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

Fondway Cafe

This past week, I was fortunate enough to have been invited to Fondway Cafe’s exclusive media and industry launch event. It was an exciting night of wonderful food and amazing service.

Disclaimer: This was a complimentary event, I did not receive any monetary compensation or bribes to write. All content is purely based on my own thoughts and personal experience.

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Fondway Cafe is conveniently located just a few steps away from the Metrotown Skytrain, making it easily accessible. The interior was thoughtfully designed. It’s a meeting of the vintage and modern. I love the bright, open, spaciousness, along with the artistic, hipster vibe. I also have to mention that I’m quite fond of the cafe’s name. Shall we go away and create some fond memories at Fondway?

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Once I entered the cafe, I was greeted by the friendly and helpful staff, the whimsical chatter of my foodie friends, and plethora of delicious looking food (over 20 signature items) spread across the table.

I was immediately drawn to the Belgium liege waffle. The waffle wasn’t crisp on the surface, but it was nicely dense and chewy. The flavour was great, and I love the bits of pearl sugar that adorned the waffle.

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Besides the liege waffle, they also offer a waffle pork sandwich. I love the substitution of waffle for bread, it adds a touch of indulgence to the otherwise light tasting sandwich. The ingredients inside included, lettuce, cucumber and shredded pork.

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Going along with the waffles, they also had this cute little bite sized appetizer on the table. It was a mini waffle with a light Taiwanese tuna salad scooped on top. It was a cute and yummy snack.

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Fondway offered us a variety of crustless sandwiches. I tried the Taiwanese pumpkin crab. I thought it sounded like an odd combo, but it worked. The imitation crab meat was mixed in a light mayo, and the flavours went well with the creamy sweetness of pumpkin.

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Halfway through the event, the staff began taking out desserts. They looked so delicious, but I was already getting full. The portions were big and I did not want to take a bite and waste the rest. Nevertheless, I wanted to taste everything.  Luckily for me, I met some like minded foodies that were more than willing to share. There was chocolate cake, caramel earl grey, red bean matcha, fruit cake, and cheesecake to choose from.

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We had our eyes on the caramel earl grey cake. The cake was airy and spongy. It reminded me of those cake rolls I’d find at typical Chinese bakeries. The caramel flavour was most prominent at the top of the cake where the caramel drizzle was. It was a light treat, not too sweet, but I would’ve preferred if it had a stronger earl grey taste.

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Next, we tried the concentrated chocolate cake. The chocolate cake had the same spongy roll cake texture to it. The chocolate cake was more true to its flavour than the one preceding it.

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The cheesecake had a layer of caramelized sugar torched on the surface. The texture was between dense and fluffy. It wasn’t too sweet or heavy.

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The apple crumble pie was tasty. The sweet crumble graced the bed of fragrant apples that sit on top of the thin pie crust.

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The caramel nut tart was also good. It had a variety of nuts in it, and it tasted a lot like nut brittle on a pie crust.

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There were little jars of creme caramel that we got to take home with our full stomaches. The syrup at the bottom was runny, but the custard pudding was smooth and full of eggy flavour.

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Towards the end of the night, we were given takeout boxes to take home whatever we wanted. I took home the multi-grain croissant chicken along with another sandwich I hadn’t tried as well as a liege waffle. Some people had packed 3 boxes. Honestly, I wanted to pack home everything, but I didn’t want to appear to be the fatass that I am… *ahem. Lol. I had put the croissant in the oven the following day so it was nice and crisp on the surface. There were lots of good things in the sandwich; lettuce, chicken, egg, tomato, mushroom etc. with a thin layer of savoury pesto. I gave Baby-Paca the rest of the items I packed home so I can’t comment on the sandwich, but she liked it.

I also got to try a variety of their drinks. My favourites included their grass jelly milk tea, which had a nice, strong, concentrated tea flavour, milky and smooth  and their organic grapefruit tea, which was refreshing and appetizing. Neither were too sweet. Another drink that stood out for me was the nitrogen coffee which was infused with soda fruit juice, The soda fruit juice adds a bit of sourness to the coffee and makes it more light and refreshing, but it’s definitely an acquired taste that I’m certain not everyone will enjoy.

I was so preoccupied with tasting the variety of offerings in front of me that I neglected my photography. I totally regret not getting more shots. Fondway had soups and salads for tasting as well, but I did not get around to trying everything as I was already full to the brim, but from what I hear, the clam chowder was pretty good for a Taiwanese inspired cafe. I guess that just means I have to give them another visit sometime!

In short, Fondway really spoiled us that night.The food I was fortunate enough to try tasted simple, fresh, light and considerably healthy. After indulging myself all night, I actually didn’t feel all that guilty!

Today was Fondway’s official grand opening, so go and give them a visit if you haven’t already!

 

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

FONDWAY CAFE
+1 604 283 6997
Central Burnaby
4462 Beresford Street, Burnaby, Metro Vancouver

Cafe Eggstatic

An old bubble tea cafe in Crystal mall closed and a new one has taken over its place. I gotta say that the bubble tea addict in me was pretty ecstatic to give them a visit. I totally got lured in with their punny name. And with a name like Eggstatic, the assumption is that they’d whip up decent bubble waffles, right?

Cafe Eggstatic offers 2 specialty drinks. What makes it special is the addition of bird’s nest, which is an ingredient prized as a Chinese delicacy. It supposedly has high nutritional value and is said to have a beautifying effect to those who consume it regularly.

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Curious, I thought I’d give the bird’s nest mango slush infused with aloe vera ($5.70 +50cents for pearls) a try. I don’t think the slush was infused with aloe vera, rather it was an addition, like the boba pearls. The aloe vera was definitely my favourite thing about this drink, super refreshing and fun to eat. The slush didn’t taste of fresh mangoes, but it didn’t taste like syrup either. They probably used mango puree. The boba pearls are smaller than your standard and has a very nice QQ texture. I usually prefer my pearls sweetened, but I hardly noticed that they weren’t. The slush was topped with a dollop of syruped strawberries and 10 grams of supreme bird’s nest. The bird’s nest wasn’t sweetened and doesn’t naturally have much of a flavour, but it provided a textual contrast. I think the strawberries were mostly just for garnish, but the slight tartness went well with the mango slush.

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I also got the original bubble waffle ($3.75). I liked that they embodied that yummy egg flavour. The insides were pleasantly chewy, but it didn’t have that crispy exterior. The batter was spread a little thin, which made for a more hollow and airy center. Some people may prefer it this way as it makes for a lighter snack. I had visited during their recent opening, so I understand that they might still be tampering around and trying to get the timing and consistency right.

On two other visits, I got the chance to try the original milk tea and the cream float green tea. I wouldn’t get the milk tea again. It wasn’t substantial. It lacked tea flavour and tasted predominately of milk powder. The cream float green tea on the other hand had a nice Jasmine green tea flavour, but I didn’t like their cream float/milk cap. The milk cap was too thin and frothy. The taste of milk cap is very peculiar, it should be a sweet and a little salty, but the one here just didn’t get it right. I just kind of felt like I wasted my quota of calories on it. