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Interesting food near Pearson Airport?

d
divirtual May 26, 2003 08:03 PM

I need to pick up someone at Pearson, and drive them to Oshawa (obviously across the 401). Since I'm probably going to be doing this around rush hour, I thought that we might have dinner first, and drive later. (We're getting tired of repeating the same Oshawa restaurants!)

We're usually adventurous diners, so The Keg isn't quite our style. Thanks.

  1. d
    divirtual May 29, 2003 01:17 PM

    Well, I get to answer my own question, with some good news.

    At 5 p.m. yesterday, it was actually a crawl from Pearson Terminal 3, across Dixon Road, and up Highway 27, so we were happy when we made the left turn onto Albion Road. I had seen the review for Exotic Indian Cuisine in Now Toronto -- see the link below -- and my friend turns out to have few friends who like Indian cuisine, so we took a flyer.

    The restaurant is literally in the middle of nowhere -- unless you're really into visiting the Provincial Records Center in the low-rise warehouse across the street. Exotic Indian Cuisine is a storefront in a strip plaza (of the usual suburban type). It's nicely decorated, in that suburban soothing pastel style, so it would be fine for dates or business meetings. It's newish and very clean.

    My friend and I were the only ones is the restaurant around 6 p.m., and maybe 3 or 4 other tables were filled up 7 p.m. There's a big screen tv playing Bollywood movies, so my friend was following the subtitles (something about a religious group in India). The waiter (owner?) was very knowledgeable, friendly, and attentive.

    The food was probably the best Indian food I've had in some time. Extremely careful spicing, so that each dish was completely different.

    We started off with the usual pappadams with three sauces (tamarind, coriander, chili). My friend tried the chili to check out spiciness, and thought it was mild, then -- wait -- it was the slow burn. The waiter suggested that we try the special appetizer of the day, which was chicken tikka grill. It came to the table on an iron plate, as an extremely large portion -- it seemed like 8 chicken breasts rolled up. Very tasty, and almost undersalted (which is unusual for Indian restaurants). We had poori (which was suitably inflated, but somehow disappointing) and good garlic naan.

    We ordered chicken kaori and lamb vindaloo. The kaori was outstanding. It's a dish based in onions and tomatoes, with matchsticks of fresh ginger in them. This was definitely the best dish of an already great meal. (The waiter explained that kaori is the small wok-like serving dish. I've had balti served that dish, before). The lamb vindaloo was more than adequate, but overshadowed by all of the other wonderful dishes. Basmati rice, of course, and mango chutney seemed homemade, with some interesting flavours that I don't usually taste in a bottle.

    Would I go back? Yes. Great cuisine, reasonable prices, large portions. My friend (from New Jersey) said that she would definitely drive 15 to 20 minutes out of her way to go to a restaurant this quality.

    Link: http://www.nowtoronto.com/minisites/r...

    4 Replies
    1. re: divirtual
      c
      Coconuts Jun 1, 2003 07:09 PM

      Hey thanks for the great review. would love to pay a visit soon. The chicken tikka sounds interesting.
      how much did the bill come to?

      1. re: Coconuts
        d
        divirtual Jun 13, 2003 08:09 PM

        Sorry, my friend got the bill, and I don't remember how much it was. (She remarked that the appetizer of the day was the most expensive item on the bill!)

        1. re: divirtual
          h
          hoagy Nov 1, 2003 10:15 AM

          Exotic Indian Cuisine used to be called Gujurat Durbar and was on Gerrard St. It was a sad day when they moved north, but the location is better for the owner and there is a lot more lunch traffic for him.
          They have the most delicious yogurt soup, I think it is called Kadhi which I used to inhale.

          1. re: divirtual
            h
            hoagy Nov 1, 2003 10:16 AM

            Exotic Indian Cuisine used to be called Gujurat Durbar and was on Gerrard St. It was a sad day when they moved north, but the location is better for the owner and there is a lot more lunch traffic for him.
            They have the most delicious yogurt soup, I think it is called Kadhi which I used to inhale.

      2. f
        Francesco May 28, 2003 05:11 PM

        Divirtual,

        if you like Indian and can stand to drive just a little out of your way, you shoud try the Madras Dosa Hut at Albion/Islington - NOW Magazine review link below. The area has a great reputation for great Indian food.

        Link: http://www.nowtoronto.com/minisites/r...

        1. n
          NewtonSquare May 27, 2003 07:05 PM

          Try Le Biftheque, 25 Carlson Ct. 798-4333 (Dixon Rd. and Hwy #27) The BOSS says the prime rib is world's best. Check the comics section of Sat's Star for the specials. NY Sirloin, BB back ribs and twin Lobsters this time. $15, $15, and $23 resp. Mr Greek on Carlingview was my favorite, but has slipped and no longer on the list..........same goes for Perkins.

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