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40 Dundas St. W.
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About
Harlem West is a moderately priced casual Cajun / creole restaurant located in the King West area of Downtown Toronto. Harlem West specializes in Cajun / creole cuisine and features big screen tv / satellite in a casual atmosphere
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Harlem  West The Menu
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Review: Harlem Underground, funky and full of soul

 
By Jim Bamboulis, reviewed on October 14, 2010

If you're entering a de-tox program intending to rid yourself of high caloric foods, then going out with a bang is essential, so a visit to Harlem Underground is a must! After all, your last meal should be one to last for ages.

Funky with positive vibes,...

If you're entering a de-tox program intending to rid yourself of high caloric foods, then going out with a bang is essential, so a visit to Harlem Underground is a must! After all, your last meal should be one to last for ages.

Funky with positive vibes, Harlem Underground has all the important elements of a quintessential Queen West hotspot that makes for an immediate impact. "I like it already," my dining mate says. I feel the same.

Friendly, casual, yet professional staff greets us as if we've just come home. With passionate red painted walls, velvet curtains and Harlem- renaissance inspired graffiti art as far as the eye can see, this space is uber cool. Add a live jazz band to the mix and you'
ve got a very utopian dining experience off the top.

Would the food follow suit? For the most part, yes. Especially if you like Afro-American and Afro-Caribbean inspired dishes with a twist. Harlem Underground is known for its unique and flavourful starters and its equally dynamic mains. The Chicken Wings ($8.95) made with homemade hot sauce are delicious but provide more a sweet and smoky flavour than hot. Steamed Mussels Creole ($10.95) served in a spicy coconut cream sauce were savoury but not as spicy as I expected, while the traditional Corn Bread ($3.95), prepared with jalapeno and green onions, raised our eyebrows and left us fighting for the last piece.

Southern Fried Chicken & Waffle ($13.95) is an interesting and very filling dish. One side of the plate featured a breakfast style waffle along with beautifully flavoured coriander-lime maple syrup. The other side had three large pieces of southern fried chicken served with chicken gravy. In the middle was a salad that wasn't noticeable until the end of the meal and therefore had no business being on the plate. I'm guessing greens had to be included somehow. Meanwhile, BBQ Chicken ($14.95) fulfilled its promise. Large, tender, sweet and mildly spicy seasoned pieces of chicken were delectable.

Chase these dishes down with a couple of Red Stripe beers and you'll be feeling full in no time.

Price: $120 with drinks, tax and tip
Atmosphere: Refreshingly casual.
Wheelchair Access: Yes
Hint: Don't count calories! Leave expectations out of it and try as many dishes as you can!

Reviews are meant to describe a dining out experience at a given period in time and are the personal opinion of the writer.
All meals are paid for, including all taxes and gratuities. All reservations are made under assumed names. Menu items, prices and individuals mentioned in this review may not be up to date. Dine.TO encourages its users to share their feedback.

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