Saturday, August 28, 2010

Seafood, seafood, Water-Prince Corner Shop.

Charlottetown Waterfront, Prince Edward Island

During my time here in Charlottetown, we have driven by this corner shop a few times, peeking in the large windows as they were just gearing down for the night. Interesting place I thought, a corner shop? I wonder what they sell. I recall my boyfriend's mom mentioning that when Live with Regis and Kelly was filmed here, Kelly ate at a seafood joint and just raved about it (of course she'll rave about it-she's on live television).

Tonight was one of the last nights my boyfriend and I would spend in Charlottetown, because we were going to drive over to Nova Scotia for a wedding, and the following morning we'd be leavin' on a jet plane back to good ol' Edmonton. We ventured to two places before settling on a restaurant for dinner. Claddagh Oyster House was the first one we came across. Located in a historic building, this is one of the pricier restaurants. All I wanted for supper was some fish 'n' chips and some famous Malpeque oysters. This restaurant was too pricey, so we walked across the street. The Gahan House and Oyster Bar, located in a historic building, is known for their brown bag fish and chips, as well as their in-house brewed ale. I really wanted to eat here, but the waitress told us it will be a  45 minute wait. No way are we going to wait for 45 minutes.

We then walked back to the direction of our car, heading towards the wharf. My boyfriend then mentioned we should check out the place Kelly dined at while she was here to film Regis and Kelly. Given that the next day was Saucer and Cup day, a provincial holiday on the Island, there would probably be a line up at this restaurant as well. We arrived at the corner and saw several people waiting outside. Turns out they were just waiting on the corner. Thank goodness! Perhaps we can finally have a bite to eat? Sure enough, the waitress seated us outside on the side of the street, our table equipped with plastic patio furniture and an umbrella!

Mmmm seafood platter.
I knew exactly what I wanted. I had already tried all the fresh seafood I've been wanting to here, all but fresh Malpeque oysters. So my boyfriend and I shared that, as well as the seafood platter. It consisted of: 1/2 a lobster, P.E.I blue mussels, fried scallops, and fresh cut french fries. Oooh boy this should be good. Surprisingly, the Malpeque oysters did not have that much flavour other than sweet; perhaps they were too small. I drizzled it with a bit of cocktail sauce and squeezed fresh lemon juice. Delish. Next up came our platter. I had the lobster because my boyfriend detests lobster. Dipped it in vinegar. Oooh boy. Yum. The fried scallops were pretty good. Crispy, light batter, dipped in cocktail sauce. The mussels were sweet and fresh as usual. The fries sure tasted like they were freshly cut and fried.

Seafood isn't exactly filling, so that left room in our stomachs for dessert. "Strawberry shortcake!" I say. The strawberry shortcake here is a lot different than the kind out here. It's so much better than the ones out here. They are homemade and they actually use fresh strawberries. The "cake" part is actually bannock (native Indians make this, it's like a scone), cut in half and filled with strawberries and topped with more strawberries and topped with whipped cream. Typically, strawberry syrup is drizzled over it, but this version there wasn't leaving the bannock a bit too dry to swallow. Other than that, we inhaled it in 3 minutes.

Overall, this restaurant was pretty good. Cute location. There isn't really a secret to seafood, as long as it fresh. Although, they charge a decent price for bulk lobster and mussels; I brought some home for my family. $1.69/lb of mussels and $8.99/lb cooked lobster.$12 for packing to bring it on the plane.
Verdict: scrumptious!

Teriyaki Corner on Ellerslie & 91st

Mom and I were cruisin' down Ellerslie and 91st one day and decided to check out the Summerside corner of Ellerslie. Good Earth Coffeehouse had opened, so we decided to see what else was open. Sure enough, more restaurants were down the stip mall, there was a Vietnamese Pho Noodle Place, but it wasn't opened yet. There was also a place serving East Indian Cuisine, but also wasn't opened yet. The last one on the block: Teriyaki Corner. Teriyaki Corner? I think I've been in one before, but did not get a chance to eat because they were closing for the night. It was located in the west end, near Lewis Estates.

