Ivory Restaurant – Donald Street


A few weeks ago, I was walking down the street, and noticed that the former Spice Affair was now Ivory. This surprised me because I didn’t realize that the Main Street location was no longer open. So, I took a stroll down Main Street a couple of days later and sure enough, there was no Ivory there any more.

Ivory buffet plate

My first plate from the Ivory Buffet.

Ivory is now the third Indian restaurant to make a go of it in this location. Prior to Spice Affair it was Dhoom, and going back into the distant past, it was a Pizza Hut. In the days when it was Dhoom, it was a place that I visited several times.

My memories of the Main Street location of Ivory are rather limited. I went once or twice, and not much about the food struck with me, but I do remember it having a larger buffet area, than most other Indian restaurants.

Ivory Buffet

When I walked into the restaurant I noticed that the space had been opened up and instead of two smaller sections there is one larger one. Along one wall, there is a very nice looking bar, with three TVs hung over it, which when I was there, were tuned into news programming. Continue reading

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Hong Hing Chinese Restaurant


Hong Hing restaurant on Ellice Avenue, is a  Chinese restaurant of the type I was familiar with growing up. Lots of dishes featuring chop suey and chow mein. However, there are a few Szechuan dishes available on the menu, and even an eight item Dim Sum list.

This is a place that I’ve often wondered, when I passed, if it is still in business. It’s a squat, rather non-descript, exterior that doesn’t appear all that inviting even in the daytime. However, it is also not far from where I live so I thought I should stop in some time.

Hong HIng Sliced Chicken.

The sliced chicken from Hong Hing. The skin is nice and crispy and the chicken is quite good, if slightly overcooked.

Hong Hing specializes in takeout, but there are a few table and about twenty seats in the restaurant if you want to dine in. Although I dined in on my first visit, I got the impression that they would prefer you to place takeout orders. Continue reading

Pho Binh Minh – Sargent Avenue


Having recently moved, I find myself going out and exploring the various restaurants close to my new location. It’s one of those interesting things. Even though I wasn’t many blocks farther away from these restaurants than I am now, those extra few blocks meant I didn’t get out and check out places like Pho Binh Minh.

The shredded pork Banh Mi (sub)

Pho Binh Minh is located on Sargent, just past Arlington in a little professional plaza. The restaurant takes up about half of the street level floor of the building. Continue reading

Ukrainian Comfort Food – Estellia’s


Last weekend was ManyFest. This year the weekend was a busy one for me. As a result I didn’t get to take much of the festival in. Of course, I visited some trucks for Food Truck Wars.  Although I tried several dishes, Estellia’s Ukrainian Comfort Food was the only truck I managed to visit a second time.

Based out of Dugald, MB, Estellia’s is offering traditional Ukrainian Comfort food. The location in Dugald is a retail store, and they also have a cart along with the trailer they brought to ManyFest. The business is named in honour of the owners’s mother. You can read more of her story on their website.

The trailer’s paint job features the colours of the Ukrainian flag. This makes it stand out from many of the trucks on the street. Unfortunately, the picture of the truck I took didn’t turn out the way I hoped it would. Here’s my experience of Estellia’s.

Estellias messy cabbage roles.

Estaellias messy cabbage roles are a real treat.

Value:

Most of the main dishes cost $8.00 for vegetarian or $9.00 with meat. When I ordered the Messy Cabbages rolls I was a little disappointed when I saw the container I was about to be handed. Then I took hold of it, and my hand dropped about 2 feet. The container is stuffed to the gills. The perogies are a good size, and they come with piles of onions and loads of butter. There are also a sort of mini perogie, that is $9.00 for 10 or $18.00 for 20. Drinks are reasonably priced. 4.5/5

Selection:

Not a huge selection, though having both vegetarian and meat options is good. It would nice to find Kulbassa on offer at the trailer.  4/5

Quality:

I found everything here well prepared. The tomato sauce is quite good. I understand there are some arguments about whether or not perogies should ever be deep-fried, but I really enjoyed the golden crisp pastry on my perogies. Plus, they drench the perogies in real butter. 4/5

Estellia's Deep-fried Perogies

Translucent onions on Deep-fried Perogies

Portability:

Estellia’s Ukrainian Comfort Food scores really well here. The perogies come in a deep dish container. The Messy Cabbage Rolls come in a container with a closeable lid. Plus they appear to be compostable. 5/5

Service:

I happened to visit twice when the lineups weren’t very long. Both times the service was friendly and I received my food quickly. They advertise that good food takes time, but they seem to have the process down quite well. 4/5

Estellia’s Ukrainian Comfort Food Overall:

I quite like this truck. It is certainly a good truck to visit if you wish a really filling meal. This food will definitely leave you feeling comforted, and perhaps a little comfortable as in needing an after lunch nap. 4.5/5

Estellia's Ukrainian Comfort Foods Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato