Thursday, December 29, 2011

Asian Christmas, 2011

Happy Holidays, everyone!

For the most part, traditional Chinese families don't serve the typical Christmas dinners, such as a roasted turkey and all its trimmings. Since my parents have been here for a really long time, my mom does make a really mean roast turkey and yummy stuffing when she feels like it. However, since this year we were entertaining guests that were more traditional Chinese, we decided to make an entirely Chinese Christmas meal.

Allow me to introduce to you a Chinese Christmas feast!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Little Fat Sheep is more than the restaurant's name; it's a lifestyle.

So impromptu restaurant visits result in crummy cellphone pics. I'll update with better pics if I go back.

You know that feeling of pride and independence you get when you first eat out with your friends without any adult supervision? It usually happens in the early years of high school (or in middle school for the non-Quebecois), and it usually happens at the 3 Amigos, since fast food places don't count. Well, in my case, one of my first independent restauranting experiences was at the Little Fat Sheep, an AYCE Mongolian hot pot franchise restaurant in Chinatown.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Having fish & chips at Brit & Chips!

Brit and Chips is a small and quirky restaurant located in Old Montreal. Apart from their quaint outer decor that makes one feel like they walked onto a 1990s set of Coronation Street, they boast serving the best fish and chips in Montreal. And what makes their fish and chips so special? Different types of fish paired with unique mixes of batters!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

What if you could have a bit of Beirut in your garage? - Garage Beirut

Garage Beirut is a small and unconventional Lebanese restaurant situated on Mackay, which is apparently pronounced 'Mac-Eye' and not 'Mac-A'. Eeesh. Tom-eh-toes Tom-ah-toes. Anyway. I've only the typical fast-food Lebanese food, like the shish taouks, shawarmas and falafels, but I've never been to a Lebanese restaurant before. Having read some good reviews on Garage Beirut, I was eager to try this place out.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Montreal's own Mahal! - Bombay Mahal

Bombay Mahal is one of the many Indian restaurants on Jean-Talon street in Parc Extension, but definitely not one of the most eye-catching. In fact, this restaurant would have been very inconspicuous, tucked away in a corner, if it weren't for the crazy line-up in front of its doors. So why would people still line up at 8:00 pm on a cold November's night? Yummy, spicy Indian food for very reasonable prices!

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Hot, hot, hot! - Cuisine Szechuan

Heeelloooo chili-heads. Look at those peppers. Now back to me. Now back at those peppers. Now back to me. Sadly, they aren't sweet. But if you stopped eating Americanized Chinese food and switched to authentic Sichuan food, you could eat spicy foods just like me. Look down, back up, where are you? You're at Cuisine Szechuan with the Chinese food your food could taste like. What's in your hand, back at me. I have it; it's a napkin with two chopsticks to that thing you love. Look again; the chopsticks are now hot peppers. Anything is possible when you eat authentic Sichuan food.

Now that I've filled my quota of incomprehensible humour, allow me to introduce Cuisine Szechuan to you! Situated conveniently downtown on Guy, Cuisine Szechuan specializes in Chinese cuisine from the province of Sichuan, which is known for their spicy and flavourful foods. What makes Cuisine Szechuan stand out is that, unlike most Chinese restaurants here, they aren't afraid to bring on the heat!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Are you coco for Cocoa? - Cacao 70

Cacao 70 is a little cafe on Ste-Catherine's street with a warm, home-y atmosphere and equally warm and friendly staff. They specialize in cacao and cacao products, and have an extensive menu on a wide range of hot cacaos, quirky cold cacao drinks, and decadent chocolate desserts. For those who are looking for a meal, they also serve a variety of salty crêpes.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Can a burger be gourmet? It can, at Le Gourmet Burger!

Hey look! I'm reviewing a restaurant that's non-Asian! Ha... ha... ha....

Truth is, Gourmet Burger is a pretty popular spot with the students. It's right downtown, near Concordia, and serves great burgers to boot, so of course I was gonna check it out. While they didn't serve the best burgers I've ever had in my life, Gourmet Burger definitely blows the surrounding competition out of the water. The neighbouring A&W's and Mickey D's ain't got nothing on this burger joint.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

When slurping noodles, please ensure that you do not disturb the people in your surrounding area - Hakata Ramen

 Why, you may ask, is my title picture that of fried chicken slices if I'm reviewing a ramen restaurant? It is elementary, my dear Watson; I fail at taking pictures of ramen. And since the crispy chicken dish is one of the mainly featured ramen dishes at Hakata Ramen... Why not?

