Eating With Kirby

Mosaic Bar and Grille- Italian Chef Tasting Menu

The barely cooked runny yolk is meant to be popped and enjoyed along with the risotto...and enjoy I did. The golden lava coated every kernel of rice with its warm embrace and made the risotto that much more comforting.

Adorabelle Tea Room- Catching Up With the Girls

This is an Onion, Chive, and Bacon Savoury Cupcake. Even the icing was savoury! It was super delicious and was really innovative. Overall, the ambiance was great (loved the fake sky ceiling!), food was well thought out and executed, and the service was attentive.

Forage- Pretty Decent Food.

All six of us ordered their Award Winning Seafood Chowder with soft poached quail egg and crispy pork rind. While the soup was smokey, full of flavour, it was too thick and tasted a bit more like sauce than soup. The quail egg added a certain richness to the soup too which was nice.

Jethro's Fine Grub- That's Some Tasty Grub.

Overall, Jethro’s is an awesome breakfast and lunch diner serving up good eats with a twist. I most definitely will return for some alligator nuggets or pancakes!

Teppan Kitchen and Mambo Cafe (Aberdeen Food Court)- Crazy Sauce.

They serve this to you with a little sleeve around the plate to catch any splattering oil that radiates from the oven hot iron plate. If you are noob (hehe) at this Teppan Rice business, you can read the "How To Cook" instructions on the sleeve.

Basho Cafe - Quaint, Cozy, Delicious

You get the real deal here when it comes to their Matcha Latte. Served in a traditional Japanese bowl the way its suppose to be (not cup), its not only fragrant but it has incredibly depth. Be forewarn, this latte isn't sweet. There is no additional pre-sweetened sugary stuff here.

23 November 2015

Marukame Udon (Hawaii) - So Cheap! So Yum! So Good!

When my friends heard I was going to Oahu for the first time, they all recommended the same place. A Japanese udon bar located on one of two largest streets in downtown Waikiki, known as Marukame Udon. 

If you plan to come here, I would advise coming during non-peak hours like 7-9am, or 2-4pm or else you're likely to wait in line for 20-30 minutes. Granted, the line moves quite quickly because the turnover is extremely fast. This ain't no place for chit chat. This is a cafeteria-like environment where you eat and leave.

They have seven options to choose from and they range from $3.75 - $6.75 USD. It's a wicked deal and I would suggest trying out as many variations of these dishes as you can while you're in Honolulu. 

In orderly fashion, people line up, grab a 'cafeteria' tray and plate and select the udon they want. Then the udon maker will prepare the dish in (literally) a few seconds and hand it to you.

All of the udon is made fresh in front of your eyes so you'll never get bored waiting in line. It's like a free show. For foodies :P Every employee at Marukame has one specific job to do and they do it well. They have one guy that works almost every day and his job is just to boil the udon. That is probably the most difficult position in the restaurant so while it looks redundant and easy, I actually really admire his expertise.

After you get handed your udon, you will shimmy along the line and reach the tempura bar. Various battered goodies are up for grabs and they will add about $1.50 each to your overall bill depending on how much you load up here.

They have everything from fried chicken, tempura mushrooms, asparagus, pumpkin, hard boiled egg, to spam musubis and onigris.

 In total, Meta Knight and I ate here three times in seven days. I know.. this place was THAT good. On my first visit I got the Regular Cold Ontama Udon ($4.25) with Spam Musubi and Croquette. In total, my meal cost me about seven bucks. The onsen egg was friggin delicious and I couldn't get over the perfect al dente texture of the fresh udon. Bouncy with a bit of chew.

 Meta Knight could not resist the Marukame favourite, Niku Udon ($5.75) with Vegetable and Shrimp Tempura. Though the vegetable tempura looked huge, it was mostly onion so we avoided getting this on our future visits. It was also heavily battered so it didn't help us feel any healthier eating it.

 His broth was super flavourful and did not disappoint!

 The famous Hawaiian musubi. All it is, is a slice of spam on top of a white rice ball, wrapped in seaweed. To be honest the one here was definitely not that great. Passable, but definitely not better than the ones from Musubi Cafe Iyasume (I will have a future post on it).

 Second visit: Regular Kamaage Udon ($3.75) with Fried Chicken and Bean Curd Musubi. Kamaage udon is served hot in a wooden basket and is served with a hot Bukkake dipping sauce. The sauce is flavoured with green onion, tempura bits, grated ginger, and ground sesame.

 On the second visit, I chose the Kake Udon ($3.75) with onsen egg, tempura fish stick, and vegetable tempura (I forgot how displeased I was with the first one and got it again >.<). Made with just bonito flakes and seaweed, the Kake broth was clean and refreshing.

 On the third visit, Meta Knight loved the Kamaage Udon so much he got it again. This was his ultimate favourite by far because of the flavourful Bukkake dipping sauce.

