- The Entrée:
- The Sides/Drinks:
- The Atmosphere:
The Ossington strip has been booming with many great up and coming restaurants in the past year or so. One of it’s newest additions is Hawker Bar. With the city lacking in Singaporean options, Chef Alec hopes to bring his variation with a street styled inspired twist to Toronto. Like many other Ossington restos the spot is relatively small. They currently do not take reservations so come prepared. Even on a random weekday, there is a usually a slight wait for dinner.
164 Ossington Avenue
Toronto, ON M6J 2Z7
Hawker Bar has been making the rounds as the next must try place. So for a catch up dinner, my friend Lily and I decided to pay them a visit. We got there around 7 and were thankfully seated within 5 mins as a table was just leaving. The decor is nice and simple. Most if not all furniture had a wooden theme going; from our tables to our seats which I believe were tree stumps. Lily is a quite the foodie so within a few minutes we knew what we wanted and ordered quickly.
For appetizers we started off with the Son in Law Eggs which were very nice to my surprise. A soft boiled egg that was almost even creamy inside. There was a sweet chili jam on the bottom that had the right balance of sweet and spiciness that complimented the egg quite well. Our second app was the Singapore Chicken Wings that also came with a sweet chili soya sauce that you can dip in. Now the chicken wing had a good blend of flavours and a nice crispy outside. If you’re saucy like me, you should definitely try dipping it. In fact, everyone should try dipping to see how you like it. =P The apps were definitely a good start to the night.
Now onto the mains, we got the Hainanese Chicken with rice and also the large Chicken laksa. They provide 3 homemade sauces in which you should definitely mix together and create a base for your Hainanese chicken to be dipped in. The 3 sauces were a ginger puree sauce, a dark soya sauce and a spicy red chili sauce. Personally I leaned a little more to a ginger and a dark soy concoction, but definitely adjust accordingly to your preference. The chicken was okay. Very lightly marinated and Chef Alec has decided to go with chicken breast instead of dark meat as traditionally used. The laksa in my opinion was probably the weakest dish out of all the food we had that night. I think I personally compared this dish to the Khao Soi which has been a major hit at 2 heralded thai joints within Toronto, Khao San Road and Sukhothai. Our laksa that night was quite watery and lacked that viscosity we expected. The flavours were alright, and for the large eaters out there we felt it lacked substance. Between the two mains we ordered, we preferred the Hainanese chicken over the laksa when we compared the mains.
Overall, Hawker Bar is a nice little joint on the Ossington strip. A place where we felt the apps were much stronger than the mains. The Son in Law Eggs were definitely the stand out. For dessert, the banana fritter were a nice treat to end the night. Maybe they had an off night for the mains, but we do commend Chef Alec for bringing Singaporean dishes to Toronto where the prices won’t kill ya. How was your experience? How did you like Hawker Bar?
The Damage: $48.59 after tax