommunication but and sounds like they didn't make it clear that you could get whatever side you wanted.

                                                                          One of my friends had the chicken recently and was much more enthusiastic about it than I was. I think a large part of it for me is also the value (for snack pack) in combination with the taste. If it was cheaper I probably would have liked it more :)

                                                                          1. re: ylsf

                                                                            Miscommunication no doubt, guy #1 was some sort of manager or owner and he had severe ADD, half the time he was supposed to be talking to me he was actually looking at what guy #2 was doing with the POS screen, or what the woman behind him packing orders was doing or interrupting me to greet new customers who came through the door.

                                                                          2. re: bytepusher

                                                                            The last time I went (and it will be the last time) I had to go back b/c I got the half chicken and they gave me all dark meat and I had a child that night that wouldn't eat it. I went back to ask them to fix it and then the girl at the counter tells me she decided to just give it to me that way b/c a new tray of white meat wasn't coming out for another min or two. So instead of asking me what my preference was she just made the decision for me and I had to make trip back to get what I actually ordered. She did not apologize.

                                                                            And you didn't miss anything with the mac and cheese. It was flavourless and gummy.

                                                                            1. re: JennaBean

                                                                              Oh and I forgot to mention - when I got home to feed the kid the chicken breast - it was seriously under cooked. There was a PBJ on whole wheat after that.

                                                                          3. So I had lunch from this place today and a review will follow.

                                                                            First let me address the crispy/rock hard shell thingy. It's a tempura batter. It was quite crispy too. "Hard as hell", "Worried I'd break a tooth" or anything like that?? Absolutely not. I can't comment on how those people's chicken were when they got it and maybe they have dialed back the crispiness. They sure seem to be paying attention to what's being said.

                                                                            Anyway, donuts first. I picked up a half dozen. Ya, they're expensive. I understand the perspective thing but that doesn't change the fact that they're very pricey. I quite liked them and would order one every once in a while but I really wasn't blown away by any of the 6 I tried.
                                                                            I think the reason why they're one flavour with different toppings is because they're made by a robot.

                                                                            The chicken was a bit of a surprise at first. My first thought was fairly flavourless. After I ate a bit more I decided a better way to put it was it had a delicate chicken flavour. It's getting it's flavour only from the bird, nothing else. On that, it was quite nice. The whole idea it seems is that the chicken comes pretty plain and you customize it with seasoned salts or sauces.
                                                                            The sauce didn't work for me. Even though I'm a sauce lover I found the hot sauce too thick and overpowered the chicken. I also got some Garam Masala Salt and thought that it made for a real nice piece. If you didn't over do it.
                                                                            So in future I'll stick with the salts, not the sauces.
                                                                            I loved the crispy, crunchiness of it. The meat was juicy enough although not overly so. All in all, I think it would be very tasty if it was simply salt and peppered right out of the oil.


                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                            1. re: Davwud

                                                                              Did you have the grapefruit/maple donut (if they are still making it)? That is the first flavour that has appeal to me. I've been in twice to check out the donuts and the appearance (so much glaze on a tiny donut, plus I think the display itself, like the donuts are jewellery) turns me off. I know I should just give them a try.

                                                                              1. re: julesrules

                                                                                Of the ones I they had available, it was the only one I didn't have.

                                                                                My favourite was the Rootbeer Float.


                                                                            2. FYI: Not that I prescribe to Foursquare's tips, but they apparently don't like it as much: https://foursquare.com/v/paulettes/4f...

                                                                              1. I went back today. I gotta say, they must be listening. The "cocoon" effect is no longer - the batter is very much integrated with the chicken skin now. Also, it still has that great "chicken-y" flavour that I liked so much before (on the face of it, I know, that sounds an absurd statement - but this chicken is very "chicken-y". I wish they would offer fries, but I had the corn-bread and it was pretty damn good. I think I'll be visiting this place on a regular basis. I still give the crown to Stockyards, but for something slightly different, Paulette's is great. It was crunchy without being too crunchy, and was not oily at all. Glad I went back.


                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                1. re: justxpete

                                                                                  Exactly the same findings on my end.


                                                                                2. I have been visiting every couple of months, and their fried chicken has been getting better and better. Now I'm at the point where I think it rivals what I think is the best fried chicken in TO, Stockyards.

                                                                                  I still wish they had better sides, though!

                                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: justxpete

                                                                                    Do you not like the Mac n Cheese??


                                                                                    1. re: Davwud

                                                                                      I found it fairly bland, but I've not tried it of late...

                                                                                  2. Is this place still open and would anyone recommend it?

                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: TeacherFoodie

                                                                                      It's no longer open, but Delica is, and they still sell their doughnuts out of Delica.

                                                                                      1. re: kwass

                                                                                        What's the point of selling donuts if you don't open till 10am?

                                                                                        1. re: petek

                                                                                          I couldn't agree more!!!

                                                                                          GHD finally clued into the lunacy of this, and now it opens @ 8 am during the week, although later on weekends.