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It's Indian Now?

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spine64 Jan 3, 2013 06:53 PM

Dinner with my foodie daughter and I has now changed from Italian to Indian for our Saturday night. We have dined at Copper Chimney and it is a viable option. Looking for any suggestions outside of the Chimney option.

Thank you

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    DaveMaharaj RE: spine64 Jan 3, 2013 06:56 PM

    Bombay by the Lake in Etobicoke. A hidden gem.

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      autopi RE: spine64 Jan 3, 2013 07:17 PM

      only been there once, but i liked aravind quite a bit. very casual setting, but rather more refined cooking. it's keralan, which i gather involves more fish & vegetables, and less butter/cream/heavy sauces (though i'm no expert!) it's easily accessible by TTC too, which is a plus.

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        dubchild RE: spine64 Jan 3, 2013 07:17 PM

        Aravind on the Danforth. At one point Lahore Tikka House in little India was getting a lot of buzz, but I haven't heard anything lately.

        6 Replies
        1. re: dubchild
          biggreenmatt RE: dubchild Jan 3, 2013 07:19 PM

          LTH is still amazing. Shocks me every time at how good the food is at that price-point.

          1. re: biggreenmatt
            MissBingBing RE: biggreenmatt Jan 4, 2013 04:56 AM

            Not as much fun in the winter as eating on the patio!

          2. re: dubchild
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            bytepusher RE: dubchild Jan 4, 2013 05:55 AM

            +1 for Aravind

            LTH is great but you need to be ready for the atmosphere, I know that it's not quite the "restaurant in the middle of a construction site" it once was but there's still some of that.

            1. re: dubchild
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              pakmode RE: dubchild Jan 4, 2013 07:48 AM

              LTH is terrible.
              I know you specifically asked for Indian - but I would consider the Afghan restaurant Bamiyan Kabob in the Thornecliffe area. It's not far off the DVP, so it's easy to get too.

              1. re: pakmode
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                bytepusher RE: pakmode Jan 4, 2013 12:24 PM

                I love Bamiyan Kabob for what it is but would always caveat that with a) it's fast food counter service b) it's a bright and sterile room (and very clean), c) not surprisingly for the cuisine of a muslim country, no liquor licence. Go for the food sure, but there is NO atmosphere to speak of.

              2. re: dubchild
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                timeo RE: dubchild Apr 14, 2013 08:16 PM

                Just went to LTH tonight with the fam for the first time in a year or two. The place is still rocking it (and possibly might be even better than before). We got the usual: vegetable combo sizzler (lentils, chickpeas, cauliflower, potato, spinach), chicken tikka and chicken kebab rice sizzler, beef nihari, and whole wheat chapatti.

                Beef nihari is still succulent, the meat cooked just right so that there's a gelatinousness to it. The combo sizzler was very well-seasoned and cooked. Unlike previous ventures when the vegetables were a bit overcooked, we didn't find that to be the case this time. The folks commented on how greatly improved this dish was compared to previous visits and my dad pretty much wolfed the whole thing down (saying a lot since he's nearly a carnivore). Chicken tikka was moist, and the chicken kebabs were delicious as usual (though that was probably the weakest thing on the table).

                While I thought the dinner was a tad better than previous times, my parents thought that it was a vast improvement over a restaurant that has always been pretty good. From what we could gather from the staff, they hadn't changed chefs, but had learned to make some of their dishes more mild (which we all agreed ended up being better though we all love heat). And of course, the true litmus test: there were tons of Indian/Pakistani families waiting for tables. $48 with tax/tips.

              3. prima RE: spine64 Jan 3, 2013 09:24 PM

                I'd probably head to Aravind.

                FoodyDudey recommended Sher-E-Punjab a few times. I'd think that's another safe bet, but I haven't tried it yet.

                1 Reply
                1. re: prima
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                  bytepusher RE: prima Jan 4, 2013 06:05 AM

                  Sher-e-punjab is a good choice if what you want is the standard Northern/Punjabi dishes well executed in a nice room.
                  We've been going there for 25+ years and the menu has barely changed, you won't find anything adventurous here. Chicken Tikka, saucy curries and the like.

                2. MissBingBing RE: spine64 Jan 4, 2013 04:59 AM

                  Trimurti on Queen West or Dhaba on King West. Maroli on Bloor West.

                  1. Googs RE: spine64 Jan 4, 2013 07:58 AM

                    I'm still very much in love with Jaipur Grille though admittedly I haven't eaten there in about 3 months.
                    http://www.jaipurgrille.com/

                    12 Replies
                    1. re: Googs
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                      spine64 RE: Googs Jan 4, 2013 08:26 AM

                      As we will be shopping in Yorkville, the Jaipur Grille may work, just looked at their menu and looks perfect.
                      Thanks

                      1. re: spine64
                        prima RE: spine64 Jan 4, 2013 09:06 AM

                        I've also enjoyed Jaipur Grille.

