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So when does it "get better"

So when does it "get better"

Old May 17th 2019, 5:03 am
  #91  
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Default Re: So when does it "get better"

Originally Posted by scilly View Post
They must be dumping them here!

Doesn't always apply though ...... we often find the Washington taste older, and cost as much if not more than the BC ones in our local Sobeys/Safeway.

In any case, we're trying not to buy US.
Yeah a myth I often hear repeated is that "groceries are cheaper in the US", when you factor in the exchange rate I find it's actually often more expensive and not as good quality. The main benefit is a different selection - thats why I enjoy going to Trader Joe's for example.
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Old May 17th 2019, 1:47 pm
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Default Re: So when does it "get better"

Originally Posted by shelley748 View Post
I agree with you about the food- a decent carvery would do really well- and the chinese food is surprisingly bad. I was looking forward to having chinese food prepared by a chinaman, and having lived in Singapore and experienced it first hand, I can categorically say its not great. Now of course depends where you are, if you are in Toronto or another big city I am sure its fab.
The Chinese food in Toronto is excellent although it's very authentic, cheaper and less fancy compared to what you'll commonly find in the UK. There's also more mainland Chinese cuisine due to Canada having a larger mainland Chinese population compared to the UK's close historical ties with Hong Kong.

The Korean food in Toronto is simply out of this world though and better than a lot of what you'll find in parts of Seoul these days IMHO in terms of taste and value for money. Both districts and communities also have some really great ethnic supermarkets.

Remember that with Asian food, and particularly in a country like Canada where many of the locals tend to have a more bland and heavy taste palate, restaurants will often cook the food to appeal to the local tastes and will not always differentiate one caucasian face from the next. They'll also fuse it slightly with the local cuisine. For that reason the Chinese food I've had in Italy was barely fit for human consumption and the only time I've had a really decent Indian curry in Canada is when an Indian or middle eastern colleague has ordered it for me.

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Old May 17th 2019, 4:00 pm
  #93  
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Default Re: So when does it "get better"

Originally Posted by DigitalGhost View Post
The Chinese food in Toronto is excellent although it's very authentic, cheaper and less fancy compared to what you'll commonly find in the UK. There's also more mainland Chinese cuisine due to Canada having a larger mainland Chinese population compared to the UK's close historical ties with Hong Kong.

The Korean food in Toronto is simply out of this world though and better than a lot of what you'll find in parts of Seoul these days IMHO in terms of taste and value for money. Both districts and communities also have some really great ethnic supermarkets.

Remember that with Asian food, and particularly in a country like Canada where many of the locals tend to have a more bland and heavy taste palate, restaurants will often cook the food to appeal to the local tastes and will not always differentiate one caucasian face from the next. They'll also fuse it slightly with the local cuisine. For that reason the Chinese food I've had in Italy was barely fit for human consumption and the only time I've had a really decent Indian curry in Canada is when an Indian or middle eastern colleague has ordered it for me.



This is so true! national cusine varies depending on local demograhic....and some national cuisine in certain countries/areas just doesnt do well.....Chinese for example....I grew up with Brtiish Chinese, and you raised a good point it was probably based on the Hong Kong variant....its ok here but not what im used to. Chinese food in mainland Europe though is the worst in my expereince!

I have recently moved to the GTA and there are a lot of places that serve "Hakka" which is an Indian/Chinese fusion food, I am very intriuged to give it a try, haven't had chance yet, I dont do takeouts often, but this type of food is purely down to the demographic and the huge number of those immigrant groups in the GTA. The company I work for is very diverse culturally, and although I cant have the banter and humour I would normally have, I love the conversations we have about food....I have learnt a lot since I have worked here about different cusines....including where one of my favourite Indian dishes came from..... Vindaloo....and that its traditiionally cooked with pork.... the guy I work with gave me a sample his mother in law cooked....so much better than chicken! I have since cooked it myself....it will always be pork vindaloo for me nowm so much more flavourful

The other thing I have found moving to the GTA, is where I thought things like meat and produce would be better quality as I would have more choice than where I used to live in much smaller Peterborough is unfounded, I have found the produce in the same grocery chains here is sub standard to what it was in Peteborough! , and the stock is just not there....so many times I have had t go to 2 or 3 places as one grocery store is out of stock of certain things, maybe the sheer number of people makes it that way....something I would have thought would have been better is actually worse, however I am still finding out about places to shop the GTA is a big place! So i think its down to individual locations when it comes to how good the quality of food is and the availibility of it.


