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

esf2003's Profile

Title Last Reply

Want some brilliant Cantonese food? Try ' Brilliant Chinese Restaurant', Markham!

Maybe the a-la-carte food is better than the set dinners for 10?

I have been here many times in the last year or two for family gatherings and I've found the food to be very ordinary (and admittedly, I groan when we're dragged there). I'll admit though that the chicken stuffed with glutinous rice is amazing!

ISO Great Sushi and Sashimi, Omakase Style

I went to Zen yesterday for lunch and got the Omakase.

There definitely was real wasabi... I watched as it was grated. Unfortunately it doesn't have the same taste as in Japan (I assume because it's not that fresh after travelling such a long distance.) My dining partner, who just ordered the regular sushi lunch got the wasabi from the tub.

And if anyone was wondering, it was served piece by piece and in approximately this order:
- Iwashi
- Kanpachi
- Tai
- Madai
- Mirugai
- Ika
- Amaebi
- Hamachi
- Aburi Toro
- Uni
- Otoro
- Aji
- Anago
- Negitoro temaki

Definitely worth every penny.

NYC Lunch/Dinner Recommendations

I'm going to be visiting NYC (haven't been in 10 years) for the next week from Toronto and I'm looking for some recommendations.

So far I've decided to do lunch once at Kurumazushi and dinner omakase at Yasuda. Now I'm in search for French and Italian recommendations.

Ideally, I am looking to spend about $100-$150 per person for each of these meals. I had a look at Per Se's menu and I am still on the fence whether I would pay more than $300 a person, would it be worth making the splurge?

I also want to know if there are any "must-trys" in NYC, things that I can't get in Toronto. SOme recommendations for good "cheap eats" would be nice too.

I would really appreciate it if some of you can help me out. I've spent quite some time searching but it seems like an information overload!

Jul 12, 2009
esf2003 in Manhattan

Where to find weisswurst (white sausage) in TO?

I second this. I buy these for Sunday breakfast every week. As far as authenticity goes, it's not completely authentic as authentic weisswurst is made from veal, and traditionally is consumed right away after being made as it spoils quickly.

Visa Infinite offer @ George?

Has anyone tried the Visa Infinite offer at George? I was on the site today and saw that there's a free appetizer that's not on the menu to cardholders. Is it anything special? I was thinking of giving George a try for the last while, and this may be the motivation I need.

Mid-priced Japanese?

Zen's lunch is a bargain. $15 or so for 9 pieces of good sushi, no reduction in quality as far as I can tell. It's one of the few places in town that doesn't serve that disgusting "whitefish" that gives you the runs. The picture below was from 4 months ago, before I left from Hong Kong. I shot it with my phone camera, but I guarantee you it was excellent.

Best sushi in Hong Kong?

+1 for Kenjo. A stand out in HK.

Kenjo is probably the best and not THAT terribly expensive... on a side note DO NOT order anything that's not on the menu, anything the waiters recommend you... you will regret it. They charge exhorbitant price for stuff not on the menu.

I find places like Unkai, Kuu, etc. to be very average... maybe a step about conveyor belt, but not enough to justify the price difference.

Singapore Cuisine

I agree with all the recommendations for Lion City. It's about as close to authentic S'pore food in Toronto. I'm a regular there, but I've never ordered the black pepper crab, so I can't really comment. It is indeed family-owned with a Singaporean chef. All the dishes are pretty solid... the fish in banana leaf is really good as well as the chicken rice.

Whether it is worth the drive, is up to you...


Just order the sushi and sashimi omakase. You'll be pleasantly surprised. :) No need to make any requests... if you're still not full, just order what you liked from either dish as they are great samplers.

starving student soon to be in Hong Kong

I am also in the same shoes as you... I am a student who spends his summers in Hong Kong, and I also try to keep the budget to about HK$100 for 3 meals, although I do have the option of eating at home anytime.

