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Restaurants

Asada Mexican Grill

Posted by Liora Ipsum / Profiled on April 2, 2013 / review policy

Asada TorontoAsada Mexican Grill opened a couple weeks ago amongst a jumble of St. Clair storefronts. It's a new quick eatery from husband and wife team, Austin and Klaudia Morgan who serve up traditional family recipes in convenient and customizable formats.

It's slow food served fast. Everything on the menu is made from scratch, like soft tortillas (flour, whole wheat and traditional corn); grilled, fried and slow cooked fillings; and an impressive assortment of toppings from which you can build a burrito, taco, torta (sandwich) or box as you see fit. Any option for only nine bucks.

Asada TorontoIt's a casual, 'come as you are' kind of place, with ample room to dine in. Industrial furnishings and fun installations like, a floating row of hot sauce (from 1508 Design) avoids the usual cliches but still nods to the Mexican theme. It's vibrant, modern and inviting -- not at all where past experience tells me to find great tacos.

Asada TorontoAt the counter, I ask for a sampling of tacos, 'chefs' choice and end up making it through the Baja Shrimp ($3 extra), Cochinita Pibil (Mayan pulled pork) and an off-the-menu creation; the Veggie Baja (avacodo battered and fried for a golden exterior and creamy centre).

Each is packed with complex flavours learned from Austin's mother and grandmother who were once pioneering owners of the Mexico Restaurant, circa 1979 (its former Bathurst and Dupont address is now home to Rapido).

Asada Mexican GrillToppings are added per personal preference but include an all-avocado gauc (no filler here), pickled onions, zesty cream sauces and pico de gallo -- not to mention there's a self serve salsa bar with seven housemade varieties. I sample the hottest of the bunch and can report it triumphs flavour over heat.

Asada TorontoA pending liquor license means bottled beers could be added soon. For now, the current beverage selection is just as extensive as the rest if the menu. Vintage refrigerator cases house imported Mexican sodas in glass bottles and housemade Horchata and hibiscus flavoured, Jamaica. Fountain pop is here too, plus American-style fresh brewed ice tea (sweeten it yourself).

Asada St ClairFor the road, I pick up an order of Sweet Nachos ($4.95) dusted with cinamon sugar and served warm from the fryer. As good as they were, next time i'd try the Tres Leches Cake ($4.95) for better value.

Asada TorontoOpen from 11am to 10pm (+1 hour on the weekends) every day except Monday, locals should ask about the 'secret menu' that's set to slowly roll out off-the-menu specials. Patio seating out front should be ready in time for warmer days.

Asada TorontoPhotos by Jesse Milns

Discussion

37 Comments

Ira / April 2, 2013 at 09:34 am
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Went there on thier grand opening day - So tasty. So glad we got a good slow fast food join in the hood. Big Fan
Luis / April 2, 2013 at 09:53 am
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Attention all anglosaxens stop hopping on the Mexican bandwagon pretending to know how make Mexican food, leave the South American food to the South Americans
Greg replying to a comment from Luis / April 2, 2013 at 10:46 am
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The owner is Mexican.
.... replying to a comment from Luis / April 2, 2013 at 10:46 am
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Number 1) It's Anglo-Saxons
Number 2) Your ignorance is hilarious
Mathesond replying to a comment from .... / April 2, 2013 at 11:16 am
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Number 3) Mexico is in North America
nicole replying to a comment from Mathesond / April 2, 2013 at 11:20 am
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Zing!
John / April 2, 2013 at 12:44 pm
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Thats what I love about people these days, take Luis for example. Think before you write, or don't write anything at all!
Asada looks great, will give it a try.
St. Clair West Community / April 2, 2013 at 01:12 pm
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Enjoy 2 hours of unlimited travel on the 512 street car (with valid transfer)! Hop on and hop off as often as you like.
https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.207431972692470.29633.182855901816744&;type=3#!/photo.php?fbid=218464798255854&set=a.207431972692470.29633.182855901816744&;type=3&theater
Adam / April 2, 2013 at 01:20 pm
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Hilarious burn on Luis
Luis / April 2, 2013 at 01:38 pm
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Yes because Austin Morgan is very Mexican sounding
w-hat / April 2, 2013 at 01:52 pm
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Luis - beside the obvious stupidity other's have pointed out, you'll be disappointed to know that "the rest of the world" has been stealing Mexican food for a very long time. Imagine the world without Corn, Squash, Cacao, Vanilla and many other beans. All native to Mexico, all a HUGE part of the world's diet today.

