The Niagara Falls location of Johnny Rockets recently made headlines regarding Aretha Franklin as she wanted to eat her take-out order in the restaurant. I have seen the chain whenever I am in Niagara Falls, but I have never personally ate there. However, I have finally tried Johnny Rockets about a month ago at their Dundas location (near Eaton's Center).
  
Johnny Rockets is an American franchise with multiple locations all throughout the world. There are four different locations in Canada, and the one we ate at is nearby the Eaton's Center. The restaurant's concept is to retain the classic restaurant look from the 1950's; so pretty much diner-style.



As you can see from the picture; the decor was dated as they want to retain the 1950's look. There were a few booths along the side which was where we were seated. On each table was a mini jukebox machine that plays music when you insert a nickel (5 cents) into it but it was non-functional.



Johnny Rockets is known for their thick and creamy shakes and malt, and offers several flavors. We decided to get both the vanilla original shake ($6.49) and strawberry original shake ($6.49). I liked the milkshakes a lot as it was tasty and rich. You can really tell that Johnny Rockets uses real ice-cream and whipped cream for their milkshakes instead of artificial ingredients.


The grilled cheese ($6.99) - our grown-up version of the grilled cheese with your choice of four slices of cheddar, American, Swiss or pepper jack on your choice of bread, was one sandwich cut into two slices. It also came with a side of french fries. The grilled cheese looked rather lackluster, but at least there was plenty of cheese. Unfortunately, the two slices of breads were lukewarm so I didn't fully enjoy the second slice as it was rather cold when I got to it. I did like their fries though as it was crispy and non-oily.


JL opted for the Route 66 ($11.99) - this favorite is named after the iconic, carefree, American Highway Swiss cheese, grilled mushrooms, grilled onions and mayonnaise, which also came with a side order of either salad or fries. You can also add additional toppings for $1.79 each (onion rings, jalapeno slices, grilled mushrooms, grilled onions or gravy) and $1.99 each (2 slices of bacon, chili). The burger may be a tad overpriced due to its small portion, but he liked it regardless.

I find that with chained restaurants; one can either like it or hate it. With that being said, I am rather indifferent towards Johnny Rockets.The food wasn't completely inedible or bad, and I really did enjoy their milkshakes. However, there was nothing spectacular about the food or service.

Address: 22 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON M5B 1R4

Johnny Rockets on Urbanspoon

Johnny Rockets (Now Closed)

by on Friday, August 01, 2014
The Niagara Falls location of Johnny Rockets recently made headlines regarding Aretha Franklin as she wanted to eat her take-out order in t...
There are three different Ka-Chi locations in downtown Toronto. All three are independent and are not associated with one another despite sharing the same brand. The location that I often frequent is the one on St. Andrew Street, and I reviewed it here. However, during the winter, there was an unfortunate fire at an (illegal) boarding house, and both Ka-Chi and Jang Su Chon were affected by the fire. Sadly, the latter is still close due to severe fire damage to the structure; I am not sure if the business will reopen.

Since that one was closed during the winter; we decided to check out the location in Chinatown. The menu and prices of the food were one of the same. This location was clean, spacious, and each table was reasonable apart from one another); similar to the other two locations. 


Out of all of Korean restaurants that I have been to; I'd have to say that the bachan provided at Ka-Chi is my favorite. However, the bachan doesn't arrive prior to the meal, but at the same time as the first dish (my significant other's kimchi stew). This particular meal came with six different dishes of bachan (cucumbers, kimchi, potatoes, seaweed, spicy cucumbers and glass noodles).


The kimchi stew with pork, dumpling, and tofu ($8.50)


I opted for the Ka-Chi's spicy BBQ beef ribs (grilled marinated beef ribs with Ka Chi's sweet & spicy sauce) ($12.95). I thought that the portion was generous, as they didn't skimp on the pieces of beef ribs. Instead of long pieces of ribs; the ribs were cut into decent sized pieces. The meat was tender, and the overall dish was full of flavor; spicy with a hint of sweetness.


I also got the spicy rice cakes (rice cakes with fish cakes and japchae) ($6.50) for us to share. Once again, I was pleased with the generous portion. There was a good amount of rice cakes and fish cakes; good to share between two people. This dish was a lot spicier than I expected, which is always good if you can handle the spice.

The service wasn't amazing, but the servers did their job adequately and efficiently. They check up on you about once or twice, and they were quick to refill the bachan dishes which I appreciated. The overall service was quick; as our food arrived pretty quickly as well. 

Address: 414 Dundas St W, Toronto, ON, M5T 1G6

Ka Chi on Urbanspoon

Ka-Chi

by on Tuesday, July 29, 2014
There are three different Ka-Chi locations in downtown Toronto. All three are independent and are not associated with one another despite...
Yakitori Kintori specializes in yakitori (grilled skewered chicken) but their menu also offers items such as noodles, tapas dishes, drinks and desserts. The restaurant is housed on the second floor of Kinton Ramen 2 on Bloor in Koreatown. Since it opened up in March of 2014; I have been back about five times, as I really enjoy yakitori. Below are some of the other items that my boyfriend and I have ordered on our visits (I did not take pictures of some of the repeat orders from the original review).

