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Toronto restaurant recommendation - Page 28

post #406 of 963
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hartmann View Post
Any thoughts on the list?

Also I can safely say I've never been to any of them except for Splendido, and that was a while ago. Any recommendations for sleeper hits in this bunch?

#2 flies in fish from Japan. That's why it's expensive. When Joanne Kates was there, she said they didn't have a liquor license but I think they rectified that.

Queen & Beaver is more a posh pub. They have a nice pub lounge at the top and that's where I go. Setanta and GolTV for those interested. Nice rabbit meat and scotch eggs. Don't really like their chips, which are more like crisps. If you go weekday afternoons you get pounced on by the weirdest ex-pats (weird as in they would be good conversation partners with Prince Philip)

I already went to Splendido - good service, pretty busy at night if you don't get a reservation.

Ame is like Ki but less pretentious and a lot quieter. Their grilled fish come filleted and then they put it back on the fish. I wouldn't say I saw a huge amount of creativity with the sushi though.

Hoof Cafe is where you go waiting to get into Black Hoof - kind of like going to Hank's waiting to get into Wine Bar. Although they're known for their meats, they also have a neat cocktail list where all the ingredients are made from scratch (no Real Lime).

Guu is where you go to wait 2 hours for a table.

Paramour is supposed to be the product of a server from Splendido - was hoping to try that some time. I heard it was a good place for a vegetarian person.
post #407 of 963
Last week, I thought I tried this new sushi place around Yonge & Dundas but I went to the wrong one. I went to Sushi Tower, which is a place you want to go if you want to spend $3.99 on a sit down lunch or $6.99 for mini california rolls; the smallest roll you can find at another place divided by two.

Anyway, I ended up at Tatami today near Yonge & Dundas. Okay, I heard this place was supposed to be aimed at students and stuff but there were only office people in there today. And compared to Salad King, this place is a ghost town. Service was confused - I was asked to order twice; this is also one of those places where you have to checkmark the menu. But it was confused in a "I don't know what I'm doing" way not a "I don't care what I'm doing". Second, they do take all your sushi and sashimi orders and arrange them into a fruit garnished plate. That was pretty neat. I'm not sure about the wires and stuff sticking out of a few of the rolls. And the fruit was sweet, pretty edible stuff.

The menu was not dirt cheap but it wasn't expensive like Nami or Ki or something. They can't really charge too much because they only have 4 base ingredients; tuna, red tuna, salmon and unagi. And amazingly with different vegetables and tempura pieces, they can make at least a dozen combinations but again, it's all very limiting.

I saw someone get the $9.50 bento boxes - those looked huge (think Ninki down at Scotia Plaza).

Lunch for two, no tea, came to $25 + tip. The decor looked nice but the space is pretty small. I admire they turned what was a burger joint or something into something so elegant but it seems cramped and given what I saw on Monday, they're not going to make enough to take on a space like that.
post #408 of 963
Thanks for the input, thorough and insightful as always. Just saw that the article said best new restaurants of the year, that explains a lot actually, haha. Thinking of trying the Queen and Beaver for a football match, and maybe Hoof, although my fondness for charcuterie has inexplicably declined in the last while. One place I went to last Friday was this boulangerie whose name escapes me, I think it's literally one number down from Splendido. Wasn't all that hungry so just had a croissant, it was actually good and flaky. Was tempted to get the foie gras but didn't want to force myself. The main idea is that this is a cheese shop, I'm pretty sure it's run by some French guys. There's quite a few places along the strip on Harbord there I've been meaning to check out, like a dessert/bistro place across the street from Splendido, etc. Speaking of sushi, I went to a similar restaurant to Tatami, it's Masa at Bay/Charles. Same idea, the decor was nice, lots of space inside actually which was quite surprising. Downside again was limited menu choice. We were in a group so had the buffet, total w/gratuity was less than $20. Not bad if you're going with a crowd. One better place I was at before for sushi buffet at less than $20 was one block north of Yonge/Bloor. Forget the name tho. And yea, I can see how they'd upcharge the product at #2 on the list if it's flown in. I always generally wonder where they source most of the seafood for the run-of-the-mill sushi places anyway...
post #409 of 963
I went to Fin Izakaya at Yonge/Eg on saturday. Most of the courses were ok but I don't see what all the fuss is about. At least there was no wait like at Guu.
post #410 of 963
Quote:
Originally Posted by EL72 View Post
At least there was no wait like at Guu.

