Fresh off the much-anticipated final season of Netflix’s Never Have I Ever, we recently caught up with the show’s star Maitreyi Ramakrishnan to talk all things food. The Mississauga, Ontario native is admittedly not a chef herself, but loves to eat, which is why her recent partnership with Tim Hortons to launch their Dream Cookies was such a natural fit.
Since the super successful launch of Never Have I Ever in 2020, Maitreyi has split much of her time between her home in Mississauga and filming the show in Los Angeles. Thankfully, her foodie cousin Megala has kept her up to date on all the best spots to eat in Toronto: “My cousin loves food, she has a food Instagram, she always clowns me because every time I recommend people food, it’s because she showed it to me. I’m such a fraud,” says Maitreyi with a laugh. “Her account is @megalaishungry, she’s always commenting under every single post of mine. We love her.”
Read on for Maitreyi’s go-to spots to eat in Toronto.
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Address: 354 Broadview Ave, Toronto, ON
“I always shoutout Oji Sechi, they’re a ramen place in Toronto,” Maitreyi shares. “They have their own in-house chili oil that they make. I just love their noodles, they’re my favourite ramen of all time, in my life of 21 years.” This is especially high praise, considering that Toronto is home to some seriously incredible ramen options. Maitreyi loves this restaurant so much, she even celebrated her most recent birthday there this past December (AKA “Maitreyimas” according to the star, whose birthday is on December 28).
This East Chinatown ramen shop opened in 2021 and has quickly gained a loyal following, thanks to their modern approach that combines Japanese techniques with local ingredients. Case in point: the noodles are handmade daily using enriched Canadian flours. While most ramen you’ll find in Toronto is of the rich Tonkatsu variety, Oji Seichi focuses on Tokyo-style ramen, which features a lighter broth with a chicken base. On the well-curated menu, you’ll find a handful of different ramens (including a veggie miso option), Japanese sandos, classic sides like gyoza and seaweed salad, and of course, Maitreyi’s much-loved chili oil.
Kerala Curry House
Address: 5120 Dixie Rd, Mississauga, ON
When it comes to Tamil food, Maitreyi’s go-to spot is Kerala Curry House in Mississauga. “I literally just got takeout from there yesterday” the Tamil-Canadian actress confirms. “That’s a go-to. I got the rice parcel, it’s rice packaged up with curries inside and they pack it up in foil and you just bring it home and open it up and all the curries and everything are inside mixed in the rice and it adds to the flavours as it soaks up and heats up together.”
Based on the menu, it looks like Maitreyi’s go-to order is the Kizhi Biryani — a dish where rice, protein, and spices are steamed directly in a banana leaf and then served. The restaurant has an expansive menu of South Indian cuisine, including a wide variety of biryanis, dosas, and housemade Indian breads like chappathi and palappam. If you plan on dining in, the restaurant offers a buffet so you can try a bit of everything.
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Address: 659 Lansdowne Ave, Toronto, ON M6H 3Y2
“My cousin showed me Ruru Baked, and she makes fun of me because my favourite ice cream flavour from Ruru Baked is the buttered popcorn, it’s good!” she emphasizes. “I think my refined palate loves buttered popcorn. When I have LA friends come to Toronto, I definitely show them Ruru Baked.”
A cult-favourite ice cream shop in Toronto’s west end, Ruru Baked is best known for their creative flavours like Bannoffee Pie, Orange Dreamsicle, Biscoff Cheesecake, and Asian-inspired flavours like Pineapple Tart, Miso Crumble, Milo and more. You can drop by for a scoop of their rotating menu of flavours, but we definitely recommend taking a pint home for later, too (trust us on that one).
Address: 624-B The Queensway, Etobicoke, ON M8Y 1K3
“Mamma Martino’s, I always love it there because the waitstaff know me there now, I go there a lot,” says Maitreyi. “I take all my friends there. It’s just a good Italian family restaurant.”
This homestyle Italian eatery has been serving up affordable eats for over 25 years (that’s older than Maitreyi!). Their menu features classic dishes like chicken parm, spaghetti and meatballs, veal cutlet sandwiches, garlic bread and pizzas, with almost all of the menu items under $15. Yes, please!
@foodnetworkca I know, I’m fangirling too 😭 the taste is unmatched 🤌 #thisorthat #neverhaveiever #maitreyiramakrishnan #canadianfoods ♬ Lo-fi hip hop
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