Bars/Lounges · Beer · Burgers · Cheap Eats · Comfort food · Fusion · Happy Hour · Pubs · Restaurants

Eat Crow Snack Bar – COVID-19 dine-in edition

On Monday evening, L and I checked out Eat Crow Snack Bar, a new restaurant that took over Brassiere Kensington. For this post, I’m going to play a piece by conductor Liang Zhang from the Shanghai Symphony Orchestra. I know nothing about conductors, but according to my father, Zhang is the bee’s knees.

I ordered a Texas Paloma ($13) and L ordered a Lone Star beer (HH $5, regular $7.50). The dried grapefruit garnish was a pretty, decorative touch. The combination of Texan Paloma, Epsilon Reposado, Ketel One Grapefruit, Rose Vodka and grapefruit was surprisingly balanced and subtle. I was expecting a cocktail that was heavy on the tequila. L took a sip and mentioned that in our next visit, he would partake in a cocktail instead of his usual beer.

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The Spicy Chicken Wings ($8.50 w/ ranch dip) is a winner. If you are a wing connoisseur, you need to try these wings. The seasoning is mildly spicy and dry. The batter is thin and crisp, and so light the skin melted on my tongue. The chicken is good quality – plump with unblemished, silky white meat.

Each order comes with three pieces of chicken, and each wing is equivalent to three or four pub wings. I estimated I got about nine regular size wings worth of meat and skin. I would come back to Eat Crow just for the wings because it was that good.

Another must order dish is the Crow Burger ($6). The patty is thick and tender and explodes with juicy flavour. Though small in size, this burger is packed with so much meat, cheese and pickles, it was satiating. The Crow Burger rivals all the heavyweights in Calgary – Charbar, Clive Burger, and Burger 320.

The Magic Fries ($6) is also worth ordering again. Golden brown and perfectly munchy, these fries are delightfully addicting. I love the soft, mealy texture inside the crispy shell. Extra bonus – the portion is large enough to share.

I ordered my second and last cocktail of the night – the Humble Pie (HH $8.50). Made with Highroad Alberta vodka, sparkling wine, raspberry and lemon, this drink reminds me of the Framboise fortified wine from Elephant Island Orchard Wines. Not too sour or sweet, this cocktail is too easy to drink. I couldn’t taste the three ounces of booze, but I could sure feel it.

The Humble Pie cocktail came with a baby lemon tart. The custard is creamy and bright with a citrusy zing. The crust is brittle and buttery. The fresh mint and dehydrated strawberry garnish wasn’t just decorative but added to the flavour profile. I would order this cocktail again just for the lemon tart.

L and I shared the Crow Joe ($6). This is an incredibly messy slider. With every bite, an equivalent amount of the filling would drip down onto the plate. The sauce reminded me a little of Heinz beans.

I’ve actually never tried General Tso Chicken ($10) before so I wasn’t sure what to expect. The batter was sweet and sticky. This dish, as well as everything else we ordered, arrived piping hot and immaculately presented.

The Handmade Pirogies ($10, $2 bacon) arrived supersized and fluffy. L enjoyed the sweet caramelized onions and smoky bits of bacon. I’m curious to know what my friend Sirosky would think, as his family makes their own pirogies.

Eat Crow charges prices similar to El Furniture Warehouse, a restaurant that sells all dishes for $5.99 (plus extra for upgrades like bacon, cheese, and sauces). However, the food quality at Eat Crow is significantly higher and vastly tastier than El Furniture Warehouse. I’m keen to return to try some of the vegetarian dishes, as well as those delightful wings and the Crow burger.

 

Eat Crow Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Italian · Restaurants · Special Occasion

Cotto Italian – COVID-19 edition

L and I are eating out more frequently to support our favourite restaurants during the COVID pandemic. On Sunday, we ordered a three-course takeout meal from Cotto Italian Comfort Food . For $29 a person, we were given a large Caesar salad, two slices of Parmesan garlic toast, a big pan of porcini truffle mushroom risotto with grana cheese, and two pots of tiramisu.

