Now that we’re rolling into the fall season and coming back from various journeys over the summer, I thought it would be a good time to do another one of these consolidated posts and provide an update on previously visited places again as a refresher. The links throughout will lead you to original posts and/or commentary on follow up visits. If in doubt if you’ve viewed them all, please do a search on the main page for all your queries…
Returning to this unpretentious, very local Thai restaurant on Edmonds Street for a quick take away meal. After having a daily lunch special on my first trip here, I opted for the most well known Thai dish in North America, the pad thai. With medium heat requested, it did have a decent kick to it, but overall, the noodles were lost on me and the flavor seemed to skewed to sweet in the sauce that wound it way around all of the ingredients. There might be fans of their pad thai, but I’m clearly not one of them. Perhaps I just got them on a bad day, though the kitchen should not have been rushed as there were only two diners in the room at the time.
Another look at the noodles. A bit on the too-stuck-together scale for me, and sadly a lot of shorter, broken pieces in my styrofoam tray.
Another 2nd time visit. This time to that enclave of Korean eating delights in Coquitlam off North Road. Last time, we indulged in some table top grilling, however this time our meal was cooked in the back kitchen and brought out to us. We were kind of not expecting that, but alas, what can you do.
A pork and veggie melting pot on a hot grill plate made for a hearty meal once again. Lettuce leaves and various other condiments could be used to flavor each packet before eating. If I had to choose, I’d go with the marinated pork belly in the DIY manner over this one. Flavors while mixed, was on the ordinary side, nothing really excited the taste buds here. That didn’t stop us from eating most of the dish though. The accompanying doenjang jjigae (stew) was pretty good in terms of the robust flavor you get from Korean-miso infused stews and soups.
This popular stand in the Aberdeen Center continues to draw in crowds and ordering always begins with a wait in a lengthy queue. Again, as its been a while since I’ve had their well known deep fried chicken wings, this is what I ordered. I can’t recall if prices had gone up at all since last time, but I seem to think perhaps they have. While still juicy inside and delightfully crispy and seasoned on the exterior, I didn’t get the wow factor as on my first attempt. Still tasty, but not absolutely amazing. I guess its always good to have second takes on things, just to temper one’s excitement about things, especially food.
In this area of Burnaby – what I call the far east end of the Kingsway strip – there are really only two Japanese-run places that I will order sushi. Makoto, a spartan space with a well rounded menu featuring other Japanese favorites, is one of them. Nigiri is always fresh, well handled and prepared. With only one man behind then counter, it can take some extra time to be delivered especially when they are busy, but if you are more about quality than quantity, then you should have no issues. The ika and toro on this occasion were particularly delicious.
Another stop back at the U of C, thus ended up staying in the neighborhood again. Car-less and not a lot of free time on my hands resulted in me returning to some old stalwarts, Thai Palace being one of them. Still remains surprisingly popular with hotel stayers and locals alike, as it was busy on the two occasions I ate there on this trip. Once, I got asked if I had a reservation. Wow, not bad for a dimly lit place that has a strong draft of the chlorine water from the nearby pool inside the same building.
The green curry remains very good. Packed with authentic flavors and wonderfully savory and spicy. The portion size may appear insufficient, but coupled with some steamed rice, it makes for a big enough meal for most hungry men.
Perhaps it a theme of this post, but the pad thai which I thoroughly enjoyed the first time I had it here and raved about it, was disappointing me a bit on this night. Flavors seemed all muddled together and wasn’t catching the distinct balance on my taste buds.
This version of a tom yum soup they have was a delight. That rich umami-ness coming from the loaded mushrooms smothered throughout the broth really brought things together in my books. Perhaps more on the tart side, but if that’s how you like this distinct Thai favorite, then its right up your alley.
Perhaps its lost its luster for me, while still pushing out great hot dogs adorned with unorthodox toppings and combinations, but it could be that my desire to line up for these has waned. It was only because there was a slight reprieve in the queue that I decided to go in and was just one person behind at the til. Sticking with the best one (terimayo) they have IMHO, and tackling again the one that probably takes the most time to prepare if the staff don’t have their act together in the tonkatsu dog. Not sure if its the case since its been a few visits since I’ve gotten one at their street stands, but the buns at the “store” seemed more toasted than those, and I think that’s not something I like as much. So not off my eating list, just not high on there as its wearing off and the lines are still annoying.
Ramen in Burnaby is pretty underdeveloped. Kenzo is one of the few I know about and decided to give them another shot. Still quite popular with customers, and the big windows makes for a bright, welcoming place. I ordered one of their house special ramen, it was gigantic. The bowl was big enough for two I thought. Shio soup was the selection here. With some much veg, it was subdued and actually tasted quite healthy and was light on oil content. For randomly being this far east in this part of town or not wanting to go downtown for a hit of ramen, turns out Kenzo isn’t all that horrible when you consider those limiting factors.