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Please Critique My Toronto Must-Try List (Updated and Revised)

t
TeacherFoodie Jan 30, 2013 03:44 PM

Here is my newly revised list for places I would like to try. Essentially I am hoping my list reflects Toronto’s “best of” for various price-points. Comments and suggestions are welcome! Let me know if you think I am missing any cateogories. I am happy to remove restaurants if necessary as well.

Aboriginal – Keriwa Cafe

Afghan – Bamiyan Kebab, Pamier Kabab

American/Canadian – Actinolite, Ursa, Harbord Room, Acadia, Black Hoof, Marben, Woodlot, Grand Electric, (have been to Burger’s Priest and Holy Chuck)

Bakeries/Ice Cream/Treats - Patisserie Royale for Middle Eastern (have been to Prairie Girl)

BBQ/Burgers – Barque, Big Smoke Burger, Goody’s Diner, Hadley’s, Paul and Sandy’s, Queen and Beaver (for the burger) and Buster Rhino's in Whitby (have been to Big Bone BBQ in Newmarket, Stack and Stockyards)

Chinese - New Sky, Yuen Tung, Spadina Garden, Congee Queen (Don Mills and Lawrence) and Brilliant Chinese in Markham (have been to Asian Legend at Leslie/7 and Lee Garden)

Dim Sum – Bamboo, Crown Princess, Rol San or Pearl

Dim Sum (Uptown) - Dragon Dynasty - Sheppard & Brimley, Yang's - 9665 Bayview Ave.,,Casa Imperial - Steeles & Warden, Casa Victoria - Warden & Hwy 7, Empire Court - Hilton Suite, Hwy 7, Markham

Ethiopian – Dukem

French - Pastis, Le Select, La Cigogne (tarte flambee on Saturdays) (have been to Didier, Celestin, Coquine and Le Papillon)

Greek – Pantheon, Avli, Pan, Volos

Indian - Copper Chimney or Jaipur Grille, Sher-E-Punjab, Savera and Saravanna Bhavann

Italian – Splendido, Scaramouche, Paese (King location), Tutti Mati, Mistura and Enoteca Sociale (have been to Buca, Campagnolo and Scarpetta)

Japanese - Zen, Guu Izakaya, Koyoi (have been to Qi and Solo Sushi-Ya in Newmarket)

Korean - ?

Lebanese – Paramount?

“Mexican” – Frida, Grand Electric, Agave y Aguacate, Rebozos, La Bella Managua (have been to El Rincon, Milagro and Playa Cabana ).

Pizza - Pizzeria Libretto, Pizza e Pazzi, Queen Margherita (going to Danforth location of Libretto this weekend)

Polish - Cafe Polonez

Portuguese - Bairrada Churrassqueira, Churrasqueira Estrela, Banaboia (have been to Bloor Village Grill and Chiado)

Sandwiches - Porchetta & Co, Cora's Kitchen, Buster’s Sea Cove, Bahn Mi Boys, Hey Meatball, California Sandwiches, Nino D'Aversa Italian Salumi

Seafood – Starfish, Catch, Rodney’s

Thai – Suko Thai (have been to Khao San Road, Linda and Mengrai)

Vietnamese – Pho Phuong, Tien Thanh

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  1. l
    LexiFirefly RE: TeacherFoodie Jan 30, 2013 04:12 PM

    Goody's is closed :(

    1 Reply
    1. re: LexiFirefly
      t
      TeacherFoodie RE: LexiFirefly Jan 31, 2013 02:09 PM

      Okay, thanks!

    2. d
      deabot RE: TeacherFoodie Jan 30, 2013 04:16 PM

      Quite the list!

      Agree with Cafe Polonez, Patisserie Royale, Frida.

      Did not like Paramount for Lebanese. Not a fan of Barque either.

      For Korean can I suggest Mot Na Son? Haven't been yet but it's on my list. For pizza, maybe Danforth Pizza House for some old school pizza?

      1 Reply
      1. re: deabot
        t
        TeacherFoodie RE: deabot Jan 31, 2013 02:09 PM

        Thanks deabot for the suggestions. I've added/taken away from my list.

        What did you try at Barque?

      2. Charles Yu RE: TeacherFoodie Jan 30, 2013 04:18 PM

        Brilliant in Markham is closed!
        For higher end Chinese, head over to Yang's or the Emperor, both in Richmond Hill, instead.
        For less formal, try Maple Yip or Honest Kitchen at Sheppard and Midland in Scarborough.