I recently discovered that it's not pronounced "Jew".
post #411 of 963
I went to the Metropolitan resto/bar south of Victoria & Adelaide yesterday for lunch. Just a place I walk by all the time but never got to try. I think next time I'll keep walking. There's really nothing special about the place - typical Italian panini, pizza lunch fare stuff. The decor looks nice on the website but feels shabby inside. There are a few stains on the wall.

The server set down the bread and forgot the olive oil and only on third time passing did I finally have to ask for it. I imagine if I didn't, I wouldn't get it. Had a vegetable panini and a lentil soup. Panini was lukewarm. The only nice thing about the lunch were the two vodka martinis I had. They pitch themselves as an after work drinks place but they only have 4 bar seats. $52 + tip for 2 meals, including 2 martinis.
post #412 of 963
On Friday I had to suffer through a work lunch at Baton Rouge - I loathe the place but I had to go. It's the one place where servers speak in unenthusiastic monotone voices and the hostess tossed menus on the table at me.

Later, I had work drinks at Vertical. This place is pretty dead - Friday night and the bar isn't even half full. Prices are only fit for those with expense accounts. Flatbread, couple of scotches and a Coors Light came out to $70+ tip. At least the waitresses were wearing something worth looking at.

Dinner with my cousin at Cucci all the way out in Oakville along the Lakeshore. I had reserved this place just to get OpenTable points and I thought it couldn't be *that* bad but the first bad thing is they have no hostess. Servers run pass you between the bar and the dining area and you have to flag one of them to tell them you have a reservation. Strike one. One gent, who seems like more a senior waiter, tells me he knows about my reservation but the table for 2 is still being seated by someone with coffee. He escorted me to the bar, in which there are actually no seats so I'm standing at the edge of the bar with bus boys coming in and out behind me and on top of that a jazz band setting up right behind me. Strike two. My reservation was for 9pm, I got there at 8:50. Anyway, 2 drinks later, after the bartender said they'd check on the seat, a random waitress said they would and someone who looked like a principal/owner said they would, 9:15, still not seated. Went for a smoke break - now I'm getting pretty peeved because this is after all Oakville and not a Michelin starred place in Manhattan. Smoke break ended, finally got seated! Hurray!

Waiter drops off the menus and hastily takes our wine order. He opens the bottle of wine, pours the entire thing into a decanter and then pours two half glasses and said, "Oh would you like to try it?" I imagine at this point if I don't like it, he pours it back into the bottle? Strike three. After the wine is set up, he said he would come back to take our order. 45 minutes later (after some table finished an entire course), we get our order in. Strike four. He finally gets us bread so my cousin doesn't die of starvation. Of course, there's only one plate.

Finally, the food comes out. I had these forest mushrooms on toast, which were okay except someone thought it would be good to put salty cream of mushroom from a Campbell's soup can on top of it. The halibut steak main came totally unseasoned and flavourless. My cousin ordered a crepe something that looked and ate like a lasagna. She had scallop risotto, which she thought was good enough to take part of it home. So service was slow, bread was slow, food came out pretty slow, but when you say you want to box up food and leave, that's lightning quick.

When we're done it is close to 11:45, and I thought maybe they rush this to get another sitting in - nope, no one comes in after us. Our AWOL waiter comes around and asks if we want coffee or the dessert menu. Not wanting to suffer another 45 minute wait, I quickly got the cheque. $148 + (a really bad) tip and they forgot to charge the drinks from the bar.

