Friday, October 28, 2011

Oh Geul Boh Geul

(416) 733-3385 ‎

Most people who are familiar with the area know of the Korean restaurant The Owl of Minerva. But Monique wanted to try this other Korean place that was two doors down.

Menu sampling

Potato pancake on the house. 
I like these. They're a bit chewy, and I tend to eat them with soy sauce.

There were 7 of us and we had just finished eating deep-fried mac and cheese (see future post), and we joked that we could've had the complimentary sides as dinner. They gave us two sets. 

Viv's soon tofu.

Towards the end of the meal, one side of our long table had barely dented their sides.

Our side pretty much cleared them. :)

I actually forgot to take pictures of the food I actually ordered (food blog fail!). I shared a type of soon tofu ($6.85) and dumplings ($9) with Bianca. The dumplings were quite crispy, but a little miniature and a bit overpriced. The soon tofu was okay, and had random chunks of seafood. I think I prefer the soup from Buk Chang Dong Soon Tofu

Would I return? Sure. The food was okay, prices are affordable, the sides are plentiful, and it's a good back-up plan if the Owl is full. The staff is pretty nice for a restaurant in this area. Oh yeah, and their rice is purple. It's unfortunate that Liz ordered the Korean beef soup dish that tastes like water. I wouldn't call it a bad mark on the restaurant, as I've had that dish at Nak Won before. I think that's how it's supposed to taste - like water. The beef is always hard and tough too. I should find out what that is called in Korean and avoid it in the future.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Man Doo Hyang

Man Doo Hyang


I've raved about this place several times before, and it's no surprise that I recently went to eat what I thought would be the same comforting food that I've consistently had there. 

The complimentary sides and dumplings were there.

Noodles and kimchi dumplings.
The noodles were pretty much the same as before, but the broth was different. Jo, Renée and I all noticed a change in the broth. Jo said it tasted like MSG, Renée said it was more watered down, and I felt like it was lacking the meat infused taste that it used to have. It's not as turbid with flavour as it used to be.

Would I return? I probably would, but I must say that I was a bit disappointed. From my first visit there, the beer prices have gone up, and the quality of the soup broth has gone down. I'd go again hoping that their stuff would go back to the way it was before. 

Total damage: $10.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Rol San

Rol San (323 Spadina Avenue, Toronto)

In Chinatown, there are two dim sum places that are right across the street from each other. One is said to be rather mediocre, so naturally we went to the other one for some all day dim sum. On a weekday morning, it was just us and some elderly Chinese folk. Derek had been there before, but me and Monique had low expectations for Chinatown dim sum. I'm more a fan of that strip of Chinese restaurants on highway 7 sometimes called Chinatown North. They seem slightly cleaner and the food seems to be of higher quality. 

Some har gow (steamed shrimp dumpling) and har cheung (shrimp rice noodle roll).
They weren't bad! The shrimp were pretty large. The skin on the har gow was a bit thick, but it was edible.

Fried octopus and siu mai.

There were three of these fried radish block thingies before I took the pic.
It could've used a little more fried outside, but I liked 'em. 

Chicken feet.

Black sesame balls and milk egg tarts.
The sesame balls were really hot and fresh. We all quite enjoyed them, though I know that Jo would complain about how thick the outer shell was.

Taro spring rolls. Monique was trying to order something else, but this came out. 
That was kind of new to me. It was okay, but the taro would've gone better with the flakier stuff that Monique was attempting to order.

Would I return? Yeah. With my aforementioned low expectations, I was pleasantly surprised by how edible everything was. Some stuff was even good! I like how they even had the authentic dim sum standard white plastic table cloth. Since their dim sum is offered all day, I wouldn't have to wake up early to get it. That's a win to me! However, if given the choice between Rol San and uptown dim sum, I'd pick uptown. But you know... it's still okay for downtown dim sum.

Total damage: $14 per person. Three is a good number of people for dim sum because most of the food comes in portions of three or four. 

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Random Food Time!

Bean soup. I've made variations of this, and it tastes better with tomatoes or something tomato-based. It also tastes better with some sort of meat in it... I would've put in some real meat, but all I had were hot dogs. I'm really just throwing whatever is in my cupboards and fridge into a pot and cooking for a few hours.

 Soft-to-hard-boiled egg with soy sauce and cayenne pepper.
Sometimes I get weird cravings...

Fried rice... just like my bean soup - throw everything I have into a pan and fry.

I used chicken stock for this bean soup, but maybe (real) beef would've been better.

I tried making apple pie with some shredded cheddar cheese in the crust. I didn't have a rolling pin, so I got creative. I used this recipe and added cheese.