So picture this: it's a dreary October day, it's freezing outside, you're downtown and you have no idea what to eat because you're with the world's most indecisive people. Where do you go? What do you turn to? Pho! ... is what I'd like to say, but there aren't that many good pho places downtown. So what's the next best thing? Ramen!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Spicy, sweet, savory? - Restaurant Sawadika

Wow, I'm so sorry I haven't updated in so long! What with midterms running rampant, I haven't had much time to go restauranting or to write up blog posts. But now that I have thoroughly screwed over my midterms (or is it the other way around?), I present to you a blog post on a taste of Thailand - or is it?

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Getting a boost from Restaurant Boustan

I know I haven't updated in a while, but midterms have started, so restauranting won't be happening for a while. I did manage to visit Boustan before things got too hectic, so here is a fast post about fast food!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Poutine Bananza at La Banquise

You know, despite being a self-proclaimed foodie and a Montrealer, I've yet to try the so-called 'greatests' that Montreal has to offer, such as La Banquise and Schwartz's. Yes, yes, ready your rotten tomatoes, aim, and fire. I had been meaning to try them for a really long time now, but the line-up in front of Schwartz's never fails to make me cringe, and La Banquise always seemed like a hassle to get to. Luckily for me, an opportunity arose when a few friends (with a car!) from out-of-town came to visit and wanted to check this place out.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Happy (belated) Mid-Autumn Festival! Mom's homemade mooncakes~

Happy Mid-Autumn Festival to all! 中秋节快了!And what better way to celebrate than with mom's homemade mooncakes?

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Lamb shanks and meatballs and spices, oh my! - Khyber Pass.

It's back to school! Back to endless nights of cramming, countless boxes of take-out and empty cartons or instant noodles. Sigh. But before that, one more trip to the Plateau!

When my friend told me she was craving lamb, my first thought was: 'Oh, we're going to Fat Sheep or Kiss Grill again'. Never in a million years did I expect her to take a group of us to Khyber Pass, a quaint Afghan restaurant situated on Duluth in the Mount Royal region. To be completely honest, I had no idea what Afghan cuisine even consisted of before going to Khyber Pass, and I still can't really say if I do now. I don't know if the Afghan cuisine they serve in this restaurant is authentic or not, but what I can say is that the food is damn good either way.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Yuan, for all things 'un' of the Oriental sort.

So, as you may or may not know, I have some weird fascination for vegetarian and vegan cuisine, despite being more carnivore than omnivore. So when my friend told me about Yuan, a restaurant that serves Asian vegetarian and vegan cuisine featuring imitation meat, I was immediately intrigued. I had never tried imitation meats before, other than the good ol' fake crab, and was curious as to whether they really tasted like meat or not. The verdict? Read on to find out. (TBC... Dun dun dun!)

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Chez Hwang to the rescue!


Heeere goes my craving for Korean food again. Luckily, many of the better Korean restaurant seem to be located in Westmount, so when I found out that La Maison de Seoul was closed for lunch on that particular day (I'm not entirely sure if they're closing down permanently), all I had to do was take a ten-minute walk to Chez Hwang, and voila! Craving abated, crisis averted.

Chez Hwang is another non-descript restaurant located a bit in the middle of nowhere and that offers the typical variety of Korean dishes, as well as some atypical Korean dishes (pig feet), and some Japanese dishes as well.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Burger de Ville, Burger de Ville, fresh juicy patties direct from the grill!

... Eating it will give you such a thrill! Burger, oh Burger de Ville~  (To the tune of 'Cruella De Vil'). Oh yes, I'm full of really bad and corny puns. Aaanyway, onwards to the intro!

Burger de Ville is a popular burger joint with a simple and straightforward menu that offers burgers with fresh (read: unfrozen) beef patties, a large variety of toppings, and a small selection of side dishes. While the menu and decor of the restaurant are simple, Burger de Ville proves that it doesn't need all the fancy add-ons by offering some of the juiciest, thickest burgers that I've had in Montreal.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Mooching off a friend on a rainy day... in HD!

Imagine this. You're planning to take a stroll in the Mount Royal region and try out some quaint restaurants, but it just so happens that the sky decides that it's high time to start dropping domestic pets on you - metaphorically, of course. So what do you do? Head over to your culinarily-gifted friend's house and mooch off her, of course!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Vivre Aux Vivres!


Aux Vivres is a popular vegan restaurant/cafe on the Plateau that seems to also specialize in smoothies/juices. Even though the store is small and the location a little random, the restaurant is usually quite full, and with people of all shapes, sizes or food-religion. Or regular religion, at that. Despite having no trace trace of dairy, eggs or meat in their foods, it is not uncommon to find even big, burly guys frequenting this dainty establishment. Why? Because Aux Vivres manages to whip up foods that make you forget that the meat/dairy/egg is even missing.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

New blog, hurrr! Introductory post that no one will read.

