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Cynthia's chinese food in Thornhill

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C mac Feb 22, 2013 07:05 AM

Okay, so Im very particular about my Chinese food. In fact, so particular that I always go to the same place which is waaay downtown at Dundas and University to a place called Hong Shing. (I know Im crazy seeing as I live in Thornhill. I only go late at night when traffic has died down. Being single I have nothing better to do anyway...lol) So there is this place near me called Cythnia's Chinese restaurant, found a couple of mentions on her place here on chowhound but not much. Was wondering what people's take on this place is?

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  1. m
    magic RE: C mac Feb 22, 2013 07:12 AM

    This the place at Promenade?

    I love it, but I haven't been in years.

    I'm sure traditonalists will scoff at Cynthia's but I thought it was very tasty. And pricey!

    6 Replies
    1. re: magic
      c
      C mac RE: magic Feb 22, 2013 07:17 AM

      Yes that is the place at promenade.

      Thanks for the feedback.

      1. re: C mac
        m
        magic RE: C mac Feb 22, 2013 08:15 AM

        You are most welcome.

      2. re: magic
        m
        magic RE: magic Feb 22, 2013 08:27 AM

        Cynthia's prices, service and decor seem to put it in more of the 'special occasion/celebration' catagory, rather than a normal weekday night out.

        So I'm not sure comparing its prices to other Chinese places is ideal.

        Again, I haven't been in like 10 years so I can't speak to what it's like now.

        1. re: magic
          kwass RE: magic Feb 22, 2013 08:57 AM

          In terms of being considered a "special occasion/celebration place" you're right magic, and that's why the prices are probably higher than your average Chinese Restaurant. But as I said earlier, unfortunately the quality just isn't what it used to be.

          1. re: kwass
            m
            magic RE: kwass Feb 22, 2013 10:07 AM

            That's a shame to hear....

            1. re: magic
              kwass RE: magic Feb 22, 2013 10:11 AM

              I know. It's always sad when a good restaurant goes south.

      3. lyndak RE: C mac Feb 22, 2013 07:24 AM

        I like Chinese food but I'm far from an expert so take my quick review with a grain of salt.

        We've ordered delivery from Cynthia's and it's OK. I find it very expensive for what you get though, the serving sizes are normal sized and not large like I would have thought based on the price. I liked (not loved) the hot an sour soup. DH had the won ton and I thought the broth was very weak.

        If you're a Chinese food fiend, I'm going to suggest you'll have better luck in Markham.

        1 Reply
        1. re: lyndak
          kwass RE: lyndak Feb 22, 2013 07:29 AM

          Agreed. Really overpriced and quality has gone down hill as of late.

        2. k
          kwfoodiewannabe RE: C mac Feb 22, 2013 07:28 AM

          My Mom's favorite spot. I found it just ok. Would agree with previous postings re: somewhat expensive.

          1. f
            Fresserdude RE: C mac Feb 26, 2013 08:01 AM

            used to be an ok fill-in for cdn chinese but our last experience was brutal.

            ordered-veg egg foo young... a big container of mush, supposed to be layers off egg crepes filled with vegetable, this one had nothing but bean sprouts..watery and terrible..

            lemon chicken--- i'm not sure if they decided to serve me the gui lau version but on several occasions (dozen at least) we received 2 nice chicken breasts, fried nicely (granted the batter has always been a bit heavy), with a decent lemon sauce...this time.. price is still a ridiculous $12, we received frozen pre-shaped pieces of soggy battered miniscule chicken, the dish completely changed yet the cost is the same...

            bbq pork app-very very fatty....

            I'm really getting frustrated trying to find chinese restaurants with similar quality to those in Vancouver.or even Winnipeg. Problem i guess is that most here cater to Cantonese folks who like their homestyle dishes.

            How i measure good chinese food?

            -fresh oil for deep fried dishes, light batter always
            - clean de-veined prawns , not these cheap white shrimp that are simply tossed into dishes..
            -szechuan dishes are spicy from adding flavour, not siracha, not those crappy dried chiles, but flavour...toban djan, real chiles etc....

            wok hay is a necessity.....

            i guess i need to find some chinese friends who can order for me in richmond hill, because when this gui lau walks into Yang's etc... i dont get the same service nor do i get the same menu options...

            Frustrated!!

            Fresserdude

            1 Reply
            1. re: Fresserdude
              kwass RE: Fresserdude Feb 26, 2013 12:13 PM

              Another option, about 15 minutes away from Cynthia's, is Szechuan Szechuan @ Vaughan Mills. IMO, it's fairly decent Chinese Food. It's probably not the best Chinese you'll ever have, but for the most part, it's pretty good.

