A couple years ago, I ate at this restaurant as a birthday outing suggested by a couple friends, so to many like me, it isn’t a new restaurant. On this re-acquaintance with SPICE, I noticed that I wasn’t over-dressed, however if a semi-formal atmosphere is what you’re looking for, you need to look no further.
During our quaint lunch I observed that there was a significant office-worker client base. It struck me as a bit of a surprise because Indian food is notorious for heavy spice quantities. In defense of the food, on which I will later expand, it only took one buffet plate for me to realize the broad appeal to patrons on a lunch-break. When I first stepped into the restaurant I was intimidated by the chic décor. Its exquisite interior, fine cutlery, and well chosen china blended nicely with the non-Canadian menu options. SPICE is a culinary escape from our Canadian norms.
There were Canadian sides like coleslaw and macaroni salad; on top of that there were enough options, on the buffet menu, to fully service a vegetarian diet. Ultimately, what won over my guest and I, were the authentic Indian treats. Samosas are slowly growing into a popular American snack because of the heavy pastry content. However, after trying SPICE, I can now say that samosas are only made best by true Indian chefs. And no Indian meal would be complete without the curry. Between the two of us, we enjoyed probably the finest butter chicken and curried beef Barrie has to offer, for the price.
As for the amount of spice that you think may be troublesome to withstand, I found the spice factor was actually quite minimal. I’m not a person who can handle copious amounts of spice either, but the restaurant wasn’t anything like Hollywood’s portrayal of Indian restaurants. In movies, you always see people rushing for the bathroom, like they had just polished off a can of Metamucil. In the case of SPICE, this couldn’t be farther from the truth. In fact, the SPICE website discusses some of the health benefits of the spices that are used in many of the menu choices.
For instance, about cinnamon, it says “Detoxifying herb, creates freshness, strengthens and energizes the tissues. Acts as a pain reliever, promotes digestion and has a natural cleansing action. Also relieves cold, cough and congestion. It may help people with adult onset diabetes. Helps reduce inflammation Enhances the brain, cognitive processing, memory and visual motor speed. It’s used to provide relief from cold and flu.” The rest of the article can be found on the SPICE website: www.spiceforme.com.
All in all, SPICE is perfect for a quick lunch, because you can grab a couple of plates from the buffet in less than 30 minutes. It is also a great starter for your night out because the Indian food selection is, in a good way, going to be culturally-provocative in terms of conversation and mood. And what’s best is you won’t be left with a huge tab. Our two-person buffet cost us only $27.00 with two soft drinks. Considering that a Chinese buffet for two will easily put you over the $30.00 threshold, SPICE is really a great deal, because it just has way more class.
-Written by: Michael Whone
Hours of Operation:
11:30 – 2:30 PM
5:00 – 9:00 PM
5:00 – 10:00 PM (Fri-Sat)
16 Dunlop Street East,
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