Oh, hopefully no one went to Tatami on my recommendation last week when part of the building collapsed.
post #413 of 963
Quote:
Originally Posted by fwiffo View Post
On Friday I had to suffer through a work lunch at Baton Rouge - I loathe the place but I had to go. It's the one place where servers speak in unenthusiastic monotone voices and the hostess tossed menus on the table at me.

lol. love your posts fwiffster. you do eat out a lot. and either have a ton of dates or a cousin that's superhot, or both.

baton rouge is horrible. i went with a date once, she got the filet mignon (red flag right there -- the date, not the food). the beef was untasty and felt more like inside round than filet mignon. eesh.
post #414 of 963
Quote:
Originally Posted by fwiffo View Post
On Friday I had to suffer through a work lunch at Baton Rouge - I loathe the place but I had to go. It's the one place where servers speak in unenthusiastic monotone voices and the hostess tossed menus on the table at me.

Later, I had work drinks at Vertical. This place is pretty dead - Friday night and the bar isn't even half full. Prices are only fit for those with expense accounts. Flatbread, couple of scotches and a Coors Light came out to $70+ tip. At least the waitresses were wearing something worth looking at.

Dinner with my cousin at Cucci all the way out in Oakville along the Lakeshore. I had reserved this place just to get OpenTable points and I thought it couldn't be *that* bad but the first bad thing is they have no hostess. Servers run pass you between the bar and the dining area and you have to flag one of them to tell them you have a reservation. Strike one. One gent, who seems like more a senior waiter, tells me he knows about my reservation but the table for 2 is still being seated by someone with coffee. He escorted me to the bar, in which there are actually no seats so I'm standing at the edge of the bar with bus boys coming in and out behind me and on top of that a jazz band setting up right behind me. Strike two. My reservation was for 9pm, I got there at 8:50. Anyway, 2 drinks later, after the bartender said they'd check on the seat, a random waitress said they would and someone who looked like a principal/owner said they would, 9:15, still not seated. Went for a smoke break - now I'm getting pretty peeved because this is after all Oakville and not a Michelin starred place in Manhattan. Smoke break ended, finally got seated! Hurray!

Waiter drops off the menus and hastily takes our wine order. He opens the bottle of wine, pours the entire thing into a decanter and then pours two half glasses and said, "Oh would you like to try it?" I imagine at this point if I don't like it, he pours it back into the bottle? Strike three. After the wine is set up, he said he would come back to take our order. 45 minutes later (after some table finished an entire course), we get our order in. Strike four. He finally gets us bread so my cousin doesn't die of starvation. Of course, there's only one plate.

Finally, the food comes out. I had these forest mushrooms on toast, which were okay except someone thought it would be good to put salty cream of mushroom from a Campbell's soup can on top of it. The halibut steak main came totally unseasoned and flavourless. My cousin ordered a crepe something that looked and ate like a lasagna. She had scallop risotto, which she thought was good enough to take part of it home. So service was slow, bread was slow, food came out pretty slow, but when you say you want to box up food and leave, that's lightning quick.

When we're done it is close to 11:45, and I thought maybe they rush this to get another sitting in - nope, no one comes in after us. Our AWOL waiter comes around and asks if we want coffee or the dessert menu. Not wanting to suffer another 45 minute wait, I quickly got the cheque. $148 + (a really bad) tip and they forgot to charge the drinks from the bar.

Oh, hopefully no one went to Tatami on my recommendation last week when part of the building collapsed.

What did you expect? It's not even really in Oakville -- that's Bronte!
post #415 of 963
Quote:
Originally Posted by oldseed View Post
lol. love your posts fwiffster. you do eat out a lot. and either have a ton of dates or a cousin that's superhot, or both.

baton rouge is horrible. i went with a date once, she got the filet mignon (red flag right there -- the date, not the food). the beef was untasty and felt more like inside round than filet mignon. eesh.

