Psst... We're working on the next generation of Chowhound! View >

mary sand's Profile

Title Last Reply

Best Eggbread/Challah in Toronto?

Ok, I love challah. Where's the best challah in Toronto?
I've tried Silverstein's on McCaul, meh and My Market Bakery in Kensington Market, which is my favorite so far.
I've heard Harbord Bakery makes a really tasty one, which I am meaning to try and also Loblaws has frozen challah to bake at home.
Braided or loaf, recommend me some spots!

My Market Bakery
184 Baldwin St, Toronto, ON M5T, CA

Harbord Bakery
115 Harbord St, Toronto, ON M5S, CA

Cheap and Dirty: Thrifty Dive Bars of the GTA

Hahaha I've always wondered about Blanca Rosa! I walk by there every day to and from work and there's always a pile of old/young Portuguese men milling about smoking, staring. Never any women, I don't think they're allowed in! Although on the foodie tip, I did see some men eating big shrimps in shells, looked cooked a la planca too!
The diviest bar I've seen is HAPPY CUP on Bloor/Landsdowne. There is a big banner that says "Chinese Indian Food". I meant to stop by at lunch on a Saturday afternoon, except I peered in the window into the darkness and saw old decrepit old man eyes staring back. I didn't go in! I read a review of it somewhere and a girl said a random man made a bang-bang hand gesture on her boyfriend's NECK. They left the too! All along Bloor around Landsdowne there seem to be divey bars, like Jankie's.

Worst/Slowest/Most Disappointing brunch ever at STARVING ARTIST!

Oh, the servers/staff knew! It wasn't just us, the other tables on the patio waited just as long too. When we were paying the bill, when they calculated that $9 + tax + 25% tip is $12.50, they apologized to one member of our group saying that they thought it was going to rain, so they were understaffed. For the record, there were 3 cooks behind the bar, and another person making drinks! I'm not sure how most restuarants work but I've been to excellent spots with only 2 cooks!

Worst/Slowest/Most Disappointing brunch ever at STARVING ARTIST!

So we went to brunch at STARVING ARTIST a long block north of Bloor at Landsdowne Ave.
From the time we ordered to the time our food arrived was 1 HOUR!!!!! No explanataions from the non-existant server, NOTHING!
Now this place has a good reputation, like it gets bigged up in NOW and has some good word of mouth. EXCEPT the food is mediocre! My 7 year old neice could make it because none of it was made using a stove! Just microwaves and bottled salad dressing! Oh and it seems 1 waffle maker for the whole restaurant that seats over 20. They don't use bread here, they use waffles which in concept is delicious, except so poorly executed it was extra disappointing because well, the menu reads great (burger sliders on waffles anyone?) and I wanted to support our local economy!

Ok, so Eggs Benny is 2 microwaved poached eggs (you can hear the microwave dinging in the back ground and the eggs are in that characteristic microwave poacher mold) on top of cold potato waffles (sounds great right? except they were cold) with from-mix hollandaise sauce. On the side is a scoop of grocery-store mayo potato salad (if that potato salad was actually "homemade" I would be embarrassed for the cook) and a handful of dried out mixed greens with a couple squirts of Kraft Raspberry Vinegarette (not dressed properly either because the vinegarette is pooled on the plate).
Multiply this sort of food for 5 people and it took them over an hour for them to "assemble" it.
The meal was only $9 (BTW the servers inform you it's $12.50 including tip, which would be a 25% tip. How generous of them!), but for $9, you could eat an amazing brunch at Aunties and Uncles and be served it with in 15 minutes!

Aunties and Uncles
74 Lippincott St, Toronto, ON M5S2P1, CA

Which restaurant to go to in the King/John neighbourhood?

My girlfriends and I want to have a nice casual dinner tonight some where along King St or in the downtown core.
One has suggested one on that strip of restaurants at King and John St, you know like Fred's Not Here, N'awlins and St Tropaz etc.
Any suggestions? We're kinda over Terroni! Any suggestions would be mucho appreciated!

Fred's Not Here
321 King St W, Toronto, ON M5V1J5, CA

299 King St W, Toronto, ON M5V1J5, CA

New burger spot on Ossington?

I went in mid December and the owner, super friendly BTW, suggested that I order the burger "juicy" next time since at that visit my $10 burger was dry (fries are an extra $4). He also said that they were going to get a meat grinder which would allow them to cook their burgers rare vs medium. I had the deluxe Mac and Cheese as well, decadent!
Since I live in the neighbhourhood, I'm glad a Good new place opened up!

Heaven found in Harbord Room

I've had Brunch at the Harbord Room and I just found it kinda mediocre... For sure the room is beautiful, especially if you sit in the front booth but the food itself is kinda whatever. I agree with the rest of the posters that the burger is one of the best, juicy, succulent etc. My friend had the Breakfast Poutine and we had high expectations but it just tasted salty, and fatty but had no other flavour. Been there for dinner too and eventho we all got different things, everything looked the same with this ubiquitous brown gravy. This grilled cheese that everyone's raving about? Way overpriced for what it was. Tiny too!

