Thursday, June 30, 2011


Me: How can it be a rib if it has no bone? 
Andrew: It's all the meat in between mashed up and processed into a patty. 
Me: So it's like a McNugget but in burger form. 
Andrew: Yeah, but pork and with barbecue sauce.

The McRib is back for a limited time. Andrew seems to like it.

I just order the crispy chicken ranch snack wraps.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Sushi Tei

Hours 11:30 a.m. - 10:30 p.m.

 Chirashi sushi. A good way to remember this name is that it sounds like "trashy" as my dear friends kept reiterating during dinner.
I did appreciate that they incorporated one or two slices of not so common sashimi, such as herring roe (kazunoko).

The sashimi was off to the side, as opposed to on top of the rice.
I liked that it wasn't all salmon and tuna, but a few pieces had those hard to chew spots and some still had that frozen taste. 

Would I return? I'd probably sooner go to the Sushi Tei in Thornhill. Kind of far and the sashimi wasn't terribly impressive. Points for the herring roe though. That's my favourite type of sashimi. 

Total damage: $20.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Bayview Court

Bayview Court Chinese Restaurant (1070 Major Mackenzie Drive East, Richmond Hill)

Chiu chow style congee.

There's a wall bit that's meant to look like old apartment fronts in the East. In fact, the paper place mats teach Chinese people some English words, using phonetic sounds of Chinese words.


So I didn't manage to take a picture of all the food, but it was pretty good. We all really enjoyed how they fried the spinach and made it crispy like spinach chips. Too bad that it was only garnish and not a dish on its own. Casey ordered something that sounded like (from a literal translation) "old water tofu". That tasted good.

Would I return? Sure. There aren't a million chiu chow style restaurants around and this one seems to be of decent quality.

Total damage: $12 per person.

Sunday, June 26, 2011

New York Fries

Small poutine. 
They were out of the braised beef poutine (booo!). The signs boast real cheese curds from Québec, and they were indeed cheese curds; however, they did not squeak. It was passable, but I would've preferred crispier fries, squeaky cheese curds, and more flavourful gravy. 

Total damage: $7.18.

Saturday, June 25, 2011


I've mentioned Sir Perry and Strongbow before, but it was time for a comparison. (Yes, I know one is pear cider, and one is apple.)
Sir Perry is less sour, more sweet. Strongbow has a more intense fruit flavour, but the fermentedness makes it taste more alcoholic. Then Jo thought up the ingenious idea of mixing them together. Sir Perry counteracted the sourness of Strongbow, and Strongbow contributed stronger fruit flavours. The mix was kind of awesome.

And on a random note, Strongbow (and most alcoholic beverages) taste better out of glass bottles - at least they do for me.

Ozeki hana-awaka (sparkling flower) sake.
 Only the bottle is pink; the actual liquid is clear.
I was pretty excited to try this since I've never seen it before. Normally, I'd drink sake out of those tiny cups that'd contain probably less than a shot of liquid... but then I saw that the alcohol content was 7% and decided that this was a drink you could chug like pop. 

My first thought was that it smelled like sake and tasted like rice. It's like really light-tasting sake with bubbles. Jo likened it to diluted sake with fruitiness. It's quite easy to drink. I'd consume this sparkling sake again.

Cheers to Casey for importing the sparkling sake to me from California!

And on another random note, the Ozeki website looks a little '90s ghetto.

Friday, June 24, 2011

The Keg

Mon - Thurs 3 p.m. - midnight
Fri 3 p.m. - a.m.
Sat 4 p.m. - 1 a.m.
Sun 4 p.m. - 11 p.m.

Andrew wanted to check out the newly built Keg. It basically moved to a different section of the same parking lot that it was in before.

This was the 10 oz prime rib with garlic mashed potatoes that I forgot to take a picture of before I hacked at it. 
(Picture by Andrew.)
It was much better than I had expected. The meat was incredibly soft. The dipping sauce was deliciously meaty flavoured. The only negative thing I'd say about the dish was that the onion crisps weren't that crispy, but that may have been because I ate them last. Overall, I was pleasantly surprised by the food here.

Would I return? Yes. Everyone was quite happy with their food. My aunt said the salmon was very nice and not overcooked, my uncle who ordered the same thing as me was also pleased with the meat, and my cousin said there were nice char marks on his steak.

Total damage: free for me thanks to my uncle and auntie!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Hong Kong Style Café

These Hong Kong style cafés usually have afternoon tea specials where cheap food combos come with a drink. Sometimes, there's a siu yeh menu too, where snack food is cheap after dinner time (maybe around 9 or 10 p.m.). This place does not have a siu yeh menu. 

Soup noodles and fried chicken wings.
The noodles were doughier than expected, and it tasted like comfort food.

Jess was expecting no more than three pieces of chicken, but this place showed her up when the plate arrived with four.
The chicken wings were crispy, but Jess and Jo said that it didn't look as good as the chicken wings from the mango dessert place at First Markham Place.

