Showing posts with label chicken curry. Show all posts
Showing posts with label chicken curry. Show all posts

Chris Jerk Caribbean Bistro (Toronto) for takeout


Note: Prices in post are based on regular menu prices and may be higher when using delivery services

Have you ever encountered a situation where you’ve lived in a neighbourhood, but felt you overlooked an area and now wish you discovered it sooner? For me, it’s Huntingwood Square, a strip mall at Birchmount and Huntingwood in Scarborough.  I must have driven by the plaza hundreds of times while traversing Huntingwood trying to miss the busier arteries. Little did I know it’d be home to some well-loved authentic mom-and-pop places, one of them being Chris Jerk Caribbean Bistro.

And when I say Chris Jerk is known and loved, I’m not kidding. The weekend crowd is well documented online, so I thought I’d be smart and visit on a random Tuesday instead. Arriving ten minutes to 11:00am, before the restaurant opened, there were already a couple of cars parked around the entrance. By 10:55am, someone started a line. Before the doors even opened, there were ten people queued up. All on a regular Tuesday.

Chris Jerk serves up an array of Jamaican food, but there’s a couple of surprising things on the menu like the shawarma plate and even more popular shawarma poutine. It seemed a little out of place, but then I learnt about Chef Taylor’s background at Me Va Me and the menu made more sense.

Even so, I didn’t feel like shawarma. What had me salivating was the other meals I’ve seen, substantial well-rounded meals. Unlike most places, the containers aren’t merely filled with rice, peas, a protein, and perhaps a tong of coleslaw. At Chris Jerk, each meal also arrives with vibrant buttery stir-fried vegetables and sweet soft fried plantains. It’s a full-sized affair where you’re bound to have leftovers.

As soon as I saw the large pieces of oxtail ($16.95) I was ready to dig in - you’re lucky there’s any pictures that’s part of this post. Boy was it tasty: thick and meaty with more than enough of the lovely gravy to mix into the rice and peas. While it was tender, it wasn’t braised so long that it fell off the bone. You could still pick up each piece and get a bite of meat and jellied cartilage all together.

I wasn’t quite sure how I felt about all the chickpeas accompanying the curry chicken ($12.45) but, in retrospect, the crumbly legumes with the juicy chicken were a nice combination. Despite the vibrant yellow hue of the sauce, the spices weren’t too powerful. Everyone seemed to ask for hot sauce on the side, something I’ll pick up next time to add a bit more heat to the dish.

In fact, nothing is overly spicy. Even the jerk chicken leg ($3) was rather tame tasting like barbeque chicken with a jerk element, equally sweet to spicy. I’m glad we only purchased a side order as it would have been a disappointment – when one orders jerk chicken you want that hit of flavours, this was not it.  

If you ever visit Chris Jerk and see a line-up, don’t get too scared. It moves fairly quickly with their order, pay, leave phone number, and get out of the store system. In about 15-20 minutes when your meal is ready, you’ll get a call. At that point, head back into the cash register area and the fragrant to-go package is presented. Good food takes time, and these hearty meals are worth the time. 

Overall mark - 8 out of 10


How To Find Them
 Location: Toronto, Canada
 Address: 2570 Birchmount Road
 Delivery:  Uber
Referral Discount Codes
 Support the blog by using my referral code
 UberEats: use eats-ju6ta to get $5 off a $15 order 


Follow me on twitter to chat, be notified about new posts and more - https://twitter.com/GastroWorldBlog
____________________________
Gastro World's Grading System

  • Anything under 5 - I really disliked and will never order again
  • 6 - decent for delivery and takeout, but there's better
  • 7 - this is good, for delivery and takeout
  • 8 - great for delivery and takeout, it's almost like you're in a restaurant
  • 9 -  wow, it's like I'm eating at a restaurant
  • 10 - I'd happily order this for delivery or takeout instead of dining in any day!


Is That It? I Want More!

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My Roti Place (Toronto) for delivery

Note: Prices in post are based on regular menu prices and may be higher when using delivery services

Does anyone else associate food with seasons? Hot pot or shabu shabu screams winter while hot dogs and burgers is synonymous with summer. In the fall, every time I tuck into a bowl of soupy noodles or pork bone soup it reminds me that winter is coming. So, what exactly do I associate with spring?

Salads come to mind – perhaps more from necessity as I attempt to shed the winter insultation that’s not needed when shorts and bikinis make an appearance. A recent meal from My Roti Place made me realize a veggie samosa evokes a spring feeling. I know, it sounds odd. For me, samosas are that bridge between the hearty winter (on account of the potato stuffing) and the promise of sun to come – just try not to smile when you see that lovely golden crust and colourful chutneys.