I have a few female companions who I go with. They're not all romantic dates. I'm not as debonaire like the other gents on this forum I'll pass the compliment on to my cousin who will appreciate being "superhot".

Women ordering steak - I only know of one - most women prefer to die of a coronary from high cholesterol seafood, or boredom from vegetarian dishes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by eg1 View Post
What did you expect? It's not even really in Oakville -- that's Bronte!

I usually think anyone living west of Glen Abbey is living in Burlington but I'm told I'm posh and stuck up so I keep the disparaging comments to a minimum. It was, however, an insufferable dining experience regardless of locale.

Lunch was half a mushroom sandwich at Hank's and fries. Fries were not as great as I thought. The mushroom sandwich was really good however. Made me wish I saved the calories on the fries for the rest of the sandwich. I was at a conference at King Eddy's and ended up doing cocktail hour there. Then it was off to Paramour.

I wasn't terribly happy that I booked on Tuesday for 2 and was seated next to the door. The good thing, though, is that the place only does one sitting so once everyone was seated, the door didn't open. There was a table of some really loud howlingly drunk 30 something women but otherwise not a bad ambiance.

The foccacia bread, which is housemade is a bit on the salty side. The special starter of the day was the coconut shrimp. I didn't think it was anything out of the ordinary. I had the pickerel with scallop potatoes. My date had the vegetarian special; portobello mushroom on top of a risotto. She liked it but I read about this veggie pate they made. When I heard portobello mushroom, I thought, gee another portobello steak? How very original.

For dessert we chose Danielle; a strawberry tart with a rosewater infused cream. If it weren't for the fragrant rosewater, the tart would have been too sweet.

Most of our service was done by Adlay from reservations to clearing our dessert plate. As a person who tries to maintain Switzerland neutrality (I can smile even if I hate the place), I thought he was a little bit eccentric. My date found him entertaining & charming though.

Not a whole lot of choice for scotch fans. $122 + tip, my date didn't drink.
post #416 of 963
any consensus on whether that 7 West place would be any good for a coffee date?
post #417 of 963
not bad for a coffee date. not great either. cafe le gaffe on baldwin street is a nice small place. beaconsfield is a nice small bar on queen w. in greektown there's an awesome pastry shop called athens bakery. awesome galaktibourikos, awesome cappucino/latte/etc. lots of small italian places on the east side of yonge street north of eglinton (NOT gratzi's).. there's always the queen mother on queen st west and yonge..
post #418 of 963
man, cafe la gaffe looks amazing will check out all your recommendations
post #419 of 963
I was at Bistro 990 yesterday for lunch. I wasn't sure what to expect but my lunch date said she wanted French so I just picked something close by. The decor was unique although a little bit dated. The place filled up pretty good for a Wednesday lunch. I had the omelette and salad (watching my weight) and the poached pear for dessert. She had a rainbow trout with something which she said was good. Uncharacteristic for a French place, the portions were big and the flavours not overly rich. There's a really bubbly waitress there but the rest of the wait staff ar a bit slow. Bread wasn't placed until 3 minutes before the entree came. After the entree was finished, clean up was slow so it was a bit inconsistent all around. Waitress lifted the card from my table when I wanted the bill - that was clever. Got out of there in 70 minutes or so for 2 courses. ~$60 + tip, including a glass of wine and a cocktail.

What is a "coffee date"?
post #420 of 963
well i smoke girls out in order to try and fuck em, right? and i recently discovered this cannabis lounge (yonge/bloorish) that has low lighting and fantastically comfortable leather couches, so ive been thinking about taking a girl out for coffee somewhere nearby, and then just taking her over to the cannabis lounge to smoke and see if any magic happens. 7 west is ideal because it's like 2 minutes from the place. as for the formula, i'm thinking: one round of coffee + one or two rounds of beer + "i'm going to this cool place i know, it's right here. wanna come?" anyway, they really brought the bread out right before the entree? do you think they do that as a matter of course? that's low as hell.
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