[Chinese] Stay Cafeteria

Restaurant: Stay Cafeteria 
Location: 388 Spadina Ave, Toronto, ON M5T 2G5
Price Range: $

Stay Cafeteria
Stay Cafeteria


Stay Cafeteria is a cute little Asian cafe located in Chinatown/Kensington Market area. I have been to this place several time as it is quite convenient for a large group of people, ok prices and the atmosphere is not too bad either. This place can get crowded very quickly, but I have never really lined up for more than 15 minutes. Just putting this out there, don’t come here and expect good service lol. The service is terrible and the servers look like they hate working here. Also, good luck trying to get their attention even when it’s not busy. The servers either forget your order or give you attitude when you ask a question.

Inside Stay Cafeteria
Inside Stay Cafeteria

Love love love the brick walls and decorations in here as it gives a modern vibe to the place., very different and stood out from other restaurants in Chinatown. There are hooks to hang your coats and outlets at every tables against the wall, pretty convenient and a nice place to “study.” They also have free Wi-Fi as well, so remember to ask for the passwords!

Food & Dessert menu
Food & Dessert menu
Snack & Drink Menu
Snack & Drink Menu

The food here is quite cheap but not the drinks, they are a bit pricier compared to other places.

Sour & Spicy Shredded Potato - $4.49
Sour & Spicy Shredded Potato – $4.49

Initially I just wanted something small and light so I ordered this, and I regret it…. I believe the potatoes were pretty much raw, and the sauce was so sour that it gave me a stomach ache after having a few bites. The pepper flakes added no flavor nor spiciness to the dish, terrible terrible dish..

Peach & Melon Green tea - $5.49
Peach & Melon Green tea – $5.49

I wanted to order another drink but my friend made a mistake and ordered this for me LOL… Terrible woman. Surprisingly it tastes really good! The tea wasn’t too sweet and the peach flavor wasn’t too artificial, a very nice and relaxing cup of tea :).

Black Sticky Rice with Durian - $5.49
Black Sticky Rice with Durian – $5.49

Durian. The fruit of “death” and I LOVE it. I know I know, the smell is terrible and some people actually puked after eating it, but it’s my favourite fruit lol :(. With that said, the durian smell lingers so you want to know how to kill your friend? Eat durian and let them smell it wahahahahaha. Anyways, the black sticky rice has a nutty and natural sweet flavor, and here it was paired with sweet coconut milk, delicious! If you don’t like durian, try the mango version as the sticky rice can basically go with any fruits :D. However, for a $6 dessert I wish there was more black sticky rice :(…

Sweet Grass Jelly - $5.99
Sweet Grass Jelly – $5.99

While I didn’t get to try this, my friend seemed to enjoy it. This dessert contains red bean, green bean, peanuts, tapioca and myotonin.

Traditional Braised Beef Noodles - $8.99
Traditional Braised Beef Noodles – $8.99

Personally I think this dish is bad. On the menu it says the broth is supposed  to be spicy, but I would say the spicy level were non-existent. Also, the broth was so sour! Is it just me or the chef here loves to put vinegar in all the savoury dishes?! The tomato added a bit of sweetness but the sourness of the broth overpowered everything else. The braised beef brisket was tender and very good, but my beef pieces were all fat!! I say 6 out of 10 pieces of beef were not cartilage, just FAT.

Overall I didn’t really like this place for their savoury dishes. There are so many options around Chinatown that it would be better to have dinner around the area, then come here for their dessert. I will still come back here for their dessert and tea, as there aren’t many options in downtown for Asian desserts. So far I only know of this place, One Hour and Sugar Marmalade that sell Asian desserts, so if you know other places, let me know! :).

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6 thoughts on “[Chinese] Stay Cafeteria”

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