In CityU, the FW foodcourt has a great selection, if you want to save money, eat dinner before 6pm, as many of the restaurants there have "tea sets", smaller portions, but much cheaper than regular times. Some of the greatest places to eat for cheap are in seedy, dirty and very local areas.... I frequent a beef noodle place in Sham Shui Po across from Golden Computer Centre, it's $15 or so and it's really good. Buying flavoured buns from bakeries is also a economical choice, I quite frequently buy char siu (roast pork), chicken, etc. buns from Maxim's and fill up on those.

All I can say, is get out there and try those small, cramped restaurants everywhere... you'll be amazed at what you'll find at the prices. Central has the best wonton noodles, and plenty of really good places to eat for cheap (as well as a lot of expensive ones). In HK, it would be ideal if you could splurge on some meals every now and then...

Best Italian restaurant in Hong Kong: Da Domenico?

Any chance you recently wrote a review of this restaurant on OpenRice?

I tried the scampi a few weeks ago... simply amazing but the price tag was shocking. Even though I wasn't paying for it, I felt pretty guilty eating it. The service sucked, but no more than some typical high-end restaurants I've been to in HK and Toronto.


I have to add, the sushi/sashimi omakase are probably the best dishes you can order at Zen... the variety is amazing for a sushi restaurant in Toronto, and I love how they are like sushi restaurants in Japan, in that they employ different seasonings for different types of fish. It's not the same level as say Mizutani or Jiro in Tokyo, but at about $45, it's probably the best value for high quality sushi in Toronto.

Does anyone know if they have simple Anago on rice instead of sushi? I find a single order of Anago to be quite pricey, and that is why I order omakase sushi as it seems to always be included.

Hainanese Chicken Rice in To

Charles, would you mind telling me where "Dai Pa Yoh" is? I'm currently in HK and desperate to find a good Hainanese Chicken rice, good as I've has it in Singapore many times before.

Japanese Noodle Soup

Kumai has a solid hot kitchen, and a really good udon. But their service is an abomination (I'm still a frequent customer), it can be very slow, but always polite.

What are the best cakes and where?

I enjoyed the mini-cakes at Senses a lot, but they are quite expensive for the size.

What is the best Chinese restaurant in Mississauga?

Emerald is rubbish, the food is mediocre and expensive for what it is. Sam Woo was good many many years ago, but it started going downhill in the last 4 years, me and my parents used to be frequent customers of the place, but we haven't been back in a long time, only for take out BBQ meat. Ever since the time they got closed down by health inspection, we swore we would never return.

Hi Shanghai restaurant in Scarborough - anyone try it yet?

I was wondering the exact same thing last night, as I happened to be in that mall too.

Hiro Sushi- Hmmm....

Again, I emphasize that I did enjoy Hiro's sushi, but only if it was not the gaijin rubbish, I spent a term on exchange in Japan a year ago, and it was pretty sad coming back to Toronto and getting pretty mediocre sushi, with the exception of the places I mentioned earlier. Hiro's sushi matches that quality and would be out of this world if the real wasabi was used. I'm done with the set dinners or lunches, and I'm probably going back next week for the omakase. Basically, to sum up what I said, I was quite disappointed with the set lunch, but was more than happy with the a la carte orders, and felt that it represented his work well.

BTW- What was the point of showing me that rant? A measure of "worth" is rather subjective, and yes I do think some sushi is more than worth it (The individual orders I had at $6 for 2 pieces was well worth it, but I wouldn't pay anything for sushi at most places on Bloor). You can question if any food is worth the money, it doesn't apply just to sushi...

Hiro Sushi- Hmmm....

Okay, so I went to Hiro Sushi for lunch today, expecting to be blown away. I was very hungry and chose to have the Sushi and a Half lunch special. I was the only one there, being there at exactly 12:00pm. The sushi rice wasn't even ready when I sat down, so I waited a little while before Hiro-san actually started making the sushi.

