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Eat & Drink

The top 10 Chinese lobster in Toronto

Posted by Darren "DKLo" Susilo / February 12, 2014

Chinese lobsterThe top restaurants to chow down on Chinese lobster in Toronto serve up food that's a far cry from the plain simplicity of the steamed and dunked in butter version prevalent in most North American style seafood spots. The Chinese (or Cantonese) way of cooking lobster is pretty damn impressive and involves infusing these sea critters with seasonings and spices that make the whole dining experience a feast fit for a king. Common ingredients include Chinese cooking wine, soy sauce, and ginger and many restaurants offer the option to choose whether you want the crustacean steamed, stir-fried, or deep-fried.

Here are 10 restaurants to hit up for Chinese (Cantonese-style) lobster in Toronto.

Wah Sing
A staple among Chinese lobster lovers in Toronto, Wah Sing's lobster special (two for $29.95) will easily trump most other options. My personal favourite here is the one done with black bean sauce. Just don't mind the ambience (nobody will confuse this place with Rock Lobster), which is passable at best, but the throngs of on-a-budget UofT students flocking here prove they must be doing something right.

Hua Sang
Located somewhat oddly right underneath Wah Sing (no, seriously), Hua Sang is your other slightly less known (but still excellent) option for two for one lobster specials ($29.95). The interior and overall appearance of the restaurant is, in my opinion, shabbier than its upstairs counterpart.

Fishman Lobster Clubhouse
Often mispronounced as FishERman Lobster, this modest-looking but rather roomy Scarborough joint is the definitive go-to place for Chinese lobster in the 905. The interior is quite fancy but you won't care as you elbow your friends trying to take photos of the towering 8+ pound lobster dish standing on your table, daring you to eat it. Try the deep fried garlic lobster for maximum flavour. Their prices, at $16.99 per pound, are pretty reasonable, too. Definitely one of those places you should visit at least once.

Fishman Wharf Seafood
Another Scarborough gem, this restaurant serves up a number of large lobster and king crab specials. My favourite is the lobster set (2 for $68) which features 5 courses and includes sweet and savoury lobster in Maggi sauce (a delicious seasoning that really should be more well-known in Canada).

Maple Yip
One of the best places for all-around Cantonese food, Maple Yip is well-known for its dated interior, hurried atmosphere, and astoundingly delicious lobster at really cheap prices. The light, steamed garlic variety is my favourite here. And with prices starting at around $15.95 per pound, it's definitely the biggest Value Menu in town. If a smaller lobster is more to your liking, you can snag 'em at $16.95 for the whole dish. Crazy crowds aside, it's a fantastic place to chow down.

Omei
At this long-standing Richmond Hill favourite the must-order is their famous lobster cooked 4-ways ($21.95 per pound) in which each dish features a different part of the lobster cooked with different seasonings. There's the classic deep fried lobster, a stir-fried lobster in Maggi sauce, fried rice with lobster innards (it's a lot tastier than it sounds) plus a whole lot more. The price point is a bit steep but there's a reason why it's one of the most popular lobster restaurants in York Region.

Best Dragon Seafood
Best Dragon's name apropos, considering the Chinese name for lobster is really dragon shrimp. There are two main options for lobster lovers here. Small lobsters are served 2 for $28 while large ones (usually 7+ pounds) go for $15-$16 per pound. Choose one of three ways to have them cooked: stir fried with ginger, black bean sauce, or deep fried with garlic.

Mr. Congee
Despite the chaotic atmosphere, Mr. Congee remains wildly popular with Scarborough residents looking for cheap and good Cantonese food. I've tried their stir fried lobster with ginger here, and at $16.99 can honestly tell you that it's one of the best values you'll get. It's not too big but it's succulent, tasty as hell and good quality. After you're done, walk off the calories inside the always quiet Bridlewood Mall.

Magic Wok
If you want good old-fashioned solid lobster dishes without any of the 4-way or towering madness that you get in some other restaurants, Magic Wok is worth a try. It's the epitome of a solid, no-nonsense Chinese family restaurant that serves up fresh and delicious lobster. The classic stir-fried lobster is the one to order here.

Congee Queen
If you're looking for easily-replicated lobster excellence, look no further than Congee Queen. The only chain restaurant on this list, they win points for their classic stir-fried lobster with ginger (value-priced at $17.99). The lobster may be on the small side but it's still absolutely tasty, which is really all you can ask for given its price and ubiquity.

Posted by Darren "DKLo" Susilo. He hangs out on the twitter and his own mansion.

Photo by Sebastian Ip in the blogTO Flickr pool

Discussion

16 Comments

West End Dave / February 12, 2014 at 09:18 am
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Wah sing is one of my favourite restaurants in the city. I come here atleast once a month. They got 2 for 1 lobster for only $30! You can choose to have your lobster done with ginger or black bean sauce. I also recommend the beef rice noodles with black bean sauce and their fried rice.
Matthew I / February 12, 2014 at 09:55 am
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I'm a Hua Sang kinda guy, myself. When I was younger (10-15 yrs ago) my family went there all the time, and told me that Hua Sang and Wah Sing were estranged brothers who were former business partners. I'm pretty sure they were just having fun tricking a little kid, but it definitely made me hate the restaurant I never went to on moral principles!

Anyways, Wah Sing is garbage, is all that I'm saying.
Confoosing / February 12, 2014 at 10:36 am
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"this modest-looking but rather roomy Scarborough joint is the definitive go-to place for Chinese lobster in the 905"

Scarborough is definitely not in the 905.
West End Dave / February 12, 2014 at 11:14 am
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So Matthew, your calling a restaurant that you've never been to "garbage" because you choose to be a Hua Sang fanboy? I'm i correct?
bellaluna replying to a comment from Matthew I / February 12, 2014 at 11:15 am
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I was told the exact same thing as a kid, that they were estranged brothers! There was always something home-y about that place compared to its counterpart. Those were the days.. waiting impatiently outside for a table, because the entrance was always so packed, salivating as I peaked inside at the other families getting their lobsters... Their snails in black bean sauce are yummy too!!

Even though I have allergies to shellfish now as an adult, I still have days when I have some ginger onion lobster, pop some benadryl, and call it a day. Best lobster hands down!
Ron replying to a comment from Confoosing / February 12, 2014 at 11:18 am
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The map on this page shows Fishman in Markham, while the BlogTO restaurant page's map for Fishman shows Scarborough.

Really like the content DKlo has brought. It's refreshing to have a different perspective from the normal blogger on the site.
Akshay / February 12, 2014 at 12:44 pm
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"this modest-looking but rather roomy Scarborough joint is the definitive go-to place for Chinese lobster in the 905"

Are you a complete retard or just a borderline moron,"this modest-looking but rather roomy Scarborough joint is the definitive go-to place for Chinese lobster in the 905"

Did you just go full retard? How does Scarborough qualify as the 905. It seems like being an idiot is the basic requirement to work at BlogTO.
Cynthia / February 12, 2014 at 01:21 pm
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Wah Sing all the way. And ginger. My familys been going since I was little. They live overseas now but my dad always makes a point of going once if not twice whenever he's in town.
Maria / February 12, 2014 at 02:03 pm
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Xamxu in chinatown makes great lobsters, choices fo black bean or ginger.
Mike / February 12, 2014 at 02:05 pm
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Beware of up-sell tactics at Fishman Wharf Seafood and Fishman Lobster Clubhouse. They will try to up-sell you on everything - grade of lobster, size of lobster, etc. Those prices will add up and you'll be paying a lot more (sometimes double) than what you're expecting to.
Amanda / February 12, 2014 at 02:27 pm
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Hua Sang is the absolute best!! The staff are hilarious and super friendly, and the lobster is delicious. Service is very quick - I've never waited longer than 10-15 minutes for an order. I've never actually been to any of the other places, but I'd definitely recommend Hua Sang and to check out their sizzling beef plate as well!
Yvonne T. / February 12, 2014 at 03:20 pm
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Sang Ho at Dundas/Spadina should be on this list. As should Wah Too.
KT / February 12, 2014 at 03:58 pm
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Hua Sang is disgusting. We were eating lobster there and found a cockroach in it. I told the lady (probably the owner) and she was trying to convince me that it was just a piece of ginger. We got so upset and told her:"Does ginger has wings and legs??!!!" and then she picked it up with her finger and said:" ohhh" and just flick it out like nothing. She then took the plate to the back. We were so disgusted and felt like throwing up. Another server came by and said that they will cover the bill. We left and didn't touch anything else, of course. Just thinking about it make me want to vomit!
yuck replying to a comment from KT / February 12, 2014 at 05:23 pm
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ok you killed it. Now I don't want Hua Sang or it's upstairs neighbour. Thank you?!
Julia Wong / February 13, 2014 at 02:26 pm
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Hello,

Happy Chinese New Year - The Year of the Horse! For those who would like to learn how to cook Chinese food at home, check out my Chinese home cooking show on Youtube (http://www.youtube.com/user/ChineseHomeCookingWN)

Happy Home Cooking!

Julia Wong, Show Host
Chinese Home Cooking Weeknight
http://www.youtube.com/user/ChineseHomeCookingWN
mongo the mongolian / February 18, 2014 at 03:23 pm
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mmmm...hua sang lobster cockroach is the best!...chinese lobster eyes DO NOT have epicanthic folds

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