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Toronto Restaurants Recommendations


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So funny, the guy named Blue Hill and Masa???

These restaurants are far behind Toqué amigo.

Le Bernardin is not always that good also, I have been disapointed 1/3 of the time there.

As for the cheese from Quebec, you should try the Kenogami wich is considered to be the best Quebec cheese.

It's easy to drop the names of the NY best restaurants, we don't care about these and we know all of them. Why comparing NYC to Toronto or Montreal? Susur is good, that's it.

P.S. Toqué can be outstanding and easy to compare with some of the best restaurants in the world when Normand is into it.

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So funny, the guy named Blue Hill and Masa???

These restaurants are far behind Toqué amigo.

Le Bernardin is not always that good also, I have been disapointed 1/3 of the time there.

As for the cheese from Quebec, you should try the Kenogami wich is considered to be the best Quebec cheese.

It's easy to drop the names of the NY best restaurants, we don't care about these and we know all of them. Why comparing NYC to Toronto or Montreal? Susur is good, that's it.

P.S. Toqué can be outstanding and easy to compare with some of the best restaurants in the world when Normand is into it.

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Perigee is the ultimate choice to be wowed by great cooking. But it's also eye wateringly expensive if you're not paid in UK pounds! I really enjoyed Crush, 455 King Street West near Mountain Equipment Co-op. Extensive, interesting wine list and superbly cooked meats - the duck confit got lots of 'mmmms' and my "wild" boar was also excellent. (It's not really wild, but comes from a farm in Saskatchewan. Mind you, I guess Saskatchewan's pretty wild.)

Sarah

Sarah

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So funny, the guy named Blue Hill and Masa???

These restaurants are far behind Toqué amigo.

Le Bernardin is not always that good also, I have been disapointed 1/3 of the time there.

As for the cheese from Quebec, you should try the Kenogami wich is considered to be the best Quebec cheese.

It's easy to drop the names of the NY best restaurants, we don't care about these and we know all of them. Why comparing NYC to Toronto or Montreal? Susur is good, that's it.

P.S. Toqué can be outstanding and easy to compare with some of the best restaurants in the world when Normand is into it.

BlueHill and Masa behind Toque? (both use ingredients far superior to Toque)

Susur the best restaurant in Toronto? Susur uses mediocre ingredients considering his exhalted status here. A great chef and even better businessman that watches the bottom-line by sourcing cheaper, not better.

I don't claim to be an expert in Quebec cheeses, but I have had my fair share. I cannot comment on Kenogami as I have yet to have it. As I said, Quebec makes many excellent cheeses.

BlueHill is hardly known as one of the best restaurants in NYC, many people haven't even heard of it. I specifically included BlueHill so people didn't accuse me of merely reciting the restaurants everyone knows and respects.

As for Le Bernadin, I can say I have dined there maybe a dozen times and only had a mediocre meal once. Eric is omnipresent, he sources the best ingredients and unfathomably talented. If its so disappointing, why do you punish yourself by going back?

"When Normand is into it". He's a restauranteur and chef, if he isn't always "into it" he should find a new profession. Based solely on what I was served I found it to be a very cruel joke. Next time I'm in town I will have one of the restaurant's purveyors call to make the reservation for me, ensure Normand will be there and re-evaluate. Toque one of the best restaurants in the world? The place would never receive even a single Michelin star!

Edited by Tom Gandey (log)
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  • 5 weeks later...

Couldn't agree with you more, Tom - Toque would never get a Michelin star.

Hate the new business-loungey room, and the snooty waiters, and

the Startrek uniforms. The stark table settings seem chilling to me -

how about some flowers and a cover plate?

But above all, I find the food irregular and

disappointing.

Yes, Masa's better. So is Per Se, and Bernardin, and Jean-georges,

and sooo many of the great NY restaurants. We just don't have anything

at that level in Mtl or Toronto.

As for my favourite near the CN Tower, I must say it's Canoe. Sweeping

views, outstanding service, beautiful, colourful presentations,

fresh Canadian-inspired dishes, never too inventive.

Went to The Fifth last week and was sorely disappointed. Place was so

dark I couldn't see what I was eating. Waiter mistakingly said the fish

of the day came from Saskatchewan (!!!). Palate cleanser was a

guava sorbet - talk about a non-palate cleanser! Tasty as dessert,

but not between apps and mains.

Amouse bouche was made with tough, overcooked beef.

Nice atmosphere, though... ;)

Alexandra Forbes

Brazilian food and travel writer, @aleforbes on Twitter

Official Website

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Couldn't agree with you more, Tom - Toque would never get a Michelin star.

Hate the new business-loungey room, and the snooty waiters, and

the Startrek uniforms. The stark table settings seem chilling to me -

how about some flowers and a cover plate?

But above all, I find the food irregular and

disappointing.

Yes, Masa's better. So is Per Se, and Bernardin, and Jean-georges,

and sooo many of the great NY restaurants. We just don't have anything

at that level in Mtl or Toronto.

As for my favourite near the CN Tower, I must say it's Canoe. Sweeping

views, outstanding service, beautiful, colourful presentations,

fresh Canadian-inspired dishes, never too inventive.