Chester's Fried Chicken downtown?

omg, thank you Jayseeca. Tonight, Bobby Wham and I biked to The Crossways "mall" where there's a Chester's Express take out place and ordered the chicken but it did NOT come in the special box. And the chicken was really mediocre. Will definitely check out the Starbank store!

Chester's Fried Chicken downtown?

I live in the Dufferin Grove Park area (south/east of Dufferin and Bloor) and on occasion on the street, I see a distinctive blue paper box with a smiling chicken on it. It's a Chester's Fried Chicken box! Obviously someone in the neighbourhood is enjoying late night fried chicken! I've googled it and there was a Chester's at Dufferin/Bloor but it's no longer there, it's a subpar roti shop now. Does anyone know where I can get Chester's downtown???

Best T.O. Takeaway Sandwich?

Near UofT, on McCaul, right by Baldwin, there is a cute takeaway place called Sage Café. They have delicious gourmet pita wraps. Like 1/2 grilled chicken and 1/2 grilled veggies and curry chicken salad. Home made, the exact opposite of a Pita Pit. It caters mostly to the business workers in the hood, so the prices are reasonable but not exactly cheap. Around $8. The older lady that runs the place is a little on the grumpy but the delishness of the food makes up for it. There's Mangiapan a couple of doors down as well.

Best Falafel In Toronto

Wow. I love falafels too and am glad to have all these suggestions.
I went to Pita Break on Yonge by Wellesley and was good, generous and although not inexpensive (I can't remember how much but it was like $6) like Ghazelle etc. The balls were freshly fried and they do this cute thing of cutting the top off the pita and having you eat it as you tell them what you want in it.
I think NOW or EYE did a reivew of best falafel in T.O a while back....
I know the falafel at College St Falafel is good but wow, does it really have to take 20min to make one????? And it's expensive! Chickpeas do not cost as much as meat but all the plates are the same price ~$10.

Worst/Best Tourist Trap Food in TO

That King west stretch between John and Spadina is the worst touristy trap ever!
People on this site actually like Fred's Not Here?! I ate at the Red Tomato and it was horrible, probably the worst food I've ever had in 27 years living in Toronto! Apparently they share many things on the menu.

Red Tomato

Red Tomato is GOD AWFUL!
I went there last night for some after work drinks and eats with my girlfriend and not only was the service neglectful and rude but the food was terrible and overpriced; the kithcen doesn't seem to know that there is a flavour besides "oil". Their "pesto" was shredded sundried tomatos and oil. No basil, pine nuts and no flavour. I couldn't eat their Mushroom and gorganzola pizza because it was way too greasy. The Pesto Pasta was penne with said oil sauce. The drinks were way over priced; $10 for a glass of wine?!? Oh yeah, this is a super touristy area and they can get away with that sort of crap.
Plus our server asked us "Are you all done here?" as in do you want to spend any more money? even before she brought us our second drinks. We were then left unattended. Empty glasses, no water refills and we had to ask 3 people for our bill and even then the server took her sweet time. Crap service, oily food. Highly disappointed! DON'T GO THERE!

Sushi (Toronto King or Queen W)

Ematai, on St.Patrick (1 or 2 blocks W of University on Queen) is an excellent authentic Japanese resto. They do more than just sushi too i.e hot foods. Reasonably priced. Looks really nice too. Dark and has tatami flooring in some areas.
Toshi, at King/Spadina (probably a few blocks west of Spadina) is also another great Japanese restaurant.

Low Price for Staub

QVC is equivalent to the Shopping Channel.
I think they're based in the US, but they deliver to Canada. I just ordered a 5 qt french/dutch oven from them and including tax/shipping it was $80. So that Costco deal sounds amazing!

"House" Wine Recommendations

I am not a wine snob. For everyday drinking, when really all I want is something easy to drink and cheap, I like Farnese Montepulciano d'Abruzzo, $7 for a 750ml bottle. I discovered it because it's also the house red at Terroni, maybe it's just the atmosphere there, but we always end up ordering more.

Feb 20, 2007
mary sand in Wine

(Toronto) Tacos El Asador - is it worth trying?

It's "alright". Nice mouth feel but bland was my experience there last summer. But it is inexpensive, so worth a try. It's El Savadorian (sic) so don't expect those "mexicasa" type of flavours!

best breakfast joint in Toronto?

IF Café (Dundas/Dovercourt/Ossington area, by the LCBO) is really really good AND inexpensive! A bit farther west than the trendy part of Dundas (Musa, Saving Grace) but 1) never a line up, 2) extremely reasonable, 3) very yummy. Unexpected GEM in this very home-style Portuguese neighbhourhood. Café Brasilliano, right beside Musa is a FIND too! Go there for lunch, when the line ups at Musa and Saving Grace are ticking you off!