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The Big Taste 2012 (formerly Dine Out Calgary)

I tried Brasserie Kensington a few days ago. The starter was consisted of thinly sliced rare duck on crostini, which was pretty good if you're a fan of duck, which I am. The main was braised beef short rib which was, in my opinion, cooked perfectly. The downside was the glob of some kind of herbed buttery substance (which might be foie gras) they put on it overwhelmed the taste of the meat. I think the main was my least favourite part of the meal, but that may just be because I don't like flavours that are too much. The dessert was fabulous. I've never had foie gras in dessert before, and was sceptical, but it was actually really enjoyable. Now for the downside; the service was lacking. This is coming from someone who normally dislikes intrusive or overeager servers. We were left with menus waiting for the server, even after we had said we were here for the Big Taste. And the waters were filled once the entire evening. The table beside us had a couple who waited a good 15 minutes before the server came over. Would I go here again? A hesitant maybe.

Mar 10, 2012
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Nice dining without breaking the bank? YYC (Calgary)

Hi all!
So, I have a question for all you knowledgable chow hounders; where is a nice place (where semi-formal clothing is appropriate) with good food and a reasonable-ish prices? I'm planning a secret santa gift exchange dinner before the group decides to jet off to different countries after Christmas, so I was hoping to find some place with good food at a reasonable price and good atmosphere. I think the ladies want a reason to dress up a bit. Any suggestions? No real preferences or dislikes in the group or any allergies.
I appreciate your consideration!

P.S. We plan to this dinner Dec 16th of that matters. :)

Dec 06, 2011
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Fresh pho noodles in Calgary?

I have yet to go to a place that makes their own noodles, but if you manage to find a place, I'd love to know about it. It's pretty much just packaged noodles in Calgary/most places.

Mar 22, 2011
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Organic Stevia Powder

I'm looking for pure stevia powder (not the extract that includes other stuff in it) online or local. Does anyone know a trusted site they could recommend? I've found a couple stuff locally but they all seem to include other ingredients. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks!

Jan 21, 2011
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Macadamia Nuts - Where to buy? YYC

I tried that as well. Couldn't find it. :(

Jan 20, 2011
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Macadamia Nuts - Where to buy? YYC

Thanks! I'll check it out when I can. They're awfully elusive.

Jan 20, 2011
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Macadamia Nuts - Where to buy? YYC

This is awkward for me to ask since I thought it was a more common ingredient, but it turns out I was wrong. Can't find them anywhere. I checked Superstore, Sobey's, Safeway, and a couple other places as well; about the only places I haven't checked are the Organic stores. Does anyone have an idea where I can buy some in bulk (for baking)? Please and thanks!

Jan 19, 2011
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Are there any great restaurants in YYC Chinatown ?

Is it bad that I think that some of the best Chinese, Vietnamese, and Japanese food are *not* in or near Chinatown? Not saying the ones that are in that area aren't good, but the best places tend to be in other areas. Try Forest Lawn area (International Avenue) for Vietnamese food.

Jan 08, 2011
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Very good restaurant in Calgary?

No love for Teatro? Sure it's expensive... OKAY, very expensive, but it has a nice atmosphere and good food (from what I can remember).

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Teatro Restaurant
200 8th Ave SE, Calgary, AB T2G 0K7, CA

Dec 23, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Kol3 Restaurant - Calgary (Kensington)

I'm a girl, and weight about 107lbs. When my family makes banh xeo at home I need to eat about 3-5 (full sized ones) to get me full. I think the single serving of banh xeo constitutes more of a snack, not a full meal. Everyone in my family eats more than one if we're eating this for meal. Same with home made salad rolls they serve in restaurants, I eat about 6-10 for dinner (they're more fully loaded) but in restaurants they're more like appetizers or snacks.

Not sure about the mung bean in the outside part but I know there is tumeric. At our house we have a whole spattering of different mint leaves; basil, spearmint, a mint that is purple on one side green on the other, the thin skinny one, and others that I don't even want to try to describe, along with lettuce. We put pork, shrimp, and bean sprouts in ours as well. Honestly though, a lot of vietnamese food in restaurants taste nowhere near as good as the stuff I get at home. And you get more of it at home for a much (much) less cost.

As for Kol3, I really liked their remix on the vietnamese sub and I was pretty darn full after finishing the first half of the sandwich. It's too bad they don't make them anymore.

Dec 09, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Onion Ring Chips

This is such a coincidence, because my sister was saying how she found these onion ring chips she used to eat as a child. She found them while shopping at Zellers. Try there and see if they're the same ones (or if they carry them at your local Zellers). Good luck. :)

Nov 30, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Beard Papa in Edm!

Hmm I'll have to pick up some cream horns for my parents, they love flaky pastries. And I don't need my bakers to be friendly, good stuff is all I ask for.

Nov 20, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

5 Guys Burgers in Calgary?

I'd say that's a good sign considering it's been downright miserable these past few days. I'm hoping for the chance to go again... I want some fries. I've always wondered the influence/impact of Chowhound on how well businesses do in Calgary... It'd be an interesting study.

Nov 20, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Beard Papa in Edm!

I love the Earl Grey ones. Whenever I'm in Vancouver I always make sure that my heart hates me. :)

Have you tried Cream puffs from Bliss cupcakes and co. in Chinatown? I forget the days when they have cream puffs in but if I remember correctly, they're not too shabby. Too bad they aren't fresh like Beard Papa's.

Nov 20, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

5 Guys Burgers in Calgary?

It's pretty funny that it was all chowhounders eating at the same-ish time. I was the girl attempting to eat a burger that was way too big.