I also followed his lead and tried the Kamaage Udon for the first time. I added an onsen egg to it as well and they put it in my dipping sauce. The dipping sauce was complex and the only way I can describe the flavour is just to say, umami... It had ultimate umami flavour.

And there you have it. Our three visits to Marukame Udon. I don't think I have to recommend it because action speaks louder than words. Three visits in a week? Yeah, it's pretty damn good.

Service Rating: 4/5
Food Rating: 5/5
Price: 5/5

Overall Rating: Hell Yeah 5/5!!

Happy Eating!

happy dance tv 90s dancing friends
   so happy we found this place

Marukame Udon Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

20 November 2015

Ono Seafood (Hawaii) - A MUST when Visiting Oahu

I came back from a fabulous trip to Hawaii just three days ago and I am so excited to share with you all my delicious eats and food suggestions for when you're planning your next trip to sunny Oahu! This is the first post but there are tons more to come.

One of the non-negotiable food items Meta Knight and I both said we HAD to try while in Hawaii was poke. Poke (pronounced poke-eh) is a Hawiian dish consisting of cubed raw fish tossed in a marinade of usually salt, soy sauce, green onion, and other ingredients. It's often eaten as a side dish or as an entree served over a bed of hot white/brown rice.

While there are a few places you can get poke in downtown Honolulu or Waikiki, if you venture out a little further (into the real streets of Hawaii), you'll find a hidden gem that is guaranteed to blow your mind.

If you don't have GPS while in Oahu, it's really easy to miss this little family run joint. It operates out of the back of a motel and is frequented by foodie tourists and locals alike. There are no seats inside (just a few outside near the door) so be prepared to eat in your car or standing if the tables are full.

They have eight varieties to choose from but the fan favourites include: Shoyu Ahi (Tuna), Shoyu Tako (Octopus), and Spicy Ahi (Tuna). A small bowl with rice and poke is $7, while a large is $9.

A little take out action for those wanting some side dishes like soy raw crab or seaweed.

Ta-da!!!! You have no idea how long I've dreamt about eating real poke in Hawaii. This was finally my chance. Meta Knight opted for the Spicy Ahi (right) on brown rice while I chose the Shoyu Ahi (left)

One bite of this and Meta Knight was in love. The raw cubes of incredibly fresh tuna were chilled and marinated in the best type of spicy mayo you can think of. The combination of cold tuna over hot rice also didn't taste awkward at all. In fact it made it perfect for the sunny 30 degree weather.

My favourite part of the Shoyu Ahi was the little bits of crunchy seaweed that was tossed in the mixture. It was unlike any other seaweed I've tasted and certainly added the 'ocean' to the authentic Hawaiian poke. In comparison, this was definitely the lighter of the two.

One thing I failed to realize when we were there was the fact that you can choose to have two flavours in one bowl! If I did, I would have gotten half Shoyu Ahi, half Shoyu Tako. Instead, we went all out and got 1/3lb of the Shoyu Tako to share. I'm a lover of Octopus and they did a really good job here. Not tough or overly chewy.

Overall, Ono Seafood met my ridiculously high expectations going in and I would highly recommend this place to anyone staying in Honolulu or Waikiki.

Service Rating: 3/5
Food Rating: 5/5
Price: $

Overall Rating: 5/5

Happy Eating!

happy excited victory yas hell yes
           When you finally eat poke for the first time

Ono Seafood Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

6 November 2015

720 Sweets - Eating Ice Cream in Style

If you are at all active on Instagram or follow any food blogger accounts (like mine!), you must have come across at least one photo of 720 Sweets.

720 Sweets is a new little ice-cream shop that's one half hipster and one half nerd. It combines the science of dry ice and uses it to enhance the typical ice-cream experience.

They support a local baker by selling his or her homemade marshmallows. They not only sell them in packages for people to bring home, they also use these homemade marshmallows in their ice-cream creations.

Their menu is quite simple. They have 5 different varieties. 
  • The Classic - crushed graham crackers, condensed milk, and a freshly baked butter cookie
  • Honey720 - Rich honey drizzle and golden honeycomb
  • S'Mores Please - chocolate corn flakes, dark chocolate drizzle, crunchy almond stick and a toasted marshmallow
  • The Milky Way - crushed walnuts, light caramel drizzle, espresso grass jelly, and a crunchy almond cookie
  • Cloud Nine - almond stick, cotton candy popcorn, and a fluffy cotton candy
Queen B and I decided to share The Milk Way ($5.95). Besides the super cool effect of the dry ice flowing from the cup, there is nothing crazy outstanding about the ice-cream. The milk tea flavour was definitely on point and I would say it's one of the better soft serves I've had. However, it wasn't enticing enough for me to make the drive to Kits again just to get it. We both did notice that the dry ice kept the ice-cream cold throughout so YAY for not having any melty parts!

