When blogging one restaurant isn’t enough (and when you forget to take entrance pictures for both…) it’s time for a special update with two for the price of one!
Location: 418 Spadina Ave
Website: http://cantonchilli.com/default.aspx (sexy website… lol)
The other day I came with A) one of my university friends and B) a person who was continually tempting and torturing me with the idea of having something available at Canton Chili that we call, “Crispy Honey Beef,” or “CHB” for short. Well after multiple weeks of said temptation, I finally decided that I would satisfy my urges for delicious, crispy, honey-flavored beef. Along with other things.
I love me some delicious hot and sour soup, and fortunately for us, person A was chummy with one of the owners of this place. As such we were able to get some soup to start our meal off, free of charge. Sometimes Hot & Sour soup is too sour, other times it is too hot. However, at Canton Chili, the balance of flavors is just right, with a nice kick that (at least for me) whets my appetite.
This is a pretty standard starting dish, with a fried, crunchy exterior and a soft, meaty interior. With the added flavor from the red vinegar, this dish was alright. I’m not going to say it was amazing or anything because this really is a standard dish. It was definitely not bad, but not something I’d order a second time.
I’m not always the biggest fan of vegetables, but because I’ve grown up on eating this kind of flavor, I can tell you that they stir fry some pretty good bak choi. The slices of chicken that came along with the dish were moist and flavorful, retaining both chicken flavor and a meaty texture. The flavor of the chicken also managed to seep into the bak choi, adding additional taste to the vegetables.
This probably doesn’t look too special at first glance. But God, after waiting for over two weeks to try this (because of a certain someone constantly chanting “CHB, CHB”, you would imagine that I would be disappointed!) However, this was delicious. A fragrant, flavorful spiced honey sauce covered crispy pieces of beef. The combination of salty, spicy, and sweet along with the different textural nuances of the crisped meat proved to be a delectable combination that I could frankly go eat at least once a week. Remember that this is not high class food or anything, but for cheap Chinese food, I definitely think that this is the creme de la creme of restaurants! To note: the far more boring name for CHB is Spicy Crispy Shredded Beef, or 四川脆牛柳.
Conclusion?: The CHB alone makes it worth going here, but the other items we had off the menu were pretty tasty, along with being super easy on the wallet for a student. They also do delivery and are open very late, being open til 4-5 AM in the evening and doing delivery until 3:30-4:30 AM. 8.5/10!
Of course, this is not the true conclusion, because we went somewhere else that evening, a place that I’ve been meaning to blog for a little while. It’s just a small, two floor cafe that happens be open for 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert! For this particular occasion, we chose to have dessert. Introducing…
Location: 7 Charles Street West
There was actually more of this cake before. I also forgot to take a picture of this entrance as well… it was quite cold outside and I was not wearing enough. I’m sorry. 😦 Anyways, my friends and I had a couple cakes and some toast. There were a lot of people at this cafe when we went (around 12 am) and we had to squish into a table. Not the most comfortable seating space, but they’ve got some great cakes!
The chocobanana cake, as pictured above, a mix of what was like banana bread and chocolate chips, was a tad too sweet for my friend’s liking. He admitted that he did find it tasty and that he would have liked it more if we had enough water to drink. We had to ask the waitress and waiter working the tables three times for water! Fortunately when they finally remembered they bought two jugs of water so that we could fill up a few times before asking them again.
Okay well I’m not a connosieur of red velvet cake. However my girlfriend and I do know a tasty cake when we taste one, and this one certainly fit the bill. It was colored crimson, though the lighting makes it look kind of brown. The cream layers were some sort of yummy cream cheese frosting. Though I thought this cake would be too sweet, it was actually just right! The layers of cake were all moist and sweet, with the flavor of the cream cheese coming through to add extra depth to this cake. A good first experience with red velvet cake.
Conclusion: I’ve actually been here a few times. They’re not the cheapest restaurant on the block but they serve solid food throughout the day. Their pastas are okay, their sandwiches are yummy, and they usually give you massive slices of cake that would be fit for two people instead for one! Did I mention that this place is open 24/7, for whenever you’re hankering to satisfy your sweet tooth? 7/10