Went to The Fifth last week and was sorely disappointed. Place was so

dark I couldn't see what I was eating. Waiter mistakingly said the fish

of the day came from Saskatchewan (!!!). Palate cleanser was a

guava sorbet - talk about a non-palate cleanser! Tasty as dessert,

but not between apps and mains.

Amouse bouche was made with tough, overcooked beef.

Nice atmosphere, though... ;)

Hi Alexandra,

I don't really write on eG anymore due to the political climate here, but I'm curious about your last visit to Canoe? I went around this time last year and it was borderline horrible. Nice view but amateurish although well-intentioned service, and poor ingredients (my fish tasted like it was caught the week before). The technique seemed to be average-plus, even for a Toronto restaurant. I have been told its much better now and just wanted to confirm before another visit.

The Fifth was never great, but it has definitely seen better days (Thuet, Leroy). Avalon has also had problems since their chef du cuisine and much of their kitchen staff left for what is probably the best restaurant in Toronto now, Perigee.

Only 2 top-tier restaurants in Toronto now that are really worth going to, Perigee and Splendido. Both have good ingredients prepared by creative skilled hands. They are far from perfect, but certainly worthy of your money if you are looking for a "fine dining" meal in Toronto. Kaji is a very good choice and one of the regulars in my rotation.

Have you been to Eigensinn? That is the only restaurant in Ontario that deserves all of the accolades it receives, truly something special.

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Couldn't agree with you more, Tom - Toque would never get a Michelin star.

Hate the new business-loungey room, and the snooty waiters, and

the Startrek uniforms. The stark table settings seem chilling to me -

how about some flowers and a cover plate?

But above all, I find the food irregular and

disappointing.

Yes, Masa's better. So is Per Se, and Bernardin, and Jean-georges,

and sooo many of the great NY restaurants. We just don't have anything

at that level in Mtl or Toronto.

As for my favourite near the CN Tower, I must say it's Canoe. Sweeping

views, outstanding service, beautiful, colourful presentations,

fresh Canadian-inspired dishes, never too inventive.

Went to The Fifth last week and was sorely disappointed. Place was so

dark I couldn't see what I was eating. Waiter mistakingly said the fish

of the day came from Saskatchewan (!!!). Palate cleanser was a

guava sorbet - talk about a non-palate cleanser! Tasty as dessert,

but not between apps and mains.

Amouse bouche was made with tough, overcooked beef.

Nice atmosphere, though... ;)

The Fifth hasn't been good since Marc Thuet departed and I never found it outstanding while Didier was there either.

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I don't really write on eG anymore due to the political climate here

I must be missing something. Does eGullet have political overtones? Am I being watched as I type this? What's that noise! ... Hey! ... (Uhh!)... :wacko:

If you've read this, you will also be in Danger.

Big Brother :angry:

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  • 3 weeks later...

Hi!

I'll be in Toronto for 4-5 days and would like to try some places to eat that really show off Toronto and how it is different from Vancouver in the dining scene. So I'm not looking for the highest priced restaurants but rather the unique places that make food that can not be found in Vancouver. I'm sure there are some of you out there that know Vancouver's dining scene well and can send some recommendations. Thanks so much!

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Try to find your way north of the 401. Richmond Hill, Markham, Scarborough, etc. have some large Chinese owned Strip Malls that have become the new "Chinatowns" and each mall has at least 3-4 Chinese restaurants. In one of the threads in this forum (Toronto), you will find Jan Wong's list of the "Ten best" restaurants (Chinese) in Toronto. The thread is titled "Dim Sum in Toronto, the best Places" about 7 threads down.

For good (sometimes great ) and cheap food head for the Old Chinatown of Dundas/Spadina. Just don't expect folded linen napkins and white tablecloths.

Edited by Ben Hong (log)
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i lived in vancouver for 6 months earlier this year and for the life of me, could not find any good indian food. you should try Gandhi (on Queen just east of Bathurst) - they have the BEST rotis i've ever eaten (and i've eaten quite a bit!). if you're a foodie, you should go to Kensington Market and try Big Fat Burrito - really tasty and HUGE burritos.

forget the japanese restaurants here in toronto - vancouver's way better

Edited by MightyD (log)
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Thanks for the reply! For a frame of reference when you were in Vancouver did you eat a Vij's?

i lived in vancouver for 6 months earlier this year and for the life of me, could not find any good indian food.  you should try Gandhi (on Queen just east of Bathurst) - they have the BEST rotis i've ever eaten (and i've eaten quite a bit!).  if you're a foodie, you should go to Kensington Market and try Big Fat Burrito  - really tasty and HUGE burritos.

forget the japanese restaurants here in toronto - vancouver's way better

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If you are looking for something different, here's a few places you might want to check out while in Toronto.

For breakfast, try the Beaver Cafe on Queen Street west near Dufferin.

Great food, good portions and a funky little place for breaky.

The Swan on Queen West is also very good for dinner or lunch.

And I would not be living up to my nickname if I didn't mention at least a couple of really good oyster places. (Something that Vancouver even with it's proximity to the ocean is sadly lacking, Joe Forte's and Rodney's aside.)

