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  #61  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2014, 3:41 PM
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Originally Posted by lio45 View Post
Agreed.

If you're a cheapskate, like me, nothing beats McDonald's for value. (Most other chains also have deals like that... Taco Bell, for example. But I find it even crappier food.)

McD's has several $1 burgers in the Value Menu. Small fries is also $1 in most states. I am pretty sure that in Quebec there's at least a couple burgers for something like $1.39... last I checked (I don't eat there if I can help it).

For $3 you can definitely have a "meal" over there. No independent restaurant (unless in the third world) can match that.

Of course I wouldn't recommend it too often, but when I'm on the road, that diet (one $1 McDouble) mixes well with the carrots, apples, bananas, peaches, Nature Valley bars, and all kinds of nuts that I'll get at supermarkets. (Fueling up at "Murphy"/Walmart when they're on the side of the interstate = trip inside to the produce aisle.)

At home obviously I won't go for that kind of crap food, but for price, it sure can't be beat.
There are many fantastic holes in the walls in Toronto that offer food for a lot less than $10 a plate. They can still be had in the downtown area although much fewer than 10 years ago. Just the other day I had a made to order $3 burger that may not be among my favourites but certainly put the $5 Big Mac to shame.

A food court will charge $10 a plate eventhough they deal in high volume. A counter in the office core of Toronto will run you $25000 a month in rent alone.
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  #62  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2014, 3:42 PM
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I know you're the expert on all things Anglo-North American, but what is this even based on? Most people haven't even left work by 5, let alone have gotten home and had time to make dinner. I think 7:00 is a pretty normal dinner time, even for the uptight Anglos. For restaurants, 6-9 are the generally the peak hours, maybe 7-10 depending on the area.
Precisely. I haven't even left the office at 5 (let alone got home). I don't know anyone who eats before 6:30.

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People generally eat dinner later in Quebec than on the rest of the continent.

It's not a societal value judgement, just a pretty observable phenomenon to people who travel a lot.

Get over it.
Yes, we get it. Montreal is the ne plus ultra of European living and snazziness where people eat past their bedtime etc... In stuffy Toronto, people go to restaurants while they're still at work...
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  #63  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2014, 3:47 PM
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Originally Posted by Acajack View Post
Also, one's own hipster bubble emcompassed by a few blocks of central Toronto is not indicative of the entire GTA, let alone the rest of North America.
Unless you work from home or live very close to work, I don't see how anyone could be home in time to make a meal and have it on the table by six anymore. Congestion is terrible and few people have a stay-at-home partner to get things started.

Given that a huge chunk of the population works shift work (whether in the service sector, manufacturing, healthcare, etc.), the rise of ethnic diversity and differing cultural relationships to food, and the unfortunately large segment of the population who can't/don't cook, I think by this point it's pretty useless to suggest that there's any specific time which dominates dining in most North American cities. Perhaps there's a middle class nuclear family ideal for all that, but that's a relatively small (and shrinking) demographic.
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  #64  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2014, 3:57 PM
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Originally Posted by flipv View Post

Yes, we get it. Montreal is the ne plus ultra of European living and snazziness where people eat past their bedtime etc... In stuffy Toronto, people go to restaurants while they're still at work...
Did I make a link between nec plus ultra European living and snazziness and dining times?

I may be off with the exact times but honestly people do generally eat dinner later here. It's something my wife and I had to (slightly) adjust to when we moved from Ottawa to Gatineau. Imagine that.

And several relatives and friends of ours who live in various parts of Ontario (including the GTA) have remarked it as well.

Sorry if that bugs you.
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  #65  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2014, 4:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Acajack View Post
Did I make a link between nec plus ultra European living and snazziness and dining times?

I may be off with the exact times but honestly people do generally eat dinner later here. It's something my wife and I had to (slightly) adjust to when we moved from Ottawa to Gatineau. Imagine that.

And several relatives and friends of ours who live in various parts of Ontario (including the GTA) have remarked it as well.

Sorry if that bugs you.
Acajack, I respect some of your posts, but man, when you speak about Toronto and your purported knowledge (that is entirely based on anecdotes) I cringe.

I don't base my views of Montreal and French Canadians based on what I hear from my friends.. Otherwise I'd think of them as 7 million lazy, unwashed people.

See what I mean?
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  #66  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2014, 4:03 PM
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I think I am starting to get offended by kwoldtimer's sporadic comments about how men here in Gatineau are significantly more likely to wear Cuban heels than men elsewhere...

I mean, does he have proof of this?
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  #67  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2014, 4:05 PM
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Originally Posted by Acajack View Post
I think I am starting to get offended by kwoldtimer's sporadic comments about how men here in Gatineau are significantly more likely to wear Cuban heels than men elsewhere...

I mean, does he have proof of this?
You present your anecdotes as fact. That is where the problem lies.
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  #68  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2014, 4:08 PM
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I can't imagine Toronto having a "dinner hour", for the reasons mentioned above. For many commuters, I suspect the old family dinner has pretty much disappeared. I was struck by the report of the latest Toronto shooting that the restaurant was busy with diners at 4am.

And then there are retirees, like me, who are beginning to make a leisurely lunch out with friends (usually from 1pm until sometime between 3 and 4pm) their main meal of the day. Dinner then becomes something simple and light, eaten at around 9pm. It's a small niche, but one I expect to grow as more and more boomers start to smell the roses.
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  #69  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2014, 4:18 PM
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Originally Posted by kwoldtimer View Post
I can't imagine Toronto having a "dinner hour", for the reasons mentioned above. For many commuters, I suspect the old family dinner has pretty much disappeared. I was struck by the report of the latest Toronto shooting that the restaurant was busy with diners at 4am.

