Where to find the best meals for $10 or less in Unionville
Including Hong Kong café specials, hand-pulled noodles, takoyaki and kothu roti
Unionville is a quaint historic neighbourhood in Markham. How quaint? The pilot episode of Gilmore Girls was filmed there—that’s how quaint. But, along with its tree-lined streets, duck-filled ponds and heritage homes, Unionville has a lot to offer in the way of good, affordable food. So, while you can’t actually grab a bite to eat from Luke’s Diner (the storefront is actually a medical spa), you can pick up a slice of pizza or a banh mi and enjoy it in a gazebo—which, though not the same one from the show, is close enough, plus it’s lined with benches. Here, the best meals in Unionville for $10 or less.
Roji Monster Ice Cream
Canada’s only outpost of this Taiwanese chain specializes in whimsical frozen treats, but it turns out a lot of savoury snacks too. Customers here can score takoyaki; toast topped with cheese, ham and corn; or three skewers of Japanese dumplings, all for $7 each.
More budget bites: Popcorn chicken or tempura-battered fish with fries ($9 each).
New Olde Village Bistro
This long-standing spot excels at classic diner-style breakfasts. Get three eggs (any style) served with toast, potatoes, sautéed onions and fresh fruit ($7); a stack of french toast ($9); or a BLT sandwich ($10).
More budget bites: The veggie burrito ($10).
Nam 2 Unionville
The lunch deals at this Vietnamese kitchen are where it’s at. Fan favourites include the banh mi bo—beef brisket on a baguette topped with pickled veggies, cilantro and spicy aioli ($10)—and the pork and shrimp salad rolls with peanut sauce ($10 for two).
More budget bites: Shrimp chips with peanut sauce ($7.50).
杭帮菜 Seven Best Foods
This Langham Square vendor turns out all kinds of snacky skewers, like fish balls ($3.75 for five pieces), red sausage ($3.75 for six pieces), cuttlefish ($4.50 for three) and mussels ($4.50 for a dozen).
More budget bites: The Curry Jumbo Meal Deal, with fish and beef balls, tofu, sausage, and sweet corn ($6.50).
New City Restaurant
Hong Kong café–style food is a glorious mishmash of Western and Eastern flavours. Some of the best deals here can be found on the restaurant’s Tea Time Specials menu, served from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. every day. They include fried chicken thigh with fries ($7.25), steak with black pepper sauce and fries ($8), and—a classic—luncheon meat and egg with instant noodles ($6.25).
More budget bites: Beef macaroni with borscht ($7), pork cutlet with fries ($7.25) and spicy beef brisket soup with Shanghai noodles ($7).
Look beyond the fried bird for better deals here, like chicken dumplings with a choice of dipping sauce (we like the spicy butter best) or the lunch udon special (both $9.85).
More budget bites: Tteokbokki (chewy Korean rice cakes) in a rosé sauce ($9.84).
Big Beef Bowl
The name says it all, really. Tuck in to bowls of beef vermicelli soup (or a curry version of the same dish) chock full of hand-pulled noodles for just $7.50.
More budget bites: Skewers of cumin lamb ($5.50 for two) or pork belly ($5 for two) and a bowl of comforting shrimp or double-egg congee ($7 each).
Pop Up House
The bestsellers at this Hong Kong–style snack shop tucked away on the second floor of the T&T plaza are the rice combos. Each one (Chinese liver sausage, egg or baked chicken with tomato sauce) comes with a milk tea included ($6.50 each). Mini crêpes—stuffed with things like smoked salmon ($4.75) or grilled eel ($5.19)—are also very popular picks here.
More budget bites: Takoyaki with sweet potato fries and fish balls ($5.95).
Old Country Inn
Housed in a 140-year-old building, this spot offers hearty Austrian comfort food, like mushroom scrambled eggs on toast topped with Edam cheese ($7.95) and leber (liver) with bacon and onions served with home fries and vegetables ($9.95). Pork Strips à la Baden—sautéed pork with onions and mushrooms in a white wine sauce served with house-made noodles—will run you an extra $0.95, but it’s worth it ($10.95).
More budget bites: A schnitzel sandwich on rye with home fries ($9.95).
Babu Take-out and Catering
Since 1992, Babu has been serving up Sri Lankan specials like paneer with sambar and chutney ($9.95) and—if you’re willing to go a buck over budget—egg kothu roti ($10.95).
More budget bites: Breakfast combos that include two dosai (thin pancakes), two idly (rice cakes) and two vadai (fritters) served with sambar, chutney and a choice of coffee or tea for just $6.45.