Here's where Andrew Phung of Run the Burbs likes to eat and shop in Toronto
It seems as if you can see Andrew Phung and his high comb-over hair pretty much everywhere these days.
Whether it was on the hit show Kim's Convenience as 'Kimchee Han' or a Becel commercial making jokes about oats or even on his new show Run The Burbs where he co-created and stars as a version of his real-life self.
The Calgary-born actor is everywhere.
blogTO recently had an opportunity to tag along with Phung to explore his neighbourhood of Danforth East.
The Kim's Convenience actor moved to Toronto to play 'Kimchee Han', the best friend of Jung Kim played by the now Marvel superhero actor Simu Liu.
The show took off and became one of CBC's most successful shows. Phung then moved to Toronto with his family to ease the amount of travelling back and forth to Calgary.
"(I) was looking for a good mix of an area that was family-friendly, but still had that Toronto vibe to it."
Phung said his Kim's co-star Paul Sun-Hyung Lee recommended he give East York a try. "We found that we get a little more house up here, a little more space. It's really kid-friendly. It's really good to go through Toronto from here."
Kim's Convenience ended abruptly after 5 seasons in 2021. Phung's charismatic acting skills opened an opportunity for CBC to offer him his own show.
Less than a year later, Run The Burbs premiered on CBC. The show circles around Andrew Pham (played by Phung), a stay-at-home father of two who lives in the suburbs.
"Living in the east end of Toronto really did inspire me to write 'Run The Burbs'" says Phung. He adds "noticing how this suburb of Toronto works, seeing the people there inspired me to make the show."
Dream come true! My TV series, Run the Burbs, is coming to @CBC! It's a show about a family living their best life in the suburbs and taking on the world together. This is a comedy filled with so much love, and I can't wait for you to see it! https://t.co/kGwdV0YplZ @Pier21Films— Andrew Phung (@andrewphung) March 26, 2021
On a bright winter's day, Andrew showed us his three favourite spots in his neighbourhood of East Danforth.
A huge sneakerhead (and owner of 500+ pairs of sneakers) Phung says this is one of his favourite sneaker shops in the city. Parlour 23 is a consignment shop that offers some of the best sneaker selections in the city. They've also had their own merch line that includes shirts, hoodies and jerseys.
"I like to come here just to talk. But also they buy and sell as well." Phung says. "If I have pairs, I'll come in and try and sell a few pairs and make my way up because in the sneaker game, you try and make your way up."
The Run The Burbs star purchased two pairs of sneakers. The Air Jordan 1 Lost and Found and the Air Jordan 6 History of Spizike. This cost him around $1100.
Aside from collecting sneakers, Phung also collects action figures and toys.
This toy shop might not look like much on the outside, but when you walk in, you're instantly surrounded by vintage toys and collectibles. They've also got comic books, vinyls and even card packs with gum that's over 35 years old.
Walking in, Andrew's face lights up and he tells us "I'm a big collector of action figures and toys. I'll come in here with my son and just show him things from the 80's is such a joy."
After going through the entire store, Phung selected 8 out-of-the-box action figures, spending roughly $200 on a bag of toys that he's going to enjoy with his two boys.
A proud Vietnamese-Chinese Canadian, Phung often boasts about his love for banh mi. This spot on Danforth East had Andrew rolling his eyes back of his head with just the thought of taking a bite of this popular sandwich.
"When you see the words 'Banh Mi Bar' you gotta try it" claims Phung. "I came in one day and it just rocked me. It’s a bit more of a modern take on banh mi subs."
A large milk tea bubble tea and a Calvin Style Beef Sandwich came up to $23.
What makes a great banh mi for Andrew Phung? "It’s got to be a fresh baguette. When it's soft, flaky and fresh it's really nice. Also depends on the style, if it's the traditional cold cut one, it's gotta have the pâté, the lard and you gotta give me the toppings."
We also bought him kimchi. Why? Because he was Kimchee on Kim's Convenience of course!
You can catch Andrew Phung’s new show Run The Burbs Wednesdays at 8:30 p.m. on CBC and CBC Gem.
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