Summer Vacation 2011 Recap

The Hubbs’ holidays are now over and it was actually quite nice! I didn’t think we had done much this year compared to our first year where we stayed home specifically just to hit up restaurants in the city, but according to The Hubbs, we actually did a lot more food-related things this year than I had thought.

Other than Waldhaus in Banff to kick off the holidays, we of course hit up North Sea Fish Market, as I had mentioned earlier, before we had gone to the cabin to pick up a nice fish — wild sockeye salmon, smoked maple candied salmon (we bought this more for D cuz we know it’s one of his favourite treats), smoked trout and smoked mackeral. We stopped in a second time on Thursday and picked up a piece of wild steelhead trout that was fresh that day and a portion of lobster mac’n’cheese for my lunchie. We were originally going to go out to dinner that night somewhere but I couldn’t get super excited enough to choose a place after we had visited Jelly Modern for the first time that afternoon, even though I still had restaurants on my list I wanted to try. After picking up fish, we popped next door to Springbank Cheese Co. and bought some cheeses: Salt Spring Island goat cheese with truffles, Scottish cheddar, a Boursin cheese and wedge of Parmesan.

When we got back to town on Monday, we went to Kinjo’s for dindin and specifically went about trying different things on their menu – more nibbly cooked things than actual sushi/sashimi which I guess it would be like going to a tapas bar or more correctly, since it’s Japanese, an izakaya. They’re menu is designed similarly to that of Sushi Boat — items are priced based on their plate colour and menu items are listed under each colour heading which is kind of odd when you wanna order stuff. For example: I wanted to order o-toro sashimi (fatty tuna belly), it’s not listed under sashimi, but under “gold plate items”. Pain in the butt in my opinion, but it’s a relatively minor issue. Food is mostly okay since I don’t hold them to super high standards. One nice and interesting thing about Kinjo’s is that they give you an amuse bouche/sampler plate when you arrive at your table, which generally tends to be 4 VERY small slices of their special rolls of the day. Oh I do have one gripe about their rolls: unless you order their house special rolls, the regular stuff (ie: simple tuna or salmon or even california roll) is extremely tiny. Usually sliced half the size of a regular roll and only four pieces to a plate. Total disappointment in that regard. If you order their special rolls, they are quite ikmpressive, so perhaps that’s what your’re expected to buy instead.

Wednesday we went out for brunch at a place on 4th Street called Red’s Diner. They do not get thumbs up from us. The whole meal was disappointng from start to finish. Maybe it was just a bad day, but somehow I am leaning towards our experience being considered normal. Waitress was slow, forgot my coffee, claimed to not have heard my coffee order (even though she repeated it back to me when I made it), food took over 30 minutes to arrive, took even longer to acquire a bill and we think we both may have had a bit of tummy upset for the days following as a result :/ and no, the place was not busy, which is what made things even more frustrating and disappointing. They even lost a few customers due to their failure to acknowledge the customers’ presence at the door for 5 minutes of standing around waiting for a table. Poor customer service all around.

Friday we went to Big Rock Grill with D&K and the lovely Miss R. We didn’t realize it, but it was D&K‘s five year anniversary so we bought everyone lunch to celebrate. Their lobster bisque is quite tasty, and even moreso on a day that happens to be cold, wet and gloomy. The rest of the day we spent at home (actually, the last three days) vegged out on the sofa in the family room. Me with my ipad and cookooks and The Hubbs with his laptop paying WoW. I had a hankering for comfort food that night so we ordered Chinese takeout wih lots of veggies from our usual haunt Shanghai Palace. It never fails to amuse me, everytime The Hubbs comes back with our dinner, the ladies at the restaurant always say, “Good deal! We give you free chicken fried rice!” Even funnier is when we order something “particularly Chinese”, they always make doubly sure when he picks up our order that it’s what we wanted and he reminds them that I am Chinese and then they always go, “OHHH!!!! Very good then, she knows and will like it lots!” Or something to that effect. They’re awesome, I hope they stay in business for a good long, long time even though we’ve already been frequenting them for the last 10(!!) years. ^_^

Saturday we didn’t actually have any plans, but we ended up running off to Jelly Modern again and picked up some doughnuts for my parents. Apparently Dad was craving doughnuts after I had spoken to them that morning. We also picked up a reuben for The Hubbs at Myhre’s Deli. Apparently the boy at the deli missed us ;)

Sunday was a mostly veg-out day too, but we decided at the last minute to make a jaunt to the new location of theCalgary Farmer’s Market. We picked up a three cheese rosemary focaccia, a chocolate truffle mousse thingy, and an almond croissant from Yum Bakery, some black truffle salt, and a jar of whole nutmeg from The Silk Road Spice Merchant, and a jar of lobster bisque from Blu Seafood. The bread, Thursday’s cheeses and the bisque is what ended up being dindin for last night.

Bread’n’Cheese

The bread was excellent, though a bit on the greasy side, be it because of all the cheese or perhaps they had rolled the dough in olive oil prior to putting it into its bread pan and baking, I don’t know. Flavour-wise it was wonderfully fragrant with the rosemary and the amount of cheese sprinkled on top wasn’t so excessive to make it heavy and weighed down. The lobster bisque, I have to admit, I was underwhelmed by. Not necessarily because it couldn’t hold a candle to the bisque at Big Rock, I really enjoy tasting a restaurant’s lobster bisque when it’s available so that’s not the issue. The problem was that it had no lobster flavour and no lobster pieces. It was flavourful, but it tasted more like a creamy tomato soup than anything remotely lobster-like. Kind of a disappointment, but given that it was $6 for a 500ml jar (to which you had to add 1/2 cup of cream when reheating) it would have been an absolutely awesome price for such a decadent soup that I would have been more than thrilled to buy again if only the flavour was there. They also sell it in 1L jars for $12 which would be a great size when having friends over for dindin and not be a break the bank kind of dinner option.

All on all, I guess we did do a fair bit, it just didn’t seem like that much in my head. The Hubbs wished he could take the rest of the summer off with me when we went to bed last night, but otherwise, I think he had a mostly restful week off ^_^

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