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Hooked Seafood - New fishmonger on Queen

great store. good quality fish and other goodies compared to the many places i've seen across this city. it's also inviting and clean. above all, really nice people who know their stuff.

if only markup was reasonable enough to make me a regular (it's clearly the markup when you consider for example, the common farm sourcing of trout no matter where you go in toronto and the huge disparity in price). i'll be sure to come back more often when i work on bay street because this place is tremendous. the black s-class parked illegally out front will be me.

A rare NY steak from Canyon Creek Chophouse Burlington is tough to top for steak! Awesome!

you have a point but i'm willing to bet anything you've never been to the scarborough one.

New to Windsor

thanks everyone for the responses thus far. lots of really good leads here that i'm going to check out ASAP.

New to Windsor

Bad news: I'm moving to Windsor to study. Yeah, I know.

I'm not looking for the pity of Torontonian foodies with this post, but rather some help in finding good replacements for the things I've come to love about Toronto. I know many of them probably exist but that they'll be hard to find.

For anyone familiar with this town (and particularly with near-campus food options) I'm hoping you can point me in the right direction for such things as:

-good espresso (without which I cannot function)
-general supermarkets
-ethnic markets
-farmer's markets
-good pubs
-to-go lunch/dinner places
-delivery (e.g. indian, chinese, vietnamese, pizza, etc.)
-destination restaurants (downtown or otherwise)
-food options inside the U of Windsor campus

Any help would be extremely appreciated! I'd also be interested to know if anyone has any thoughts on the restaurants named in this thread:

Quality kitchen supplies on the cheap...

thanks all; lots of good info and item suggestions in here.

Quality kitchen supplies on the cheap...

... Any suggestions? I'm looking for a microplane grater (I know, hardware stores have them), an instant read and/or remote probe thermometer, and probably a food processor/blender device.

Perhaps someone might have something to say about Tap Phong, Nella Cucina, IQ Living, etc. For some reason I don't want to pay more than I have to.

Nella Cucina
876 Bathurst St, Toronto, ON M6G, CA

Tap Phong
360 Spadina Ave, Toronto, ON M5T, CA

Anchovies packed in Salt : Any sources in downtown Toronto?

Specifically in salt is a toughie.

Downtown, Pusateri's and Whole Foods are sure things for preserved anchovy products, and they have variety so you might luck out there. You could also try Grace Meat Market on Grace and College. As far as I'm aware, the aforementioned Highland Farms (the Scarborough one near me anyway) only has anchovies in brine or oil, which is unacceptable for your purposes I gather?

If not, I suspect you can probably think of some places already.

Best Espresso in the city...

OP in 2005 was dead on about Bar Mercurio L'Espresso, which I frequent. On a good day, great espresso, people, and great food at somewhat inflated prices. A good blend of neighbourhood and yuppie but fairly disjointed still. It's much more an Italian restaurant across from the yacht club.

I want to make the case for Rooster Coffeehouse on Broadview as a real espresso bar. It primarily serves a neighbourhood, which is where it goes way right; it has great atmosphere, from a patio overlooking Riverdale Park, to books and artwork strewn around. It stays easy on the stupid hipster/kitschy items you'll find at places like say, Mercury and Red Rocket, and the coffee is so much better -- it's why the clientele is so varied. But let's talk about the coffee.

Rooster uses Te Aro beans and has a lot of specialty and seasonal drinks they'll whip up for you too. Fresh baked goods, amazing scones and ginger cookies, and Loic sandwiches. They will start over if they get a bad pull and I'm certain they steam milk better than anyone in Toronto that I know of (including B, Mercury, Dark Horse, Jet Fuel, Zaza, Bulldog, all the Ossington joints, and so on). I'm a dry cappuccino guy, and I so appreciate a smooth, un-scalded cup.

If you prefer a rounder, more chocolatey cuppa, I really like Dark Horse as a second choice. I know that's unpopular among espresso snobs, but I stand by my convictions.

Bar Mercurio
270 Bloor St W, Toronto, ON M5S1V8, CA

Te Aro
983 Queen St E, Toronto, ON M4M1K2, CA

Dark Horse
2401 Bloor St W, Toronto, ON M6S, CA

Anything decent near near Sick Kids hospital?

I rather liked their jambalaya of all things.

I find the food at Pogue to be far superior to most downtown (chain) pubs in the area, all of which tend to serve shall we say, less-discerning, undergrads.

You can definitely tell you're helping to pay their rent with every order though, which is why I wouldn't go out of my way to eat or drink there.


A lot of people would go to Barberian's for a dated broiler steak and Caesar.

Go here instead for those menu items and you absolutely will not be disappointed. The menu is a little "eclectic" as you say, but everything is very well-executed by the kitchen. I had a great dinner the last time I was there.

7 Elm St, Toronto, ON M5G1H1, CA

Comparing quality butchers in the 'burbs, 2011

Wow, I had no idea this Kingston Road place existed. That's pretty close to me; does anyone have information or knowledge on pricing at that store for comparison?

