What’s on the menu at MIMI Chinese, a gorgeous new restaurant in Yorkville from the team behind Sunny’s Chinese

What’s on the menu at MIMI Chinese, a gorgeous new restaurant in Yorkville from the team behind Sunny’s Chinese

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Name: MIMI Chinese
Contact: 265 Davenport Rd., mimichinese.com, @mimichinese
Neighbourhood: Yorkville
Owner: David Schwartz (Sunny’s Chinese)
Chefs: Executive chef David Schwartz and executive sous chef Braden Chong (Sunny’s Chinese)
Seating: 75
Covid-19 safety measures: Frequent sanitization, physically distanced tables, mask policy, contact tracing
Accessibility: Fully accessible

The food

Sunny’s—a pop-up specializing in regional Chinese cuisine—was actually the pandemic-born testing ground for the team’s original idea: MIMI Chinese, a sit-down restaurant that opens to the public on October 21. The main difference between the two, besides the obvious dine-in factor, is style. MIMI Chinese is a bit more grown up, a touch more refined and even theatrical—you can order a four-foot belt noodle and watch a bow-tie-wearing server use scissors to cut it tableside.

The menu, which showcases dishes from various regions but leans towards Cantonese-style fare from Guangdong province, specifies each item’s region of origin. The team is serious about staying true to traditional recipes—though you might find a twist here and there, this food is about celebration, not innovation. The idea is to inspire conversation about China’s diverse culinary landscape over dishes designed to be shared. (Note: Reservations are now open but already filling up fast.)

The kitchen’s dedicated wok station features two enormous woks operated by knee-level knobs—because with the speed and intensity of wok cooking, there’s no time to adjust the heat with your hands. Here we have a nascent stage of supreme fried rice.

 

Salted duck egg is grated over a luxurious bowl of supreme fried rice with dried scallop—shredded and fried for a crispy-chewy texture—lap cheong (cured Chinese sausage), egg and flowering chives. For an extra 10 bucks, you can add 20 grams of jewel-like salmon roe. $28.

 

Here’s that supreme fried rice again—with the addition of salmon roe. $38.

 

Shrimp toast, getting a thorough sesame seed coating.

 

Shrimp toast—popular in Guangdong province, Hong Kong and North American Chinese restaurants—is typically served with either mustard, mayonnaise or vinegar. MIMI Chinese combines the three, in a fashion: hot mustard–mayo dipping sauce accompanies deep-fried white bread stuffed with shrimp, brushed with Chinese red vinegar, and coated with sesame seeds. $18.

 

Preparing char siu pork is a three-day affair here: the meat is brined, marinated and roasted twice, and finished with local Ontario wildflower honey.

 

That same char siu, being plated

 

And the finished dish. It’s served with sweet caramelized soybeans which complement the rich, fatty pork. $36.
This showstopper of a dish consists of a single four-foot-long belt noodle coated in the restaurant’s aromatic Sichuan chili oil. It’s topped with mixed mushrooms and fresh cucumber and cut tableside by a server. $24.

 

Here we go…

 

Ta-da!

 

For dessert, there’s shaved ice with creamy osmanthus milk pudding, mandarin granita and jasmine. $12.

 

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The drinks

There’s an impressive selection of sake, signature cocktails that feature Chinese ingredients and a wine list—with an emphasis on white wine—designed to pair with the food. The Tea Ceremony, a communal cocktail for two to four, is a highlight: the vibrant, refreshing blend of vodka, green tea, citrus and wildflower honey is served in a big iron pot and poured tableside.

The Jungle Panda, one of the restaurant’s signature cocktails, is an ode to China’s national animal. It’s a citrusy, lychee-infused tropical cocktail made with rum, Campari, elderflower, and baijiu—an aromatic Chinese spirit that, fun fact, is the world’s most consumed liquor. $19.

 

The boozy rye-based MIMI Manhattan includes Cantonese rice wine alongside punt e mes, or Italian vermouth. It’s topped with a skewer of dried tofu and a Luxardo cherry. $16.

 

A take on the corpse reviver, the floral and citrusy Jasmine Reviver features gin, lemon, vermouth and jasmine tea. $17.
The space

Black walls, red velvet booths and a beautiful lotus flower mural give the space a dramatic, opulent feel. There’s lots of booth seating, several spots to hang out at the bar, and a private dining room for 10. Behind the hostess stand—procured from a closing sale for North York’s iconic, now-closed Sea-Hi Famous Chinese Restaurant—sits an ornate antique armoire. Nearer the back, a glass case displays fermentation crocks and a cookbook collection. An ’80s soundtrack helps keep things fun—as does the bar at the front, which will stay open until the wee hours, long after the dining room has closed.