Goa Indian Farm Kitchen (Toronto)

My first job was at Bayview Village at the Bakery Garden Café (now turned into Tabule). Once a fairly homogenous mall with eateries serving mostly sandwiches, pizza, and burgers; the strip of restaurants by the O&B entrance has gotten a diversity makeover. A new addition to the fold is Goa Indian Farm Kitchen, the more upscale and polished restaurant by Hemant Bhagwani (also known for Amaya and Indian Street Food).

Lunch is a great time to gather a group for a visit: their lunch combination ($23.95) offers a choice of appetizer and main. Just be mindful of their advice - our waiter noted the starters are not shareable and are made for one person. In reality, the appetizer sizes are substantial and even the short rib samosa arrives as large as a baseball cut into two. So, listen to your gut and get a bunch of appetizers to share.

For us, we made the mistake of taking the waiter’s advice and ordering two portions of the saffron eggplant. Sure, they’re tasty, like shoestring fries made from eggplant, but since the vegetable soaks up oil, they start to feel heavy after half a dozen. I would have much rather alternated between the eggplant and the rawa pakoras as well.

The sriracha chilli cauliflower is exactly as it sounds: bit sized florets deep fried and tossed in a spicy sweet sauce. While there’s nothing inherently wrong with the dish, it’s also not terribly exciting and lacks any Indian flavours.

Luckily, I got my fill of exotic spices from the Goan seafood curry main (additional $4.98), a combination of jumbo prawns, scallop, tiliapia, and mussel cooked to perfection. For those who prefer milder curries, this sauce is ideal with the coconut base enhanced by just a tiny bit of chili, adding flavour without massive amounts of heat. In fact, the sweet onion, tomato, and coconut milk tastes are what really comes through. Unlike their appetizers, the main dish portions are better suited for one person.

Combos arrive with basmati rice dressed up with onion frizzles, chick peas, and a bit of wild rice for colour and texture. While this was more than enough food – we had leftovers – we had to add butter naan ($4), a hot airy soft bread glistening with butter. Too bad we had to remind them about it after we were already halfway through our meals.

While you could enjoy lunch with cocktails and wine, it was the vegan mango lassi ($7) that filled in as a drink and dessert. It’s as thick as it gets, but absolutely delicious made with a coconut and soy milk base and tons of mango throughout. Sweetened with maple syrup and dusted with cardamom powder and pistachios it’s a small but tasty glass.

Even during the weekend it wasn’t overly busy at Goa Indian Farm Kitchen, which allowed us to stay longer and catch up. Of course, being situated in a mall, we could also run errands around the meal. For me, just being in Bayview Village brought back a sense of nostalgia, it was the place where I earned my first dollar.

Overall mark - 7.5 out of 10

How To Find Them
 Location: Toronto, Canada
 Address: 2901 Bayview Avenue (in Bayview Village)

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Gastro World's Grading System

  • Anything under 5 - I really disliked and will never go back
  • 6 - decent restaurant but I likely won't return
  • 7 - decent restaurant and I will likely return
  • 8 - great restaurant that I'd be happy to recommend
  • 9 - fantastic restaurant that I would love to visit regularly and highly recommend
  • 10 - absolute perfection!

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