Thursday, July 12, 2012

Parker Place Food Court - Shanghai Goodies and Lai Taste

Well, it's a month of firsts.  First the Beaver Tails, now Viet Namese Subs.  Can you believe I've never had a Viet Namese Sub?  Anyway, I'll get to that later.  I was out with my parents and they were giving me the Parker Place Food Court tour.  They go for walks everyday and part of their routine is to go someplace to get a snack.  It used to be Richmond Public Market for the longest time, now it's Parker Place for XLB and and Viet Namese Subs.  I decided to meet up with them after one of their walks and was really, really hungry so we ordered a bunch of stuff to try.

I usually can't handle spicy, but sometimes I like to tempt fate like here with the Hong You Cao Sou (No idea how to write it properly).  Anyway, essentially it's wonton noodles in a spicy sauce.  It wasn't too bad considering it was a food court, and you really can't complain about the pricing.

Sen Jian Bao (again, no idea how you're supposed to spell it) were okay, but a bit dry inside compared to some other places that serve it.  Still, they were tasty overall and for the price, it's hard to complain.

XLB!  I can't believe I'm using this acronym, because I always thought of them as Shao Long Bao, but then again, I guess that depends on what part of the world you're from.  I could never figure out how the hell you get a "sh" sound out of an "x", but whatever, that's opening a whole other can of worms.  The XLB were not too bad, skin was a bit thick, but still tasty.  They had a decent about of soup inside so more or less made right.  There's this place in the Aberdeen Food Court that makes better food-court xlb, but that's just my opintion.  These are definitely still good enough to eat that I won't bother walking to Aberdeen if I'm already in Parker Place.  Decent food, cheap, quick and easy.  Chinese fast food at it's finest.  Yeah, I'd go back.
Shanghai Goodies 上海坊 (Parker Place) on Urbanspoon

Part two of the tour was my introduction to Viet Namese Subs.  Now, being in the Parker Place Food Court, some might question the authenticity of this Viet Namese shop.  For me, I couldn't care less who made it, as long as it tasted good.

I tried the pho and the cuts of beef were quite different from what I'm used to.  Thicker, and more of it.  The quality of the beef was good, unfortunately the broth itself didn't have very much flavour (haha, maybe not enough MSG).  Anyway, the star of this shop isn't the "pho", it's the subs.  Authentic or not, they taste awesome, and there's no way to beat the price - cheaper than dirt.

We ordered two types of subs, the pork and the fish.  Both were absolutely amazing.  The pork was tender, with a thinly breaded coating.  It was like veal (yeah, I know, veal is baby cow and we're talking about pigs here).  The veg wasn't overwhelming the meat, and I think the combination of the pickled radish and carrot combo (sort of sweet and sour) along with the celantro is a perfect paring to the deep fried pork.  This combo comes wrapped in a lightly toasted French-style baguette.  It wasn't hard, it wasn't chewy, it didn't fall apart and every bite was suprisingly neat because none of the ingredients fought against the other as in some other subs.

The fish sub was also delectable.  Same veg ingredients, and a perfect blend of textures.  Best of all, a stupidly low price considering you get a very tasty and rewarding meal. 

Gonna try the brisket next time.  Had the beef, hope the brisket will be better.  Or maybe I'll just order more subs next time!  I never had a Viet Namese Sub before, so are they all this good?  I will definitely have to start experimenting with other places, but damn, Lai Taste really delivers for less than a fist full of dollars.

Lai Taste on Urbanspoon

Beavertails - Holy %&$# these are good

How is it I was born in Canada, grew up in Canada, yet never experienced eating a beaver...tail?  Haha, all kidding aside, I got to partake in this magical experience for the first time at Lonsdale Quay Public Market.  I've seen people line up for these things, and now I sorta get why.  Apparently, they're not that high in fat and calories (less than a muffin or scone according to them), but something that tastes this good can't be good for you, haha!

I wonder how much fat and calories are in the Nutella one that I had?

So this was my taste of amazing.  I found it was light and fluffy with a thin crispy coating, every bite melting in my mouth, held together only by the generous coating of Nutella.  I could eat a dozen of these.  I can't remember if wheat was the only option, but mine was wheat and it helped assuage my guilt for eating such at thing.  I can't wait to go back, haha!

Beaver Tails (Lonsdale Quay) on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Alaskan King Crab at Lucky Tao

God, this should have been posted bak in April or something, haha!  I have really been neglecting this blog since I started that other hobby, but anyways, let's see if I can get back into it.

Alaskan King Crab was in season a few months back and all the Chinese restaurants were having their deals on.  The one we chose to try was Lucky Tao.  I haven't had Alaskan King Crab for ages and to be honest, I can't tell the diff between good quality and bad since I hardly ever have it.  Take dungeness crab meat, throw it in a pool of garlic butter and I doubt I could tell it from Alaskan.  But anyway, here we are at Lucky Tao.

The place was pretty crowded and considering we had a reservation, we still had to wait quite some time well past our reservation time.  The staff worked hurriedly, with no time for idle chit-chat or smiles.

Out waiter brought out a crab to show us that the meat was indeed real, and not pre-frozen.  I had my doubts originally because the tanks were filled to the brim, overcrowded even, with Alaskan King Crabs, yet everyone was ordering Alaskan King Crab.  Then I saw a delivery of live crab brought in unceremoniously through the center of the restaurant and saw that yes, they just had a steady supply crabs.....I know, that sounds weird.

The first course was the legs, all opened up for us and served in this buttery garlic sauce.  There were way too many of us, so I onyl had about two legs.  Garlic and butter is always a good combo, especially when added to just about any seafood, so yeah, it tasted good.  Not sure if it tasted $15.95 per pound good, but it tasted good.  Funny thing was, I swear I didn't get a pound's worth of crab, haha!

The set meal allowed for a side dish so we chose deep fried prawns in seasoning salt.  It was pretty tasty and the prawns were of a decent size.  Good thing everyone else was holding out for the next crab dish so I got most of the prawns, haha!

Some sort of meat and veg, not worth mentioning.

Next was the fried rice served in the crab head.  I honestly didn't detect much crab meat here, and the fried rice was a bit substandard.  And *uck!  What did they do with that gooey stuff some people call crab brains or Kani Miso?  Oh, if they threw it out, what a waste it would be.

No idea what this was....some sort of jello pallet cleanser.  The only reason I ate so much of it was because after our meal, I was still really, really hungry.  It worked out to about $45 per person, and I felt a bit scammed because I was still hungry at the end! 

Would I go back?  Well, probably not.  The service ended up being really good, two older gentlement were our primary servers and they were pretty nice.  But damn, Alaskan King Crab is pretty expensive for me, so on that alone, I would probably not go back.  The food tasted good overall and the service was decent, but to leave with $45 less in my wallet, and still be hungry is the biggest sin.

Lucky Tao Chinese Seafood Restaurant on Urbanspoon

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