Caribbean Queen, 10 Dundas East

Concept: 2 out of 5
Execution: 3 out of 5
Yeah, but: I do not have high standards.

The Long Version: This is a tough review to write, because I don't want to reveal just how often I end up getting my lunch from the food-service outlet calling itself "Caribbean Queen". Located in the food court at 10 Dundas East, it combines some of my main crucial elements: sufficient seating, fast service, and a reasonable price.

As for quality, let's not kid ourselves. It's slightly-spicy-but-otherwise-standard beige-brown food court fare that's cooked in batches and kept under heat lamps. It serves its purpose of being palatable and readily available; sometimes that's enough. There are a few decent restaurants in the area, and instead I end up here far more often than I care to admit.

But what really keeps me coming back to the Queen is their level of personal service and attention. It's completely non-existent. I spend my workday talking to people and being friendly, so it's something of a relief to be able to carry out a transaction without needing to smile. I like to think that if I were to collapse in front of them, their first concern would be how much of my order could be scraped out of the styrofoam container and put back under the heat lamps.

I order the same thing every time, and usually appear on the same day of the week – and I'm not saying how often, just that it's the same weekday – at a quiet time when there's usually only one or two people working the front. Elsewhere this would make me 'a regular'; at the Queen they have yet to anticipate my order. It's as if they've never seen me before. I hope that doesn't change, because then I'd need to find somewhere else to go for lunch.

last updated 25 may 2012


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