Kara Mia Markham Offers Larger Dining Area
Words cannot express how happy I was earlier this week when I found out Kara Mia Markham was finally opening. Living in Scarborough, both Kara Mia Vaughan and Mississauga were just too far to go to for an impromptu dinner. Markham? Be there in 15!
One thing to keep in mind before heading over to Kara Mia is that they do not take reservations. Not yet anyway. I called around noon to make dinner reservations but I was informed that they aren’t able to hold a spot for us. It irked me a bit, but I really wanted to visit Kara Mia Markham so we decided it was worth the risk.
It was a little hard to find: we knew it was at Markham and 14th but there was no signage above the restaurant space like it’s neighbours. So for those who don’t know – It’s located right next to the Boston Pizza, and there is a smaller sign in the window – so just keep an eye for it!
As soon as we pulled up, I noticed the large crowds of people outside. I groaned audibly. It was 8:30 PM on a Saturday and we were famished. But this is something I expected – I would run out of fingers and toes if I had to count how many people told me they were going to check out Kara Mia Markham this weekend.
We went in, and ran into some family (a large party of 8) who had been waiting an hour before they were seated. So we settled into wait for what we thought would be very long, but were seated around 30 minutes after we got there.
Now for the actual restaurant space: Kara Mia Markham is bigger than what the Vaughan location was, but still half the size of the Mississauga location. There’s several booths lined up on both sides of the restaurant, with a few large tables in the center. If you’ve ever been to the Vaughan location, you probably remember the cozy, intimate atmosphere of the restaurant. With just a few tables, it was more perfect for a date night than a place to go to dinner with a large group of friends. This location is bigger and there were many large parties there and everyone seemed very comfortable and not cramped.
I asked the waiter about the new options on the menu, the Saffron Burger (a hamburger topped with their signature saffron sauce) and the Penne Piccante Salsiccia (a spicy pasta with beef sausage).
I was leaning towards the Saffron Burger but then chose a classic: Chicken Saffron ($14.99) and upgraded my fries to a Saffron Poutine (extra $1.99).
We also ordered a Bisteca Fungui ($24.99) which is AAA Angus strip topped with chicken breast, then smothered with their signature gorgonzola saffron cream sauce. We also upgrade the fries to a Peppercorn Poutine ($1.99).
There were no complaints about the food at new Kara Mia Markham. For those who haven’t had the pleasure of enjoying their gorgonzola saffron cream sauce, it is so good. It was good with the chicken, it was good on the poutine and it was good on the steak. The best way to describe it: a creamy, savoury (not spicy) base, with hints of — you guessed it — saffron, which also acts as a natural colouring. Agreeably it’s not the most beautiful looking being strikingly yellow and opaque, but I noticed almost every table had some sort of dish with this sauce. A testament to its unique and addictive flavour.
Besides Kara Mia Markham’s saffron sauce, the steak was cooked to our liking and so was the chicken breast. I’m not a huge fan of white meat because I feel it’s usually too dry, but not this time. The chicken was juicy, flavourful, and accompanied the saffron sauce perfectly.
Though I had to wait a while – both to be seated and to be served dinner, I’m definitely going back. I’m far more forgiving of these things because it’s a new scene for Kara Mia; Markham and 14th is a hot spot on the weekends. Our waiter told us that they weren’t at all expecting such a rush, so soon after opening. So here’s to hoping and knowing the service will improve greatly in just a few weeks.
Meat Source: chicken is sourced from Al-Amin and Beef is from Riz Global Foods
Hafsa is a cupcake-baking, fashion-loving, DIY-obsessed small town girl living in a big city. You can follow her adventures in her new lifestyle blog ‘Does This Make My Head Look Fat?” She has a background in public relations but now currently works in the digital agency world as a Social Media Coordinator for 88 Creative. Her guilty pleasures include traveling, eating macaroons and Instagramming her day-to-day excursions. Follow her adventures on Twitter.
Kara Mia Markham
7690 Markham Road, Markham