PS You are dumb
Rogers / April 2, 2013 at 02:05 pm
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I think what Luis is trying to say that in the last couple of years Mexican food has become the hot thing in Toronto. Which I'm sure he is happy about , what I think bothers him and me is people who think they know Mexican food trying to it off as the real thing. I doubt Austin Morgan grew up in Mexico or went to culinary Mexican school. Just hopping on a fad
jd / April 2, 2013 at 02:51 pm
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Do they sell Mexican Coke?
w-hat / April 2, 2013 at 02:54 pm
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Who cares as long as it tastes good and people like it? I spend time in Mexico and eat real Mexican food and it is great. So are some of the "Mexican" places I've eaten in outside of Mexico. The food in those pictures looks pretty damn tasty and I will be checking it out.

BTW - Mexican cuisine adopts and "passes off as Mexican" all sorts of other food trends. Tacos Al Pastor anyone?
Austin replying to a comment from Luis / April 2, 2013 at 05:19 pm
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Hi Luis, Rogers, I know my name doesn't sound Mexican. I can assure you that I am Mexican/Canadian and I was born in Reynosa Tamaulipas Mexico, and lived in Ensenada Baja California Mexico before coming to this great Country! My business partner Alejandro is also Mexican/Canadian. he was born in Mexico City D.F Mexico and also lived in Monterrey Nuevo León Mexico before also coming to Canada.

I promise you that our food is as authentic in flavour as it gets! We make our delicious food from scratch, and would invite you both and everyone else to try us out......from our handmade corn tortillas to our Cochinita Pibil! You can than wash it down with a refreshing horchata! If you like spice, you should try our Habanero salsa made from scratch...I would even say that our Mexican Chorizo is a must :)

We just wanted to build an inviting and fun eatery that is built on great food, and to offer all our customers a great experience, while bringing the "Real Mexican Flavour". We at Asada feel we have done that, as our Canadian and Mexican customers love our decor, our great customer service, and most importantly our delicious food.

I do appreciate where you both are coming from, as there is a bunch of Mexican joints popping up! However, I believe that in this great diverse city, it is awesome that we have so much choice when it comes to food:)

Thanks, and hope to see you all soon!
Austin Carlos Morgan
Austin / April 2, 2013 at 05:33 pm
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Hi jd..We absolutely have Mexican Coke as well as Mexican Fanta, which are both made with real sugar cane:)

Thanks again
Luis / April 2, 2013 at 05:56 pm
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Thank you Austin! I stand corrected and I cannot wait to come and try the food
Austin / April 2, 2013 at 06:50 pm
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That's very humble and classy of you Luis.
See ya soon!:)
Austin


Jer / April 3, 2013 at 10:06 am
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I have to say I am not in that area often but when I am I will definitely check it out.

I like to see a growth of "fast service" restaurants that aren't "fast food"... Quality ingredients and nice flavours that aren't muted/dumbed down. I hope the food tastes as good as it looks
Miriam / April 3, 2013 at 03:41 pm
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This place is so great, there food is just fantastic, full of flavor and very much Mexican! I am a chef my self and know good food when I see it and eat it. ASADA your great and I hope you guys do well so I see more of your locations open up. Ill tell yah Brampton would definitely benefit from one lol.
God bless you and your business!
Danielle / April 3, 2013 at 10:59 pm
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I ate here recently and was quite happy with everything I tried - I had 3 different tacos and we split 2 soups btwn us. All the meats were very tasty! toppings excellent too. Drinks are awesome, especially the homemade vanilla/cinnamon/rice drink!!

I like the fact that there are flour tortillas available if you want them - try as I might I just can't get into authentic soft corn tortillas, so when a place offers an alternative with tasty authentic Mexican fillings, I'm sold.

The only negatives I'd say are a lack of salt/acid in the soup and some of the nachos were not fried completely/were still "soggy"
Calavera / April 4, 2013 at 11:23 pm
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I live in the area and tried this for dinner tonight. I'm a vegetarian so I can't personally vouch for any of the meat dishes, but the veggie burrito was giant and delicious. The zuccini and squash (I think) in it were a nice touch, and the refried beans were fresh and piping hot. I also tried their homemade horchata, which was very tasty.
Jason / April 6, 2013 at 10:08 pm
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I went to this Mexican Grill after Reading the review on blogTO. I went with my wife and three year old, upon entering my daughter wanted nothing to do with this place and I thought we were not going to be able to try it. We were quickly and warmly welcomed by the owner Austin. He made a fresh batch if us delicious cinnamon tortilla chips and she was quick to warm up. I tried the steak burrito and my wife had the tacos. The flavor, size was mouth watering and devious. We tried the dessert and the owner was very friendly and hands on asking us hit hinges were and deeply cared about are experience. I am super jealous of the st. Clair and Vaughan rd residents as they truly have a gem of fast Mexican cuisine.
Jason / April 6, 2013 at 10:10 pm
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To the person who said things didn't taste right you should of brought it to their attention! They have amazing customer service which is hard to find.
Miriam / April 9, 2013 at 11:26 pm
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I totally agree with Jason... they are an amazing restaurant and they go above and beyond to make shure there customer are a 100 percent satisfied and that tells you a lot.
I still stick to what I said in my prior post...
We need Asada to venture out to the West end
C / April 11, 2013 at 03:58 pm
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Went last Friday. Love that you can order three different tacos in one order. It was suggested to me that I try the Baja shrimp taco. It was uber tasty and loaded with goodies. Everything tasted lovely. I'd go back in a heart beat.