Anyways, my set came, and it was completely underwhelming. 2 pieces of salmon, one white fish, one saba, surf clam, shrimp, shiitake, fake crab stick, egg, unagi. How disappointing it was, getting really cheap ingredients in supposedly such a great place for sushi. The use of the shiitake mushroom really shocked me. On a brighter note, the fish was absolutely superb, and the shrimp, egg and unagi nigiri I still enjoyed very much (but the surf clam, shiitake, fake crab stick was really dispapointing). The rice was perfect, and the right amount of wasabi was used in my opinion, though I can see why people may find it to be a bit too strong.

I decided to give him another chance and ordered a few a la carte orders as I sat at the sushi bar. I started off with his signature zuke, the marinated tuna, and it was sublime. The rich flavour of the tuna marinated in his soy sauce, with the raw garlic on the top was such a perfect combo. Next, I had the hamachi, which was pretty standard, but very fresh. After asking for bonito and aji, I was disappointed to find out it wasn't available today. No matter, I ask him for his recommendations. I order the fluke, and it was also excellent. Finally, to finish off, he recommended a spanish mackarel, which he put some hot oil on top, a leaf of lettuce under, and ginger and green onion on top. This absolutely blew me away, possibly the best mackarel sushi I've ever had.

I left $40 poorer, which wasn't too bad, considering I had 18 pieces of sushi and a roll, but I definitely would have enjoyed it more if I just ignored the lunch menu and ordered straight from the a la carte menu or ordered omakase. Although, I didn't feel like it was completely worth it to walk all the way from Bloor and St. George in the cold all the way to Jarvis and King E. and back just for lunch.

So in conclusion, will I return? Yes. But I will not order the cheap lunch specials again. The only way to go must be to order the sushi omakase or just order a la carte. The sushi is really good, it's absolutely what I'm looking for, but the silly cheap ingredients are a turn-off to say the least.

Anyone who has been to Kaji lately...

To clear up, no I'm not looking exactly for the most for my money, but I want to use this experience to try some of the rarer items.

@thegreatfoodhunt, those pictures are absolutely mouthwatering....

Do-not-miss dining: Toronto

Le Biftheque is definitely far from do-not-miss dining in Toronto, rather it is a "must miss" for good food.

Warning (as if you needed a warning)

Apparently that's what it's called at the entrances... unless my mind is screwing with me :S

Warning (as if you needed a warning)

Bad food in the Eaton's Centre... Who would have guessed? (Insert sarcasm)

Anyone who has been to Kaji lately...

Could you describe what exactly was on the menu? I want to choose the right time when they have stuff like lobster, crab, toro, etc because this will likely be a one-time thing for a few years. (I just can't stand the reality of paying more than $150 for a dinner for two, when it's coming out of my own pocket ;) ).

Best Lunch under $20 in Downtown?

What is the best lunch in Toronto you cn have for under $20? I'm trying to look for new places to try, as I'm getting bored of the same places over and over again. I'm at the University of Toronto St. George campus, but I can walk/jog really fast, so distance is not really a problem, as long as it's not past Davenport, Church or Front. St.

Sushi Freshness

Sushi is never delivered to restaurants as far as I know... (unless if you call those mall teriyaki stands restaurants)

Eigensinn Farm- Comments?

I'm considering having my big splurge of 2007 here... Anyone got any details they want to share about this place, and when is the best time of the year to go?

What is the best Chinese restaurant in Mississauga?

My could anyone recommend Mandarin's?

My vote would go for The Perfect Kitchen for dim sum ONLY. I've been there for dinner twice a while ago, and it was absolutely terrible. Summit Garden, which is close by has been consistently good for the better part of 10 years of repeat visits, for the casual yum cha every week, and the dinner is pretty decent too.

Do-not-miss dining: Toronto

I 3rd or 4th Lai Wah Heen as a must in Toronto. This place has to be the closest to the high-end dim sum you get in Hong Kong at 5-star hotels, in that it experiments with non traditional ingredients, etc. I say this as a person who has probably had hundreds of dim sum meals in Toronto, and LWH definitely tops every single one of them.

Dinner Saturday night

Pangaea seems to be a good option, the dining room has good atmosphere, and the entrees were in the $40 range from what I remember, and they have killer desserts too.