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lunch within driving distance of victoria park/danforth?

helenhelen Oct 21, 2013 12:23 PM

i know of the places i can walk to around here (danforth roti, hakka chopsticks, double sushi, bengali places around here, etc.), but am wondering if there is good food a bit further out if i drive (within 15 min). today, i went to armenian kitchen on vic park (just north of eglinton) which was okay. i have also driven to jatujak for thai.

any suggestions for places with good food (with vegetarian options) i can drive to in any direction?

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  1. Googs RE: helenhelen Oct 21, 2013 12:43 PM

    There are a ton of places within 15 minutes of that intersection. However, places with vegetarian options really does cut that list down. You could go to Crazy Tomato, though I haven't been fond of it lately. In the same strip plaza as Armenian Kitchen, try Blue Water Curry & Roti. Don't let the look of the place deter you. Their doubles and rotis are really good. Going further north on VP, there's L's Chinese Eatery just east of VP on Lawrence. Kinnaree Thai at Pharmacy & Ellesmere also has some tasty veggie options and cheap, cheap, cheap lunch prices.

    6 Replies
    1. re: Googs
      mariecollins RE: Googs Oct 21, 2013 01:03 PM

      You may want to call Blue Water Curry and Roti first, as they had no veggie when I went. Twas good though.

      1. re: mariecollins
        helenhelen RE: mariecollins Oct 21, 2013 01:15 PM

        thanks, googs, for all these suggestions!

        i passed by blue water and peered in with curiosity, and planned to google it to see if i could find a menu.. so thank you for the link to the website!

        1. re: mariecollins
          Googs RE: mariecollins Oct 21, 2013 02:06 PM

          Pumpkin or bhaji rotis are veggie, aren't they? I think polourie, doubles, and dhal qualify as veggie, but I could be wrong.

          1. re: Googs
            mariecollins RE: Googs Oct 22, 2013 06:49 AM

            True that - just that the (one) time I was there they had no veggie roti options available. I had chicken instead, as
            I eat meat, but prefer veggie rotis.

            1. re: Googs
              helenhelen RE: Googs Oct 22, 2013 09:17 PM

              yup, i think they all are!

            2. re: mariecollins
              helenhelen RE: mariecollins Jan 6, 2014 09:58 PM

              i got to try something from blue water recenty. i got the pumpkin with rice (it said on the menu that it was supposed to come with potato curry, but mine didn't, and i didn't know till i had already left with my takeout). i was literally just mashed up pumpkin with what i think was jasmine rice (the combo doesn't work so well together, imho). the pumpkin tasted good, but it was such a weird mix of just plain jasmine rice with mashed up pumpkin, and with nothing else. i didn't enjoy it. i could see the pumpkin being tasty in a roti though, along with something else in there (potato or chana or something).

              may give them another try sometime.. but i also work right by danforth roti, and so blue water didn't impress me enough to make the trek there.

          2. Otonabee RE: helenhelen Oct 21, 2013 03:49 PM

            If you go down Vic Park there is always Vi Vetha (lots of pasta options) - www.vivethabistro.com/‎

            There are some vegetarian options at The Green Dragon Pub as well IIRC - not tons but the food is usually pretty good - www.thegreendragonpub.com/‎

            No Bull Burgers on Kingston Road has a quinoa burger as well.

            4 Replies
            1. re: Otonabee
              helenhelen RE: Otonabee Oct 23, 2013 08:44 AM

              thanks! and i am excited there is veg poutine near here (this could be dangerous!)

              1. re: helenhelen
                helenhelen RE: helenhelen Nov 18, 2013 07:11 PM

                i have now tried the veg poutine and the quinoa burger from no bull burgers and both are very good!

                1. re: helenhelen
                  helenhelen RE: helenhelen Jan 6, 2014 09:54 PM

                  ...except for the 2nd time i had their veg poutine, they didn't heat the gravy long enough (i guess it is in the fridge since proably few people order it, so it isn't freshly made) and it was kinda lukewarm and chunky on my fries. not so good :/

              2. re: Otonabee
                Googs RE: Otonabee Nov 19, 2013 08:35 AM

                Wow. I didn't even know No Bull Burgers had a 2nd location. Good on those guys. They're the same people behind Souvlaki Express. Makes me miss my old neighbourhood even more.

              3. hal2010 RE: helenhelen Oct 21, 2013 04:49 PM

                Udupi Palace at Gerrard just west of Coxwell does a good dosa and their chaat is very good.

                1 Reply
                1. re: hal2010
                  helenhelen RE: hal2010 Oct 23, 2013 08:44 AM

                  yum, i like that place!

                2. mariecollins RE: helenhelen Oct 22, 2013 06:50 AM

                  hmm, The Thai Room at Woodbine an Danforth is quite good and their veggie options are varied.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: mariecollins
                    helenhelen RE: mariecollins Oct 23, 2013 08:45 AM

                    i have driven by it many times but glad to know now that it is good!

                  2. g
                    garfield RE: helenhelen Oct 23, 2013 04:20 PM

                    What bengali place do you recommend in that area with vegetarian options?
                    I do remember going to gharoa but was not overly impressed with it.

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: garfield
                      helenhelen RE: garfield Oct 23, 2013 05:59 PM

                      i haven't tried most of them yet.. but my coworker (who is bengali) recommends anando, and another one whose name escapes me right now (starts with "M" maybe?). i went to a place (name also escapes me) and had a tasty egg curry but i found it too spicy for me (which means stomach ache a few hours later). the food around here is generally spiced according to local bengali resident tastes, so be prepared!

                      you will be able to find veg options in pretty much any bengali place, think.. the food is similar to indian food which is also very veg friendly.

