Taking advantage of the gorgeous weather during the Victoria Day weekend, we thought we would venture over to the Danforth to enjoy lunch on the patio. We have heard so much about Pappas Grill on The Danforth that we were all eager to give it a try. Pappas Grill is a family-run Greek restaurant that has been in its location at Danforth and Arundel Avenues in Toronto for years.
We arrived just before 12:30 p.m. on the Victoria Day weekend Sunday and were pleasantly surprised to find a table on the side patio. Although most diners opted to be outside, the interior of the restaurant features huge casement windows that open up onto the patio to give the inside an al fresco feel.
Upon seating us, our pleasant server quickly took our drinks order and gave us several minutes to peruse the menu. Two of us opted just for water while the other two ordered a half a bottle of an Italian white.
Pappas Grill’s menu includes a brunch menu with Canadian favourites such as Eggs Benny and Classic French Toast, but we came for Greek food so we ordered from their regular lunch and all day menus.
Our server arrived with our food about 15 minutes later, which gave us a chance to enjoy people-watching on The Danforth.
Diner #1 ordered the Chicken Souvlaki, ($13.95 from the lunch menu), which is served with rice, roasted potato, Greek salad and tzatziki. He said the chicken was succulent and wonderfully seasoned with mild spices, while the roasted potatoes were flavourful. The feta cheese gave a pleasing sharp bite to the other fresh ingredients in the salad. Diner #1 said the portion was about right for lunch, although he claimed he could have eaten more chicken; however, he had run 10 kilometres in the morning.
Diner #2 ordered two appetizers: Greek fries topped with feta and oregano, $6.95, and Spanokopita, $5.95. She stated that she enjoyed the Greek version of poutine, although I tried a few of the fries and, while they were fine, they were nothing to get emotional about (I had superb fries just last week at the new Bombay Street Food). I will discuss the Spanokopita appetizer below since I ordered it as well.
Fried Calamari served with Chipotle sauce and Greek salad, $13.95, was Diner #3’s selection. She agreed that the Greek salad was exceptionally fresh and enjoyed her fried calamari, although she said one of the calamari rings was a bit chewy.
I myself ordered two appetizers: the Spanokopita, $5.95, and the appetizer portion of the Fried Calamari, $12.95. I really enjoyed my calamari and did not find any chewy portions on my plate. The breaded coating was tasty without being greasy. I had no problems with the house-made Chipotle sauce: it had a fair bit of kick. I simply prefer a squeeze of fresh lemon on my calamari so I opted for lemon instead. I would definitely recommend the Fried Calamari if you are visiting Pappas Grill on The Danforth.
I was not enamoured with the Spanokopita, on the other hand. I found there was too much pastry, which overwhelmed the flavours of the spinach and feta cheese filling.
Overall, we really enjoyed dining on the patio at Pappas Grill on The Danforth. We were quite pleased with our meals with just one or two misses.