        British Gastro-pub: The Grove!!

        Middle Eastern/Lebanese - Instead of Paramount, I like Sababa, on Steeles, between Yonge and Bathurst.

        Seafood: Instead of Rodney's either Zee Grill or Diana's

        BTW, Splendido, despite of the name IS NOT Italian. Its fine dining French/Continental. So is Scaramouche!

        1 Reply
        1. re: Charles Yu
          t
          TeacherFoodie RE: Charles Yu Jan 31, 2013 02:10 PM

          Thank for the info. Charles. I also like Sababa!

          I'm hoping to be able to join you for a Chow meet sometime.

        2. d
          Dean Tudor RE: TeacherFoodie Jan 30, 2013 04:28 PM

          Lunch only -- Gallery Grill

          Spadina Chinese - Mother's Dumplings

          Persian?

          BBQ - Lou Dawg's

          3 Replies
          1. re: Dean Tudor
            t
            TeacherFoodie RE: Dean Tudor Jan 31, 2013 02:16 PM

            Thanks Dean. What do you like at Lou Dawg's and Gallery Grill?

            1. re: TeacherFoodie
              d
              Dean Tudor RE: TeacherFoodie Jan 31, 2013 02:23 PM

              Lou Dawg has whole wings (including the tip which i gnaw on) so all three pieces are together,

              Gallery Grill's menu changes every 10 days or so. It is only open for lunch and Sun brunch. Soups are great, so are the rabbit variations.

            2. re: Dean Tudor
              d
              defram RE: Dean Tudor Nov 26, 2013 07:26 AM

              For Persian Kabab, I recommend Akbar Joojeh (267 Bay Thorn Drive, off Yonge/South of 7)

              I'm picky with other Persian foods but the wife like Gilaneh @ Don Mills/York MIlls.

            3. prima RE: TeacherFoodie Jan 30, 2013 04:52 PM

              I'd describe Keriwa as upscale/contemporary/continental with a few traditional First Nations ingredients/elements thrown in the mix rather than Aboriginal.

              Mot Na Son and Seoul House for Korean

              Black Camel for sandwiches

              Not a fan of Tutti Matti. I plan to try the Italian brunch at Lil Baci Taverna on Yonge near Davisville in the near future. I also want to try Black Skirt, for its southern Italian food. http://www.blackskirtrestaurant.com/

              9 Replies
              1. re: prima
                k
                KAYLO RE: prima Jan 30, 2013 06:43 PM

                Yours Truly is original and innovative.., and unique in Toronto. ANd highly polarizing. Several threads here can attest to that! I happen to adore it,but I encourage you to try it at least once.

                1. re: KAYLO
                  t
                  TeacherFoodie RE: KAYLO Jan 31, 2013 02:16 PM

                  I've added it. Thanks.

                2. re: prima
                  t
                  TeacherFoodie RE: prima Jan 31, 2013 02:13 PM

                  Thanks prima! I've been to Black Skirt, and did not enjoy, for the simple fact that the spaghetti I had seemed like the type you buy at the grocery store in a box/bag. If I'm going out to eat Italian, I want "home made" pasta.

                  1. re: TeacherFoodie
                    prima RE: TeacherFoodie Jan 31, 2013 02:24 PM

                    Have you tried Strada 241? That's also on my list.

                    1. re: prima
                      t
                      TeacherFoodie RE: prima Jan 31, 2013 02:28 PM

                      I haven't tried it. The menu looks really reasonably priced, although I do find it ridiculous that they charge $2 for bread and oil when a lot of restaurants bring it for free.

                      I am looking forward to your report!

                      1. re: TeacherFoodie
                        c
                        celtgirl RE: TeacherFoodie Feb 4, 2014 01:17 PM

                        http://pizzaeatingtoronto.blogspot.ca/

                      2. re: prima
                        kwass RE: prima Feb 10, 2013 12:17 PM

                        Strada 241 is good, but not particularly memorable. It's definitely not a destination place, but someplace you should try If you happen to be in the area.

                        1. re: kwass
                          c
                          celtgirl RE: kwass Feb 4, 2014 01:16 PM

                          Horrible. Just horrible. I would never go back to that place again. Worst pizza ever.

