Friday, 15 December 2017

Captain's Boil: Pricey but fresh!

A new Captain's Boil in Coquitlam! Much excite =D Since we got a coupon in the mail for a free pound of shrimp/mussels/clams, I've been itching to come!

Restaurant: The Captain's Boil (visit their website here)
Location: 1111 Ponderosa Street, Coquitlam
Cuisine: Seafood, Cajun/Creole, Asian Fusion
Price range: $20+/person

The Captain's Boil Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Date of visit: December 15, 2017
Atmosphere: 4/5
Staff/service: 1.5/5
Food variety: 2/5
Food quality: 4.5/5
Buck worthy? 3/5

Found some time to bring my parents to try, we waited about 15 minutes for seats. They cover their table with a paper sheet and have plastic bibs and gloves placed on the table.

They have a simple menu with seafood, flavor, and heat.

Look at the cute sailor bibs!

Anyhow, I wanted to try the clams, but they had just run out *cries* so we ended up with two items with the same flavor. First to arrive was our Mussels in a bag ($13/lb) in mild garlic sauce. I found it quite spicy already, loved the strong garlic though. If only it weren't so salty! Mussels were fresh and felt like more than one pound. There were 16 nicely sized mussels in the bag.

The downer of the meal was the Fish Dinner ($10.95), otherwise known as Teriyaki Fish on their menu. It comes on a sizzling plate with white rice and deep fried fish. The fish was salty and dry inside a thick layer of batter which was made even drier by the hot plate. It came with soy sauce for the rice. Not a big portion of rice. But to be fair, they're not known for their sizzling plates.

And then finally we ordered the King Crab (seasonal price, tonight it was $44.95/lb). I was impressed with the one leg that came in a bag, the garlic sauce didn't quite touch the leg but that's ok, we just opened it to dip. I expected a frozen leg but this was fresh and the meat was nice and flush to the shell. A giant leg, succulent flesh, it was moist and meaty.

Look at the size of it in my hand (it's de-shelled!)

And this was the damage, they claim to use biodegradable bags, so kudos to them! I really don't hope to see all this waste end up polluting the oceans =(

Alas, it was a pricey meal but satisfying. Service is a bit slow, but the servers were friendly. I know people are complaining about the paper/plastic cups and lack of true utensils, but perhaps they're forgetting the fun of eating with our hands-- which I feel is the reason why I'm paying so much money to eat at The Captain's Boil in the first place!

Sunday, 10 December 2017

Jimoco: Unfresh seafood, delicious pasta, small portions

I remember coming here many years ago and the would be hour long lineups, but the place was near empty for Sunday lunch time. Odd. Maybe it's because it wasn't lunch time yet? (We were there at 12:30pm) anyways, no one greeted us at the front, and finally someone noticed as we walked in halfway to the counter and told us we'd be seated in a couple minutes.

Restaurant: Jimoco CafĂ© & Pasta (visit their website here)
Location: 1046 Austin Avenue, Suite A, Coquitlam
Cuisine: Italian, pasta, seafood
Price range: $20/person

Date of visit: December 10, 2017
Atmosphere: 4/5
Staff/service: 2/5
Food variety: 5/5
Food quality: 1.5/5
Buck worthy? 1/5

Looking at the menu, prices have gone up by about $3-5 per dish, such was expected due to inflation and whatnot over the years. From the 2 for 1 menu we ordered 4 dishes for 5 people. First to arrive was the Risotto Al Frutti Di Mar ($21.95) with rose sauce (you can choose from tomato, rose, cream, wine, or curry). It was a pretty small portion if it weren't 2 for 1. The risotto was about 0.5 inches deep and although it tasted great, it definitely needed more cream to the rose. Tasted like plain tomato sauce. The mussels were hit or miss on freshness, some of them have definitely gone bad.

Next was the Linguine Al Frutti Di Mar ($20.95) in white wine sauce. Portions got smaller for this one, definitely not like the pictures on the menu. The was about a cups' worth of pasta on the plate. There were scallops, mussels, clams, and shrimp in this dish. The flavors were great and noodles cooked al dente. Again, the shellfish was not fresh, tasted fishy and smelled pungent.

Then the Fusilli Alla Lucana ($22.95) arrived a little on the burnt side. Interesting presentation since it's covered with pizza dough on top, which helped keep the dish warm while we finished the others first. At this point I didn't understand why they used such large plates if they were only going to fill them 1/3 or halfway because it just looks bad. Anyways, only dish that wasn't seafood, the sausage and pasta was decent. Pizza dough was very dense and although interesting in design, felt disconnected to the whole dish.