Jo's pineapple drink.
It tastes like canned pineapples (liquid included) with ice.

Would I return? Sure. This place has some pretty low prices for food that's filling. 

Total damage: approximately $6 for my food.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011


Popcorn shrimp ($9.99).
Jo was really craving something deep-fried. These breaded shrimp were super textured and crunchy. I really enjoyed the deep-friedness of it all, but Jo thought that it should've been more flaky. The red spicy Thai chilli sauce was some sort of sweet chilli. I preferred the white cilantro lime sauce.

Lemon pepper shrimp pasta ($9.99).
This was off their 15 minute express lunch menu, where they advertise that "lunch is ready in 15 minutes or it's free!". It was pretty good. I liked the cheese on top, and there was a good amount of plump shrimp. It was a perfect lunch-sized portion. 

Jo's beer-battered fish and chips weren't that great. The batter was crispy, but the fish was overcooked and dry. The fries were nicely seasoned, though. 

We split a pitcher of Canadian, and our server poured the first two glasses. She overfoamed Jo's cup, but apologized for it. I poured the next round and realized that the pitcher was a lot heavier than it looked.

Would I return? Yes, it's okay enough, but I need to remember that this was the place with the sobering cocktails. We were going to order fancy drinks until Jo reminded me of the cocktails that sobered us up from the beer buzz we had last time. And I'd stay away from the fish and chips.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011


Mon - Sat 6 a.m. - 3 p.m.
Sun 7 a.m. - 3 p.m.

At the corner of 16th and Vogell (on a pretty warm day), we spotted a costumed cartoon frog waving at us. The waving frog was branded by Cora's, which is where we were headed. Pauline, who has never been there before said, "I like this place already". Indeed. They have cute pictures and interesting decorations on the wall. Since moving away to the States, Casey has missed Cora's fruit-filled breakfasts.

I ordered the Construction plate.
It's a plate full of protein and potatoes. I actually could not finish this. Too. Much. Protein. Bacon was crispy and sausages were tasty. Eggs weren't overcooked, nor were they raw.

Would I return? I will probably go again the next time Casey visits since he loves it so much. It's not the cheapest breakfast around, but they don't mess it up, and there are some pretty nice-looking dishes on the menu. Service was very friendly, but the food took a little while to come out. My coffee was refilled without me asking, which was nice. This location is less crowded than the one at Warden and Highway 7, but someone had mentioned that the other one is better and serves faster.

Total damage for my food and coffee: $16-something.

Note: the credit card machine didn't have the percentage option for tipping, so I actually had to do math in my head.

Monday, June 20, 2011


After hearing me complain about not finding real hard-topped muffins, Jo answered my cries! She brought me some super chocolatey muffins from her work. I was so happy. :D
 They had giant mushroom top, and you could tap to feel the crunchiness of the top. 
Unfortunately, I didn't eat them quickly enough, and they lost their nice muffin top crunch when I had left them in the car. :s 

But it still makes me happy to know that muffins exist! They were very moist and very full of baked chocolate goodness.

Total damage: free for me thanks to Josie!

Sunday, June 19, 2011


Hours:  5 p.m. - 11 p.m. daily.

Soup of the day
A cabbage and potato purée. It was more flavourful than its description. Its orange-reddish colour made it look more like tomato soup (possibly also due to lighting). It was larger and more filling than I had expected.

Rigatoni portobello.
The sauce was quite creamy, the shredded Parmesan on top was nice, and the pasta was cooked pretty much to al dente status. The large chunks of portobello were tasty and just the right turgidity for me. The first bite through the piece had a slight pop, and as my teeth sunk into the squishy flesh, the mushroom juices flowed nicely.

Would I return? Yes. Our server was quite friendly and polite. The food was good, portions were more generous than I had anticipated, and Felicia's tiramisu looked legit with its boozey lady fingers. Prices aren't on the cheap side, but they're not super extravagant either. The main entrance is lined with pictures of celebrities who have visited the restaurant. My one beef with the experience was that the soot from the candle was blowing into my face due to the open window. Luckily, it wasn't that windy and that only happened on occasion throughout the dinner.

Total damage: $37 for my soup, pasta, and coffee.

Saturday, June 18, 2011


Here's something that seems impossible to find: good chocolate chip muffins. I've searched high and low for these mythical baked treasures, but  whose grandma do I have to rob to find me some proper hard-topped, legitimate chocolate chip muffins? The kind where it's shaped like a giant mushroom, and you can tap the top without it sinking in like a sponge. The reason muffin tops are so desirable is that they have a hard exterior, and a soft, moist interior. So why is it so hard to find one?

My cravings (like that of a pregnant lady's sometimes) led me to yearn for one of my favourite oven-made classics one day. So Lorne and I went searching. We searched two grocery stores and two malls. Nothing. Nothing but wannabe muffins with shiny, soft tops. You know what muffins without the crunchy tops are called? Unfrosted cupcakes! If I wanted cupcakes, I would buy cupcakes, but I want muffins! No place had real muffins, and the ones that did have promising looking muffins did not have chocolate chip. 

