Wine Dine and Play: May 2014

Basil Asian Bistro

Canton, Ohio, USA
A fantastic exploration of Asian Cuisine
Dined in April 2014

I visit Canton, Ohio several times a year to see family, and had seen the Basil Restaurant when I was downtown during the cities major events like the First Friday, and had wanted to try the restaurant, so knowing I was coming back in April, I made my reservations. Just prepare for some wear and tear on your vehicle when you drive through the city to dine at Basil, the roads are horrible, full of pot holes, and falling apart. Someone forgot to allocate funds to infrastructure projects.

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Star ratings chart:
5 stars
4 stars
3 stars
Exceeded expectations    
2 stars
Above average                         
1 star
No star rating
Basic, poor, or appalling

Review basics:
Overall Star rating by Wine, Dine, & Play:
4 of 5 stars
Quality of food:
8 of 10
7 of 10

Customer service:
8 of 10
7 of 10
Corkage fee’s:
American Restaurant standard is $25.00 per bottle
Restaurant style:
Casual, to Semi-formal dining
Dress code:
Business casual, Smart casual, or Conservative attire
Not Required, but recommended
Make reservation through, or by contacting the restaurant directly. See contact info below the review section
Not guaranteed
Child policy:
The Restaurants reviewed on this site may have a child’s menu or cater to them; however for full enjoyment of food and wine, it is recommended for children not to be in attendance. Hire a Babysitter. See Alinea Baby Gate, god I love Alinea.
Cuisine style:
Asian, Bistro, Asian-fusion, Pacific, Thai, Chinese, Japanese, & Vegetarian
Music styles:
Background instrumental
Place for foodies, Business parties, Romantic, Hot spot, Great bar, Good for special occasions, Rustic, Classy, Upscale, Trendsetting, and a Neighborhood gem.
Industry standard is 18-20% added to parties of 6 or more
Visa, MasterCard, Discover, American Express, Diner’s,
Parking is available in the lot located behind the restaurant and there is ample on-street parking for a fee.
Transport options:
Bus (SARTA), taxi, limousine, personal vehicle, and walking
The restaurants reviewed on this site may have Wi-Fi, but do not require you to go online, because the excitement of the food and wine alone will keep you too entertained instead of checking your social media and emails.
Noise level:
Low, to Medium
Nonsmoking restaurant

Luong Ly
Food price per person
(Excluding gratuity)

Price chart:
$£€¥ -                Under 50.00
$£€¥ x 2 -          Under 75.00
$£€¥ x 3 -          Over 100.00
$£€¥ x 4 -          Over 200.00
$£€¥ x 5 -          Over 400.00

Currencies chosen reflect the world’s major travelers and restaurant connoisseur's

My food bill:
Country :
Price chart:
United States Dollar (USD)
$$ ½
£ 46.91
Great Britain Pound Sterling (GBP)
European Union (EUR)
$ 86.27
Canadian Dollar (CAN)

$$  ½
$ 85.45
Australian Dollar (AUS)
$$  ½
¥ 488.10
Chinese Yuan (CNY) 

Visit these sites to get up to date currency rates:

Alternatively, visit:

Scroll down below the main review to see cost of wines and tasting notes.

From restaurants home page:
Basil derives its name from being “an essential ingredient in our Asian cooking,” explains Tony Ly, Manager. If you’re looking for Italian dishes – you won’t find any, but we think you’ll be thrilled with house favorite, Coconut Spaghetti! Come meet the new generation of the Ly dynasty. Basil shares the same roots at Ricky Ly. Ricky Ly brought upscale Asian cuisine to Stark County over two decades ago. Basil Asian Bistro is run by the Ly family. Tony’s father, Luong Ly, is the head chef. The Ly family uses only the freshest ingredients along with unique cooking techniques. The menu items are inspired by Pacific and Southeastern Asian cuisine and feature gourmet offerings such as spicy Szechuan, Thai curries and Pad Thai and fresh sushi. There also are traditional dishes available at the restaurant, including 23 different stir fry options, such as General Tso’s chicken and moo goo gai pan. Get an up close look at our downtown Canton restaurant and our commitment to preparation perfection in our video.

Main review:
The restaurant is located in the arts or historical district of downtown Canton. The older buildings are a work of art with a lot of Freemasonry, which you can tell by the designs, and the symbolic nature of some of the buildings. Pyramid symbols are everywhere, and on the ceiling of the restaurant etched into the stone were hundreds of Fleur de Lys symbols. Above the restaurant on the second floor was President William McKinley’s law office before he was elected President. Close by the downtown area is the McKinley Park where he was laid to rest in September 1901, after his assassination, and the Presidential Library is also nearby his tomb.