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When I saw that Cotto was making risotto, I instantly thought of a scene from Big Night, when an American woman orders seafood risotto and fails to understand the tradition and craftmanship behind the dish. Upset that the risotto doesn’t look as how she expected, her husband suggests she order a side of spaghetti and meatballs. For this post, let’s listen to “Oh Marie” by Louis Prima.

Cotto is offering 30% off all their wines. I asked Fiona, the owner and wife of Chef Giuseppe, for a wine that would pair with the food. She recommended 2016 Giuseppe Campagnola Ripasso della Valpolicella Classico Superiore ($42). I found the wine smooth and silky. L thought it was well-balanced and an easy to drink wine. I agree, it was hard to cut myself off after my second glass.

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L doesn’t normally like Caesar salads but he’s a fan of Cotto’s version. He liked that there wasn’t an overwhelming amount of garlic. I loved the tartness of the sun-dried tomatoes and the feathery crumbs of grana cheese. The salad dressing was refreshing and helped cut into the richness of the risotto.

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The garlic bread was decadent, generously layered with butter, parmigiano cheese and garlic. The bread was crusty on the outside and the crumb – the inner part of bread –  was soft and delicate.

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I wasn’t expecting such a large portion of risotto. We had enough for lunch the next day. When I lifted the risotto from the pan, I could see the fine strands of cheese stretching out like a cobweb. The grain was cooked to an al dente, deeply infused with the flavour of porcini mushrooms and truffle.

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The smell and taste of the truffle wasn’t overpowering. The porcini mushrooms were silky smooth but there was still a nice toothsome crunch to it. The best part of the risotto  was the contrast between the rich, earthy cheesiness and the greens.  The taste of the spring onions and the pea shoots made my tongue tingle with pleasure. This was the first risotto I’ve tried and would order again.

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Along with risotto, this was the best tiramisu I’ve consumed. The soft layers of Kahlua espresso lady fingers and mascarpone cream were light and sweet. My favourite part of the dessert was the smell of the cocoa power and amaretto. It reminded me of a frozen dessert I would have as a child, only occasionally, because it was an expensive treat.

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On our drive to Kensington, I was shocked to see the number of businesses that are permanently shut down. I feel like there’s a war going on, but instead of guns and the military, it’s an invisible virus wiping out livelihoods in Calgary.

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Do you want to help the restaurant industry in Calgary? If you have the financial means,  YYCTAKEOUT is asking Calgarians to show their support by joining #YYCTakeoutTuesday and ordering a pick-up meal. If you can’t afford to eat out, consider retweeting or sharing an Instagram story from @yyctakeoutspecials.

Cotto Italian Comfort Food Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Bars/Lounges · Beer · Happy Hour · Patio · Restaurants

Wine Bar Kensington – Baller Wine List

I’ve been to Wine Bar Kensington multiple of times – for my own stag, girls’ night, Sunday half price wine night, and impromptu meetings.  It’s a beloved bar for locals, particularly those who live in the hood. Which is why I’m surprised to see this is my first post for Wine Bar.

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On Monday, Wine Bar celebrated its 10th anniversary with DJ Jon Yumol, magnum wines and a half price baller wine list. I thought that was funny because a true baller can afford to pay full price, so by buying a half price bottle, I’m just a wanna be baller.

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That’s okay with me, because I’m perfectly secure in knowing I’m a small potato.  For this post, let’s listen to Puff Daddy – It’s all about the benjamins. Oh god, I can’t believe how bad the lyrics are:

Now, what y’all wanna do?
Wanna be ballers, shot callers, brawlers
Who be dippin’ in the Benz with the spoilers
On the low from the Jake in the Taurus
Tryin’ to get my hands on some Grants like Horace
Yeah, livin’ the raw deal
Three course meals: spaghetti, fettuccine, and veal
But still, everything’s real in the field

I would argue that spaghetti, fettuccine, and veal are not a three-course meal. A three-course meal consists of three parts served one after the other. What Puff Daddy is rapping about is having three mains as one meal.