                        There's also Utsav on Yorkville Ave near Bellair. I've never dined there, so I can't comment on the food, but it looked fairly busy the last time I walked by.
                        www.utsav.ca

                        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/1051...

                        Host on Prince Arthur is another option located near Yorkville. http://www.welcometohost.com/menu.html

                        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/1051... I haven't dined at the Yorkville Host in the last decade,so I can't comment on recent experiences.

                      2. re: Googs
                        prima RE: Googs Jan 4, 2013 10:09 AM

                        Googs, which dishes do you recommend the most or order most frequently at Jaipur?

                        1. re: prima
                          Googs RE: prima Jan 4, 2013 11:16 AM

                          I'm afraid you might find my tastes somewhat less than adventurous. Here goes anyway.

                          First, I like that they have a selection of decent wines and cocktails. That's so rare in an Indian restaurant. I usually go with a Riesling. I'm a little disappointed that they no longer serve Narcissist. The current one is okay, but that could stand improvement.

                          Second, the room is appropriate for a couple or family night out. Not luxurious, but comfortable with good and knowledgeable service.

                          Third, there's a gentleman server who's been there for years. I highly recommend talking to him about your likes/dislikes and having him recommend dishes. Surprises have worked out for me quite nicely.

                          From the app's, I like the pakoras served light and crispy without a hint of grease. (But I know you're in there, yes I do.) The Tandoori wings are kinda fun if you're in the mood for that. If I'm really hungry i might go with the lamb rib chops. I'm a sucker for Indian spiced lamb.

                          For a main, it depends on mood, heavy or light. I'm definitely a Lamb Vindaloo gal, but I've yet to have a meat dish I didn't like. I've yet to have the Pahadi Chicken. I saw it land on the table next door last time and now it's definitely on my to-do.

                          Their seafood dishes are lovely. The Goan shrimp is a fave of mine. Grouper Konkani is also nice.

                          Naan is crisp with just the right amount of char. Their pullao I wish I could make at home. So, so good.

                          Don't skip dessert. I'm partial to the Ras Malai which I might not have gotten around to without the server's rec. Pair it with a shot of Frangelico and that's heaven to me.

                          Oh to live in their delivery zone.

                          1. re: Googs
                            prima RE: Googs Jan 4, 2013 11:32 AM

                            Thanks so much for your detailed reply, Googs. I just like having specific dishes recommended, adventurous or not.

                            I don't eat Indian food frequently enough to try every channa masala, every aloo gobi, etc in the city, so I appreciate recs for specific dishes. I'll have to try the Goan shrimp.

                            The last time I ate at Jaipur Grille, it was part of a large group dinner when a friend's family was visiting, and I didn't get to do the ordering.

                            1. re: prima
                              justxpete RE: prima Jan 7, 2013 12:39 PM

                              I pretty much have a set menu at Indian Restaurants:

                              Lamb Vindaloo (spicey)
                              Butter Chicken (occasionally)
                              Lots of Naan
                              Aloo gobi
                              Raita (yogurt w/ mint and/or cucumber)
                              Daal Makni
                              Chicken Tikka

                              It's a pretty un-adventerous menu other than the lamb vindaloo (which can be quite spicey), but pretty damn delicious. The naan with the raita with the daal and then the proteins.. so good.

                              1. re: justxpete
                                prima RE: justxpete Jan 7, 2013 12:51 PM

                                When I'm at Northern Indian restaurants, I often order aloo gobi, channa masala, mutter paneer, sag aloo or sag paneer, but I also like ordering seafood curries and tandoori dishes, and any somewhat less common vegetable dishes. Haven't ordered much vindaloo lately- it's been a while!

                                1. re: prima
                                  justxpete RE: prima Jan 7, 2013 01:08 PM

                                  Yeah, it definitely depends on the restaurant, but this is just my general type of menu - at Indian Rice Factory (for example), I would order an entirely different set of items.

                                  My SO is a little more conservative than I, so this seems an agreeable menu for both of us.

                                2. re: justxpete
                                  prima RE: justxpete Jan 7, 2013 12:51 PM

                                  Thanks for posting your typical set menu, Pete. It's neat to see what others tend to order.

                                  When I'm at Northern Indian restaurants, I often order samosas, aloo gobi, channa masala, mutter paneer, sag aloo or sag paneer, but I also like ordering seafood curries and tandoori dishes, and any somewhat less common vegetable dishes. Haven't ordered much vindaloo lately- it's been a while!

                                  1. re: justxpete
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                                    akhorasanee RE: justxpete Jan 13, 2013 08:32 AM

                                    For your menu Selection you Should give Kathmandu on young a try, their daal makhani, chicken vindaloo, chicken biryani, okra masala, matter paneer is really good

                                    1. re: akhorasanee
                                      justxpete RE: akhorasanee Jan 18, 2013 02:49 PM

                                      Thanks Akhor. Will definitely give it a try next time we're in the mood for Indian.

                                3. re: Googs
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                                  spine64 RE: Googs Jan 4, 2013 02:33 PM

                                  Thanks Googs,

                                  I know Aloo Gabi will be my daughters definite menu item. No meat for her, but I have a hard time resisting lamb. The Vindaloo sounds perfect.

                            2. estufarian RE: spine64 Jan 4, 2013 09:22 AM

                              I think Aravind may have closed.
                              Their voice mailbox is full - and no lights on.
                              But no notice on the door.
                              I hope not - IMO it was the finest Indian restaurant still standing when I last went in early December.

                              Jaipur Grill is OK - tried it again (last year) after others' recommended and it was fine - but never went back as I preferred others.

                              And add me to the Lahore Tikka House 'haters' - yes, it reminds me of India - but the food is overcooked, overspiced, and doesn't even look attractive.

                              6 Replies
                              1. re: estufarian
                                prima RE: estufarian Jan 4, 2013 10:07 AM

                                I hope the owners are just on holiday. It seems most Indian people I know visit India in December, January or February.

                                1. re: estufarian
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                                  bytepusher RE: estufarian Jan 4, 2013 12:41 PM

                                  I hope not, lets hope a poorly communicated vacation closing.

                                  Nice folks but they have always been really poor at any kind of communication. Create twitter, tweet for a week, just drop it, create facebook page, post for about a week, just drop it, register a web domain but never put up a web site, you get the idea...

                                  1. re: estufarian
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                                    bringonthelbs RE: estufarian Jan 4, 2013 12:55 PM

                                    +1 for the LTH haters!

                                    1. re: bringonthelbs
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                                      pluckypear RE: bringonthelbs May 10, 2013 08:46 PM

                                      Another +1 LTH hater. I find the food also overcooked, extremely greasy as in swimming in it, and overly salty. The setting is like sitting in a run down alleyway. Sure it's cheap but so is Mcdonald's.

                                      I like Indian Rice Factory, Copper Chimney and Banjara on Eglinton.

                                      Aravind on Danforth was a new favourite of mine. The food was sophisticated yet authentic. Sadly it has closed.

                                      1. re: pluckypear
                                        foodyDudey RE: pluckypear Nov 12, 2013 06:40 AM

                                        This reply is six months after you posted, but I thought I'd mention that the Star analysed the LTH vegetable sizzler for fat and salt, the results were a complete fail. You can read "Lahore Tikka House's Veggies sizzler packs a sodium surprise" here -> http://www.thestar.com/life/health_we...

                                        Bye the way, I heard on the radio today that the owner of LTH died of a heart attack last week at the age of 48. http://www.thestar.com/life/food_wine...

                                    2. re: estufarian
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                                      spine64 RE: estufarian Jan 4, 2013 02:29 PM

                                      What would be your first choice?

                                    3. Nevy RE: spine64 Jan 4, 2013 09:39 AM

                                      I recently went to Amaya on Bayview in December and we enjoyed it. Service was quick, polite, and warm. Food was very flavourful and well spiced. It wasn't the biggest Indian portions I've ever recieved (that award goes to the restaurants in Brampton) but they did fill us up nicely. I would really recommend their halibut in banana leaf. It was juicy and great use of spices.

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: Nevy
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                                        callitasicit RE: Nevy Jan 4, 2013 10:03 AM

                                        Go to Lahore Tikka House, forget what all the haters say;) They have the best garlic naan and chicken tikka masala in the city!

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                                        AndrewWalshe RE: spine64 Jan 4, 2013 01:15 PM

                                        Lahor Tikka House

                                        1. c
                                          childofthestorm RE: spine64 Jan 4, 2013 02:52 PM

                                          I'm gonna throw Anjappar Chettinad in the mix if your daughter is serious about food and wants something different from the usual Punjabi.

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                                            linalool RE: spine64 Jan 6, 2013 01:13 PM

                                            googs, the rasmalai from jaipur grille is of the pre-packaged, bulk, pre-frozen variety. i would say most every rasmalai or gulab jamun served in toronto falls into that category. the dessert is still pretty tasty but hardly warrants special mention as a standout.

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: linalool
                                              Googs RE: linalool Jan 7, 2013 06:59 AM

                                              That my be true, but as you say it's still pretty tasty.

                                            2. Baelsette RE: spine64 Jan 7, 2013 10:58 AM

                                              Walked by Aravind today, there is a sign that they are closed for the holidays.

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