                          1. re: celtgirl
                            kwass RE: celtgirl Feb 4, 2014 01:20 PM

                            Sorry to hear. I went when it 1st opened, but haven't been back since. My experience wasn't horrible, but I wasn't particularly impressed either.

                  2. s
                    stephen RE: TeacherFoodie Jan 31, 2013 06:04 AM

                    Would add Holy Chuck to the burger list...

                    5 Replies
                    1. re: stephen
                      a
                      afong56 RE: stephen Jan 31, 2013 08:29 AM

                      100% agreed. . .

                      1. re: afong56
                        m
                        millygirl RE: afong56 Jan 31, 2013 08:57 AM

                        OP has been to Holy Chuck. He/she has it listed under Americian :)

                        1. re: millygirl
                          t
                          TeacherFoodie RE: millygirl Jan 31, 2013 02:17 PM

                          And I will be back! I have been twice and would go back any day for a milkshake! They are so good! I have had the Nutella Salted Caramel and the Strawberry Cheesecake.

                          1. re: TeacherFoodie
                            c
                            callitasicit RE: TeacherFoodie Feb 24, 2013 05:16 PM

                            I would also recommend the apple pie milkshake, truly tasted like an apple pie without the crust pieces lol.

                            1. re: callitasicit
                              t
                              TeacherFoodie RE: callitasicit Feb 25, 2013 02:11 PM

                              Thanks callitasicit. I'll remember to try it on one of my visits.

                    2. t
                      tangovoxtrot RE: TeacherFoodie Jan 31, 2013 06:45 AM

                      Bakery - Nadege
                      Ice Cream - Greg's
                      Chinese - Maple Yip, Spring Villa Chinese Cuisine (haven't been here in a while though)
                      Italian - F'Amelia, L'unita (not as good as Enoteca Sociale though)
                      Pizza - Fabricca (crispy Roman-style crust)
                      Mexican - Dos Amigos (haven't been there lately)
                      Greek - Mezes
                      Indian - Amaya (not the Bread Bar)

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: tangovoxtrot
                        t
                        TeacherFoodie RE: tangovoxtrot Jan 31, 2013 02:21 PM

                        Thanks tango.

                      2. a
                        afong56 RE: TeacherFoodie Jan 31, 2013 08:29 AM

                        agave y aguacate is closed

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: afong56
                          1sweetpea RE: afong56 Jan 31, 2013 08:47 AM

                          I'd add Pho Dau Bo (Finch and Weston or Dixie and Dundas) for Vietnamese. I'd also suggest Anjappar Chettinad in the Indian Category. Rendez-vous may not be everyone's cup of tea, but the one time I visited, the Ethiopian food was excellent, particularly the dishes we specifically ordered, versus the combo plate standards. It is my second choice for Ethiopian in Toronto, Dukem being my #1 for consistently good food. If you're a fan of Sichuan cuisine, Ba Shu Ren Jia is worth considering.

                          1. re: afong56
                            t
                            TeacherFoodie RE: afong56 Jan 31, 2013 02:21 PM

                            So sad. :(

                          2. a
                            air621 RE: TeacherFoodie Jan 31, 2013 01:33 PM

                            I would create a pub listing just to have the Auld Spot on it

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: air621
                              t
                              TeacherFoodie RE: air621 Jan 31, 2013 02:21 PM

                              Done!

                            2. s
                              szw RE: TeacherFoodie Feb 1, 2013 11:57 PM

                              My suggestions: Add Hoof Raw Bar, and Hoof Cafe for brunch!

                              Add Chantecler, Bestellen, La Carnita, Richmond Station (this satisfies burger category also).

                              Parts and Labour currently has a nice looking burger special on wed.

                              Japanese...forget Koyoi. Check out Kingyo, Zakkushi, and there are tons of ramen to check out also if you are intersted.

                              Korean...Song Cook's at yonge/steeles (it's hard to find, its behind galleria. Makkal Chon on Lawrence East. If must be k-town, go to sunrise.

                              Thai...sabai sabai on church

                              I'd add Malaysian at Gourmet Garden/Restoran Malaysia and also One Two Snacks. (both in scarborough)

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: szw
                                t
                                TeacherFoodie RE: szw Feb 10, 2013 11:52 AM

                                Thank you szw!

                              2. t
                                TeacherFoodie RE: TeacherFoodie Feb 10, 2013 11:55 AM

                                The latest list - thanks everyone for your help so far!

