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“very long wait, old looking interior, not great food” 2 of 5 stars
Review of Malbec Restaurant

Malbec Restaurant
234 Merton Street, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
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Ranked #3,558 of 6,548 Restaurants in Toronto
Cuisines: Argentinean
Dining options: Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Ontario
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
8 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
“very long wait, old looking interior, not great food”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 6, 2013

I am Argentine, and I am always on the lookout for new and good Argentine places to check out.
I heard about this place through a friend who had tried it. 4 of us gave it a shot.
First impressions: this restaurant needs to get voted onto the show "Restaurant Makeover". The decor is right out of the 60's and needs a massive upgrade. Everything was clean and all that, so that's not an issue. But really, old carpet and chairs that look like they came of a Tavern from an Etobicoke strip mall?
We ordered the Scallops and Provoletta starters to share. Scallops were OK, nothing to write home about. The people here who said they were amazing must have never been to a very good high end fish place, cause what is served at Malbec is average, not great, not bad either. The Provoletta on the other had was excellent and we really enjoyed this. This is a huge round piece of provolone cheese grilled in a cast iron pan and melted but maintaining it's shape. It was very good. This is a classic for me and I thought they did a nice job with this.
We then ordered the parilla - a collection of various meats and sausages which we ordered for 4 people.
It came fairly quickly, about 15-20 minutes. They place a portable gas cook thing on the table and bring the meat on top to keep it warm.
This was a major disappointment to us. The plate had 2 sausages, lots of chicken breast pieces and NO morsilla - the blood sausage that was clearly spelled out on the menu as to have been included. So right off the bat they didn't bring us what were were most expecting to try. They had no more apparently. Are you kidding me?
The meat was ok - i enjoyed the Vacio the most. The little cuts of ribs were of really bad quality - mostly fat all over them. The chicken was plain Jane rubber chicken and I didn't even bother trying it. It came with sides of "home made" fries, which were anything but homemade, and a sweet potato mash that was very tasty and good.
We then ordered the white chocolate flan for dessert. This was the most tasteless dessert i've ever had in my life. It was terrible. Next time they should stick with the regular flan as that's next to impossible to screw up.
Would I return or suggest it to my non-argentine friends to experience good argentine food? Absolutely not.

We spent $220 for 4 people with some wine - Malbec of course. They had none of the good wineries from Argentina i was hoping to find. Only cheap brands unfortunately.
So plan to spend $50 per person and not eat anything special. You can do better for this money else place in the city.

  • Visited September 2012
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
    • 2 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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9 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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    2
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    1
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Brampton, Canada
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
3 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
“Malbec visit”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed November 12, 2012

We were looking to capture the same or similar experience that we had at another Uruguayan Argentine restaurant. The food we ordered did taste good , we just didn't like the long wait. It took a long time to put our order in and to get served. There was only four of us and we waited close to two hours and a bit to get our main coarse. While we waited a couple came in about an hour after us , they were served and given the bill well before we were. Again the food was good, the servers friendly , the meal took too long to get to us.

  • Visited November 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Erin, Canada
Senior Contributor
46 reviews 46 reviews
16 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
“Restaurant wasn't even open despite reservation”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed October 19, 2012 via mobile

As a group of adventurous foodies who wanted to try authentic Argentinian food melbec seemed to be the place in toronto to try. Reservations took several phone calls and when we arrived today the restaurant was locked up. The owner had apparently gone out to "shop" we were told when we called the number on the website.

No offer to have us return another day for even free appetizers, this service was by FAR the worst I've seen in my lifetime! Doesn't matter how good the food may be, poor service is unexceptable if a restaurant is to be well regarded

    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
    • 1 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, On
Top Contributor
153 reviews 153 reviews
60 restaurant reviews
Reviews in 50 cities Reviews in 50 cities
258 helpful votes 258 helpful votes
“Little Bit of Buenos Aires in Toronto”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 4, 2012

My husband, son and his girlfriend ate at Malbec Saturday night and it was a wonderful experience.

We were a little dubious at first as the restaurant is not that easy to find and was empty, except for one other table. However, our doubts were quickly dispelled when we met the wonderful, friendly, knowledgeable owner. He recommended a fabulous wine and we shared a starter of hearts of palm with artichokes and salsa golf - delish.

For our main courses, my son and I shared Parillada which was out of this world - better than some of the meals we've had in Argentina. (My husband is from Buenos Aires and is a red meat affecianado!) The platter consisted of the juiciest flank steak and short ribs ever, chicken, chorizo, sweetbreads and chinchulines - all cooked to perfection. Even sitting on the grill on the table, the food retained it's moistness and flavour. This came with 2 side dishes - we chose marinated eggplant and asparagus with baby mushrooms. My husband enjoyed a chicken milanese and my d-i-l had fantastic salmon with mashed potatoes and perfectly cooked vegetables. I thought we'd have left-overs to bring home - wrong!!! We ate everything.

Even though we were really full, we couldn't resist ordering one flan to share. This one was made with white chocolate and decorated with dulce de leche and whipped cream.......divine.
Excellent coffee also with complimentary glasses of port.

By the way, the restaurant is obviously enjoyed by Argentinians - lots of other diners arrived after 9.30pm! We'll know for next time - and there will be a next time.

  • Visited September 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Toronto, Canada
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
“Outstanding”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 13, 2012

Argentinian fare at its best! Owner/manager is Francisco, a very charming and welcoming man. Lots of wonderful meat dishes and a friendly atmosphere. A definite recommendation!

  • Visited February 2012
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Atmosphere
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Food
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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