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One of the biggest food names to come out of the pandemic, Sunny’s Chinese is finally coming out of its hiatus to serve their first sit-down customers at their new spot in Kensington Market, and you can start reserving your spot today.
The cult takeout concept was created by Chef David Schwartz, Braden Chong, Keith Siu, and Joseph Ysmael back in spring 2020. It started as a small friends-and-family popup—something to keep the team busy through the pandemic until it made sense again to open the restaurant they had planned.
In just 11 months, their Instagram-driven, mailing list-only supper club had attracted over 11,000 subscribers, landing them a spot on the Canada’s Best New Restaurants 2021 list as the country’s Best Takeout.
It wasn’t until October 2021 that the team finally introduced MIMI Chinese, the sophisticated Chinese dining experience they had been working toward from the start. There, the team crafted a menu of Southern Chinese specialties with a lavish twist.
But don’t expect the same atmosphere when you step inside Sunny’s Chinese. Described by the team as the “funky downtown cousin to MIMI Chinese,” their new restaurant will bring back the energy of their pandemic-era takeout menus.
“Sunny’s Chinese is inspired by high energy dining cultures found throughout China tied with the history of the space in Kensington Market - a place you discover with friends. From Shaokao spots in Chengdu and Xi’An to Dai Pai Dongs in Hong Kong, the team looks to regional traditions to create an experience that’s casual and playful.”
According to co-owner and Executive Chef David Schwartz, Sunny’s Chinese will have a different regional focus with more Sichuan, Shaanxi and Northern Chinese dishes. You’ll find smaller, homestyle plates here, including items made fresh on their charcoal grill.
Completing the down-to-earth playfulness of the food menu, Schwartz also hints that the atmosphere will be completely different—imagine a more casual space with no bow ties or velvet chairs, catered for big groups looking for a fun night out with Baijiu, natural wine, and music from the ’70s through the ’80s.
While the new Sunny’s Chinese will differ from both MIMI and its own takeout beginnings, you can still expect to experience echoes of their popup days, including artwork by Justine Wong, the illustrator behind Sunny’s witty takeout menus. Staying true to their educational mission through all their projects, the new dine-in menu will once again have descriptions of the uniqueness of the Chinese regions that inspired each dish.