                                Afghan – Bamiyan Kebab, Pamier Kabab

                                American/Canadian – Acadia, Actinolite, Bestsellen, Chantecler, Ursa, Harbord Room, Black Hoof, Hoof Raw Bar, Marben, Woodlot, Grand Electric, Richmond Station, Yours Truly (have been to Burger’s Priest and Holy Chuck)

                                Bakeries/Ice Cream/Treats – Nadege, Greg's, Patisserie Royale for Middle Eastern (have been to Bakerbots and Prairie Girl)

                                BBQ/Burgers – Barque, Big Smoke Burger, Hadley’s, Lou Dawgs, Parts and Labour (Weds. Burger special), Paul and Sandy’s, Queen and Beaver (for the burger) and Buster Rhino's in Whitby (have been to Big Bone BBQ in Newmarket, Stack and Stockyards)

                                Brunch – Hoof Café, Stockyards, Marben, Beast, Mildred’s Temple Kitchen, White Brick Kitchen, L’Ouvrier, The Saint, Red Fish, L’il Baci (Have been to Lola’s Commissary)

                                Chinese - Ba Shu Ren Jia, New Sky, Mother’s Dumplings, Yuen Tung, Spadina Garden, Spring Villa, Congee Queen (Don Mills and Lawrence); Yang’s and Emperor in Richmond Hill; and Maple Yip and Honest Kitchen in Scarborough (have been to Asian Legend at Leslie/7 and Lee Garden)

                                Dim Sum – Bamboo, Crown Princess, Rol San or Pearl

                                Dim Sum (Uptown) - Dragon Dynasty - Sheppard & Brimley, Yang's - 9665 Bayview Ave.,,Casa Imperial - Steeles & Warden, Casa Victoria - Warden & Hwy 7, Empire Court - Hilton Suite, Hwy 7, Markham

                                Ethiopian – Dukem, Rendez-vous

                                French - Pastis, Le Select, La Cigogne (tarte flambee on Saturdays) (have been to Didier, Celestin, Coquine and Le Papillon)

                                Gastro-Pub/Pub – Auld Spot, The Grove

                                Greek – Pantheon, Avli, Pan, Volos, Mezes

                                Indian – Amaya, Copper Chimney or Jaipur Grille, Anjappar Chettinad, Sher-E-Punjab, Savera and Saravanna Bhavann

                                Italian – F’amelia, L’unita, Paese (King location), Mistura and Enoteca Sociale (have been to Buca, Campagnolo and Scarpetta)

                                Japanese - Zen, Guu Izakaya, Kingyo, Zakkushi (have been to Qi and Solo Sushi-Ya in Newmarket)

                                Korean - Mot Na Son, Seoul House, Song Cook’s, Makkal Chon, Sunrise

                                Lebanese – ?

                                Malaysian – Gourmet Garden/Restoran Malaysia, One Two Snacks

                                “Mexican” – Frida, Grand Electric, Rebozos, Dos Amigos, La Bella Managua, La Carnita (have been to El Rincon, Milagro and Playa Cabana ).

                                Middle Eastern - ? (Have been to Shoom Shoom, Sababa, Tabule, Jerusalem, Me Va Me, Sofra Grill)

                                Morrocan/Persian - ? (Have been to Sultan’s Tent)

                                Pizza – Danforth Pizza House, Fabricca, Pizzeria Libretto, Pizza e Pazzi, Queen Margherita (going to Danforth location of Libretto this weekend)

                                Polish - Cafe Polonez

                                Portuguese - Bairrada Churrassqueira, Churrasqueira Estrela, Banaboia (have been to Bloor Village Grill and Chiado)

                                Sandwiches/Lunch – Black Camel, Porchetta & Co, Cora's Kitchen, Buster’s Sea Cove, Bahn Mi Boys, Hey Meatball, California Sandwiches, Nino D'Aversa Italian Salumi, Gallery Grill

                                Seafood – Starfish, Catch, Rodney’s, Zee Grill, Diana’s

                                Thai – Suko Thai, Sabai Sabai (have been to Khao San Road, Linda and Mengrai)

                                Fine Dining/Upscale/Contemporary – Keriwa Café, Scaramouche, Splendido

                                Vietnamese – Pho Phuong, Tien Thanh, Pho Dau Bo

                                15 Replies
                                1. re: TeacherFoodie
                                  b
                                  bapto RE: TeacherFoodie Feb 14, 2013 08:57 AM

                                  This is a great list! It serves as a great guide for someone trying to discover Toronto. I see you have Red Fish in the Brunch category but not Seafood as well?...

