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Schnitzel Queen; Farmhouse Tavern; Noodle Face Co.

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Photo: Farmhouse Tavern/Yelp

Schnitzel Queen is hardly regal but the massive sandwiches found in the tiny lunch counter at Queen and Sherbourne are a definite hit with the locals. More is more with twelve juicy schnitzel options that overwhelm with a smattering of heart-stopping toppings and fatty condiments; their sheer girth has them dubbed the "Saturn of sandwiches." If there is a drawback, the four-seater hole-in-the-wall demands a stoic patience as the place quickly fills up daily at noon, and hungry patrons wait in line out in the bitter cold. But always remember: It takes a village to raise a schnitzel shop. [The Grid]

Alex Molitz, the new chef at Farmhouse Tavern in the Junction has squeezed one more star from The Globe And Mail's Chris Nuttall-Smith. Whereas previously the restaurants' selling points were that "it was cheap and unpretentious… in a neighbourhood without a single other noteworthy restaurant;" now, Molitz "has brought real technique and ambition to lumpen hunks of local fish and meat and vegetables, even now in the bleakness of winter." Highlights include the "veg harvest" platter – "an assortment of cold-weather vegetables so dun and joyless that they could drive even the stoutest-hearted vegetarians to suicide watch." Yet, they "melt inside as if into candy." The burger – a stack of fatty beef, goat cheese, bacon, a whole fried duck egg, and optional foie gras – is "disgustingly wonderful;" and a dish called the "threesome" – duck breast prosciutto, seared foie and foie gras torchon – was "impeccably balanced and textured and smartly judged as any in this city." Big words that signal a major shift for the Farmhouse Tavern, but before Molitz can bump the rating higher than two stars, Nuttall-Smith wants "better balancing and pacing." As it stands, the lack thereof "hardly overwhelms the high points." [The Globe And Mail]

Noodle Food Co., the latest addition to the Baldwin Village strip, may feature low-budget versions of old-school Chinese, but one reviewer thinks its burrito-style beef Signature Pancake is "better than the moist pancakes served at places like Momofuku." Good news for first time restaurateurs, husband and wife duo, Yang Lz and Qing Lzu, and Qing's mother, an experienced chef, who oversees the kitchen. Expect "serious bang-for-your-buck" with Chef Q's Homemade Dumplings, and "bold" house-made noodles in the Zhajiang Mian, a combination of "clean broth," and "rich hoisin-like soybean paste." The only problem so far seems to be its growing popularity. As one commenter says: "They seemed on the verge of being overwhelmed by the amount of business coming in. If they can keep up with the demand this will be a definite keeper." [BlogTO]


FARMHOUSE tavern

1627 Dupont Street, Toronto, ON 416 561 9114