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“Tasty fusion cuisine in upscale setting”
Review of Amaya - CLOSED

Amaya
Price range: $20 - $25
Cuisines: Indian
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic
Dining options: Delivery, Reservations
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Neighborhood: East York
Cross street: South of Eglinton Avenue
Description: Joanne Kates (The Globe and Mail Restaurant Critic) writes…”Amaya, which opened recently in the (renovated) premises of the former Jov, is heaven-sent. The combination of silken service and excellent ingredients freshly cooked, with sensitive spicing, is seductive in the way that only the food of the subcontinent can be - rich, assertive, complex, exotic.” Just as the food avoids clichés, so does the setting. The 40-seat dining room is accented with subtle hints of India through stunning photography creating an inviting atmosphere that is casual and friendly yet elegant and sophisticated.
Reviewed April 27, 2013

I went to Amaya on the last day of a Groupon; so the place was packed with procrastinating bargain-hunters like me, mostly young couples from the neighbourhood. I was dining solo, which I find is always a good test of the quality of service. The staff didn't listen when I told them I was alone for the evening, as they provided two menus, two glasses of water, etc. Not a great start.

I order a starter of lobster in a mild curry sauce ($12), a martini glass full of mostly lobster knuckle and claw (very little tail) in a pleasant red sauce. Good portion size - could easily be shared. Lobster was suitably tender. Most of the "small plates" were in the $8-10 range.

For my entree, I ordered the Muskoka duck in a raspberry sauce ($19). The duck was cooked perfectly, but the dish has no connection to Indian cuisine whatsoever. The menu lists roasted coconut as an ingredient, but it is undetectable. The sauce is pleasant, a little sweet, but ultimately the dish is "one note." I ordered a side of beetroot rice ($5), expecting the rice to be a brilliant red colour from being cooked in beet juice. Instead I got a standard bowl of basmati rice with a brunoise of beets mixed in and a few curry leaves as garnish. If I were not celiac, I certainly would opt instead for the mixed naan plate that my neighbours ordered: a huge assortment of different-flavoured breads.

As a beverage, I had the mango-fennel lassi ($4). I couldn't detect any fennel in it. And as lassis go, this one appeared to have "split" and looked quite unappetizing. A big miss.

Service was spotty. No one checked in on me after any of the courses, and it took a while to get dishes cleared and to get the cheque. But at least the dishes came hot and on time.

The bill came to $40 before tax and tip. The dessert menu did not look very authentic; so I crossed the street and had some excellent sorbetto at Hollywood Gelato, which was the highlight of the evening.

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Thank VinceBToronto_Canada
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviews (76)
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43 - 47 of 76 reviews

Reviewed April 13, 2013

We have dined here many times and ordered for take out as well. Without a doubt the best Indian in Toronto. Butter chicken sauce is smooth with a little bite. Love the madras chicken, lamb with lime, dahl, sweet n sour eggplant, kale n jackfruit and so many others it is hard not to list the entire menu.

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Thank highlandbeachflorida
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 7, 2013

We didn't know what to expect when I made reservations for dinner, but I was impressed once we got there. I have to say that our experience was one of excellence and enjoying this restaurant's well executed idea of a truly refined way of making an evening special through great food and service - from the discreetly welcome at the front, the understated yet elegant interior arrangement, the knowledgeable quietly attentive service, and the statement of passion from the owners on the back of the menu (in small print) ... and of course, exceptional (yet affordable and unpretentious) food and drink. Keep it up, Amaya! We'll be back!

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Thank eirenew
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed March 16, 2013

Four of us got together at Amaya to celebrate a birthday and Indian food is great for sharing. We ordered many dishes and I, for one, was stuffed when we left.

You need a reservation and I suggest avoiding the 7:00 to 8:00 time period on a Friday or Saturday night because there were many people waiting at the door for a long time to be seated. Our server was very friendly and attentive; it was a busy evening and the staff was hustling but we never felt neglected or rushed.

The overall winner appetizer at the table was the lobster with mango and tellicherry pepper. That was fantastic! Spicy pepper flavour, succulent lobster and crunchy onions. OMG. Next favourite was the lamb lollipop, which were two lamb ribs in a gorgeous sauce. This is harder to share between four so we shared one each between our partners.
We also tried the black olive chicken tikka, the masala scallop and Goan chorizo, and the lentil soup, (which we didn’t share, for obvious reasons:-)

The main with the raves was the tomato butter chicken for some but for me it was the duck in raspberry. So delicious! The Tilapia was good too, so was the prawn curry and the vegetable curry, ah. It was all good, every last dish. You have to go to this restaurant and just try everything. If you like Indian food, you’ll love the food here. This was our second visit and I will certainly go again.

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Thank AppleSpice
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 25, 2013

I love this place for the chef's special. The lamb kabob / popsicles are to die for. The last time I went, they had just renovated and the prices were up. I kind of think the prices are a bit too high - but I still love the place.May just have to go a bit less often.

Thank Bruce M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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