At My Roti Place, the filling of their veggie samosas ($5.95 for two) is even more reminiscent of spring: the potatoes are mashed and mixed with peas and other vegetables to create an airy light bite. Meanwhile, the wrapper is still a thicker variety that soaks in the oil – it would be great if these were drained a bit longer – so it’s not necessarily fully summer friendly.

Since it was my first visit, a classic roti seemed like a smart start, the shell is super thin and slightly chewy so that it helps hold together the thick saucy filling but melts away as you’re eating. These are a knife and fork eat as the saag paneer roti ($11.95) incorporated huge chunks of the soft Indian cheese and plenty of thick green spinach sauce that just tingles the tongue at the medium spice level – I think I can advance a step in my next order.

While the spinach-based roti was tasty, the mom’s classic curry was even better and will become my go-to sauce mixed with any protein - a safe combination is pairing it with chicken ($12.95). My Roti Place doesn’t skimp on the meat as there were large pieces of chicken breast scattered throughout.

I do need to figure out how to best re-heat the roti the next day. The go-to toaster oven method was decent and created a bit of crunch around the taller edges, but the centre was still so mushy. Maybe I’ll toast it in a frying pan next time to develop a crust on all sides.

The dinner arrived with complimentary fried chip rings (savoury with a hint of spice) and dessert. Normally, I’ve shy away from gulab jamun as they are too sugary for my liking. My Roti Place’s version is a perfect balanced ending – I can best describe it as an old fashion plain Timbit soaked in a sweet thin sauce, you’d associate with crème caramel. It’s absolutely delicious.

Our meal started with a sunny samosa and ended with a golden gulab jamun. It’s official, spring is in the air.

Overall mark - 7.5 out of 10


How To Find Them
 Location: Toronto, Canada
 Address: Various locations
 Delivery: Uber, Doordash, Skip the Dishes
Referral Discount Codes
 Support the blog by using my referral code
 UberEats: use eats-ju6ta to get $5 off a $15 order 
 SkipTheDishes: click link to get $5 off a $15 order
 DoorDash: click link to get $20 off

Follow me on twitter to chat, be notified about new posts and more - https://twitter.com/GastroWorldBlog
____________________________
Gastro World's Grading System

  • Anything under 5 - I really disliked and will never order again
  • 6 - decent for delivery and takeout, but there's better
  • 7 - this is good, for delivery and takeout
  • 8 - great for delivery and takeout, it's almost like you're in a restaurant
  • 9 -  wow, it's like I'm eating at a restaurant
  • 10 - I'd happily order this for delivery or takeout instead of dining in any day!


Is That It? I Want More!

Other Gastro World posts similar to this:



The Uptown Pub House (Toronto)


Sometimes pubs are dark environments where their carpet stinks of stale beer. At other times, their dining room is like The Uptown Pub House: brightly lit and the carpetless. Their menu still has the typical pub fare – burgers, wings, Shepard’s pie and the like.

The batter on the haddock used in the fish and chips ($14.95) was thin and light, albeit a tad soggy in the centre. Thankfully, the tartar sauce isn’t the packaged Heinz variety, instead thick and zippy but would be even better with more pickles. Even though the chips weren’t the thick cut version of Scotland, they were hot and crispy … I couldn’t help eating one more.


You really can’t go wrong with anything deep fried. The crispy shrimp ($11.95) arrived blistering hot in a crunchy shell and a tangy horseradish laced homemade cocktail sauce. Similarly, the sweet potato fries ($5.50) must be some of the best in the city – keeping their length with a really light dusting of flour so the sweet starchy flavour was the most evident.


The only disappointment was the pub house chicken curry ($14.95), which didn’t hold up to its British counterparts of making excellent thick creamy curries. Instead, it’s as if the chef merely took the chicken, pea and potato mixture used in the pot pie and added curry powder. Indeed, the dish had a vibrant colour, but lacked any heat or flavour. Even the curry aroma was non-existent, it’s a passable dish.


I’d just go with the chicken pot pie ($15.95) instead. Although I didn’t taste it, at least the crust appeared flaky and as the steam arose from the chicken and gravy, it smelled like something.


Despite its gloomier exterior, The Uptown Pub House is surprisingly family friendly inside. This may be a tad disappointing for a lonely soul who wants to knock back a few at the bar and be miserable in a shadowy silence. But for those who want to eat, at least it doesn’t smell like rank beer.  

Overall mark - 7 out of 10


How To Find Them
 Location: Toronto, Canada
 Address: 3185 Yonge Street

Follow me on twitter to chat, be notified about new posts and more - https://twitter.com/GastroWorldBlog
____________________________
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!


Is That It? I Want More!

Other Gastro World posts similar to this:



The Uptown Pub House Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato