Islas Filipino BBQ & Bar

1690 A Queen St W.
Toronto, ON M6R 1B3
416.533.0777
website

Toronto’s western suburbs, specifically Queen Street, has just about every kind of food you can imagine. Tibetan, European,  Hispanic, Italian, you name it. So it’s no surprise that this city has a significant share of Filipino restaurants as well. Relatively unheard of outside of the west coast, Filipino cuisine is enjoying a surge thanks to the popularity of all Asian cuisine in the West. So there’s a lot of good restaurants to try, and one of them is definitely this barbecue-centric dive near the Queensway. Food is pretty good, it is pretty close to the mark of genuine Filipino food—If you can stand the wait that is.

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The food is heavily focused on grilled Filipino meats, many times these are served with a heavy, soy-based sweet sauce.

  • Lumpia: A lightly fried steak of meat topped with a sweet adobo sauce and green onions and served alongside a citrusy dipping sauce. Probably good for two people, though I suggest maybe ordering another app if you want more than that.
  • Filipino Pork BBQ: Smothered in a sweet sauce and grilled on a spit alongside some veggies and pineapple, the meat is juicy and glistening when served to you. Put it on a bed of rice with that wonderful sauce. 
  • Filipino Chicken BBQ: Same as above, and I’d recommend this if you’re looking for something a little less heavy. 
  • Turon: Caramelized spring rolls with plantain and jackfruit ice cream. Sweet, simple, desert.

So all this food is really good, but coming here entails a certain kind of wait that frustrating. You’re promised free rice refills, but by the time that second cup of rice comes out, your food is already cold. It will take 15 minutes for an appetizer to come out, and 15 minutes for dessert to come out. Overall, though this is in an area where people don’t necessarily rush to and fro, it’s a longer than normal wait. Part of the problem seems to be that the kitchen was a bit understaffed, and another part seems to be the wait staff was focused on the whole room, instead of individual servers getting individual tables, which meant a lot of inefficiency.

There’s a lot going good for the place, the ambience is definitely peaceful and quiet which is great when you’re in a large city. It’s also really nice to have Filipino food at a price point that does not break the bank. That said though, the experience does come to an extent from the people, and I wish it was a little bit better organized.

Recommendations

  • There are a lot of dishes that are good to share for two people, but I would say probably this is a restaurant that you should stick with a small group. It’s not big enough to handle many people at once.
  • Consider it a good place to take Frenzl and spend some relaxing time. Their cocktails and a bar menu.
  • This is one of the better rated Filipino restaurants in town, but there are a number of others across the city.

Islas Filipino BBQ Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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