Tuesday, October 27, 2015
Hudson's. I ordered them when I was at the Whyte Avenue location for lunch this week. The Spolumbo's chicken maple sausages were large and had a good texture, although I did not pick up much of the sweetness from the maple. The onion demi-glace was extremely thick and soupy - more like a rich gravy, and that really dominated. Instead of the cheddar mashed potatoes I had fries (I don't like cheese in my mash and it was already all made up). Very filling comfort food, but if I ever had it again I would ask for the demi-glace on the side.
HALO Bar and Bistro, which is located in the lobby of the Renaissance Hotel. I had a sampler platter, giving me a choice of three of the menu's small plates. The chicken pot stickers reminded me of a similar dish I get in another restaurant/bar I frequent - nothing really unique. The green onion chicken was two skewers of chicken breast deep fried in a crispy batter with green onion. The green onion flavour really did not come through - I expected more of a green onion cake sort of batter - and the flavour and texture was sort of a "fish and chips" kind of thing, making the aioli they were served upon go well with them. The star of the plate was the Alberta prime rib meatball slider, which was a dense, perfectly-cooked meatball in a fresh bun with slaw. I found that while the green onion chicken was hot, the other items had some temperature inconsistencies. Overall, for the price, I was not blown away by the food,e ven though I really liked the atmosphere of the place itself.
Block 1912 for coffee and a piece of pumpkin mousse cake. The top of the cake was fluffy mousse, with a thin layer of moise spiced cake underneath. Delicate sprinkles of dark chocolate enrobed the outer layer. The mousse part itself did not taste much from pumpkin - one had to scoop up the mousse and cake together for the full flavour experience. This was one of the lighter desserts I have had here, as far as a cake can go, and made a good after-dinner treat.
MEAT. I had the brisket, which is my favourite meat there, and for something different chose the green beans as a side. I am not usually a fan of string beans, but when they are fresh they can be wonderful. They were blanched and cooked lightly in butter, not enough to be overpowering, and sprinkled with bread crumbs. It was a light-tasting, comparatively healthy choice (butter aside, green beans are a great source of fibre), and went well with th brisket.
Viphalay is open for lunch from Tuesday to Friday. Better still, there is a special lunch menu with a variety of affordable options ($15 range). I had one of the curry combos. The yellow curry was just spicy enough, with a familiar, rich texture and flavour. It was full of potatoes and carrots, as well as tofu (my choice of protein). The abundant liquid went well with the side of coconut rice (jasmine was the other option).
Italian Centre often. Usually I just have a latte or espresso. Last week I had a major craving for dessert, and had a slice of the lemon cake with my cappuccino. The cake was moist and sweet, and the lemon flavour resonated.
Monday, October 19, 2015
Maki Maki. I had a bowl of pho with well-done beef brisket. The broth was rich and meaty, the noodles were plentiful, and the meat was so tender it was falling apart in the bowl. And, there was lots of it. Plus, I loved the abundance of cilantro. Piping hot, filling, and totally comforting.
Co Co Di because I love Mediterranean food and it was there. I ordered the chicken kabob wrap with a side of tabouli salad. The wrap had a full kabob's worth of chicken in it, with a mild garlic sauce, pickles (the purple kind), and tomatoes. The chicken was perfectly seasoned and the wrap was small, but very tasty. I was accidentally brought fattoush salad instead of the tabouli, but it looked so beautiful I did not complain. It was the best fattoush I have ever had, with crispy pita chips, pomegranate seeds, onions, cucumbers, and a delicious house dressing. I was brought a tabouli to go when the mistake was discovered, which was much appreciated. At $12 this was a perfect portion for the time of day.
Sunday, October 11, 2015
Riverside Bistro at the downtown Courtyard Marriott hotel has become my go-to place for supper before events at the Shaw Conference Centre. Last week, I was excited to attend the Chris De Burgh concert and had a steak sandwich before the show. The presentation of the meal was wonderful, with a balance between the fries and generous portion of onion straws. A few mushrooms graced the area around the steak, which I ordered well-done. And well-done it was - the charred crust was a bit over-done, but the meat inside was flavourful and not tough. I will be more explicit in my cooking instructions next time.
Edmonton Zombie Walk, I was in need of some hot comfort food. I went to the Rice Howard Way location of The Sherlock Holmes Pub and ordered Shepherd's Pie. The dish was deep and piping hot, with beef in a savoury gravy and lots of vegetables, topped with mashed potatoes. Comfort food doesn't get more comforting than this.
De Dutch on Jasper Avenue. I went for the Dutch Scramble, which is scrambled eggs with a choice of filling, potatoes, toast, and a choice of fruit or a salad (I chose the fruit). For my filling, I had the wild B.C. smoked salmon, which was also the priciest choice. Almost $17 for scrambled eggs seemed a bit high, but the serving was large and there was a lot of salmon. I viewed this as brunch comfort food.
Piccolino Bistro for his birthday recently. I had the vegetable pizza. I absolutely love how the thin crust stayed crispy without being over-done, under a mountain of toppings. The cheese to vegetable ratio was perfect. The variety of vegetables was also great. I ate half and took the rest home. Two people could easily share.