                                  1. re: bapto
                                    t
                                    TeacherFoodie RE: bapto Feb 14, 2013 03:22 PM

                                    Added to seafood in my word doc. Thanks for noticing!

                                  2. re: TeacherFoodie
                                    janel RE: TeacherFoodie Feb 14, 2013 09:34 AM

                                    For another bakery, try Bobette & Belle (I love their cupcakes, not really a fan of Prairie Girl).

                                    1. re: janel
                                      kwass RE: janel Feb 14, 2013 09:57 AM

                                      +1 Bobbette & Belle

                                      1. re: janel
                                        t
                                        TeacherFoodie RE: janel Feb 14, 2013 03:23 PM

                                        Thanks! I added B & B!

                                      2. re: TeacherFoodie
                                        justxpete RE: TeacherFoodie Feb 14, 2013 04:33 PM

                                        Keriwa Cafe is definitely not a "must-visit". It's more like an "avoid at all costs, or it'll cost you".

                                        Lebanese - there's a great place at Dundas square called Milo's Pita. It's cheap and cheerful, and the owner is really nice. They may have the best falafel in the city - and I know that's a big claim, but you really need to try it. It's in the last place you'd expect - a food court on the 2nd floor.

                                        Fine Dining - I'd include Cafe Boulud, Auberge du Pommier, and Shoto.

                                        Gastro Pub - I've heard good things about Queen and Beaver, but have not been as yet.

                                        Chinese - I'd include O'mei just for the sweet and sour pork that we recently had at the Chowmeet.

                                        You're also missing Hakka - Indian/Chinese food, and Lin Gardens is absolutely awesome for it.

                                        Brunch - Frank at the AGO is always solid. County General also makes a mean brunch.

                                        1. re: justxpete
                                          k
                                          KitchenVoodoo RE: justxpete Feb 14, 2013 10:57 PM

                                          Thanks for the tip about Milo's Pita - can be hard to get to but worth it if it realy has the best falafel!
                                          I must disagree about Frank - took people there for brunch when the Spanish Frida theme menu was on and it was very bad indeed. The classic spanish omlette which should be solid with potatos and garlic and yet silky was a rubbery mess similar to what you'd get in a diner for a tenth the price.

                                          1. re: KitchenVoodoo
                                            justxpete RE: KitchenVoodoo Feb 15, 2013 07:47 AM

                                            We've been going there 4-5 times/year for about 3-4 years. Never had an issue with the food. In fact, they served me the best pancakes I've ever had. Almond whipped cream, cherry compote, buttermilk pancakes. I call every once in a while to see if it's back on the menu, but sadly, it's never been.

                                            1. re: justxpete
                                              jlunar RE: justxpete Feb 15, 2013 04:57 PM

                                              Really enjoyed my pancake stack at Frank too. Very noteworthy and sorry it hasn't returned.

                                          2. re: justxpete
                                            t
                                            TeacherFoodie RE: justxpete Feb 24, 2013 02:50 PM

                                            Thank you justxpete. I have made changes to my list.

                                          3. re: TeacherFoodie
                                            k
                                            KitchenVoodoo RE: TeacherFoodie Feb 14, 2013 11:17 PM

                                            + 1 Scaramouce
                                            + 1 Chiado
                                            + 1 California Sandwiches (only the original Claremount Street location http://www.californiasandwiches.ca/cl...
                                            )+ 1 queen Margueirta Pizza
                                            +++ 1 Frida - this place delivers seriously great and interesting Mexican food.

                                            -0 Buster's Sea Cove serves heavy greasy food.

                                            *Try Table 17 in Leslieville. Nice room, great service, excellent food, good wine list, and oysters too!
                                            http://www.table17.ca/

                                            1. re: KitchenVoodoo
                                              t
                                              TeacherFoodie RE: KitchenVoodoo Feb 24, 2013 02:56 PM

                                              Thanks Kitchen Voodoo! I have been to Chiado and really enjoyed it. I look forward to returning. Recently I ate at California Sandwiches and Queen Margherita Pizza and enjoyed both of them. I have added Table 17. The menu looks great. Thanks again for your advice!