My mom and I were getting hungry as we were doing our "wondering shopping" after work. We decide to go inside. Hmmm. Interesting. There are two seats (one when you first enter, the other in the dining room) that are held up by thick ropes to mimic swings.
The cashier greets us (who is also the co-owner). I look at the menu. "Whhooooa" i thought to myself, there's a lot on the menu! The cashier/owner was very nice; he gave us a pamphlet menu to look at and asked us what we would like to try. There's a variety of rice bowls, maki, sashimi, udon and even bubble tea on the menu. You can also choose if you want a mini size of it, or the full size, which I think is quite cute. After looking at the menu with wandering eyes for 5 minutes, my mom and I settle on the "mini" pork cutlet bowl, and the dragon eyes roll. The dragon eyes roll is a play on Mikado's famous Dragon roll. It contains a spicy cooked tuna roll, wrapped around one more layer of rice and seaweed. The outside is then coated in a thin tempura batter. But that isn't the star of the show. The star is definitely the creamy spicy sauce. Man, have they got it bang on! For those of you who've tried this Dragon roll and it's sauce at Mikado...they've got it. The secret is out!

As for the mini pork cutlet rice bowl, it wasn't too bad. I didn't expect the cutlet to be fried; there were marinated cold bean sprouts and edamame beans, topped with their Teriyaki sauce. It was pretty good, but nothing I haven't tasted.

This cute little fast-food sushi joint is definitely worthwhile to try. Tokyo Express has been around for a while and to be quite frank, ain't that great. Teriyaki Corner's choice for quality of food is better than TE. Loyal fans of TE, move over and make room for Teriyaki Corner. Hiiiiiiiii yyyyyahhhh.
Verdict: scrumptious!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Where great food meets art, jewellery, scenery and beautiful flowers

Brackley Beach, Prince Edward Island

This was one of the first days where my boyfriend and I explored the Island on our own.  His parents had shown me around because they had taken some time off as well. First on our itinerary that day was The Dunes. The Dunes is a popular attraction located in Brackley, PEI. The Dunes is an art gallery filled with art from Island artists. It also has eclectic jewlery, furniture, a beautiful garden out back, and not to mention a superb cafe serving up delicious fare. Not too far down the road is Brackley Beach, a popular tourist beach. 

We had planned on having lunch here and skipped out on breakfast, so by the time we arrived, we were starving. The lunch line was about a 30-minute wait, but it wasn't so bad because there was alot of interesting stuff to see!We were given a buzzer until our table was ready, but the buzzer didn't go off. We checked the status of our table and sure enough, we were next in line! Perfect timing.

We got seated upstairs beside the window that looked out to the garden. I was excited! Great view and the food on the menu sounded yummy. When I'm out this far in Atlantic Canada, how could I not have seafood chowder? I mean, that's one of my favourite soups.
Atlantic seafood chowder-tomato based.
So for starters, seafood chowder it was. My boyfriend ordered roasted red pepper and coconut, the soup of the day. Maaaaaaan was my chowder one of the best I've tried! It was tomato based, which I prefer because it's less filling and less fattening than the roux-based chowder soup (flour and butter and cream). Mussels, small chunks of halibut and salmon, topped with a red-pepper rouille, this soup was a meal on it's own. I stole a bite of my boyfriend's soup- it wasn't as tasty as mine, duh!

My boyfriend ordered the pasta of the day: pancetta and spinach pasta, while I had ordered the turkey burger with fresh greens, and lemon preserve artichoke salad for the main course. I wasn't even sure if I could fit that in as I was full from the chowder.  But knowing me, I'll chow it down! The burger wasn't too bad; the meat was a little dry probably because it was lean and it was seasoned with curry (which I didn't realize when I ordered). It was tasty, but I much liked the chowder before. The small portion of the lemon preserve artichoke salad was something else. The subtle taste of the lemon preserve, combined with the tartness of the lemon paired with almonds, was a new taste for me. And I absolutely adored it. I kept in mind that I'll have to make it when I get home.  My boyfriend's pasta dish was also very tasty; quite creamy but the smoky flavour of the pancetta went well with the spinach. I snagged bites here and there. ;-)

No room for dessert here. But there was definitely room for a nice little walk around the garden. Next time I come to Prince Edward Island, I am going to make another stop here for sure.
Verdict: so-darn-scrumptious!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Lobster dinner in a church basement. Yes, I did say church. And basement.

New Glasgow, Prince Edward Island

This is probably going to be one of the most memorable suppers I've ever had while on vacation, especially in the Maritimes. My first ever visit to the Maritimes and my first ever dinner in a church basement. It's totally not what you think it is. The food, service and setting make this traditional lobster dinner a must since it's humble beginnings in 1964.

After a long day spent at the Anne of Green Gables historic museum, we topped off the day with a traditional lobster dinner. It was me, my boyfriend and his parents. Although this isn't my very first lobster experience, it's my first eating-in-a-church setting. The church is sort of in the middle of nowhere; nestled between scenic rolling hills, it's no wonder P.E.I is known for it's beauty.
You can't leave P.E.I without having this memorable meal.