Our server Tess offered excellent recommendations. Outside of Bar Von Der Fels, she’s the only other person in Calgary that can nail down what type of wine I like. I learned from Bar von der Fels that I like full-bodied wines. That’s what I told Tess I liked.

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The first and my favourite baller wine of night was Ehret Cabernet Sauvignon ($110, half price $55). Smooth, gentle weight on the tongue, and just enjoyable wine to sip away. Excellent.

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L did all the food ordering because I had a stomach ache and I wasn’t planning on eating. Of course he ordered the Meat + Cheese platter – the chef’s selection of five ($42). I tried the 12-month aged prosciutto and the flavour was fantastic. I couldn’t taste the white, fatty part of the meat like I do some prosciutto.

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The second wine we tried was Farina – Amarone della Valpolicella ($105, half price $52.50) This was L’s favourite wine. Tessa said it if we liked the first wine, we would enjoy this one even though it was different. Lighter than first bottle, silky and I thought it had a nice balance of acidity.

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The Spinach, Goats Feta and Beet Salad ($17) was well-seasoned. The dressing was sweet and tart. I really liked the addition of the olives and nuts.

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I ate most of the Coconut Curried Lentil Dip ($16.75) because L and Bottlenick thought it was too spicy. I can handle my spice so I loved this dish. The flatbread was warm and crisp but still soft inside. Scrumptious.

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The brussel sprouts was a standout dish. I was getting quite tipsy at this point and I stopped taking notes. I just know that anything that taste that good isn’t healthy for you. Best sprouts in the city. I was really impressed with the food.

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I spotted my old neighbour – I’ll call him Wine Wizard. It turns out Bottlenick went to one of Wine Wizard’s events. At this event, Bottlenick picked up three bottles of Il Rosso Degugnano Dei Barbi and gave me a bottle to try. I should have known that Bottlenick bought this from Wine Wizard. The Wine Wizard is super serious with his wines. He wears a special pair of glasses to better analyze his bottles. I tried on his glasses that night and it did enhance my ability to think more deeply about what I was drinking.

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I asked Wine Wizard what he would drink. He pointed at what he was drinking that night – a $200 dollar bottle. The small potato in me came out and I balked at him. He then pointed to another bottle – Sor Ugo Superiore Cab Sauv/Merlot/Franc ($110, half price $55). That’s better.

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I had to put my thinking cap on because Wine Wizard took back his glasses. I liked his pick but I couldn’t describe what I was tasting. I think it was beyond my vocabulary.

I had a lot of fun at Wine Bar’s anniversary party. It was a treat to try some truly delicious wines at a price that’s more akin to my lifestyle. Thanks for the enjoyable company L, Bottlenick and Wine Wizard.

Winebar Kensington Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Restaurants

Peasant Cheese Shop

9:20 a.m. on a Friday morning and I was already thinking about dinner. I didn’t want to go out or cook. I thought I would be considerate for once and do something I know L would enjoy. At 10:00 a.m., I called Peasant Cheese Shop to order a mixed cheese and meat platter ($25). For this post, let’s listen to Bus-ta Rhymes – Gimme Some More.

The Mélange a Trois ($25) platter includes two cheeses, one meat, crackers and garnishes. When I called to place my order, I was informed that the store requests customers order 24 hours in advance. The male on the phone said he could prepare me a plate by that afternoon, but he would have to use a disposable tray instead of a wooden platter.

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L said that Peasant Cheese’s rules doesn’t leave much for spontaneity, and a cheese shop should know a thing or two about romance. I told L that this popular cheese shop is too busy for procrastinators. When I arrived at 3:00 p.m., the shop was packed.

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I decided to save some money by taking transit back home. On the first train, I stood by several hungry U of C students. A young Asian man looked particularly impressed and eyed my platter.

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I wanted to tell him that this was nothing – Peasant Cheese offers much more elaborate spreads and if pre-orders, he can get it on a nice wooden tray.

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The second train wasn’t as busy. I got a seat this time but my arms were getting tired and I was starting to wish I splurged $15 for an Uber.

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It started to get really windy and I was clutching the plastic cover to prevent the platter from blowing away. Luckily, L came and picked me up so I didn’t have to walk another 11 minutes.