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Old May 17th 2019, 4:22 pm
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Default Re: So when does it "get better"

Originally Posted by Paul_Shepherd View Post
This is so true! national cusine varies depending on local demograhic....and some national cuisine in certain countries/areas just doesnt do well.....Chinese for example....I grew up with Brtiish Chinese, and you raised a good point it was probably based on the Hong Kong variant....its ok here but not what im used to. Chinese food in mainland Europe though is the worst in my expereince!

I have recently moved to the GTA and there are a lot of places that serve "Hakka" which is an Indian/Chinese fusion food, I am very intriuged to give it a try, haven't had chance yet, I dont do takeouts often, but this type of food is purely down to the demographic and the huge number of those immigrant groups in the GTA. The company I work for is very diverse culturally, and although I cant have the banter and humour I would normally have, I love the conversations we have about food....I have learnt a lot since I have worked here about different cusines....including where one of my favourite Indian dishes came from..... Vindaloo....and that its traditiionally cooked with pork.... the guy I work with gave me a sample his mother in law cooked....so much better than chicken! I have since cooked it myself....it will always be pork vindaloo for me nowm so much more flavourful

The other thing I have found moving to the GTA, is where I thought things like meat and produce would be better quality as I would have more choice than where I used to live in much smaller Peterborough is unfounded, I have found the produce in the same grocery chains here is sub standard to what it was in Peteborough! , and the stock is just not there....so many times I have had t go to 2 or 3 places as one grocery store is out of stock of certain things, maybe the sheer number of people makes it that way....something I would have thought would have been better is actually worse, however I am still finding out about places to shop the GTA is a big place! So i think its down to individual locations when it comes to how good the quality of food is and the availibility of it.
You should give Hakka a try. I recently ate it in Malaysia but Toronto is one of the few cities in the west where it's easy to find. It comes from the border region between India and China so many of the dishes taste like spicy, dry Chinese food. I really like it.
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Old May 17th 2019, 4:32 pm
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Default Re: So when does it "get better"

In Vancouver I like Green Lettuce Restaurant, which is "Desi Style" Indian Chinese food.
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Old May 17th 2019, 6:10 pm
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Default Re: So when does it "get better"

Originally Posted by DigitalGhost View Post
You should give Hakka a try. I recently ate it in Malaysia but Toronto is one of the few cities in the west where it's easy to find. It comes from the border region between India and China so many of the dishes taste like spicy, dry Chinese food. I really like it.

I love Chinese and Indian...and I love spicy food!! so i w=think ill really like it, any dish recommnedations would be welcomed!

Its a quiet Friday night this week......so I think it could be a Hakka take out tonight!! just going to look at a menu, get some ideas!!
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Old May 17th 2019, 6:24 pm
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Default Re: So when does it "get better"

Originally Posted by Paul_Shepherd View Post
I love Chinese and Indian...and I love spicy food!! so i w=think ill really like it, any dish recommnedations would be welcomed!

Its a quiet Friday night this week......so I think it could be a Hakka take out tonight!! just going to look at a menu, get some ideas!!
If it's your first time then I'd just recommend Hakka fried rice. It's quite spicy and has a red colour to it and is served often with a fried egg on top, similar to Korean fried rice. From what you've said I think you'll love it.
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Old May 17th 2019, 8:35 pm
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Default Re: So when does it "get better"

Originally Posted by DigitalGhost View Post
If it's your first time then I'd just recommend Hakka fried rice. It's quite spicy and has a red colour to it and is served often with a fried egg on top, similar to Korean fried rice. From what you've said I think you'll love it.
Ok...sounds good, I think Ill like that! Thanks for the recommendation!
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Old May 17th 2019, 8:47 pm
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Default Re: So when does it "get better"

We have a number of very good butchers and meat markets selling Nova Scotia meat and it is generally excellent. It contrasts severely with the stuff you get in Sobeys and the like.

Local fruit and veg is pretty good when you can get it... just such a short growing season there is nothing close to self sufficiency here. We tend to buy fruit and veg at the farmers markets only resorting to the supermarket when there is virtually nothing available from the farmers.