You can read my original review here.

** Blog post contains photos of dishes that Yakitori Kintori offers on their menu **


Premium selection ($24):organic free run chicken thigh, chicken meatball, duck breast, premium Wagyu beef and beef short ribs


Teriyaki chicken bun ($4)

Kintori udon (udon noodle with chicken paitan soup) ($8.50)

Buta bara (pork belly) ($2) and ton toro (pork cheek) ($2)

Cheese tsukune (cheese meatball) ($2)


Momo (chicken thigh) ($1.80), Tsukune (chicken meatball) ($2) and Pork belly ($2)


 Miso chicken bun (steamed bun with grilled chicken thigh, miso sauce) ($4)


Negi shio gyu (beef with scallion sauce) ($3)

 Tsukune (chicken meatball) ($2) and Negima (thigh & scallion) ($1.80)

Address: 668 Bloor St W, Toronto, ON, M6G 1L2

Yakitori Kintori (2)

by on Wednesday, July 23, 2014
Yakitori Kintori specializes in yakitori (grilled skewered chicken) but their menu also offers items such as noodles, tapas dishes, drinks...
What I love about downtown is the plethora of sushi restaurants. There aren't that many sushi establishments in my area when I'm back uptown with my family. I was craving for some sushi one night and decided to order delivery. Based on Google maps; one of the nearest sushi restaurants in the area was Sake Sushi. There weren't that many reviews online but most were positive so I went ahead and ordered with them. Sake Sushi also offers an AYCE option for $13.99 (lunch) and $20.99 (dinner); it's $1-2 more on the weekends/holidays. 

Based on past experiences; ordering a la carte from AYCE can be a hit or a miss. Most of the time, the quality isn't very high compared to non-AYCE establishments but the price ranges are similar. 


The salmon pizza (sushi pizza) ($6.95) tasted a lot better than it looked. The crispy patty wasn't overly fried and it was topped with the right amount of roe. Although, the salmon was sliced extremely thin. 


I opted for the beef short ribs (bento box) ($11.75) which came with ribs, stir-fried vegetables, two fried dumplings, steamed rice, green salad and miso soup. The ribs were marinated well and the flavor of the veggies was good. Unfortunately, it only came with four thin slices of ribs but at least there was a helping hand of greens. Surprisingly, the bento boxes also came with five nigiri (shrimp and salmon) and spicy salmon roll; they were not listed on the menu. 


The chicken teriyaki (bento box) ($10.75) came with chicken, steamed rice, two beef dumplings, green salad and miso soup.


The shrimp tempura roll (6 pieces) ($5.95) was a good choice. The batter that they used to coat the shrimp was light and crispy. 


They offer free delivery over $30 (before tax). This was easily achieved for two people. Overall, the quality of the food was good but they really do skimp out by cutting up their meat and fish so thinly.  With that being said, I am still interested in trying out their AYCE when I'm up in the area one day. Their dinner menu seems extensive and their price is on par with other AYCE uptown.

Address: 5875 Hwy 7 W Vaughan, ON

Sake Sushi on Urbanspoon

Sake Sushi

by on Sunday, July 20, 2014
What I love about downtown is the plethora of sushi restaurants. There aren't that many sushi establishments in my area when I'm b...
Since my last visit, they have changed their restaurant name to DT Bistro Patisserie, and not just simply known as Dessert Trends. The restaurant itself is a white house, and the closest intersection is probably Spadina Ave and Bathurst Street. This review is not from a recent dinner, so some of the items that I ordered may no longer be on their current menu.

My first visit to the restaurant was back in early 2012, but it was solely for their desserts. Those delicious looking desserts are brightly showcased in a display case at the front. I didn't know that they served food for both lunch and dinner until much later. The small restaurant is a low lit which provided a very quiet and romantic ambiance. A majority of the tables were filled that Saturday night, but people weren't talking very loudly. 

 To start, one lbs of mussels ($13) were ordered. I thought that the mussels were cooked perfectly, and I liked that it wasn't drenched in white wine sauce. The light taste and smell of the white wine was delectable. 


The portion for the sticky chicken wings ($8) was rather small, and the wings itself didn't contain a lot of meat. I thought that the glaze was overly too sweet, but the accompanied slices of pickles did help to counter the sweetness.


The price of the sirloin steak ($25.00) wasn't bad, and I thought that the portion was decent. The steak was topped off with onions and mushrooms which added more aroma to the dish. I did enjoy the steak that I got, but I wish that I could say the same about the fries. The fries were extremely soft, and wasn't to my liking.


 One of my favorite desserts in the world is crème brûlée. So it was only natural that I got the crème brûlée ($8.50) from DT Bistro Patisserie after my meal. They are known more for their desserts, and it did not disappoint.


DT Bistro on Urbanspoon

DT Bistro Patisserie

by on Friday, July 18, 2014
Since my last visit, they have changed their restaurant name to DT Bistro Patisserie, and not just simply known as Dessert Trends. The rest...