My only question about this place is if the crunchy corn tortilla shells are house made or brought in? It's clear that the soft corn tortillas are fresh. The hard shells looked a little too perfect to be house made.

The owner is SUPER nice. Very cordial and informative. The staff was also very friendly.

This place isn't fancy, but I think there's been such a surge of "fancy" or "hip" taco joints recently (with a minimum 1-1.5 hour wait to eat) that it's nice that there's a place like Asada. It's non-threatening, unpretentious and delicious.

/Two cents
Carolina / April 12, 2013 at 10:15 am
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I went to this place yesterday. I love the chorizo taco...yummy. I forgot to try the pulled pork one, which the owners say is very good. The service was great, really friendly and helpful. I love that this place is in my neighbourhood.
Kaye / April 21, 2013 at 07:46 pm
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My family and I was treated to lunch at Asada today, I must say we are foodies and always look for authentic food with authentic flavour. This place delivered that and more. Austin and the girls: really attentive to their customers. The live Mariachi band added to the atmosphere. The kids tried soft corn tacos with Mayan pulled pork, Chorizo, and grilled chicken. The adults had Mexican rice with grilled steak,refried beans,sauteed onions, and Jalapeno, topped with hot salsa, cheese and their chipotle sauce. We will be back for Cinco de Mayo!!!! By the way the drive from Oshawa was well worth it!!!!!!
BB / May 7, 2013 at 09:28 pm
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The owner and staff are nice enough, but there is a lack of communication and process. They take way too long, and if you order a fish taco make sure you get them to make it first because it takes a while, your other 2 tacos are sitting there for 10 minutes while the fish is being made, by the time you eat them they will be stone cold. Also this place is basically like Chipotle. I'd way rather eat at Tenoch 2 blocks away.
Mark / May 24, 2013 at 10:51 am
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my girlfriend and I went on wednesday and were not disappointed. The two girls behind the counter were very attentive and explained to us how to order as we looked a bit lost. I ended up getting the pulled pork burrito and it was amazing. Fresh ingredients and real authentic flavour, we will definitely be coming back. Also one of the staff gave us a free order sweet nachos, they were of course delicious
Shams / July 30, 2013 at 03:35 pm
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Me and my buddy ate a burrito with chicken and steak in it, we loaded it up with onions, black beans, cheese, and salad. I washed it down with an ice cold tamarind drink.

Had sweet nachos after.

Best Mexican food in the GTA I had so far!

Even the washrooms are nice and clean.
Good over all experience, will definitely go back.

naufalsadas / September 15, 2013 at 03:38 am
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afa
naufalsadas / September 15, 2013 at 03:38 am
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masak sih
Anon / December 29, 2013 at 02:53 pm
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Best tacos I've ever had. Everything was so fresh and bursting with a ton of flavour. You can tell that a lot of care and attention goes into the cooking. Service is also super friendly
David / January 29, 2014 at 02:03 pm
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Would love to jump on the band wagon but this is not a good restaurant. The food is mediocre, ithe displaying of the food is unappetizing. Burritos are cold, seak was cooked on an a grill or griddle that hadn't been cleaned so tasted like bad barbecue. Sadly if your looking for American/Canadian style Mexican food Chipotles is better on all fronts and I wish I could say otherwise. It's not horrible... Just a solid two maybe three stars. (Lived in New-Mexico two years)
Ryan / February 18, 2014 at 09:55 am
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Asada is a really cool place. The food is all natural and home-cooked stuff, with lots of flavour. We tried almost all the tacos, and liked the shrimp, mayan pulled pork, and grilled chicken the best. They've also got some home-made drinks like a hibiscus drink, horchata, and lemonade, but we only tried the hibiscus one which was pretty good.

The owner, Austin, works there and is super friendly with all his customers. He gives you that feeling that he really wants you to be there and enjoy yourself while you're there. His staff/family were also there helping out and were really friendly. The whole place is clean and fresh. I'd go back there.
Stacey / March 8, 2014 at 07:06 pm
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Just finished eating the al pastor tacos. This place has a very good atmosphere. Very very friendly and attentive staff and delicious food. I will definitely be back when Im in the area again, and I will spread the word!

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