In the end, I caved and bought some Farmer's Market double chocolate "muffins" from Loblaws.

They tasted like chocolate cupcakes. Needless to say, I was less than thrilled about the soft top, but these would be great if I wanted something more cake-like.

I'd also like to note that I went to yet another mall since that did not have real muffins. I also tried Googling recipes for muffins with proper tops, but I had to filter through a lot of unwanted weight loss and "muffin top" pictures. 0_o

Total damage: approximately $4.50 for a pack of six. 

Friday, June 17, 2011

Actually Cooking

Cream of mushroom chicken
It went something like this. Basically, I threw in a casserole dish the following ingredients: chicken breast, cream of mushroom mixed in with a bit of milk, lime juice (didn't have lemons), chopped onion. Baked for 40 minutes, flipping the chicken at the 20-minute mark.

It looked better on rice than it did in the dish.
Cooking with canned food is the easy way out. And I'll take it! But the chicken was a bit dry again... I need to get over my fear of E. coli. 

Fried rice
I don't know why, but I used the stainless steel pan. My life would've been easier had I used the non-stick pan. Fried rice is easy. Vegetables, meat, rice go in pan/wok. Stir fry. 

Thursday, June 16, 2011



Snow roll (Mel likes it because it doesn't have rice), spicy tuna roll, and spicy salmon roll.
The maki aren't particularly well hand-crafted, but they tasted okay. The melty orange sauce on the snow roll was a bit of a turn off for me.

The fake crab was a bit shrivelled, but I really like that flavoured pollock so I ate it up. The scallops were pretty good.

I've mentioned these golden shrimp sticks before
They're supposed to be dipped in tempura sauce, but I like 'em dry and crispy.

Sake mussels.
These were a bit less exciting than I had imagined, but at least they were seasoned.

Shrimp tempura.
The shrimp tempura was quite flaky and battered. I liked these.

Enoki mushrooms wrapped in... pork? I preferred the enoki wraps over the beef-wrapped green onions.
The beef was overcooked.

Eel fried rice.
The eel chunks were bite-sized and a little scarce. The rice was gleaming with oil, and individual rice grains fell in between my chopsticks. (Yes, I realize there's a spoon on the plate.) 

Deep-fried banana.

 Mini squid balls and chicken skewers
The little balls were cute and I like how they were browned on the outside.

Cooked to my liking, which means that it still maintained that vegetable crunch without being raw.

Bitter melon, cabbage, and egg.
We all were surprised by this dish, and we all enjoyed it. They managed to take a good chunk of bitterness out of the melon without making it mushy. It tasted healthy in a good way.

Beef sashimi.
It's really more like seared beef.

Mango tapioca dessert
It's watered down, and the balls don't pop as much as I expect them to. They're a bit softer than normal.

Would I return? Yes, when I'm hungry. This place is pretty good for AYCE, and it does offer a few unique items. Not everything is great, but most things are passable. My favs for the night would be the bitter melon dish and the golden shrimp. A few of our orders were forgotten, but not frustratingly so. Staff is efficient, and some of them even smile. 

Total damage: approximately $27 per person.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Sir Perry

William's Sir Perry Pear cider

They sell these imports at the local LCBO and Jo highly recommended it to me.

It's not as sweet as I thought it'd be. The ingredients are basic enough: fermented pear juice, water, caramel, ascorbic acid, and carbon dioxide. It sort of tastes like the alcoholic version of the PC sparkling fruit juices without the intense fruit flavours. The pear taste is there and kind of light. It has less fruity flavour than Strongbow dry cider. 

Would I get it again? Yes. Goes down like fizzy pop, tastes pretty good.

Total damage: approximately $3 per can.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


Rockaberry Café (4275, rue Saint-Denis, Montréal, Québec)
11 a.m. - ?? daily.

I finally found some of my Montreal food pics from I don't know when.

Anyway, Saint Denis Street has got to be one of my favourite streets for food in Montreal. Admittedly, I'm not super familiar with all of Montreal, but walking along rue St-Denis makes me happy. It has all sorts of restaurants, less people than on St. Catherine, and less tourists to ask me where Super Sexe is.

Rockaberry specializes in pies. So we ordered pies.

Most notably to me were the cheese pies. I had never tried a cheese pie before this visit. They're sort of like softer, creamier, bloated cheesecake. I liked the texture and the taste of my Oreo cheese pie, and I also liked how it looked pouffy. I randomly have cravings for it, but I have not yet found a Toronto equivalent of this Montreal cafe to fulfill my cheese pie yearnings (not that I've been trying that much, but still).

Would I return? Yessssss.

Total damage: can't remember.

Cheers to Mia for showing me the way to cheese pies!