            2. z
              zeva RE: C mac Feb 26, 2013 03:25 PM

              I live in your neighbourhood and have had Cynthia's. it's ok but if you want excellent Chinese, I suggest you try Sechuan Gourmet beside Kivas. The place has been around for a few decades and is still popular as ever. Packed on the weekends and busy every day for lunch. Awesome Canadian style Chinese food. Hugh portions done to perfection every time. Very reasonable and best of all, accurate with takeout orders. There's a reason they have survived this long in an area known for picky 'tribe' patrons like myself.

              9 Replies
              1. re: zeva
                kwass RE: zeva Feb 26, 2013 03:45 PM

                I've heard good things about that place.

                And your comment about "picky tribe patrons", made me laugh :)

                1. re: kwass
                  z
                  zeva RE: kwass Mar 3, 2013 09:45 PM

                  hehehe....

                2. re: zeva
                  c
                  C mac RE: zeva Feb 28, 2013 06:20 AM

                  Where is Kivas?

                  1. re: C mac
                    m
                    magic RE: C mac Feb 28, 2013 08:14 AM

                    SW corner Bathurst/Steeles.

                    1. re: magic
                      j
                      juno RE: magic Feb 28, 2013 12:24 PM

                      Not quite at the SW corner of Bathurst and Steeles, though. Kiva's is in south side strip plaza on Steeles Ave. W., one block west of Bathurst St. Easy access to the plaza, if you're travelling west along Steeles, because there's a light at that corner.

                      1. re: juno
                        m
                        magic RE: juno Feb 28, 2013 03:57 PM

                        Apologies! I thought it was pretty much at Bathurst. I stand corrected.

                    2. re: C mac
                      kwass RE: C mac Feb 28, 2013 11:06 AM

                      And when you're picking up your Chinese, make sure you stop into Kiva's to get a Twister! You won't regret it :)

                    3. re: zeva
                      TorontoTips RE: zeva Feb 28, 2013 01:41 PM

                      @zeva
                      Can you recommend some dishes at SG?
                      I find with Chinese places they typically have a set of dishes they do well, and others not so much.

                      Can you help me avoid the poor choices?

                      As a note: Personally, I've had very good luck with Cynthia's, with great quality, quick delivery, and I've been pleased, but I agree the price/value ration can be out of whack, depending on the dishes.

                      1. re: TorontoTips
                        z
                        zeva RE: TorontoTips Mar 3, 2013 09:43 PM

                        It's a matter of what you like but my family loves the black bean ho fun. It's one of my faves too. The standards shine. Beef and broccoli, house fried rice, the soups are awesome. I don't think there's a dish they don't do to perfection. Order what you usually do at Cynthia's and compare for yourself. I think you'll become a fan.

                    4. l
                      linda54 RE: C mac Feb 26, 2013 03:49 PM

                      The food here is hit and miss. Good then not so good. As the others indicated it is overly expensive.

                      1. j
                        jdgo75 RE: C mac Mar 7, 2013 09:37 AM

                        Cynthias is very, very expensive. Sechewan Gourmet as noted above, is nearby and far more reasonable pricing. Quality of the food is comparable. The Crispy Ginger Chicken from schewan gourmet is one of my favourite Chinese food dishes in Toronto.

                        2 Replies
                        1. re: jdgo75
                          justxpete RE: jdgo75 Mar 7, 2013 11:00 AM

                          Avoid Cynthia's at all costs. That's all I'm going to say.

                          1. re: justxpete
                            f
                            Fresserdude RE: justxpete Mar 7, 2013 01:10 PM

                            I've tried SG a couple of times but it didn't do it for me either. Actually funny story, I was flying to Puerto Vallarta a few years ago and met a couple on the plane. We were talking about where to get good Chinese in GTA and they mentioned their favourite was SG, hesitantly I gave them my go to spot for seafood in PV thinking that when I returned home I'd have a new restaurant to try. MISTAKE....that sauce they use as a base for a good number of their dishes is disgusting... No sign of garlic, chile or ginger.. to me the staples in good Chinese food. Maybe I need to try their Cantonese dishes because I really wasn't impressed with their Szechuan dishes. Yet they call themselves SG??!! Anyways I'm still waiting for a suggestion for good Szechuan food that isn't covered in sauce as black and gooey as molasses.. That's not proper preparation....if anyone has tried Wonmore in Van of Foon Hai in Winnipeg can attest to what good Szechuan should taste like.... I'm not kvetching and I'm actually surprised that my tribe members are so all over SG!!!' We can do better than this!!!! We're the 4th biggest city in NA, Winnippeg that has a quarter of the population and probably 1/20 th of the Chinese population has a way better selection of good Chinese restaurants that have been there for 30+ years!!

                            Oh well, the search goes on... Please no more SG recommendations!!!

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