Location: 4750 Yonge Street, North York (in the Emerald Park food court)
I’ve mentioned before that the Emerald Park food court near Yonge and Sheppard is a treasure trove of unique Asian eateries (though not everything there is particularly great).
My latest discovery: Chengdu Guokui, which specializes in Sichuan cuisine.
I ordered the braised pork rice bowl, which comes with the aforementioned pork, stewed eggplant (I think?), and a spicy slaw on top of rice.
It’s almost 17 bucks with tax, which seems excessive until you get your bowl and realize that it weighs about a pound, and is crammed with enough pork belly to feed a small family.
It’s certainly better than the last thing I tried in this food court, but alas, it’s not great. The main issue here is the pork; it’s quite underseasoned, and is lacking the punch of flavour you’re expecting from the dish. It also had a vague leftover flavour, and wasn’t quite as melt-in-your-mouth tender as it should have been. It was tasty enough, but it was nothing special.
The eggplant was nice and tender, and the rice, though mushy, featured a tasty sauce and was fairly satisfying.
The star of the show, oddly enough, was the slaw; it was tossed in an intensely flavourful chili oil, and had that great numbing heat you get from Sichuan cuisine. I wish there had been about double the amount.