Oyster Boy at 872 Queen St. West.

Starfish at 100 Adelaide Street East.

Rodney's at 469 King Street West.

All these places also have a non seafood menu as well and are worth checking out.

Hope you have a good trip and enjoy yourself.

I live in B.C. now but I miss the food in Toronto a lot.

Oh, check out Chinatown (Dundas and Spadina area) for really good cheap Chinese food.

Kensington Market is also pretty cool.

Have fun

Keep on shucking

Oyster Guy

"Why then, the world is mine oyster, which I with sword, shall open."

William Shakespeare-The Merry Wives of Windsor

"An oyster is a French Kiss that goes all the way." Rodney Clark

"Oyster shuckers are the rock stars of the shellfish industry." Jason Woodside

"Obviously, if you don't love life, you can't enjoy an oyster."

Eleanor Clark

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Thanks for the reply! For a frame of reference when you were in Vancouver did you eat a Vij's?
i lived in vancouver for 6 months earlier this year and for the life of me, could not find any good indian food.  you should try Gandhi (on Queen just east of Bathurst) - they have the BEST rotis i've ever eaten (and i've eaten quite a bit!).   if you're a foodie, you should go to Kensington Market and try Big Fat Burrito  - really tasty and HUGE burritos.

forget the japanese restaurants here in toronto - vancouver's way better

no, didn't go there. but if you try Gandhi, try the butter chicken roti - go for spicy if you dare - makes me sweat like a hog but it is SOOOOO worth it.

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Just MUST go to splendido.

I had the best dinner of the year there just a month ago, when I visited Toronto for the first time.

Its a bit pricey but worth it.

The belly rules the mind.
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Having lived in each city the dining options are very similar, although there are a few places that I find to be quintessential Toronto. The first is Scaramouche which is going on 20+ years strong in Toronto http://www.scaramoucherestaurant.com and is perhaps one of the best meals I have had in the city. Spendido is also great http://www.splendido.ca as another notes - my dinner for 4 was obscenely priced though but well worth it. The Fifth is also very good and after dinner you can always go for a drink at Sleasy (I mean Easy downstairs http://www.easyandthefifth.com ) or go and stroll on Queen street. Harbour Sixty is a steak house unlike any in Vancouver and is prototypical Toronto full of investment bankers and lawyers with clients wheeling and dealing and probably dinning before or after some of Canada’s biggest corporate transactions http://www.harboursixty.com (Gotham et al. do not even come close to this one). Barbarians is also good for steaks and also Carman’s http://carmans.sites.toronto.com . Another unique place is Lolita’s Lust http://www.lolitaslust.ca on Danforth (very funky and cool and the food is great) and a few of the many Greek restaurants in the same area on Danforth which there is no equivalent to in Vancouver (Avli is a favourite of mine http://avli.sites.toronto.com). I like Chinatown but to be honest you will get better and cheaper Chinese food in Richmond and as you will be well aware Chinese food is damn good in Vancouver so this is not a unique feature of Toronto. Be aware that in my opinion restaurants are about 15-20% more expensive here in Toronto (and be prepared to add the extra PST on top of it all). Another thing that I find unique is that the bar areas at restaurants on Thursdays in the financial district are jammed packed. Go for a drink at the new hot spot for the brokers etc. at Ki. You will have a good time but go early. The Japanese food you will get in Vancouver will be cheaper and likely better than Ki but the environment will not be as cool and the space is not duplicated at any place I am aware of in Vancouver. Finally, I think that Canoe http://www.canoerestaurant.com/intro_f.htm is also uniquely Toronto. La Palette is fantastic and cheaper http://www.toronto.com/profile/312521/ in the Kensington market area which others have noted is a pretty interesting area and make sure you ask for the other wine list with some good gems. I am afraid however, that some of my places listed are probably not cheap since in my opinion places like Joe Fortes, Cin Cin, the Cannery, Kettle of Fish, Cru, and many others are dirt cheap compared with places here. Such is life though. I have never figured this out so I suck it up and drive on. I hope this helps. PM me if you want more info.

officially left egullet....

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  • 3 weeks later...

I am already planing on Splendido and Crush.But I will be with a family of six so looking for affordable options too.My cuz is a chef at a chinese place in one of the hotels there so we got the chinese rec down ,so where else should we go?

Edited by Greg Ling (log)

"..French Vanilla, Butter Pecan, Chocolate Deluxe, even Caramel sundaes is getting touched.." Ice Cream

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If you like Dim Sum - I would suggest Lei Wah Heen - Not exactly cheap, but its rated as some of the best Dim Sum on the east coast....In the metropolitan hotel.

thats where my cousin works so we got that covered.the other places seem promising.By the way what is the drinking age there? My brother is 18.

"..French Vanilla, Butter Pecan, Chocolate Deluxe, even Caramel sundaes is getting touched.." Ice Cream

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By the way what is the drinking age there? My brother is 18.

I'm afraid you'll have to dress him up, glue on a moustache, or do something so that he appears just a year older. He'd be legal in Quebec, though.

Sorry. No suggestions on where to pick up false ID.

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