Cattle Cafe

My family and I have passed by Cattle Cafe numerous times, Baby-Paca has brought up that she’s been wanting to eat there for some time now. We didn’t give them a visit until recently, I don’t know why it took us so long to check them out, but Cattle Cafe has become my go-to casual HK style cafe since it’s convenient for us to get to.

The menu is pretty extensive, but we always seem to gravitate towards the same few selections.

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Japanese style takoyaki ($5.99): These were golden and crisp on the outside while soft, warm and fluffy on the inside. A tender piece of tako (octopus) was in the center of each ball. They were generously drizzled with mayo and takoyaki sauce and sprinkled with dried bonito flakes. They’re a delicious savoury treat, pretty similar to the ones you’ll find at the Richmond Night Market.

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I highly recommend the signature noodle combo ($9.95). This is something we always order. You get to pick the soup base/sauce, type of noodles, 2 toppings ( additional toppings are $1.59 each) and a drink that comes with it. I love having their Malay laksa soup with rice noodles and sliced beef brisket. The laksa soup was creamy, and full of coconut and curry flavour. The noodles were al dente and the slices of brisket were tender and delicious. The meat was neither too lean nor fatty. Baby-Paca picked beef tripe for our other topping on this visit, they only gave us a few pieces, and they were pretty standard. The following few times we ordered this, we just got double the brisket because they were so yummy. The bowl of noodle soup was also chocked full of Chinese cabbage with a few slices of abalone mushroom as well. We always get a hot milk tea alongside. The milk tea’s alright, strong tea flavour like the way HK milk tea should taste.

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The pan fried rice cakes with yaki pork in X.O. sauce ($10.59) isn’t one of our frequently ordered dishes, but it was pretty good as well. The rice cakes were soft and pleasantly chewy, it took on the flavour of the sauce it was pan fried with pretty well. The pork slices were flavourful and supple.

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Bubble waffles appertain to the category of foods that Baby-Paca and I will never tire of. The bubble waffles ($4.59) at Cattle Cafe are definitely well executed, but rather pricey compared to other places. They’re lightly crisp with a soft chewy center and they’re full of sweet eggy goodness.

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We were curious about the ice cream with black glutinous rice ($3.99) so we decided to give it a try. The scoop of ice cream tasted like generic store bought vanilla ice cream, and not the particularly good kind. The glutinous rice was a bit course and grainy. It didn’t have enough of that glutinous-ness.

Service was quick and to the point, but don’t expect much else. The portions are on the smaller side for the price you pay for an HK style cafe, but most of the food I’ve tried here was decent.

 

Cattle Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

CATTLE CAFE
+1 604 430 8686
Central Burnaby
4877 Kingsway, Burnaby

Mamalee Malaysian Delight

What and where to eat is always the most monumental question everytime Totoro, Mamallama and I go out together. Convenience is always a deciding factor. Seeing as how Totoro had some business to attend to in Kitsilano that day, we decided on lunch at Mamalee’s.

Mamalee is a popular Malaysian joint in Kits, they don’t have very many tables, service and ambiance is minimal, but the pricing is fair and the food is pretty good as well. I also like that we put in our orders via dry erase menus.

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We started off with the roti canai ($5.95). This was one of the better roti canais I’ve had. The pastry was crisp on the outside, soft and warm on the inside. It was flaky and wasn’t greasy at all. They also got the consistency and the flavours of the dip right. It wasn’t too thin, and it was creamy and flavourful, with just the right level of sweetness for my taste.

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Of course, we had to order Mamalee’s most famous Hainanese chicken rice (reg $9.95). This plate comes with a small bowl of simple but tasty clear bone soup. The best thing about this Hainanese chicken was that it’s boneless. Not only did it require minimal effort to devour, every bite of it was juicy and tender. The seasoned oil rice was fragrant as well, I love eating it with the ginger green onion sauce so I wish I had more of that in comparison to the sweet and sour chili sauce, which I don’t care so much for.

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We also ordered a curry beef brisket with rice ($11.95). The beef brisket and potatoes were soft and tender, but the curry was thin and watery. The flavour was decent, but it could’ve been thicker and creamier. I was reluctant about this dish as I questioned whether that shiny orange-y stuff was oil. Maybe I don’t want to know.