All entree's are served as a five course meal. And there was quite a bit to choose from, like surf 'n' turf, island beef, shrimp, and of course, lobster. I knew what I wanted; the 1 lb lobster. Why wouldn't I? That's what I was here for! Here's the breakdown of my 5 course dinner:
  • Seafood chowder
  • Caesar salad
  • Fresh PEI blue mussels
  • 1lb lobster; cracked with side potatoe and roasted veggies
  • lemon meringue pie.
All that for $31.99. What a bargain. I think it came with a beverage too, but I didn't take notice until after we were finished.

The seafood was fresh and just perfect the way it was served, without seasoning. Although I've now learned that vinegar makes a great accompaniment to lobster (give it a try sometime). It enhances the aste in a way and compliments it in a savoury way.

I am totally in love with P.E.I. Not only are the surroundings beautiful, but the food is truly phenomenal because they have abundant farmland, surrounded my ocean waters filled with tasty seafood treasures.

Verdict: sooooooo scrumpidly-uptious!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Chicken feet at dim sum + boyfriend = one time experience only.

For those of you who are familiar with the widely popular ritual of dim sum, there can be many scrumptious dishes, scrumptious dishes you don't know what exactly-they-are, and not-so-scrumptious dishes that do not look appealing at all.

I'll take my boyfriend's experience this past weekend for example. I've already taken him a few times for dim sum and he for the most part, enjoys the food served. Fresh pineapple buns, siu mai, dumplings, daikon cakes and beef tripe.  All except one dish I coerced him to try (with the help of my cousin, which says that it'll make his skin nicer...haha) :chicken feet! I told him the way it should be eaten, the skin and tendons. It sounded rather disturbing to him, but somehow he agreed to try it. "Yer supposed to suck on the bones and spit 'em out on yer plate. Nice, heh?" Well, it's true. That's how we Chinese folk eat 'em. But I certainly do not eat it on a regular basis as it's quite fattening.

After that, it was written on his face that he wouldn't do it again. But, hah! I got him to do it the first and last time.

So, that's it for this entry. Wasn't about me trying a new thing, but rather my boyfriend trying a new thing. But seeing his facial expression was totally a new experience for me!
Verdict: not-so-scrumptious for him

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Cha Island Tea Co.-a tropical oasis near Whyte Ave.

Like many other Sonic Glee Club Members, I regularly chose my Sonic word every wednesday to accumulate sonicpoints. With those points you can redeem many great items such a CD's before the actual release date, signed posters and movie passes. This time, I chose to get a Cha Island Tea Co. certificate for 5 free iced teas. Mmmm.

Ma and I decided to go after work as i haven't redeemed any of my teas yet, and it expires the end of this month. It's nestled between the Rehab club and the comic store, on 81 Avenue and 103rd Street. What a cute little place! With palm trees virtually everywhere you look, it's definitely a tropical oasis they describe it to be on their website.

I ordered the iced chai tea and my mom got the iced green tea with honey. Mine was pretty good; didn't really expect the hints of chocolate until he asked me what I thought. We also ordered the Sandy Beach Waffle. It consisted of a large Belgian waffle with blueberries, green tea and coconut ice cream with whipped cream doloped in the centre. Mmmmmm. Mmmmm. Mmmmm. Tasty! Ma and I enjoyed it much.

Conversing with the owner, he gave us a drink that consisted of cinnamon, Alberta honey and water. Ta da! Those three simple ingredients mixed together tasted do earn good chilled, it wasn't funny. I had to buy a bottle for my boyfriend and family to try (i attempted to make this myself that night, but put just a tad bit too much of cinnamon).

For all of you who have an appreciation for tea, both chilled and hot (they have loose tea leaves for sale on their green shelves), come here and give it a try.
Verdict: scrumptious

Friday, August 6, 2010


Coming from me, Chinese restaurants tend to be in some of the strangest locations, not to mention obvious and yes, sometimes silly names.

My parents, aunt and I ventured to a small Chinese restaurant called 4 5 6. No jokes. I was driving to the restaurant and my dad had told me that it was behind the Municipal airport downtown. I thought, "ok", this should be interesting. Sure enough, this cafeteria-style restaurant was located in the Centennial Flight Centre (I hope i got the name right), near the Aviation museum.

