Fake shark soup a real deal
In my travels across the GTA preparing NOW's Asian New Year issue, I come across two new spots worth mentioning.
A dreary trek by public transit to Pacific Mall proves a bust. That fabulous noodle joint in the food court called Dong Bei Wang where they made their mein by flinging it in the air is now closed, and the rest is a sea of bubble tea parlours and not much else.
But a growling stomach leads me to Good Taste Garden (4300 Steeles East, at Kennedy, unit f28A, 905-470-6655), a quicky kiosk on the mega-mall's second floor at the top of the escalators, where I find a filling bowl of street-style fake shark's fin soup for two bucks.
Kicked with chili oil and garnished with chopped scallions and toasted sesame seeds, this gloopy soup thick with crunchy slivered cabbage and bamboo shoots keeps me in a delicious sweat all the way home.
New Sky old news
Jan Wong played resto expert at the Globe recently and recommended New Sky in Chinatown (353 Spadina, at Baldwin, 416-596-8787) as particularly authentic. I check it out only to discover that her restaurant opinions are as revisionist as her political commentary. Her pick from the Chinese-language-only section of the menu, free-range chicken steamed in lotus leaf ("Ask for it: the waiters speak English"), turns out to be half a hacked-up bird, bones 'n' all, complete with rubbery skin and gristle. Wrapped in a tea towel. Yes, New Sky is busy, but that doesn't mean it's any good.