Ariana Kabab House, 426 Rideau St. The new Afghan grill at the former location of Links is a good place to keep in mind for healthy and flavourful meals on a budget. Generous platters of perfectly-cooked rice and crisp salad are topped with a wide choice of meats and served with a little dish of qorma (a mild curry) and wedges of soft and chewy flatbread on the side. That same flatbread makes a really delicious and filling wrap, stuffed with lettuce, tomato, onions and seasoned ground beef or marinated chicken breast; definitely one of the best sandwiches in the neighbourhood.
Going, going . . . Our neighbourhood has always been an unforgiving territory for restaurants, but the last few months have brought an unusual amount of turnover on the eating-out scene. Todric’s on McArthur Avenue closed its doors at the end of February, to the great regret of weekend brunchers and office workers who appreciated having a nearby place for a special lunch. Uji Café on Rideau St. has a sign on its door saying it is permanently closed—no more matcha cheesecake! And the Laurier Social House served its last pint at the end of March. This summer when it’s too hot to cook, be sure to support the restaurants you love, to help ensure that they’ll be there for us all in the future.
Ghandhi’s Village, 113 Mann Ave.
Delicious South Indian food has not been enough to guarantee this out-of the-way restaurant’s success. In May the often-fateful “Closed for Renovations” sign appeared on the door, and the restaurant’s fans wondered if this was the end of a long struggle. Chef David Sweety tells us he plans to re-open very soon, however, with a vegetarian buffet. This seems like a good idea, given the restaurant’s chronic difficulties with speedy service. Drop by soon to see how it’s going and give the talented Mr. Sweety some encouragement.
Nacho Cartel, 200 Wilbrod St.
We’ve also had our worries about the small truck with the big dreams this spring, as the delightful weather of late May has brought no aroma of tacos to the parking lot next to St. Joseph’s Church. There hasn’t been a single post on the food truck’s Facebook page in 2018, either. However, we recently passed by and saw the door to the truck standing open, so we stopped to ask for news. The Cartel crew were preparing food for a special event that day, but swore to us that they’d be open soon, maybe just for lunch on weekdays. Fingers crossed . . .
Stubbe Chocolates, 375 Dalhousie St. It’s a little beyond the boundaries of Sandy Hill, but who among us does not think of Stubbe as a neighbourhood asset? Alas, at the end of June the elegant chocolate shop will close its doors in the Byword Market and move to new premises on Wellington in Westboro. So, as we ease into summer, let us eat cake!