 It turned out rather bland. I forgot to add sugar to the crust. Must add sugar. Lots and lots of sugar. Then  it might taste cool with the cheese.
Also, the shredded cheese made it look like a face with acne. :|

More fried rice. I threw some cheese in there too, and it became tastier.

Hello Kitty pasta. All the fun character ones use whole grain pasta now.

Yet more fried rice with cheese. Seriously, cheese makes everything better.

This was one of my earlier bean soup attempts. Sometimes I throw some frozen fish in there too for fun. 

More attempts at mac and cheese.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Ka Chi

10:30 a.m. - 10:30 p.m. daily

So apparently this place has a few locations. One is actually around Kensington market, just around the corner of the location we went to on Dundas Street West. I guess they're just that popular.  

Their bird logo looks frantic.

The prices seem pretty average for this type of food.

Monique's order of pork bone soup.
 The pork looked pink and really tender (not raw nor overcooked). She seemed to enjoy it quite a bit. 

Standard Korean complimentary side dishes.

I split ten pan fried beef dumplings (#8 for $5.95) with Amanda. 
They had some darker edges, but I like the slightly burnt thing. I didn't really like that some of them were broken, but they were passable. The spicy soy sauce is a must.

We also split the stir fried rice cake with bulgogi (#18 for $8.50). 
We were debating between the spicy version and the version that we got. I think we were both glad that we picked what we had. That sauce was intense, and I'm not so sure that the awesome flavour would have come through as much in the spicy one. It was so good that we both took some of Monique's rice to sop it all up. The beef was also nicely cooked. There were also some glass noodles in there.

Andrea's spare ribs on a sizzling plate looked pretty good too.

Would I return? Yes! I'm drooling just thinking about that bulgogi sauce. So meaty and delicious tasting. The decor is a bit gaudy, but it looks clean - especially for a Chinatown area restaurant.

Friday, October 7, 2011


I've heard talks of free beer being handed out around downtown Toronto for the past two weeks or so, but I haven't come across such a magical location. Until today. Walking along Queen Street West, we spotted a medium-sized queue of people. Instinctively, I knew it was going to be good. I was right. Free Alexander Keith's (with a valid 19+ photo identification)! 

It's a double pack! :D

I know they were giving away free Keith's last week too in celebration of Alexander Keith's birthday, and I guess the celebrating didn't end. I've also heard previous talk of free Carlsberg and Stella Artois within the last two weeks. What is going on? 

Anyway, that double pack made my day. I don't know what the usual time for free beer is, but I was there around 6:30 p.m. and the wait was less than two minutes. 

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Jamie Kennedy Fries

Grabbing a snack at the ACC doesn't always sound so appealing. Everything is ridiculously overpriced and it's usually about as fancy as movie theatre food. I was pretty surprised to see Jamie Kennedy's name in there on anything, but there it was... right above the word "fries". 

Fries with cider mayonnaise ($6.50)
The fries are decent. They're seasoned with what I think is thyme. I liked the cider mayo. The acidity gave it a nice tangy flavour. Jo said that got old fast, and that all she could taste afterwards was the seasoning on the fries. I only ate a few, so I didn't have that problem. 

Would I return? Well, if I'm stuck at the ACC with an empty stomach, I think those fries just might be the most worth it thing to get. That or a large beer... the lid it comes with is meant to be used with a straw. Beer with a straw? Ha ha ha. 

Cheers to Jo for sharing! 

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Absolute Bakery


Walking around Cabbagetown on a Sunday, Jess and I stumbled upon this bakery that was still open after 5 p.m. I went in with the intention of buying a sweet pastry snack, and I came out with diabetes dinner.

I was going for sweet, but the staff convinced me to get this savoury thing. Unfortunately, I didn't read what this was. 
It sort of tastes like a curry samosa in phyllo pastry. I thought it'd be a little crispier and flakier than it was. It was kind of messy to eat. I wasn't a superfan of this, but it was okay.

Apple turnover.
Very nice. Nice, large, sweetened apple slices half-naked in a solid flaky pastry. This had just the right amount of sweetness and sturdiness for me.

Chocolate danish. 
There was more chocolateness in it than I had expected. This was good, but not as good as the turnover. 

Would I return? Yeah, probably. Staff was really friendly. I liked the sweet pastries I bought. In the window display, they also had some almond twists that looked absolutely fabulous, but I was a bit disheartened when I was told that they had some berry content. Regardless, I was satisfied with what I bought there, and I wouldn't mind trying some of their other stuff.

Total damage: $7.25