Golden Krust Toronto
Golden Krust is a Caribbean chain renowned for its patties, and this is their first Toronto location.
Based in New York, the chain has been around for decades and has over 100 locations in the States.
The high-ceilinged, slick space is designed around function, a semi-circular hot table area leading a snaking line of customers to the cash.
A jerk chicken meal is $11.99 for a "Plenty" size (basically equivalent to a large) with your choice of rice and a choice of coleslaw or steamed veggies. The options vary depending on the day, and all hot table items are made in house.
The chicken could have better bite-through but has nice heat to it, the coleslaw is super creamy, seasoned yellow rice is studded with veggies, and plantain is nice and starchy with a caramelized exterior. I also like how they put a little extra jerk sauce on the rice.
Curried goat is $9.99 for a "Big Up" (medium) meal, and we opt for fluffy, if basic, steamed white rice with this one (you can also go with rice and peas). The goat is more dry than saucy, but overall pretty typical of what you'd expect from this iconic dish.
There's a lunch special on "Nice" meals with BBQ, fried, stew or curried chicken for $5.65 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. They manage to pack all takeout trays to the brim, and though this is the small size, it's no different. The BBQ chicken is sticky and moist, and you can "Ups" this special for 50 cents to include a fountain drink.
Soups of the day ($3.99) include goat head, cow foot, red peas and pigeon peas.
Most patties are $2.49, $1.99 for beef patties and $1.29 for just "krust," basically a patty with no filling. All baked goods are made in New York and shipped here, though apparently being baked fresh directly from frozen is the best way to enjoy these and the process is responsible for their signature texture.
One of their most well-known patties is chee-zee beef, with a relatively wet filling that basically combines melted cheese and beef, a bit of an air bubble inside. A portion of the filling seeps out through cracks in the bottom, but the crust is flaky with large stiff corners that are good for holding on to.
Bun & cheese ($3.99) is a classic comfort food on offer here, just a spiced bun with a thick slice of canned cheese in the middle.
A seating area with a capacity of about 30 is much larger than that of the Brampton location, one wall emblazoned with an enormous Golden Krust logo.