Pak Centre Halal Restaurant

Location: 2683 Lawrence Ave E, Toronto, ON M1P 2S2
Region of Food: Islamabad, Pakistan
pakUpon parking my car I was surprised to see the exterior of Pak Centre, not that I expected the fairy lights of Lahore Tikka or its arched entrance but I also did not expect a small two-entrance door underneath a simple banner. As I made my way in I was greeted by a hostess at a semi-circle desk, she took me to my booth and handed me the menu. I had cutlery placed in front of me and soon after a pitcher of water. The atmosphere was much like casual restaurant locales such as Boston Pizza or Jack Astors, it did not scream ethnicity!
Capture4The food was brought to me on a fine piece of china. It was topped with fresh cilantro and the chicken was mixed in with the rice. The rice was yellow, probably from turmeric powder, rather than the orange biyrani rice of Lahore Tikka. It was slightly harder and chewy as well. I am a fan of spicy dishes and to my disappointment this dish lacked in it tremendously. I had asked the waitress if the chef used a variety of spices or a commercially packed bag of spices such as Shan Masala or Parampara Masala and she responded with “I’m pretty sure we use Shan Masala.” The mild taste of the dish was thence explained. Although at that point I was not surprised, much of the restaurant’s atmosphere replicated a typical Western food establishment, the spice level followed suite.

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