Hello everyone! I am a big Masterchef Canada fan so when I found out that judge Alvin Leung was teaming up with season 1 winner Eric Chong to open a restaurant in Toronto, I knew I had to go there. R&D Spadina is located in Chinatown on iconic Spadina Avenue. The R&D name has apparently 2 meanings; the first is from their engineering background meaning research and development. The second meaning is their nicknames – Eric the Rebel and Alvin the Demon (chef). I decided to bring my fellow foodie friend Brandon for lunch as his birthday present. The atmosphere in the restaurant is very funky-industrial with a little bit of a retro feel with the leather booth seats. I love the hanging oil drums and the murals.They also serve their in-house made sparkling water…which was totally up Brandon’s alley. I am not really a sparkling water fan so I ordered still. We also ordered fancier drinks…non-alcoholic since it was the afternoon. I had a Pina Colada bubble tea and Brandon ordered a virgin mojito.Even the chopsticks were fun – awesome little fish details!
We started off with Grandpa’s Fun Guo ($8) with chicken and black truffle. To be honest, I’m not even sure what truffle tastes like, but these were tasty. Not anything mind blowing, but a solid start to the meal. We also ordered this oyster omelette dish but forgot to take a picture. At first, I was a little bit wary of oysters and eggs, but wow – what a crazy good combination.
We of course had to order Eric’s signature dish, Lobster Chow Mein ($23) and General Sanders’ Chicken ($25), which is basically a Chinese spin on chicken and waffles. The chow mein lived up to its’ reputation – perfectly wok stir fried with a good amount of delicious lobster meat. The General Sanders Chicken was a HUGE serving (we definitely could’ve fed 4 people with the amount of food we ordered) and I LOVED the fact that it used HK style egg waffles. The chicken itself was seasoned to perfection and oh so crispy. Perfectly battered and not too thick. The Sichuan syrup was sweet and peppery which provided the perfect balance to the Kung Pao sauce. I think it would still be amazing with regular maple syrup though. Overall, I was thoroughly impressed with the food and the service at R&D. Eric is even gracious and kind enough to step out of the kitchen for fan photos if asked so if you’re a fan, definitely pay him a visit. Even if you’re not and you’re interested in a very modern take on Chinese fusion food, I highly recommend checking out R&D. NOTE: I did try their CSB (BBQ Pork buns) at Taste of Toronto as mentioned in that post – LIFE CHANGING! I’m actually planning on bringing my dad (who’s been cooking basically his entire life) here at some point this summer!
Thanks so much for stopping by, and please let me know if you end up going! 🙂
DISCLAIMER: This is not a sponsored post. My opinions are honest and my own and do not necessarily reflect the restaurant or any of its affiliates.