I promised a few people that I'd share some of my favorite places to have authentic chinese food in north Toronto. Being chinese myself, I've sampled a lot of different places in search of good, reasonably priced, authentic chinese food... particularly cuisines from Mainland China. My wife is from Beijing, so she tells me whether the food seems authentic or not.
Ok, here's the list, and if anyone can add comments that would be great. Sorry I can't list the menu details, since I usually don't order because I can't actually read chinese. A few of these places seem to only have chinese-only menu's and speak very little english, so be warned when venturing upon these places (it'll be just like you're going to China!). :)
Address : 3290 Midland, Scarborough, ON M1V 3Z9 (north of finch)
Telephone : 416-321-0888
There's usually 1-2 girls working frantically at the back table making their own fresh dumpling skin and dumplings. Definitely try their dill filled dumplings, quite nice. Also tried their massive sized "lion's head" meatballs, which are bigger than my fist!
Can't even find the address on yellowpages.ca (unless I've got their english name wrong), but located at the same strip mall as Dumpling King 3290 Midland, directly next to the large water fountain facing midland.
It's been our favorite lately, and it hasn't opened too long ago. They have this amazing pancake this has a soft turnip inner core, and pastry outer layer, lightly fried with a sesame coating... it's to die for! Other favorites include their stinky tofu, and fatty pork. Very nicely decorated place and friendly service.
Reasonable prices too.
The Old House
8 Glen Watford DRive, Unit 3 (midland and sheppard)
We actually know the owners of this tiny little place that often gets packed quickly with young mainland food lovers. It's Sichuan/north china/Beijing style cuisine. We always order their fish fillets soaked in oil and red peppers. They also have a somewhat different style of "savoury pancake" that also has fillings similar to the dumpling (sorry, can't recall the name of it). Again, all chinese menu.
Hot Spicy Spicy Chinese Restaurant
Address : 173 Ravel Road, North York, ON M2H 1T1 (finch & leslie)
It's on the back side of the main strip mall, facing the school)
Telephone : 416-491-8988
I think this place has been reviewed by Toronto Life. Also very good spicy sichuan food, prices recently started to jump (probably after the TL review?).
Backyard Garden Restaurant
3636 Steeles Avenue East
Markham, ON L3R 1K9
Also has excellent stinky tofu, and this thin clear noodle dish in a delicious dark brown soup broth.