                                            2. re: TeacherFoodie
                                              Nevy RE: TeacherFoodie Aug 6, 2013 10:12 AM

                                              Hi Teacher Foodie,

                                              I'm wondering if you tried Rodney's (Bay location), Le Select, or Le Papillon on Front recently? I'm meeting up with friends and they're wanting to have seafood or French downtown that isn't too pricey. I did a board search and came up with your list :)

                                              I saw that you went to Starfish recently and that got a thumbs up for you :)

                                              1. re: Nevy
                                                t
                                                TeacherFoodie RE: Nevy Aug 10, 2013 10:59 AM

                                                Sorry I didn't reply sooner - I was away on a shopping trip! I have never eaten at Rodney's so I can't comment on that. Le Select is lovely - I haven't been there since last summer though - I had the duck and it was really good and I enjoyed the atmosphere and service here. Papillon was longer ago but I would recommend Le Select over Papillon. Starfish was great.

                                              2. re: TeacherFoodie
                                                j
                                                JToronto RE: TeacherFoodie Aug 13, 2013 09:49 AM

                                                Elle m'a dit has closed

                                                I would add Ici for French and Cava for Spanish

                                                +1 for Table 17 (bistro)

                                              3. damonster RE: TeacherFoodie Feb 15, 2013 08:30 AM

                                                As you had the Tarte Flambee mentioned I'd throw out Elle m'a Dit in Baldwin Village. Alsatian French so a little different, but have always enjoyed it and the Tarte are on their menu all the time, very tasty light app.

                                                1 Reply
                                                1. re: damonster
                                                  t
                                                  TeacherFoodie RE: damonster Feb 24, 2013 02:59 PM

                                                  Thanks. I've added it.

                                                2. t
                                                  thrillhouse RE: TeacherFoodie Feb 15, 2013 05:40 PM

                                                  I really enjoyed Frank's Kitchen. I believe it was on your last list but it looks like it didn't make the cut this time.

                                                  1 Reply
                                                  1. re: thrillhouse
                                                    t
                                                    TeacherFoodie RE: thrillhouse Feb 24, 2013 03:03 PM

                                                    The reviews for it look great - it is on my list again!

                                                  2. k
                                                    KitchenVoodoo RE: TeacherFoodie Feb 15, 2013 07:13 PM

                                                    Lunch only May - September only, but well worth it for food, price, service and the wonderful historic room - Osgoode Hall, Queen West at University.

                                                    3 Replies
                                                    1. re: KitchenVoodoo
                                                      t
                                                      TeacherFoodie RE: KitchenVoodoo Feb 24, 2013 03:00 PM

                                                      I have added it to my list. Thank you!

                                                      1. re: KitchenVoodoo
                                                        c
                                                        Cat123 RE: KitchenVoodoo Feb 24, 2013 03:32 PM

                                                        To clarify, Osgoode Hall resto is open from September to June. It is closed for the summers.
                                                        http://www.lsuc.on.ca/menu/

                                                        1. re: Cat123
                                                          t
                                                          TeacherFoodie RE: Cat123 Feb 24, 2013 03:45 PM

                                                          Thanks Cat.

                                                      2. t
                                                        TeacherFoodie RE: TeacherFoodie Jul 17, 2013 10:56 AM

                                                        Mid-year Report!

                                                        Here some thoughts on a few of the places I have tried so far this year:

                                                        1) Bestellen - I really loved it here. Here is my review:http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/893388

                                                        2) Grand Electric (last night) - Finally! Very good food, decent cocktails, VERY loud music (we had to yell to hear each other), tiny place - not in a rush to go back. My favorite taco by a landslide was the pork - even with all the heat (I am not usually a fan of heat but it was worth the burning lips to eat this taco). I also tried fish, chicken, scrapple and beef. Second favorite taco would be the fish. We had chips and guacamole as well - it was good, nothing spectacular and serving size was on the small side.

                                                        3) Boreal (dessert last night) - sample the pistachio - yum, but was in the mood for sweeter so had a scoop of salted caramel (heavenly) and a scoop of chocolate (rich and dark - perfect)!

                                                        4) Pie (pizza in Barrie) - I have been twice now. Sampled the Fun Guy, Hind Leg, Porky, and Slow and Low. My faves so far were Porky and Fun Guy. I enjoyed Slow and Low as well but found it too sweet. I LOVE the crust here - bubbly and blackened by the wood fired goodness!