I made my reservations at Basil, and then since I was dining alone, decided to enjoy my meal at the bar. The Bar Tender, Chris was the spitting image of Guy Fieri from the Food Network Show “Diner’s, Drive-ins, and Dives” you can see the picture below and judge for yourself. So with some Frank Sinatra playing in the background, it was time to dine.

Picture courtesy of

I started my meal the way you would honestly start any traditional Asian Cuisine, and since Japanese styles were available, then a sushi sampler it was, consisting of two pieces of sake, maguro, ebi, which is a style or preparation of shrimp and Hamachi, which is commonly referred to as Yellowtail, but it is actually part of the Amber jack family. Nigiri style spicy tuna maki, which is sliced raw fish with a molded sushi roll that includes toasted seaweed nori, a ball of rice underneath, with a dab of wasabi. Then to finish off the dish, which technically was a second course, there was a tasting of Miso Soup which was a Japanese bean paste, with seaweed and tofu, along with a sushi California Roll consisting of  a crab stick, cucumber, and avocado mixture.

Now that I had my sushi out of the way and was feeling like I was in seventh heaven, I wanted to explore the other areas of the menu. The Sushi Chef nailed the perfect starter for me, so it was time to go from Japan to Korea with spicy pork wontons lightly pan fried in a spicy teriyaki sauce that consisted of chili, vinegar, and soy, garnished with green onions. I had a glass of Bandwagon Pinot Noir (Scroll down below the main review to see wine tasting notes), with this course which has grape mixtures from California, and Oregon.

For my entrée course I had the Peking duck, a whole duck, which you have to order in advance because of the long cooking time, and upon completion is filet table-side by the Chef. Unfortunately, I did not see the display that day, the duck was cut up in the kitchen, so I hope to see the presentation next time. I enjoyed the duck with a bowl of house fried rice, wok tossed with eggs, carrots, peas, and onions. The duck also came with some Vietnamese bread dough used to make small duck sandwiches, scallions, and sauce. With the meal I enjoyed a nice warm glass of Ozeki Saké, and though produced in California, it was still a good dry Saké.

This Restaurant reminds me of:
Wonderful mixture of Asian Cuisine, that reminds me of 5A5 Steak Lounge in San Francisco, which prepared a fusion Asian blend that, could knock your socks off.

Cost of wines and other alcoholic beverages in USD:

Tasting Notes:
Wine & Grape:
Nose (Bouquet):
Palette Experience:
The Arroyo Seco and Willamette Valley are each great growing regions. Cool afternoon breezes and gravel-laden soil distinguish California’s Arroyo Seco growing area. Oregon’s Willamette Valley is known for world-class, cool-weather pinot noir. Bandwagon Pinot Noir has raspberry and rose petal aromas.
This is a complex pinot noir that combines the bright acidity from Oregon with a distinctly California fruit-forward style. Rich in color, yet delicate and balanced, vanilla, green tea and cherry flavors round out the palate.
FOOD PAIRINGS: Bandwagon Pinot Noir is delicious to sip by itself or enjoy with salmon, grilled pork chops or light pasta.
APPELLATION: California, Oregon
WINEMAKER: Tony Leonardini, 13.9%
Ozeki Dry Saké is a dry Saké with a refreshing fruity flavor and tastes best when served chilled. 14.5%. Brewed in California.
This is an excellent choice for first time sake drinkers due to its lower alcohol content and smooth taste. . It pairs well with chicken, light Asian dishes, sashimi, sushi,

Wine Regulatory:

Restaurant address: 
585 Market Ave N,
Canton, OH
Arts District

Cross streets:
5th & 6th Streets

GPS Coordinates:
Latitude: 40.878783 N
Longitude: -81.363724 W

Contact Information:

Maître d, reservations:
(330) 452-3888
Online Reservations :
Facebook Link      


Mon-Thurs: 11 a.m. - 10 p.m.
Fri.: 11 a.m. - 11 p.m.
Sat: 12 p.m. - 11 p.m.  

Eastern Standard Time (GMT -5:00)

Proprietor / Manager:
Tony Ly

  Explore the menu

Review by:
Chef Sean Overpeck (CFE)

"Culinary perfection consists not in doing extraordinary things, but in doing ordinary things extraordinarily well."

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