Category Archives: GTA-Toronto (East)

Xe Lua Vietnamese Cuisine


625 Gerrard Street East
Toronto, ON M4M 1Y2
(416) 466-5887

There are a number of Vietnamese restaurants in this part of the city. (In fact, on the same block). Deciding on which one to try can be mind-boggling.

Xe Lua has a number of locations in the GTA, including Chinatown and Scarborough. This particular location, Broadview/Riverdale area has been around for years! Although I think their broth (they use for Pho) is tasty and flavourful, I’m concerned about how clean their kitchen is. I’ve had a few experiences where I’ve found “foreign objects” (i.e. a small piece of wire and cement) in my food on separate occasions. Maybe, it was just my luck?!

Recommendations
• Pho – rare beef noodle soup
• Tomato Beef Brisket Stew – served with chunks of beef and carrots that are soft and juicy from the stewing process. Another flavourful dish. This item can be served with noodles or bread.

Good to Know
• Best seats: No preference
• Service: Okay
• Atmosphere: Simple. Chairs and tables are closely packed back-to-back.
• Ideal for: Casual, quick eats, take out
• Attire: Casual
• Reservations recommended: No
• Patio recommended: No

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Xe Lua on Urbanspoon

Que Ling Vietnamese Restaurant


248 Boulton Avenue Toronto, ON M4M 2K1
(Gerrard St E & Broadview Ave)
T: (416) 778-4038

Tucked away in a small side street, this tiny Vietnamese restaurant is one of Toronto’s undiscovered gems. This small family run restaurant has approximately 6 tables and a very simple menu with 10 or so items. (If you plan to go for dinner, note they close at 7pm.)

Recommendations
• Item #1 Vietnamese Steam Rolls with Meat – freshly made when ordered so it nice and soft
• Item #4 – Rare Beef Rice Noodles in Soup
• Shakes made with real fruit (if you are daring, try durian which has a strong pungent flavour that is an acquired taste; otherwise, other flavours available include jack fruit, mango and strawberry).

Good to Know
• Best seats: No preference
• Service: Nice
• Atmosphere: small, basic, two TV sets suspended from the ceiling on opposite sides of the restaurant
• Ideal for: Casual, quick eat
• Attire: Casual
• Reservations recommended: No
• Patio recommended: No

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Que Ling Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Mi Mi Vietnamese Restaurant


688 Gerrard St E, Toronto, ON M4M 1Y3
(Broadview & Gerrard)
(416) 778-5948

I have read many good reviews about this place but was disappointed that the food wasn’t “great”. The Pho noodle soup was a bit more bland and the noodles was harder/rougher than preferred. I also didn’t find the pork chop very fresh either. Overall, in comparison to most Vietnamese restaurants I’ve frequented, it was an okay experience.

Recommendations
• Fresh shrimp roll
• Mango juice

Good to Know
• Best seats: No particular preference
• Service: Friendly & bubbly
• Atmosphere: Basic (family run business)
• Ideal for: Casual, family, quick eat
• Attire: Casual (almost anything goes)
• Reservations recommended: No
• Patio recommended: N/A

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Mi Mi Vietnamese on Urbanspoon

Red Rocket Coffee


1402 Queen Street East, Toronto, ON
(Greenwood & Queen)
T: (416) 406-0880
www.redrocketcoffee.com

A nice little hangout with delicious lattes, friendly patrons and outstanding service!

Recommendations
• Industrial muffin – no sugar, no butter, no oil; but has cranberries, blueberries, and oats … a scrumptious and healthy choice! (Only available at the Queen St E location)
• Chai Soy Latte
• Apple Cider (made with real juice, not powered). Spice it up by adding fresh nutmeg, pumpkin spice and cinnamon sprinkles!

Good to Know
• Best seats: the leather sofa at front of the bar (see photo)
• Service: Excellent – the last time I was there I order a cider. When they started making it, the realized the cider had not defrost. Not only did they refund our money but they gave me a large cup of latte (my choice) to make up for the inconvenience. Now that’s exceeding customer expectations!!
• Atmosphere: Casual, cozy
• Ideal for: Date, locals, casual meeting
• Attire: Casual
• Reservations recommended: N/A
• Patio recommended: Yes
• Free: Get a free drink if you bring your travel mug to get “rebranded”!

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Red Rocket Coffee on Urbanspoon

Sunset Grill


2006 Queen Street East, Toronto, ON  M4L 1J3
(Woodbine Ave & Queen St E)
T: (416) 690-9985
www.sunsetgrill.ca

The Sunset Grill on Queen St E was the first shop that opened in 1985 and is a very busy weekend breakfast/brunch spot. Even at 2pm on a Sunday afternoon, we found ourselves waiting in line for 15 minutes. They been around for over two decades and are famous for their All Day Breakfasts.

Recommendations
• Omelets
• Homemade potatoes

Good to Know
• Best seats: No particular preference; it’s very tightly packed, especially on weekends
• Service: Good
• Atmosphere: Retro diner with black and white square tile floors
• Ideal for: Date, quick eats, Queen St/Beaches shoppers
• Attire: Casual
• Reservations recommended: N/A
• Patio recommended: N/A

Sunset Grill on Urbanspoon