                                                        5) Congee Queen - Have been to two locations - Hwy 7 in Markham and Don Mills/Lawrence) - enjoyed all dishes and tried Congee for the first time - had it again the second time - it was that good!

                                                        6) Hapa Izakaya - Pretty upbeat place with great service. I found the food to be pretty good, but nothing really stood out. A good place to come with a group of friends - music is loud here.

                                                        7) Amaya Bread Bar - I am not a big fan of Indian food but I enjoyed our meal here. Surprisingly one of my favorite dishes was a lamb one - the sauce was delicious and the meat did not have the strong gamey aftertaste that I tend not to enjoy.

                                                        8) Ascari Enoteca - I can't wait to return here. Excellent meal and sevice. Wonderful Italian Restaurant!

                                                        9) Tutto Pronto - I had a really good fish special here. Service was very good and we were a large group that night!

                                                        10) Queen Margherita - I loved it here! We ended up going for Valentine's Day. My pizza crust was perfectly done and not mushy! Good service and great food!!

                                                        11) Pizzeria Libretto (Danforth location) - Pizza was good but middle was very mushy. Warm, inviting atmosphere here buy quite a lively, busy place!

                                                        12) California Sandwiches - I really enjoyed my chicken Parmesan sandwich! The portion was enormous. Enough for two people!

                                                        13) Queen Mother - best fried Calamari I have ever eaten at a restaurant! Then we shared the Ping Gai and the Bah Me Hang - both were delicious. The Ping Gai was positively mouth-watering! Even though this one wasn't on my list originally, I would definitely return here!

                                                        14) The Saint - We had brunch here. I honestly did not find my food to be that amazing. Service was okay.

                                                        3 Replies
                                                        1. re: TeacherFoodie
                                                          l
                                                          lucywinchester RE: TeacherFoodie Aug 8, 2013 09:45 AM

                                                          I would like to second several aspects of your review of Grand Electric. Tried it and do not plan to return. The music, midday, was really annoyingly loud. And the food was okay. I remember the beef cheek taco being quite good - as was the fish - but not spectacularly so. The did not like the pig face fries - and I am fan of pork and fatty bits and related things. These had the texture of stringy shortening and the smell of, I don't know, unwashed hoof, perhaps? I gave them away to the guys at the table next to me.

                                                          For pizza, I would try Lil' Baci. I preferred it to Pizzeria Libretto and to Queen Margherita. This was at the Lesliville location. The pizza at Big House Pizza (Danforth and Donlands) is good - occasionally hit and miss, though. Really really good when they are having a good night and then just quite good if they are off. They are still pretty new so I am chalking it up to growing pains.

                                                          1. re: lucywinchester
                                                            t
                                                            TeacherFoodie RE: lucywinchester Aug 10, 2013 11:03 AM

                                                            Hi Lucy,

                                                            I have tried the pizza at the Leslieville location of Lil' Baci, and did not enjoy it. I guess it just depends on the style of pizza you like. QMP remains my favorite Toronto pizza. I have not tried Big House Pizza, thanks for the rec. I'll be trying Pizza e Pazzi sometime soon.

                                                            Yes, GE was a big disappointment. I'm hoping to try Maizal in Liberty Village at some point.

                                                            TF

                                                          2. re: TeacherFoodie
                                                            d
                                                            defram RE: TeacherFoodie Nov 26, 2013 07:30 AM

                                                            The Ping Gai chicken rules at the Queen Mum's. I've tried similar elswhere and it doesn't even come close.

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                                                            TeacherFoodie RE: TeacherFoodie Jul 23, 2013 06:38 AM

                                                            Mmmmm steak! So it occurred to me that I do not have a steakhouse category here. I really need to add one!

                                                            I have been to Hy's, Barberians, Ruth Chris, and, last night Jacob and Co.

                                                            Let me know what I need to add to my list! Tom Jones? Harbour Sixty?

                                                            We had an incredible dinner at Jacob and Co Steakhouse last night. It has a modern as opposed to old-school steakhouse feel and the service is outstanding. Very courteous! The type of place where when you walk to the washroom the servers stand off to the side and wait until you have passed, and when you get back to the table your napkin has been refolded for you. They were extremely accommodating (my husband and I like our steaks done differently so they said they would take his off and put my part back on). As it turned out I enjoyed it medium-rare so they didn't have to - it was incredible - I am now ruined for all other steak!