Nov 17, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

5 Guys Burgers in Calgary?

Just got back from there as well, and I have to say I liked it. I ordered a Bacon Cheeseburger with a side of Cajun style fries. They give a lot of fries, and I mean a lot; it comes in a cup but there were basically a bunch of fries in the paper bag. The burger was great and you can top it off with as much (or as little) as you want. THe price is a bit steep but I can see myself coming back again.

P.S. The picture of the fries down below was taken AFTER I ate a lot of them already.

Nov 16, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

5 Guys Burgers in Calgary?

Hmm here's hoping that when I show up today it'll be open...

Nov 16, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

YYC Holy Smoke Bbq

Dropped by there today and saw 2 cop cars outside and thought to myself, "this place MUST be good". I recently went to Memphis, TN and enjoyed some really outstanding BBQ at Central BBQ and Corky's and was missing the taste of good southern style BBQ. I decided to check this place out because it sounded interesting and I wasn't disappointed. Central BBQ, in my opinion, still has the best sauce to ever grace meat but I give props to Holy Smoke for cooking their meat to a good medium (not too dry/moist/stringy). I ordered the Beef Brisket, Rib, Potato Salad, and Corn Bread. The meat was well prepared, it wasn't too dry but it could have been a little more moist in order to be perfect. Definitely recommended for your southern fix.

Oct 25, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Great Taste Bubble Tea/ snack Cafe

Is it good? Comparable to the stuff you get in Vancouver at least?

Jun 26, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Kensington gossip - Calgary

Here is something random that may or may not happen. You know the building where the Wind store resides? I hear there might be a breakfast place opening in the empty bay. I think it depends on some things. Won't know for sure 'till later.

Jun 26, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Basil in YYC - Best Vietnamese resto in the city (review)

It's across from Elliston park, in the same building as the 7-Eleven. And yes, the Viet food in Calgary is pretty darn good.

Jun 26, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Basil in YYC - Best Vietnamese resto in the city (review)

There is one place I always go when I'm down in California in the Santa Anna/Westminster area. Btw.. if you didn't know, Santa Anna area is where all the Vietnamese people are, so if you're looking for Vietnamese food.. I suggest you look there. If i remember the place I go to a lot I'll reply back again (the name eludes me right now).

Jun 26, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Basil in YYC - Best Vietnamese resto in the city (review)

You lucky dog you. Yes it is. It's the same as the one in Vancouver, so if you want Banh Bot Loc (gluttonous rice dumplings with shrimp and random stuff stuffed inside) this would be the place.

Jun 26, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Basil in YYC - Best Vietnamese resto in the city (review)

Opps my bad, you did say it. Well... that's embarrassing. Anyways, pho really is subjective but like you said there is an 'authentic' taste to Pho Dau Bo/Basil and I can tell you it's pretty true. There is a Pho place that's really famous in Vietnam called Pho Pasteur and I must say that Pho Dau Bo/Basil is almost as good.

I suggest you try Bun Bo Hue (spicy Hue style beef noodle soup) at Song Huongif you haven't already. It's a very popular Viet soup dish right behind pho in my opinion. If you want a rice dish (which can also be ordered with noodles) try Com Hen (rice with sauteed baby clams).

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Song Huong Vietnamese Restaurant
1704 61 St SE #4, Calgary, AB T2A 4V5, CA

Jun 23, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Basil in YYC - Best Vietnamese resto in the city (review)

You might be interested to know that the people who own/run this place used to own Pho Dau Bo (in Forest Lawn beside Noodle World). Basil is definitely one of the best vietnamese places for Pho (as the Pho taste exactly like how Pho Dau Bo used to make it). If you like Basil's pho I recommend you trying out Pho Xuan and see how you like it. It's definitely not the cleanest place but the pho is good. There is one dish my friend raves about every time he goes to Basil and I have to say it's pretty good (It's like the one my father makes at home), it's called Bo Kho (Beef stew).

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Pho Dau Bo
4909 17 Ave SE #110, Calgary, AB T2A, CA

Pho Xuan Restaurant
920 36 St NE #128, Calgary, AB T2A 6L8, CA

Jun 23, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

The Best of San Diego in Two-ish days

Hi everyone,
I'll be going to your fair city for 2 days from the 12th to the 13th (Wed and Thurs) and wanted to know if you could name places that were good and not too expensive. We'll be staying near the Mission area and going to the Gas Light district to look around. Any type of food is fine (preferably not too too greasy). I have no idea what kind of food San Diego is known for so I don't know what to search for. Apologies if this has been asked. Thanks in advance and howdy from Calgary (Canada).

May 07, 2010
cn1822 in San Diego

A Tale of Two Cakes

If Bliss' cakes taste anything like their cupcakes, I want to buy one. This is sort of off topic, but I honestly dream about the cake from Ric's Grill. I'm saying this as a person who does not really like chocolate anything.

I recommend trying a Pandan cake from Forest Lawn bakery if you ever get the chance. They're kind of costly (45-50ish dollars for a 15" cake?) but are mouth wateringly good when done right (to me anyways). They're green in colour and have a taste I can't quite describe. The pandan rolls/logs and the cakes are different, I think, so don't get them confused.

Apr 13, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Late Night Eats in YYC

Know any good places that open late (preferably not fast food, greasy type stuff)? Name the place, what's good to eat there, and how late it opens till. Thanks. :D

Mar 09, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Beignets in Calgary?

I guess making them myself is about the only real option then. I already had a recipe but I was just wondering if there was anywhere that served them. Thanks anyways.

Feb 22, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces

Beignets in Calgary?

Could someone kindly point out a place that makes 'Cafe du Monde' style beignets (the sweet kind)? I have no idea where I can go to find them in this city, but I'd like to cheer my sister up with some (or something similar). Or if someone could maybe point out some other good beignets available? Much appreciated.

Feb 17, 2010
cn1822 in Prairie Provinces