                      1. re: helenhelen
                        garfield RE: helenhelen Oct 23, 2013 06:52 PM


                        1. re: helenhelen
                          hal2010 RE: helenhelen Oct 23, 2013 08:17 PM

                          Another vote for Anando. Their best dish, the kacchi biryani has beef in it but there are a few veg dishes and breads. It's an oddly charming place. The first time we went in for lunch it seemed deserted. About 5 minutes later a guy came to the table to ask what we wanted. "Lunch!" we said. He held up a finger and told us to wait. We waited, expecting him to return with menus. We waited some more. Then he came out with these huge plates of subtly spiced rice with a fall off the bone piece of beef and a spiced boiled potato. It was excellent. Other people have told me that sometimes at lunch you just get whatever they're cooking that day. But it's always good.

                          1. re: helenhelen
                            helenhelen RE: helenhelen Jan 6, 2014 09:48 PM

                            i think the "M" one is makkah (a different one from another makkah further west along the danforth - not sure if it is the same owners or different..?)

                            i finally tried anondo today during lunctime and was very disappointed. it may just be that they have poor veg options. i asked for something veg and was served a small plate of rice, along with a small serving of overcooked, limp and relatively bland (plus no heat at all) mix of cabbage, squash (pumpkin?) and zucchini. it cost $6 which sounds cheap, but was a ripoff considering the dish and portion size. i was still pretty hungry afterwards.

                            will try makkah next, and will also see if ghoroaa has any veg options in house (they don't appear to on their website menu).

                        2. h
                          helenhelen RE: helenhelen Nov 12, 2013 08:02 PM

                          this hakka place is near there too. any good?

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: helenhelen
                            katdog RE: helenhelen Nov 13, 2013 05:20 AM

                            the hot and sour soup is good

                            1. re: katdog
                              helenhelen RE: katdog Nov 18, 2013 07:10 PM

                              what about overall?

                              1. re: helenhelen
                                katdog RE: helenhelen Nov 19, 2013 05:00 AM

                                sorry, i'm not much help there as i've only had the soup.....which, if i remember correctly, had chicken in it so not suitable for you

                                1. re: katdog
                                  helenhelen RE: katdog Nov 19, 2013 01:30 PM

                                  no worries! i will prob check it out at some point. usually, there are always options and chinese spots, whatever the type of cuisine, or they tend to be flexible about taking out meat.

                            2. re: helenhelen
                              helenhelen RE: helenhelen Jan 6, 2014 09:51 PM

                              tried this place out. had the black bean veg with tofu dish which was okay but nothing too exciting, or worth making the trek for since there is a similarly okay hakka place (hakka chopsticks) on the danforth closer to my work. however, i will probobly give them another try sometime and try a different dish.

                            3. sumashi RE: helenhelen Nov 13, 2013 02:41 PM

                              hey helenhelen, have you tried out Danforth Dragon? It's west of you near Donlands so it would fit your 15 min drive range. I also recall you liked the crispy ginger beef from Helena's ages ago (I think it was you?). I really like DD's version. Their pakoras, shrimp balls and green beans are also really great.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: sumashi
                                helenhelen RE: sumashi Nov 18, 2013 07:10 PM

                                thanks! i haven't tried it yet but have heard of it!
                                also, it can't be me who likes the beef since i am vegetarian. ;)

                              2. mariecollins RE: helenhelen Jan 7, 2014 06:40 AM

                                Try Almanqal, the new Middle East place at Woodbine and Danforth. Best is their big selection of sides and salads, and the portions are huge. I don't think their Falafels are quite as good as Sultans at Main, but the sides are way better.

                                1. h
                                  helenhelen RE: helenhelen Feb 11, 2014 06:42 PM

                                  a colleague told me a new place just opened up that serves up ital (jamaican rastafarian veg) food:


                                  gonna try it soon!

                                  1. s
                                    Sadistick RE: helenhelen Feb 12, 2014 05:44 AM

                                    RUN (dont walk) to Little Coxwell - awesome Viet/Thai food. Their Pho is the best I have had, they make their own curry pastes - mom makes the food, and the daughter/son team man the front.

                                    4 Replies
                                    1. re: Sadistick
                                      helenhelen RE: Sadistick Feb 13, 2014 08:15 AM

                                      thanks for the suggestion! my sister said she doesn't think it is good (we are vietnamese and have eaten pho all our lives).. but i would still give it a try and make my own decision. however, i am vegetarian so not too anxious to go since viet restaurants usually have poor veg options (except for hanoi 3 seasons). do you know if they have veg options?

                                      1. re: helenhelen
                                        Sadistick RE: helenhelen Feb 13, 2014 12:38 PM


                                        I do not claim to be a pho expert, but of the bowls I have tried, it is by far the most flavourful one (and I love that they serve Shado Beni with it as opposed to just vietnamese basil...)

                                        Would be curious to hear yours and others opinions on it, and if there are dare I say, better bowls of pho in the area...

                                        I believe they do have veg options, you can check out their menu on their website.

                                        1. re: Sadistick
                                          helenhelen RE: Sadistick Feb 15, 2014 09:23 PM

                                          thanks! will google for their website.

                                          the best bowl of pho is always at home ;) but i'll ask my sister what restaurant she thinks is good (i've never had non-veg pho outside of the home since i went vegetarian long ago).. although she is also a chowhound lurker so maybe she is reading this and would like to chime in :)

                                          1. re: Sadistick
                                            neighborguy RE: Sadistick Feb 16, 2014 03:08 PM

                                            Their soup is typical of pho places in the city, meaning salty. Blech!!!

                                            The noodle dishes are quite good tho and they make it worth going back.

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