Comparing quality butchers in the 'burbs, 2011

To start: I just fed two others an enormous, bone-in ribeye from Famu on Steeles and Woodbine. It was delicious. The shop, which specializes in Japanese cuts (and which is hidden in "J-Town"), claims to also do slightly more obscure Western cuts like hanger and flatiron, and is interested in customer feedback to a great degree I found. I love Cumbrae's, but it's far and its prices are inflated.

Anyway, Famu has local and "naturally-raised" options, although this particular one I ate was a grass-fed steer from PEI that I'm told is a customer favourite that they frequently fly in from this farm over there. It was also dry-aged for something like 6 weeks and cut to my order without a huge rib sticking out.

The price at the time was $4/100g., which I think is pretty good. But there's nowhere definitive that I can compare spring 2011 prices. I should mention Famu also offers a lot of Wagyu and Berkshire pork as well, but I don't claim to be an "expert" on that subject. For more on their current pricing:

481 Church St, Toronto, ON M4Y, CA

Comparing quality butchers in the 'burbs, 2011

PREFACE: there's no recent thread on this subject that's helpful to the Greater Chowmind of Toronto to make actual comparative purchasing decisions. I don't make the rules but I'd love to get information on prices, animal feed, locality, cuts, etc. with some semblance of direct comparability.

I'll take a quick look at Famu below. I'll be returning, but can anyone come up with some alternatives, especially in East or North Toronto? I'm not a snob; if there's a good butcher in a supermarket that will do good beef, pork, or lamb to my instructions, I would love to know about it. I think many of us consumers have little time for shady practices and/or not displaying prices, so I hope this can help.

Some places I know precious little about that I'd like to directly compare: The Healthy Butcher, Meat on the Beach, The Village Butcher, Gasparro's, BlossumPure, Grace, The Butcher Shoppe. I'm also personally interested in insight into Toronto's Halal options for Western-style cuts.

The Healthy Butcher
565 Queen St W, Toronto, ON M5V, CA

Meat on the Beach
1860 Queen St E, Toronto, ON M4L, CA

Butcher Shoppe
121 Shorncliffe Rd, Toronto, ON M8Z, CA

[Daily Deal for Fri, Feb. 11] $50 for $150 towards The Butchers (again!)

i went there to scout it out. so dodgy.

there were no prices listed. when someone asked about a price the owner first asked if she had a coupon. when i called him on the lack of prices he gave some excuse about how he was shorthanded that day which meant that he wasn't able to put them out. total pants.

speaking to two separate people behind the counter about the lack of selection and quality of cuts (which admittedly could have been a fluke), they both said something to the effect of "come back on the weekend where the selection is better". the exact same line? i GTFO. i'm not saying don't buy from them but i am saying red flags are popping up everywhere and there's no way i will.

What's the best Balsamic and where can I buy it ?

i totally agree with the above. you don't even necessarily have to buy from them but at least you'll get an idea of the flavour of each brand. taste in balsamic is completely subjective and therefore you need to actually try it. generally though, if they don't let you try the stuff, be wary.

personally, i don't like it aged to oblivion, especially if the stuff they start with isn't great. reminds me of ribena, actually.

ISO: avocado oil

every time i've walked into mcewan's there's been a guy hawking avocado oil. it's been a while since i've been there but he tells you a bit about the stuff and lets you have a taste, although i can't testify to the price or quality. it is after all, avocado oil.

Buying great olive oil

whole foods' 365 organic oil is a really good choice for a low price point. it could stand as a finishing oil.

but personally, for finishing i love frantoia with all my heart. i agree that italian olive oils have a tendency to really stink. frantoia (fruity with a peppery finish, unfiltered, green, and really viscous) is not one of these. it's not expensive per se, but still too expensive to waste or cook with.

Chowhound's Own Top 10 Restaurants of GTA

good idea, but a time cutoff should be established, as the best restaurants of times past might not even be verging on this year's list (and new ones might emerge in the coming months).

88 Harbord Street, Toronto, ON M5S 1G5, CA

Steak Frites Emergency

my steak frites at le select a couple of months ago was unforgivably underseasoned. just an anecdotal heads-up.

Where to find Turkish mantı in Toronto?

Thanks everyone; a lot of gems in this thread and the chances of me trying one of these places in the next week are pretty high. If I like what I taste I'll definitely report back.


Where to find Turkish mantı in Toronto?

So I'm craving the above dish something fierce and actually finally joined Chow just to ask this question. I wouldn't be in the least bit surprised if someone here knew the answer.

If you're familiar with it, you likely know that the Turkish brand of mantı generally consists of ground beef or lamb encased in dumplings, which are then topped with an obscene amount of garlicky yogurt and variations involving combinations oil, butter, red pepper, and caramelized tomato paste.

In terms of places I know of that serve the dish in Toronto, I've heard Anatolia Restaurant in Etobicoke does, and there used to be a place on the Danforth called Champion Kokorech that I'd been to a couple of times, but they've since been bought out and the new restaurant under different ownership there no longer has it. Mantı is a fairly take-out friendly dish, and that's what I'm hoping someone can point me to where I can take some out; I make the trek between Scarborough and downtown Toronto often, so if anyone could suggest a detour I'd love to hear!