A Persian night spot makes succulent lamb and perfect rice, around the clock.
In a dingy strip mall in Don Mills, there’s an amazing restaurant that dishes up what just might be the best rice in Toronto. Darband Restaurant, located at 879 York Mills Road at Don Mills, is a 24-hour bar and restaurant that serves Iranian food. In fact, the 10-year-old restaurant is often busiest at 4 a.m. It’s a gathering place after concerts and other events in the Persian community.
I used to work nearby and I went there often for lunch, to get the delicious koobideh kebab ($8.99)—skewered strips of seasoned ground beef. The portions were giant, so I would save half and eat it for lunch the next day. It was always served with a mysterious plate of raw onion and parsley. Turns out, this is meant to aid digestion, the waitress told me. A jar on the table of sumac, a red powdered spice, is also supposed to help with digestion.
Spice City Toronto explores Toronto’s great hole-in-the-wall restaurants and strip-mall joints serving food from all corners of the world.