Chinese food in Halifax is pretty good but I get what people have said about the local palette... not much spicy food here, and what there is generally makes me laugh. That being said, there is one very good Indian restaurant we recently discovered... I tested the spiciest dish I could get and it near killed me, so I was very pleased.
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Old May 18th 2019, 9:58 am
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Default Re: So when does it "get better"

Originally Posted by Tumbling_Dice View Post

Chinese food in Halifax is pretty good but I get what people have said about the local palette... not much spicy food here, and what there is generally makes me laugh.
What Canadians find so appealing about butter chicken I will never know. Most of them couldn't handle a decent madras or vindaloo to save their lives.
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Old May 18th 2019, 11:52 pm
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Default Re: So when does it "get better"

Tumbling Dice, do reveal all. I live in Halifax and am gagging for a good Chinese, as for curry I've tried the Rada which is about the best. Love to hear your comments.
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Old May 19th 2019, 12:07 am
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Default Re: So when does it "get better"

You might have a big shock if you go into a Chinese restaurant/cafe in a small town/village in the Prairie provinces.

They date back to when the railroad was being built across Canada, and Chinese were the lowest of the low labourers ................ the others were the Irish labourers or navvies! Many of the Chinese found they could make more money by setting themselves up as laundrymen and making meals, especially if there was already a local population of farmers/ranchers, etc. Then they would stay when the railway builders moved on.

So there would be one Chinese restaurant in almost every little vill along the railway tracks (both CP and CN), often with the owners also running a laundry out of the back door.

This was still the case in the 1970s and 1980s, and often still run by descendants of the original man, who had eventually been able to bring a wife over from China and then had a large family.

BUT they also changed their food to the Western appetite .............. the beginnings of Chow Mein and Fried Rice were in those little places. However there were additives, and way of service changed ............ not dishes put into the centre of the table to be shared by everyone, which is what I was used to in the UK, and here in Vancouver.

Meals were ordered as in any "white man's" cafe, and plonked down in front of whoever had ordered that dish.

The main additive that I know about was gravy over chow mein or fried rice .......... which was what the Irish navvies liked.

I speak from experience ............. fried rice with gravy on top is errrrmm interesting, to say the least!!!!

The best advice we were given for choosing a good Chinese restaurant was to look for one where most of the customers were Chinese, then you know that you will get good food. The same applies for Japanese restaurants.

Run a mile from ones patronised mainly by non-Chinese, or that are in heavy tourist areas, or offer "fusion" style.


FWIW .......... there are numerous excellent Chinese and Japanese restaurants in Vancouver, a few good Indian ............ but Surrey is now the place for Indian food.
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Old May 19th 2019, 12:12 am
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Default Re: So when does it "get better"

Not being a fan of Asian foods other then Americanized Chinese which is hard to find in Vancouver, I wish we had good Mexican food, there are some okay places but they tend to be overpriced and not great.
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Old May 19th 2019, 12:15 am
  #104  
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Default Re: So when does it "get better"

Originally Posted by scilly View Post
not dishes put into the centre of the table to be shared by everyone, which is what I was used to in the UK, and here in Vancouver.
You're old enough to remember the Green Door and the Orange Door, The Only seafood restaurant on E Hastings, and Wo Fat bakery a couple of blocks down from there (which lasted almost 100 years and never had or needed a sign). I used to bring back bean cakes from Wo Fat on the train for my sister.
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Old May 19th 2019, 12:26 am
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Default Re: So when does it "get better"

Originally Posted by caretaker View Post
You're old enough to remember the Green Door and the Orange Door, The Only seafood restaurant on E Hastings, and Wo Fat bakery a couple of blocks down from there (which lasted almost 100 years and never had or needed a sign). I used to bring back bean cakes from Wo Fat on the train for my sister.
Oh yes!!! The Ho Inn was one of the ones we went to a lot, largely because it was the favourite of a couple of our friends. I was taken to eat dim sum one lunch time by a Chinese co-worker, who did all the ordering for me.

We used to eat in Chinatown all the time back in the late 60s and 70s ...... though I was never at The Only when Pierre Trudeau went. He apparently went there on almost every trip back to Vancouver, and would line up with everyone else. No reservations back then.

Japan town was also the only place to eat Japanese food back then.

Last edited by scilly; May 19th 2019 at 12:46 am.
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