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The garnishes made the two cheeses and one meat into a meal. The platter included green olives, figs, currents, physalis, tart cornichons and what tasted like a white wine jelly.

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The capocollo was thinly sliced and not overly fatty. If you eat a lot of charcuterie, you’ll know what I mean. Some meats taste so oily. Not this one. L could detect some heat. I couldn’t detect any spice.

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The Chateau de Bourgogne was ripe, creamy and buttery. The currents paired well with the cheese, as it gave it more flavour. I think this cheese would go well with champagne because it left no aftertaste. I enjoyed eating the rind.

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L liked the hard cheese – Lindsay. The texture was firm and crumbly. The flavour was earthy and nutty. I did not enjoy eating the rind. The only thing I didn’t care for was the wine jelly. Perhaps it was because I wasn’t drinking, but the smell was off-putting.

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It would have cost me more than $25 to buy all the crackers, cheese and garnishes from a store. You have to pay a deposit for the wood platter, but I would recommend it. Cutting into the cheese on a plastic platter took away from the experience.  I could have rearranged it on our larch wood platter from Knifewear but I was feeling too lazy. I would order from Peasant Cheese again in a heartbeat. Hitting the Sauce gives this Kensington gem two fat thumbs up.

Peasant Cheese Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Japanese · Restaurants · Sushi

Red Ember – Return of Christina

My all time favourite server is Christina from Red Ember. L and I have been coming to Red Ember since 2012. Throughout the years, Christina has been in and out, as she’s gone back to school, had other jobs and lived overseas. I saw on Facebook that she’s returned. After going out for a drink, L and I made our way to Red Ember for a late dinner. In honour of Christina, let’s listen to Return of the Mack by Mark Morrison.

Even though it was past 8:00 p.m., the restaurant was packed. I also saw numerous takeout orders being picked up. If you pay cash, you get 10% off the bill. For takeout orders over $100, you get 15% if you pay cash. Good to know for my future parties. Christina warmly welcomed us back and asked the sushi chef and owner Calvin to make us a special amuse-bouche. A very lovely treat to start our meal.

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Usually, there’s Calvin and sometimes, another sushi chef working with him. I’m not 100% sure if there is another cook for the hot stuff, like tempura, teriyaki and udon. This evening, Christina was the only server. I’m pretty sure they were short-staffed, because Calvin would disappear and then suddenly the hot food would come out. Red Ember is a smaller restaurant operation, so when it gets busy, the food may take a bit longer.

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L and I shared an order of large assorted tempura ($10.99) and a large Asahi ($7.99). We received four pieces of shrimp and six vegetables. The batter is thick and crunchy. L liked how the tempura wasn’t overly greasy. I wonder if Red Ember will ever consider making tendon (tempura covered in sauce over rice). I think if they did, it would be a hit.

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L always order the chirashi ($18.99). The rice was fragrant with vinegar. Christina asked Calvin to give me two amaebi (raw spot prawns) as she knows this is my favourite sushi. When eaten raw, the prawn is sweet, creamy and crunchy.

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L can’t look at me eating the shrimp head without making a face. A little judgy L.  I think the part that grosses him out the most is seeing the attenas poke out of my mouth as I munch away. He has no idea what he’s missing out on. The best part is when the remaining head is deep-fried as it taste like soft-shelled crab.sushi.jpg

L and I also shared some rolls. Dynamite Roll ($4.95), Negitoro Roll ($4.25), Chopped Scallop Roll ($5.99), Tako ($2.50) and Amaebi ($2.75). This turned out to be way too much food for us. The rolls were large and packed with filling. The seafood tasted fresh.

Office Dad and Asian Persuasion prefer Red Ember over Zipang and Roku because former offers more generous portions of sushi and sashimi. Both are also are a big fan of Red Ember’s lunch bento boxes. I like Zipang’s tuna and salmon slightly  more than Red Ember. However, Red Ember’s amaebi and scallop consistently taste fresher than Zipang and Roku.

Calgarians are lucky to have an affordable sushi joint, conveniently located in the inner city. L and I feasted away and our bill only came up to $60.  Hitting the Sauce gives Red Ember two fat thumbs up.

Pro tip. There isn’t any street parking immediately outside, but there is a parkade on the second floor, right next to the restaurant. My friend What’s Up Hamsup never pays for parking because he says if he gets a ticket, he just won’t pay it. L was feeling lucky and didn’t pay for parking either, despite my protests that it was only $2.00. Park and don’t pay at your own risk.
Continue reading “Red Ember – Return of Christina”

Comfort food · Italian · Restaurants

Cotto Italian Comfort Food

Kamloops and Jaime were in town! I made reservations at Cotto Italian Comfort Food in Kensington. Before we left for dinner, we shared a bottle of wine at my house – Pinot Noir, Iris Vineyards (Oregon, Willamette Valley).

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Kamloops and L enjoyed this wine more than I did. I found the flavour very light with a touch of tartness.

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At the restaurant, we ordered a bottle of Chianti Classico Tenuta di Arceno ($50). I would order this Chianti again. I thought it was well-balanced and paired nicely with our dinner. This is a wine I’d pick up regularly for supper. Cotto doesn’t markup their wines as much as other restaurants in Calgary. I spoke to a wine buyer and he told me the standard industry markup is three times the retail cost. I ordered a case of Tenuta di Arceno and saw Cotto’s markup was only two times the retail cost. I heard Model Milk does two times the wholesale cost.

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All the tomato-based dishes I’ve tried at Cotto were spectacular. In honour of this lovely fruit, or vegetable, depending if you are a scientist or cook, let’s listen to Hang on Little Tomato by Pink Martini.

We ordered family style – Arancini ($12), Caprese ($28), Milanese ($29), Pappardelle Ragu ($24), and Spagetti E Pomodoro ($24). The portions are generous. The two appetizers and three mains was plenty of food for the four of us. Actually, now that I think about it, Jaime, Kamloops and L didn’t eat much. I went all out and ate in excess. I love Italian food.

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When the golden brown arancini balls arrived at our table, the scent of cheese wafted up. The rice was cooked so that the grains were still firm and well formed. The cheese fondue was light and silky smooth. We thought we tasted mushrooms in the rice.

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The caprese salad was one of the best salads I’ve eaten. Those tomatoes – oh god – just exploded with sweetness. The buffalo mozzarella was light and decadent. I could taste the toasted nuttiness in the pine nuts. The pancetta was warm and when I chewed, squirted with fatty deliciousness. The pesto sauce and arugula added freshness to the mix and made the flavours pop.

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The large pork chop was impressively thick, covering almost most of the wooden board. The breading was still glistening from a sweet glaze and sizzling from the fryer. The side salad was simple and sweet. The polenta fries were amazing – crispy and delicious. I’d order the polenta fries again.

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The meatball in the pappardelle ragu was super sized and dense. The side of pasta was very good – al dente and saturated in a bright, sweet, creamy tomato sauce.

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My second favourite dish of the night was the Rigatoni Pomodoro. The pasta had a good bite to it. The cherry tomato and basil sauce was addicting – I’d pay to learn how to make a sauce like this. I really don’t know Cotto can make something as simple as tomato sauce into this elevated delicacy that drove all our tastebuds crazy. I’m normally a white cream sauce kinda gal, but at Cotto, it’s tomatoes all the way.

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Jaime, Kamloops and L shared a dessert – Coviglia Napoletana. I didn’t try a bite but Kamloops described the combination of chocolate semi-freddo, salted caramel and candied hazelnuts as a frozen chocolate hedgehog. Jaime looked up at Kamloops with a puzzled look on her face, so I’m not sure she agreed with him.

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Jaime noticed that her go to drink – canarino – was on the menu. I wonder if a lot of Chinese customers dine at Cotto, because that’s a popular drink for our peeps. I heckled Jaime mercilessly about being a paw paw (Chinese grandmother) until I got tired of the sport. The next time I have her over for a dinner party, I’m going to write on my cocktail chalkboard – The Jaime (Hot Water & Lemon).