                                                            We also got the caesar salad that they make table-side, beef carpaccio, duck-fat fries (yum!), and cream corn. Our server made great suggestions for what to order and sizes (he suggested getting caesar salad for one and sharing and it was more than enough, and he also suggested half-orders of the accompaniments since we were having a lot of food).

                                                            I should mention as well that my husband had the Jacob's Caesar and it comes with a jumbo shrimp on the side - he really enjoyed it. Also, it was our third wedding anniversary, so they brought us each a glass of complimentary prosecco as soon we sat down. It was an incredible dinner!

                                                            Some tips - apparently they have a very reasonable corkage fee and also if there is a side dish they don't have you can apparently let them know 24 hours in advance and they will make it for you! I would return here in a heartbeat (realistically, only for special occasions though).

                                                            2 Replies
                                                            1. re: TeacherFoodie
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                                                              acd123 RE: TeacherFoodie Jul 23, 2013 07:44 AM

                                                              Great review. Thanks. I love J&Co too. It's an awesome steakhouse. Just one think I disagree with in your review. I don't consider $40 to be a "very reasonable" corkage fee, although I pay it anyway.

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                                                                TeacherFoodie RE: acd123 Jul 23, 2013 07:50 AM

                                                                Someone told me it was $15 or $20. I agree with you - $40 is a bit much!!

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                                                              s12chung RE: TeacherFoodie Jul 23, 2013 07:17 AM

                                                              Korean: Cho Sun OK, 고려삼계탕 Korean Ginseng Chicken Soup & Bibimbap

                                                              1. mnajji RE: TeacherFoodie Jul 23, 2013 08:47 AM

                                                                For Sandwhiches, clubhouse sandwhich shop and come and get it, both on Spadina at COllege and Queen, respectively.

                                                                And I like Koyoi! Though, yeah, not as exciting compared to Kingyo and Zakkushi.

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                                                                  TeacherFoodie RE: TeacherFoodie Jul 26, 2013 10:02 AM

                                                                  Had a nice afternoon/evening yesterday - went to Starfish, Against the Grain, Prairie Girl and Tutti Matti.

                                                                  At Starfish I had the fish and chips. It was excellent. House cut fries were great. The fish was flaky and had a nice thin batter (panko and horseradish). It came with a smoky bacon aioli which was fantastic!

                                                                  Against the Grain was just for drinks. Their patio is amazing. Would definitely recommend to locals and visitors. The view here is wonderful, and you almost forget you are in a city.

                                                                  At Prairie Girl I opted for a chocolate cupcake with peppermint frosting. I loved it. The cake was perfectly moist and the frosting was nice, and the peppermint flavour was not too overpowering.

                                                                  At Tutti Matti I had the Paparadelle with pulled brisket and cherry tomatoes. It was delicious, although the portion was a bit small considering the price ($24).

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                                                                    TeacherFoodie RE: TeacherFoodie Nov 3, 2013 11:21 AM

                                                                    I had the pleasure of eating at Pizza e Pazzi last weekend. I had the Margherita pizza and we shared the meatball appetizer. Everything was delicious. We ordered the fried pizza dough for dessert. It was good as well. I really enjoyed the pizza here, but for me it is second to QMP - my favourite pizza in the city.

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                                                                      TeacherFoodie RE: TeacherFoodie Feb 1, 2014 12:57 PM

                                                                      Had dinner on Thursday night at Richmond Station. Everything was amazing. Our server, Nika, was great as well as the rest of the staff there. The food - we shared:

                                                                      1) Polenta Fries - so, so good. Highly recommend! The truffle aioli is outstanding!

                                                                      2) Roasted Beet Salad - also very good - loved the whipped ricotta it was served with.

                                                                      3) Seared Digby Scallops - parsley puree was great and the spaetzle was a great accompaniment.

                                                                      4) Stn Burger - so delicious - they cut it in half and cooked it med-rare for my hubby (I had to have it well-done) - fries were good too, but maybe a tad too salty.

                                                                      I cannot wait to return here. Definitely in my top five!

                                                                      On a side note, Ben Mulroney and his wife sat at the table next to us!

                                                                      1. Charles Yu RE: TeacherFoodie Feb 1, 2014 01:13 PM

                                                                        'Bero' a must for Modern Spanish Cuisine. Feast for the eyes and palette!
                                                                        You can check out my two detailed postings ( one yesterday ) with photos.
                                                                        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/913264

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