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From Shawarmas to Pizza: Keith Lee's Toronto Food Reviews Go Viral

Since landing in Toronto recently, he has shared reviews of four restaurants, offering his insights and ratings on their offerings.
PUBLISHED APR 12, 2024
Cover Image Source: TikTok | @keith_lee125
Cover Image Source: TikTok | @keith_lee125

Former MMA artist turned food critic Keith Lee has made waves in Toronto's culinary scene. With his TikTok handle (@keith_lee125), boasting a massive following of 16.1 million fans, Lee has become a prominent figure in the world of social media food criticism. Since landing in Toronto recently, he has shared reviews of four restaurants, offering his insights and ratings on their offerings.

Snapshots from the video. Image Source: TikTok|@keith_lee125
Image Source: TikTok | @keith_lee125

Lee's influence extends beyond mere opinion-sharing; his reviews hold considerable weight in the industry, capable of propelling struggling businesses to overnight popularity. His videos, where he meticulously rates restaurants on a scale of 1 to 10, have amassed an impressive 716.2 million likes. On Tuesday morning, he visited four food joints and marveled at the cultural richness the city has to offer.

His gastronomic journey began at Sumaq Iraqi Charcoal Grill, where he indulged in three varieties of shawarma. Impressed by the flavors, he awarded an 8.2 rating to the chicken shawarma and an 8.4 to the veal shawarma. However, the combination of both meats fell short, receiving a modest rating of 5. Despite this, Lee appreciated the mild spiciness and overall taste of the shawarmas.

Transitioning to Biscuits & Baskets, Lee and his family enjoyed a delightful dining experience, spending $36.16 on various items. They were particularly impressed by the exceptional service provided. Sampling a Korean sponge toffee latte, the influencer gave it an 8 out of 10 rating.

Additionally, they indulged in a carrot cake with cream cheese, which Lee rated a 7 out of 10. While he found it slightly sweeter than preferred, his wife appreciated it more, giving it an 8 rating for its mild sweetness.

Snapshots from the video. Image Source: TikTok|@keith_lee125
Image Source: TikTok | @keith_lee125

Lee then interacted with the owner of Biscuits & Baskets, who revealed the challenges of sustaining the business financially. Touched by the owner's honesty, the food critic offered a generous tip of $2,500, leaving a profound impact on the establishment.

The ripple effect of Lee's video was immediately evident, with the co-owner acknowledging, "The Keith Lee effect definitely took place. We had a lot of new visitors. I don’t know what’s going to happen from here on out, but I guess we have to prepare for it."

In his third video from Toronto, the influencer visited Afro's Pizza, a food outlet renowned for its community contributions. Impressed by the warmth of the staff, he sampled their mac and cheese, awarding it an impressive 8.5 rating despite his discerning taste. He also savored the Davis Jr. pizza topped with pepperoni, which earned a stellar 9 out of 10 rating.

Viewers were stunned to know that the renowned TikToker was around. @Vic Schony commented, "One thing I noticed about Canada is they don’t want your tips. They’re just naturally nice." @Toni wrote, "It really means a lot that you’re tipping so much in Canada. Everything is so expensive here right now including the cost of living and rent so I know that the businesses really appreciate the extra tip."

@Stac shared, "I’m loving the Canadian version, Keith Lee." @Wine with Moi chimed in, "You cannot do a food taste tasting in Canada, without having poutine!!!!"

Screenshot of a comment under the video. Image Source: TikTok|@keith_lee125
Image Source: TikTok | @keith_lee125

@najjy commented, "YOU NEED TO COME TO THE WEST END AND GET SOME SOMALI FOOODDDDDDDDDDD." @Skye Tiffany Renee B wrote, "you NEEEEED to come to the smaller towns around, that's where the real foods at." "I know you know your food because you came to Toronto and went straight to Scarborough," said @leaaah.

@NobleRhed commented, "Pita Deli, Oshawa, Durham, Ontario, Canada. Get either the chicken garlic or Beef shawarma. My go-to in my city. Nothing comes close."

Screenshot of a comment under the video. Image Source: TikTok|@keith_lee125
Image Source: TikTok | @keith_lee125

Keith has built a reputation as a staunch advocate for small, undiscovered food outlets, consistently shining a spotlight on hidden gems and local favorites. With his discerning palate and influential platform, he has become a catalyst for positive change within the culinary community.


@keith_lee125 Biscuits & Baskets taste test 💕 would you try it 💕 #foodcritic @mixinthe6ix ♬ original sound - Keith Lee

For more such videos, you can follow Keith Lee (@keith_lee125) on TikTok.

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