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We ended our meal with sesame glutinous balls (5pc $ 5.99) for dessert. These were nice and chewy and had a good ratio of black sesame filling to skin. I love how they have a coating of crispy flakes for extra textural contrast. Yum.

Mamalee Malaysian Delight Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

MAMALEE MALAYSIAN DELIGHT
+1 604 733 8882
Kitsilano
3144 West Broadway, Vancouver

Faubourg

Originally, Jujube had planned a girls’ day with KitKat and I, however, she ended up bailing on us on her own date. Seeing as KitKat and I already had the day off, we decided to chill without her. We strolled around downtown and did some shopping, in my case, just window shopping before we skipped off to dessert. Food is always the main destination when it comes to me and my foodie sistah. Hahah.

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KitKat felt like cake, so we decided on Faubourg. The inside was clean, classy and elegantly furnished. I love the festive atmosphere with the nicely decorated Christmas tree in the corner.

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As soon as we walked in, we were greeted by the colourful display of macarons. They looked so lovely that we just had to get some. I decided on a lavender earl grey macaron and a jasmine tea macaron ($2 each). The macarons were kind of small for the price, but I love the chewy texture of these dainty little morsels. The flavours were true and strong, but maybe a touch too sweet and floral for my taste.

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I had a tough time deciding between cakes, but ended up choosing the mille feuille ($5.60) simply because it was so pleasing on the eyes. The description next to cake was “flavoured mousse nestled in between light, crisp and buttery puff pastry, topped with shantilly.” I was unaware that it comes in two varieties: banana vanilla or gianduja vanilla and my server didn’t mention anything, so I thought it was going to be a regular Bavarian cream tasting mille feuille. I was pleasantly surprised with sweet banana mousse and caramel flavoured shantilly. The flavour of the caramel complimented the banana very well. I love that it was just sweet enough and not too heavy.

My mille feuille was good, but after tasting KitKat’s green tea passion fruit mousse, I totally regretted not getting that cake instead. Next time.

Faubourg Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Faubourg
+1 604 267 0769
Downtown
769 Hornby Street, Vancouver

Phnom Penh

Hi guys, sorry for the lack of updates lately, but I’m glad to announce that I’m finally done with exams. I’m officially freeeeeee!! I’m in a surprisingly cheerful and happy mood despite how deprived of sleep I am. But anyway, enough about me, I’m sure you guys only read for the food. #NoShame. Hahah.

Let me just rave about Phom Penh. Even the name has the word “nom” in it. Enough said. The magic in Phom Penh lie in their butter beef and chicken wings. They are must order items. I will shake my head at you if you come here and don’t try these two items. Seriously, they’re awesome.

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Marinated butter beef ($13.95): The thin slices of rare beef are served in a sauce made up of complex flavours. It is savoury and tangy, slightly sweet and incredibly flavourful. The cilantro and fried garlic really compliments it. The acidity in the dish totally revs up an appetite. The beef is tender, but a little clumpy and hard to separate into pieces to share, but who wants to share anyway?! Just take the whole dish to yourself. (Jokes!) I have to mention that I have always had an aversion to raw meat, but this is the dish that converted me.

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Phnom Penh deep fried chicken wings (L $13.50): I can only tell you how many times I’ve heard people compare these wings to crack. They are literally addictive. The chicken is fried to perfection, crispy on the outside, juicy on the inside. They’re seasoned with lime salt and pepper. These infamous babies are just unlike any other wings I’ve tasted. They’re so flavourful on their own that I don’t even dip it in the dipping sauce it comes with.

On this particular visit, we also ordered the beef luc lac, a hot and sour soup, dry noodles, a plate of veggies and dessert.

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Filet beef luc lac on rice with egg ($10.95): The beef luc lac is another popular item at Phnom Penh. It is a very hearty dish. The beef is very soft and tender. The flavour is savoury and a little sweet. While the beef is saucy, there wasn’t enough sauce to go with the rice.

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Phnom Penh hot and sour soup with prawns (S $12.95): This Cambodian soup really warms you up. There’s plenty of bean sprouts, sliced tomatoes and prawns in the bowl. It’s sweet and tangy with just a very mild kick,  very tropical and complex. However, the flavours were a bit strong, so a few sips were more than enough for me. Also, this soup would’ve earned more brownie points if they used fresh pineapples instead of canned ones.