I let my parents and aunt order the food because I usually don't know what's going on, nor do I know how to read the menu in Chinese (shame on me). But I trust them. The first item that arrives on our table is free-range Chinese chicken marinated in Chinese wine (fa zhui). The chicken is served cold and is best served this way because you can really taste the wine flavour, as well as the sweetness of the chicken. Next item up was a cabbage dish with thick-cut pork bacon, sauteed with a spicy bean sauce and a combination of another sauce I can't remember the name of. Soooooo tasty!

More items arrived simultaneously afterwards, specifically Shanghai steamed pork dumplings. These are one of the things that makes Shanghai famous (besides, yes, you guessed it-Shanghai noodles). They look like mini pork buns, but they are dumplings made to look like buns, with broth and pork with minced green onions inside. "Powwwww" a burst of broth hits my mouth, but the flavour is a bit too subtle. I prefer the chicken and cabbage/pork dish to this. Next up, dessert! Yep, Chinese people have dessert. But not the way that I tried this time. My mom saw the waitress bring it to other tables and was goshdarn curious as to what it was. The waitress was so nice as to give it to us for free. Wow. Free! Who doesn't like free? The dessert itself looked like a pretty little lotus flower. Puff pastry on the outside, and black sesame paste on the inside. The dessert was steaming hot because it was fresh from the fryer. Unfortunately, I'm not too big on fried desserts, but I had to give it a try. BINGO. Another hit with this restaurant.

To all you people out there who don't mind eating in a cafeteria with an aviation theme, and love Chinese food, and want to take the next step up: try this place. Verdict: scrumptious.

Directions: it is located right behind the Ramada on Kingsway. Take a right on 118 Avenue on to Airport Road NW (you'll see a set of lights). Follow this road as it curves, and on your left hand side, you'll see a building that says 4 5 6 restaurant.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Duchess Bake Shop lives up to it's grandiose name

The name "Duchess Bakeshop" has managed to keep it's name quite familiar amongst local folks in Edmonton these days. Like everything else in the food world, I want to try!

I ventured there by myself on a Saturday afternoon. It's nestled on 124th Street, which at one point was not a vibrant part of the city but now popping up with eclectic stores. When I arrived at my destination, there was a small line-up already forming inside. The bakery itself is simply decorated inside: white roman columns with their "Duchess" namesake behind the counter, small coffee tables on the side, and glass windows that uncover their delicious baked treasures.

They are known for their delectable macarons. It is not to be confused for "macaroons" whose main ingredient is coconut. They are bright in colour and the flavours vary on a daily basis. On the day I went, I chose 6 flavours: pistachio, passion fruit, lavender, coconut, creme brulee, and rose. Man, where they tasty! I could eat about 20 of them (they are very petite).I also purchased their meringues (egg white cookie), almond and coconut flavour. Those were tasty and baked to perfection. I also snatched up a chocolate brioche, which is small bread pastry filled with a chocolate ganache filling. Also delectable!

I totally recommend this place to anyone who has an appreciation for French gourmet baked goodies. Most is reasonable priced, but I sure don't mind to fork out money out when I know these owners have poured their heart, soul and time (bakers get up wayyyy too early!) into their baked treasures.

Verdict: scrump-didly-uptious.

My first visit to Prairie Mills Bread Co.

I was browsing the Edmonton Journal's bistro section where a blog was featured, along with links to finding local food in Edmonton. I found myself on the website "Live Local", which is a site that features local (Edmonton) businesses, restaurants and "Eat Local First" which is a site that allows you to buy featured local foods online. It was here that I discovered Prairie Mills Bread Co.

My mom and I love bread. I told her about this place when we were driving home from work and decided to give it a try since it's a reasonable distance to home.
By the time we arrived, most of the bread and goods were almost all sold-out, but we there was still quite a variety of loaves. The girl at the counter offered us a sample; after that sample, my mom was immediately taken. And so was I, of course. The weight of each loaf of bread is quite heavy and firm. By that, you know the bread is full of wheat, honey and goodness and not just whipped with air. We bought the sunflower flax loaf and I decided to try the cinnamon bun. The bread was scrumptious but the cinnamon bun, not so much.

I recommend this place if you love bread. The price of each loaf is a bit pricey (~$5.75), but it is full of freshly milled organic wheat, goodness and quality. (P.S. try the sourdough). Verdict: scrumptious.

Foon Ying!

Welcome/foon ying/bievenidos to my new food blog! Here, I shall post not only my scrumptious foodie adventures, but also my not-so-scrumptious foodie adventures in the city and also in other Canadian cities i've visited. Good food products and recipes (because I just adore cooking and baking!) that I think are worth sharing will also make an appearance on my blog. And please-I most welcome your comments, both good and bad alike! Cheers.