So. A food blog. It's a bit sad to realize that the only thing that will get me to start blogging is food, but hey, to each his/her own. I need to get back in the habit of writing, and what better to write about than food?

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Notre ami Amelio's.

Amelio's is a tiny family-owned restaurant on the corner of Milton and St-Famille. Amelio's specializes in 'gourmet' pizzas - pizzas that are of a higher caliber than your standard Domino's or Pizza Hut - but they also serve subs and pastas. Despite its low-key appearance and plain decor, the perpetual line-up outside its doors will be sure to alert you to Amelio's presence and to its quality.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Marvel at the portions at Marven's!

Marven's is another hole-in-the-wall restaurants, this time situated in a residential district of Parc-Extension. Honestly, if you weren't looking for the restaurant, you probably would never find it. Once you enter the restaurant, the decor is also rather bland - except for the giant moosehead hanging on the wall that stares into your soul - and yet, you will still see a huge line-up at the door. Why? Great food and huge portions.

Friday, July 22, 2011

The Ginza of AYCE sushi.

If Montreal's all-you-can-eat sushi restaurants were shopping districts in Japan, then Ginza would be... well... Ginza. Ginza is a very small and inconspicuous restaurant situated on the busy street of St-Denis. Despite its small stature, it is still relatively well-decorated, and serves some of the better AYCE sushi I've had to date. And believe me, I've had my share.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Shucked oysters at the Oyster Shack.

The Oyster Shack is a small seafood restaurant and bar situated in the pub district of Bishop's street. As the name implies, their specialty seems to be the oyster, but they serve various other seafood platters as well, ranging from the simple Fish and Chips to the creative Clam Chowder Poutine, and even a fancy Seafood Pasta.

Friday, June 17, 2011

Imadake, suki desuuuu!1!!!one11!!!11!

Situated conveniently on Ste-Catherine's, right across from Place Alexis Nihon, Imadake is another Izakaya-styled restaurant, serving small plates of Japanese bar food and Sapporo draught/draft beer.

The restaurant is bustling with people, but the cooks and waiters never fail to yell an 'Irrashaimase' to anyone who enters its doors. The decor is simple and the staff seem fun and enthusastic (and Japanese, to boot), and the food, while kind of expensive, is quite good.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Qing Hua dumplings, just like mom makes!

Qing Hua is a small family-owned dumpling business located near Concordia University. It has a surprisingly large white clientele, but don't let that be a turn-off for you; this restaurant offers some of the most authentic Chinese dumplings I have had in Montreal. They pretty much taste exactly like the ones my mom makes.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Please refrain from kissing any grill, even if it's at Kiss Grill.


Kiss Grill is another hole-in-the-wall Asian joint, owned and run by a Chinese family, and specializes in hot pots and grilled meats. Everything is cooked in the kitchen and brought to you, and you can choose the level of spiciness you want in most of their dishes. They also offer complimentary (and refillable!) iced tea.

Monday, April 25, 2011

La Maison Seoul, you've got soul.

La Maison Seoul is another gem of a restaurant hidden away in the Westmount area of Sherbrooke. It's owned and run by Korean people, and while it has a typically Caucasian clientele and a typical menu, the food still tastes authentic and goooood.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Crudessence for the recrudessence of my curiosity for vegan food.

Crudessence is a vegan and raw food restaurant, with various locations around Montreal. Yes, this means that not only do they not serve meat, eggs and cheese, they also serve food that has not been cooked in any form. What?You mean there's more to veganism and raw food-ism (...?) than salads? :O Le gasp!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Luck is a come-a at Raku Izakaya! *runs away*

Raku Izakaya is a Japanese restaurant run by a Chinese man who worked in Japan as a chef situated on Taschereau in Brossard. The focus of the restaurant is actually more on the cooked 'bar' foods, and less on the sushi, but the restaurant still has a decent sushi menu to meet the needs of all the sushi-addicts out there.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

La Maison Du Nord (北方人家) is not a house due North.

La Maison Du Nord is a tiny, family-owned restaurant that specializes in home-style Northern-mainland Chinese cooking. They're known for their dumplings and noodles, but also cook dishes from other provinces, like the Yu Xiang Qie Zi, Mapo Tofu, etc.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Kazu, I choose you!

Restaurant Kazu is a small Izakaya (bar-styled) Japanese restaurant owned and run by Japanese people on Ste-Catherine's street. They specialize in cooked foods with added twists, making Kazu a unique and delicious dining experience. Because the restaurant is so small and popular, expect a long line-up at any given hour. It's totally worth the wait though.