Service Rating: 3.5/5
Food Rating: 3/5
Price: $

Overall Rating: 3/5

Happy Eating!

scared omg shocked whoa john cena
                              dry ice made us go

720 Sweets Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

1 November 2015

Fresh Prep (Product Review) - Healthy Home-cooked Meal in Minutes

Fresh Prep is a local company that reached out to me to try their innovative, healthy product/ delivery service. They deliver perfectly prepped and portion controlled raw ingredients to your door so you can cook a healthy delicious meal in minutes. 

 You can choose from 12 recipes (10 are constant, and 2 are seasonal) on their website and one serving costs around $10-12. Not bad when you take into account the fact that they buy, prep, and deliver everything to your door.

Honestly, all of their recipes looked ridiculously delicious on their website so it took me forever to choose what I wanted. After much contemplation, I ended up choosing the Honey Dijon Chicken Thighs with Root Vegetable Hash.

With each delivery, they provide a physical recipe card with everything you need to know. Ingredients in the box, nutritional information, and even hashtag suggestions for when you Instagram your creations! :P

 This is what the back looks like. It was super simple for me to follow the instructions and I had the meal cooked and ready to go in about 25 minutes.

One of the reasons why I chose this recipe was the fact that it had a vegetable hash and I don't have to do any of the prep work. It came with perfectly diced red peppers, mushrooms, butternut squash, yukon gold potatoes, and onions/thyme. The raw pieces of chicken were wrapped in brown butcher paper tied with red and white yarn. How adorable does that look?!

They try to use locally grown ingredients whenever they can and I really appreciate that fact having watched food related documentaries like Forks over Knives, Food Inc., The Cove, and Fed Up. The reasons behind sourcing food locally and eating whole foods instead of processed ones don't hit close to home until you watch a documentary like Forks Over Knives or Food Inc. If you're at all interested, I highly recommend giving them a watch one night. It may change the way you eat for the rest of your life.

All I really had to do was dump all the vegetable ingredients in my pan and stir stir stir. :) So easy!

Ta-da!!! I don't know about you but I felt like a seasoned chef after creating this little masterpiece. This took the guessing out of what I was going to prepare, purchasing any of the ingredients, and cutting and chopping for an hour before actually getting to cook. I will definitely be ordering from them again, especially during those busy work days when I don't feel like going out, or cooking from scratch at home.

You have to order a minimum of 2 servings to purchase a meal so I cooked for both Meta Knight and I. He gobbled it up in no time and thought it was delicious. He didn't even mind the absence of rice or pasta. 

All in all, I think Fresh Prep is a wonderful delivery service that can benefit a lot of busy working professionals who don't have the time to always prepare a home cooked meal, but still want to lead a healthy lifestyle. 

Overall Rating: 4.5/5

Happy Eating! 

food animated GIF
                      Tasting my own creation is like

Fresh Prep Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

29 October 2015

Cafe Mai Mai - My Favourite Pho Restaurant. NO MSG!

Often many people ask me what my favourite food in the world is. It's a really hard question to answer, but when I answer I think of the one food item I cannot live without. It's also the one food item I think about whenever I come back from a long vacation eating food from another culture. For me, it's noodle soup. It can be ramen, pho, chicken noodle soup, or fish ball seaweed soup. Any type of noodle in any type of broth is my absolute FAVOURITE type of food. <3

My friend Queen B recommended a restaurant called Cafe Mai Mai not too far from my home and she said their pho is spectacular. She also said they use absolutely no MSG and that once you taste the broth, you will understand.

Since my first visit, I've been back maybe 7 times and I bring absolutely everyone I know to my now favourite pho restaurant. This is the #2 Small ($7.95) and it contains rare beef slices (which gets cooked in the hot broth), tendon, tripe, and beef balls. You'll notice the broth is a bit darker in colour than the traditional ones we're used to eating. It's darker because the owners need to use more beef meat and bones in their broth to make up for the lack of MSG. What you'll get is a richer, more flavourful, yet cleaner broth.

Your typical bean sprouts, basil leaf, and green pepper.

I can't explain how delicious the broth is (just like Queen B), you literally have to taste it for yourself to understand what I'm talking about.

Cafe Mai Mai also has a stamp card so if you eat 9 bowls, you get the 10th one free. What I love is that you also have the option of donating you 10th bowl back to them so they can donate the proceeds to the Canadian Cancer Society. I absolutely adore that idea and I think more local businesses should also adapt that. What an incredible way to promote giving back.

While I've tried their Vietnamese Coffee multiple times, I'm not a coffee connoisseur so I can't say whether this place has the best coffee or not.

For an amateur coffee drinker like myself, it tastes mighty delicious to me!

I also love eating the pho with their homemade chili sauce so I ended up buying one jar to take home for eight dollars. It's legit chili oil guys. So goooood.

Service Rating: 4/5
Food Rating: 5/5
Price: $-$$

Overall Rating: 5/5

Happy Eating!

In Japan, you must slurp your ramen.
                 Kirby eating noodles. How fitting!

Cafe Mai-Mai Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato