ImPerfect Eats on Queen
ImPerfect Eats is open for takeout and delivery. Masks are mandatory. There are floor markers and hand sanitizer at the entrance.
ImPerfect Eats is a healthy fast food restaurant that offers build-your-own grain and smoothie bowls, as well as fresh real fruit smoothies.
The fresh eats spot is one of the only restaurants in Toronto that uses only bruised or blemished produce for their menu items in order to reduce food waste. So, you can feel extra good about what you're eating.
You can also create your dream bowl or wrap with each customizable order being placed at the counter of 20 different toppings. Priced just over $10, your healthy lunch won't have you reaching too far into your wallet either.
Jeff Dang, and his sister May, are the ones behind the concept, opening the first location two years ago on Adelaide Street before coming to Queen West. The duo wanted to provide a healthy option that was affordable while also making sure that less food is thrown away.
Daily deliveries of imperfect produce, which I'm told is considered "number twos" in the industry, come from The Food Terminal. This is the produce that'd be rejected for not meeting certain size or other aesthetic standards, though still perfectly good and high in quality.
This goes for the roasted veggies that tend to rotate depending on the season. Right now, you'll find spicy charred Brussel sprouts, Italian herbs roasted beets, garlic parmesan roasted potatoes, and cinnamon-spiced roasted sweet potatoes, as the warm topping offerings.
Once you've chosen your toppings, base (like the hard-to-find sweet potato noodles), and protein between charred or chipotle chicken, portabello mushrooms, kalbi steak, garlic butter shrimp, and lemongrass tofu, get it drenched in your choice of dressing.
Carrot ginger or poppyseed vinaigrette both come as the top-recommended options if you went for the mushrooms (small: $10,.50, large: $12).
The carrot ginger provides freshness, sweetness, and a bit of spice to the bowl. And no one would guess that the mushrooms used to have a funny shape now that they're deliciously sauteed and paired with the generous assortment of toppings.
We also try another bowl with a thinly sliced and full of flavour hanger steak marinated in a mixture of garlic and butter for their own take on kalbi. Add the shrimp to make it a full-on surf and turf experience ($13). This one goes great with the fan-favourite peanut dressing.
There are also two smoothie bowls on the menu, the tropical pitaya bowl and açai bowl ($9.50). The first comes with a base of real pureed pitaya and the second with açai berries, both from Brazil.
The bowls are comprised of seasonal berries from local Ontario farms while more tropical fruits like pineapple, mango and banana are purchased from overseas. Homemade granola sprinkled in layers brings the crunch.
One of the real-fruit smoothies (small: $6.50, large: $8) provides a bit of refreshment on the side of any of the bowls whether you're looking for a serious detox drink packed with superfruits or a tropical mango topped with coconut flakes.
The beet good is more of a detoxifying option with beets, bananas, apples, and ginger. This smoothie is a filling and healthy breaky in its own right.
Although at first glance ImPerfect Eats looks to be a quick grab-and-go restaurant, down the stairs is a hidden dining section. Covered in hanging plants, it's the ideal garden oasis environment to enjoy a smoothie bowl.