Cotto is the sort of place I’d host a party for my family. The food is delicious and well-priced. Cotto makes it on Hitting the Sauce’s list of favourite restaurants in Calgary.

Cotto Italian Comfort Food Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Brunch · Burgers · Comfort food · French · Happy Hour · Restaurants

Brasserie Kensington – Big Taste 2018

Asian Persuasion, Ay Caramba, Office Dad, Lam Jam and I had the most delicious lunch at Brasserie Kensington. For this post, let’s listen to a song I listen to rev me up for work – Bitch Better Have My Money by Rihanna.

We tumbled into a packed restaurant. We were seated near the window, which affords a street view of Kensington.

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The Big Taste of Calgary menu offers a stellar deal. For only $18 we had the choice of an appetizer, main and dessert:

Peasant Duck Broth Soup or Green Bean and Lentil Salad

Brasserie Grilled Gruyere & Raclette Cheese & Vegetable Sandwich, Brasserie Beef Bourguignon with Toasted Baguette, or Crispy Chicken Sandwich with Collard Green Coleslaw

Baked Alaska with Italian Meringue & House Made Coffee Ice Cream, Chocolate Waffles with White Chocolate Sauce & Confit Apple or Coconut Creme Brûlée.

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We all ordered the duck soup. Ay Caramba and I picked beef bourguignon for our mains. Office Dad, Asian Persuasion, and Office Dad ordered the chicken sandwich. Lam Jam asked for the raclette cheese and vegetable sandwich. When the chicken sandwich came to the table, our mouths dropped. This is what I imagine patrons are like at a strip club. I was drooling. That sandwich was just busting out with chicken. Lam Jam received the chicken sandwich instead of his racelette sandwich, but he remained quiet because after he saw the chicken sandwich, he also wanted a piece of that.

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I watched my coworkers as they bit into their sandwich, moaning with ecstasy as the juices dripped down onto their plate. I have to admit, I got food envy. That is, until I tried my own entree.

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Ay Caramba and I were over the moon with our beef bourguignon. That dark gravy sauce was incredible. The potato wedges were baked and then layered on top of the stew. The carrots were bright orange, the potatoes a mellow yellow. I asked Annika if she could pack my stew for me, as I didn’t want to overeat. It was a good thing I’m so fond of this stew. On the way back from work, I spilled the sauce in my work bag.

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The desserts were phenomenal. The exterior of the baked Alaskan was warm and rich. The homemade coffee ice cream was cool and creamy. The layer of cake on the bottom tasted so good I ate every crumb.

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Ay Caramba picked a coconut brulee. Office Dad picked the chocolate waffles. Usually in a group, you have that one person that poo poos everything. In this group, it’s usually  Office Dad. Everyone was happy. A Christmas miracle in March.

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Brasserie Kensington makes it on Hitting the Sauce’s list of best restaurants in Calgary. I want to return for happy hour and dinner. If you can still manage to wrangle a reservation for Big Taste, do it.

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Brasserie Kensington Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Brunch · Restaurants

Vero Bistro Moderne

My friend Westjet called me out of the blue and wanted to do brunch. I’m not fond of brunch. I detest the long line-ups, crowded venue and the calorific dishes that leave me feeling tired and unhealthy. If you feel the same way as I do, you should check out Vero Bistro Moderne.

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The bistro is small and elegant, reminding me of a jazz club. I enjoyed the relaxing ambience. There was ample room to sit and have a conversation without being overheard. Frank Sinatra could be heard crooning in the background.

Westjet and I both ordered the Wild Boar Bacon & Jumbo Prawns. The single organic egg was cooked just how I like it – solid yet the yolk was still warm and creamy. The egg white was fluffy like a cloud and just as light. The hand whipped hollandaise was how I think all hollandaise should taste. Buttery and barely there, just enough to compliment to all the other ingredients. This was not the heavy yellow glop I remember in my past brunch experiences.

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The croissant was so delectable it deserves its own paragraph. The warm layers of the pastry flaked apart. You could see the actual separate layers. The exterior was a glossy dark golden brown.