Last was the Linguine Soul Bianco ($21.95). Last time I came here I got the Linguine Soul which is the spicy tomato base, but I wanted to try something new, the Bianco is a white seafood sauce base. This was very delicious with fragrant herbs and succulent seafood sauce infused in the pasta as it bubbled in front of us. Unfortunately the mussels and clams weren't all fresh, more than half were inedible.

It's sad to see such a great restaurant come to this. The flavors and execution were amazing, but subpar staff, ingredients weren't fresh, and portions were tiny. I was disappointed and unsatisfied with my revisit. I guess good things don't last forever :(
  Jimoco Cafe & Pasta Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Wednesday, 29 November 2017

Yoon's Kitchen: New Korean Fusion in the neighborhood!

Seeing Sushi & Roll close down was disheartening to me, since I did enjoy their food, but seeing a new Korean restaurant in this area was equally exciting (I think it just opened this month, not even Yelp/Zomato official yet!). There aren't many Korean joints around this location, so it's a wonderful addition (I hope they can continue and stay!).

Restaurant:  Yoon's Kitchen
Location: 3017 St. John's Street
Cuisine: Korean, Japanese, Asian fusion
Price range: $20+ per person

Yoon's Kitchen Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Date of visit: November 29, 2017
Atmosphere: 4/5
Staff/service: 4.5/5
Food variety: 5/5
Food quality: 4/5
Buck worthy? 3/5

The place was pretty empty when we got there around 6pm, 3 tables of people. We were greeted warmly and seated promptly. The place looked clean and neat. I guess the fusion part is that they still offer some Japanese sushi.

First to arrive was the Bossam ($18.99) which is a boiled pork belly dish with sauce and wrapped in greens. The pork was nicely marbled and seasoned well. The napa cabbage it came with was crisp and contrasted well with the soft, melt-in-your-mouth pork belly. I'm not sure what the spicy dish was but it tasted like radish, and added crunch and flavor to the bite. Side dishes weren't remarkable, there was kimchi, bean sprouts, zucchini slices, and a ball of sweet mashed potato.

I couldn't resist getting a sushi roll and I love scallops so I got Under the Sea ($6.95). This is a torched spicy chopped scallop roll with surprise cream cheese. I say surprise because it wasn't a listed item on the menu. Overall the taste was average, fresh scallops were overwhelmed by the cream cheese and sauce. I wish they had went easy on the spicy sauce, otherwise a well made roll.

Can't forget the Korean style rolls so we settled on the original Gyori Kimbab ($5.25) with fried egg, spinach, crabmeat, fishcake, pickled radish, burdock, and carrot. This was the only dish that was good bang for its buck. The roll was quite large in comparison the the previous and although simple, the flavors went well together and in good proportion. I enjoyed this quite a bit!

Onto hot foods! We got their Soon Dubu Jjigae ($11.99)--otherwise known as soft tofu stew. We chose the mix, which included seafood and beef. Considering how much I'm paying for it, I was disappointed with the quality of this. It wasn't as rich as I'd had at other places and a little on the salty side. No egg went with it either.

The rice that accompanied the dish was really well made though, and they pour cold water (which the waitress leaked all over my jacket and didn't notice, but we'll let that slide) over the hot stone bowl with the remaining rice to make a soft rice stew thing. The pot was so hot it boiled out of the pot!

Silly us, we got another rice dish, the Hot Stone Bibimbab ($12.99) had mixed veggies, beef, and an egg atop rice. Bowl was big but the ingredients only filled half the bowl, which kinda makes it look bad. It tasted good though! The hot stone kept the rice warm for the duration of our meal and we got crispy rice at the end, one of my dad's favorite parts of the meal!

Before we got our bill, the waitress brought us a sweet rice drink (on the house). I hear that rice water brightens and whitens the skin, so maybe this is the secret to how Koreans maintain their beautiful complexions! Anyways, it was a light sweet drink and quite nice to end the meal. My mom thought it was a little too sweet for her liking.

Overall, I enjoyed the meal. The food was above average and flavors were great. Service was friendly and almost the right amount (sometimes it was hard to find anyone since there's only two people running the front). Not that great quantity-to-price-wise because this isn't Vancouver, people will expect more food for the same price since there's a lot of competition around with equal quality and price but more quantity-- people want good food for a good price. Alas, they're still pretty new, I don't even know when they officially opened (or maybe they're not), a good location for them though and I see a lot of potential!