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Phnom Penh dry two kinds of noodles (rice and egg noodles) ($7.95): The noodles were mixed with prawns, pork, pork innards, ground pork and dried shrimp. Served dry with a mushroom soy sauce. Make sure you mix the noodles before you eat it because the sauce gets lost. I’m not a fan of innards or dried shrimp and the flavour was pretty lackluster compared to everything else we ordered.

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Sauteed gai lan ($11.75) This particular visit was with Totoro. Totoro always likes to order some veggies. The gai lan was fresh and tender, and the stems had a nice firm and crisp texture, however, they were pretty bland and way overpriced.

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Nine layer cake ($4.85) These little cakes are so fun to eat, I just love peeling them, and eating them layer by layer. Probably psychology, but Baby-Paca agrees with me that they just taste better eaten this way. The texture is gelatinous and a little chewy. Flavour-wise, I’d say it’s comparable to pandan. I don’t actually think they taste any special, but I just like the interactive component, I’m just a kid that likes to play with her food.

Service is pretty minimal as per usual for casual Asian restaurants and cleanliness is a bit permissive at times. Phnom Penh gets pretty busy. There’s always a wait whenever I come here, but the chicken wings and butter beef are definitely worth it!
Phnom Penh Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

PHNOM PENH
+1 (604) 682-5777
Chinatown
244 East Georgia Street, Vancouver

The Boss Restaurant

The Boss Restaurant is a Hong Kong style cafe (茶餐廳) that Totoro likes to go to, likely due to convenience since it’s right in Metrotown Centre. I on the other hand, never understood its appeal and am constantly surprised by their lineups. I usually just tag along for their buttered pineapple buns. Unfortunately, they usually run out of them at around noon each day, but sometimes we call in and they’ll put some of the buns on reserve for us.

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The pineapple buns with butter here are delicious, but they had accidentally served us plain pineapple buns and had to bring it back to the kitchen to put the slab of butter in. By the time it arrived to our table, the pineapple bun was no longer warm, so it was missing that “oooh” factor brought by the contrast in temperature between the cold butter and warm bun. Nevertheless, the bun was soft and fragrant. While it sounds kind of disgusting for anyone to just put a cold slab of butter in their mouth, the cold butter actually compliments the pineapple bun and tastes a lot better than if it were melted.

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The curry brisket and rice was disappointing. It tasted like instant curry mix and it was goopy instead of creamy. The beef brisket was dry, chewy and bland. The potatoes were undercooked, hard and starchy and you can tell that they were cooked separately from the curry because none of the curry flavour had seeped into the potatoes.

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The curry squid was even worse than the curry brisket. The curry sauce was comparably more bland, Totoro ended up dipping the squid into the brisket curry. I didn’t like the actual squid pieces either, I could tell that they treated the squid to make it more tender, but doing so gives it a texture and flavour that’s off putting to me. It was rubbery and fishy.

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Mamallama got one of the A+B breakfast specials, which comes with a free drink. She chose steak with eggs with beef brisket rice noodles. The steak with eggs were kind of greasy. The thin fillet of beef was tender, but tasted very Chinese style. The beef brisket rice noodles were decent. The broth wasn’t too salty, though I could taste the MSG. The beef brisket came in small shreds, but it was more flavourful than the curry beef brisket.  In contrast to the food, the Hong Kong style milk tea here is fantastic. It’s velvety smooth and strong in tea flavour. The hot milk tea comes unsweetened. There’s a sugar canister on the table for you to adjust the sweetness to your liking. It costs extra to have it cold.

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I got the afternoon special black pepper sauce beef tenderloin (4oz) with fries. The black pepper sauce tasted sour so we sent it back to the kitchen. After they remade it, I was eager to dig in as I didn’t want the entire table to sit there to wait for me to eat, I had totally forgotten to take a picture until after I had taken a few bites, so there’s a few chunks of steak missing in my picture. The fries were completely cold, and the steak was medium well when I asked for medium rare, though it wasn’t too chewy.

All in all, if it were up to me, I would never suggest going to The Boss Restaurant. The only thing I ever actually want to eat there is the pineapple bun with butter and milk tea. Everything else is just mediocre at best for the price you pay.

 

The Boss Restaurant Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

THE BOSS RESTAURANT
+1 604 438 2677
Central Burnaby
Metropolis at Metrotown, 4700 Kingsway, Burnaby