And then there are retirees, like me, who are beginning to make a leisurely lunch out with friends (usually from 1pm until sometime between 3 and 4pm) their main meal of the day. Dinner then becomes something simple and light, eaten at around 9pm. It's a small niche, but one I expect to grow as more and more boomers start to smell the roses.
Going out to lunch and it snowed a bit since I got to work. I wonder how my Cuban heels are gonna fare in the slush.
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  #70  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2014, 4:35 PM
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Going out to lunch and it snowed a bit since I got to work. I wonder how my Cuban heels are gonna fare in the slush.
Don't forget to wash before going out, you lazy frenchie...
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  #71  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2014, 4:48 PM
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besides, montrealers might eat late but it's just vachon cakes and pepsi anyhow. maybe a smoke after or during.
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  #72  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2014, 4:52 PM
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Originally Posted by Acajack View Post
Going out to lunch and it snowed a bit since I got to work. I wonder how my Cuban heels are gonna fare in the slush.
Acajack, in my experience, Aylmerites escape most of the "Cuban Heel" phenomena.

And, of course, my proof is precisely nil.
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  #73  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2014, 4:56 PM
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FWIW, as someone who does end up eating out fairly regularly at around 5:30 (mainly if we want to get dinner in before an early movie), I would say that business for most restaurants I go to starts to pick up at around 5, but doesn't truly get busy before 6pm. I've never had to wait for a table before 6pm, for example. When I worked at A&W in high school 15 years ago or so, the peak period shift was from 5-8:30, and occasionally they would bring someone in just for 6-9.
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  #74  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2014, 5:00 PM
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i think a lot of the early ottawa crowd might be people who work in and around the hill dining in the market before driving home to the outer areas of the city. kind of like a 5-à-7 but with a meal in there too.

i usually booked for 7 or 8 there and it never felt dead, but the "5:30 rush" was a noticeable thing.
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  #75  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2014, 5:01 PM
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Originally Posted by wg_flamip View Post
Unless you work from home or live very close to work, I don't see how anyone could be home in time to make a meal and have it on the table by six anymore. Congestion is terrible and few people have a stay-at-home partner to get things started.

Given that a huge chunk of the population works shift work (whether in the service sector, manufacturing, healthcare, etc.), the rise of ethnic diversity and differing cultural relationships to food, and the unfortunately large segment of the population who can't/don't cook, I think by this point it's pretty useless to suggest that there's any specific time which dominates dining in most North American cities. Perhaps there's a middle class nuclear family ideal for all that, but that's a relatively small (and shrinking) demographic.
In the construction world schedules are generally something like 07h30-15h30 so it's very possible to be home and eating by 17h.

I agree that young, professional, career-oriented white collars can't expect to be back from their CBD office tower and sitting at their home's table that early, but I'd offer construction which still a major sector of employment as a counter-weight to it.

I mean, sure, the average person on this forum might still be at work at five pm, but my point is, I doubt that such an overwhelming majority of workers are still productively at their job site (office or otherwise) that late in the day.
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  #76  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2014, 5:03 PM
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Originally Posted by kool maudit View Post
i think a lot of the early ottawa crowd might be people who work in and around the hill dining in the market before driving home to the outer areas of the city. kind of like a 5-à-7 but with a meal in there too.

i usually booked for 7 or 8 there and it never felt dead, but the "5:30 rush" was a noticeable thing.
I think that happens anywhere that has large numbers of commuters (no kids) - you wouldn't want to slog home and then come back downtown for dinner with friends.
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  #77  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2014, 5:31 PM
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Bakery on the Go at Bathurst subway station is my favourite "restaurant" lately.

KWoldtimer, you may not understand Toronto's club scene culture. It's something like this: show up from the 905 at around 12:30am, get ****faced, wander around downtown looking for a joint to load up on carbs ... hey if you're from 'sauga what do you really know about Toronto's foodie scene? Nuth'n. Which is why you end up near the lame 905 hangout that is Dundas Square ... a stone's throw from that Chinese restaurant shooting scene.
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  #78  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2014, 5:32 PM
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I don't know any Torontonian who eats at 5pm, most of us are still at work then.

Anyway great list niwell, took the words right out of my mouth with a lot of those. Really outlines how underrated Toronto is when it comes to it's eating scene.

Going a bit outside of Toronto I'd recommend Restoran Malaysia in Richmond Hill (if you can get out there). A tad expensive but fantastic and some of the most authentic Malaysian/Singaporean food around. My SO lived in Singapore for a while and can back up the authenticity statement. No matter what entree you get I'd recommend starting with some prata with the curry dipping sauce. Delicious.
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  #79  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2014, 5:48 PM
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Originally Posted by flipv View Post
Precisely. I haven't even left the office at 5 (let alone got home). I don't know anyone who eats before 6:30.



Yes, we get it. Montreal is the ne plus ultra of European living and snazziness where people eat past their bedtime etc... In stuffy Toronto, people go to restaurants while they're still at work...
C'mon. I chuckle at his comments when he compares Montreal to Venice and such. Things are changing rapidly there but, in my own personal experience 10 plus years ago, lunch and dinner are essentially reversed in the part of Europe I lived. London is the one of the few places I visited where the dinner hour is the largest meal of the day and where two pints counts as lunch.
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  #80  
Old Posted Nov 17, 2014, 5:52 PM
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C'mon. I chuckle at his comments when he compares Montreal to Venice and such.
Assuming you are talking about me, where and when have I compared Montreal to Venice?
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