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Hotchkiss pea shoots added a freshness to the dish. The tomatoes were sweet and ripe, dotted with pesto. The boar bacon was razor-thin, loaded in flavour, with zero grease. So crispy that the bacon shattered when you bit into it. The potato garnish also added a delightful crunch.

The two prawns were large and sweet. These reminded me of the prawns my mother use to get for us in Steveston, Richmond. She would boil the fresh prawns and peel it for us, so good you didn’t really need to do anything else to it.

Hitting the Sauce gives Vero two fat thumbs up. This is one of the best brunches I’ve ever had. Prices are higher than your usual popular, crowded venues, but the experience and quality ingredients make up for it.

Vero Bistro Moderne Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Cheap Eats · Korean · Restaurants

Wow Chicken

After a day of work and then an evening of volunteering, I was in need of a beer and fried delights. I called L on my way home and suggested we go meet for a late dinner. He suggested I get off at the Kensington LRT station and meet him at his favourite Korean chicken joint – Wow Chicken. For this post, let’s listen to Korean pop music.

L recommended the chicken fingers. We shared a five-piece chicken fingers ($11.99), large fries with bulgogi seasoning ($5.99) and two sleeves of Sapporo ($5.00). I noted L’s smiley face on his glass was teal and my smiley face was pink.

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If you looked closely, you can see a heavy dusting of seasoning and an extra layer of batter on the fries.  The fries were hot and crunchy. The seasoning was sweet, tangy and spicy. I found the seasoning too sweet for me, but L liked it. I thought the large portion of fries was too much for two people. L disagreed.

The chicken fingers consisted of white meat. I prefer dark meat. Next time I visit, I want to try the wings. The batter was great – light and airy, not oily in the least. The gan-geong sauce was really spicy. I enjoyed the heat and would order this hot sauce again.

Service was less than stellar but you don’t come here for the ambience or hospitality. If your craving scrumptious fried chicken and a cold beer, this is your neighbourhood joint. I’d rate Wow Chicken a solid 3.5/5. Other chicken destinations on my radar include Crunchy House and Popeye’s Chicken.

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Wow Chicken Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Chinese · Restaurants

South Silk Road

L’s friend Grohl came to visit us for a week. Grohl use to live in China and he loves Szechuan food. South Silk Road serves up Yunnan cuisine, which is influenced by Han Chinese and other ethnic cuisines. For this posting, I’m going to play Cher’s “If I could turn back time” because if I could turn back time, I would have ordered different dishes.

When we arrived we saw another table in the middle of a beautiful feast. I saw a pot overflowing with goodies, something yummy looking wrapped in tin foil, pigs feet and sweet and sour fish. Their food smelled delicious.

Grohl took over the ordering and selected wood ear mushrooms, shredded potato, mao pao tofu, and lotus and beef. He wanted another dish so I picked fried rice with prosciutto. I would have ordered the dishes the other table ordered but Grohl was on a food rager. He wanted to order all his old favourite dishes from his stint in China.

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The mushroom with lotus dish was a good dish to begin our meal ($11). Light, cold and refreshing, I detected loads of fresh garlic, tart notes of vinegar and fresh cilantro. I would order this again.

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The Mao Pao Tofu ($11.99) wasn’t spicy. I like the deep flavour of the chili oil and the smoothness of the cubes of tofu. I wish I ordered plain rice instead of the prosciutto fried rice.

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I know other reviewers like prosciutto rice but I wouldn’t order this dish again. It was tasty and lightly fried but it just wasn’t my thing.

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The Sliced Potato ($12.95) arrived lightly dressed. The potatoes tasted a tad undercooked.

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The Fried Dry Beef with Lotus ($14.99) was interesting. The vegetable was sticky, sweet and hard, as was the beef. The vegetables and meat were almost candied.

I liked our server – she was friendly. I also enjoyed South Silk Road’s tea, which I preferred over the typical tea you get at a dim sum restaurant. I want to return to try the eggplant, taro spring rolls, chilli fish, green beans, and the sweet and sour fish.

South Silk Road Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato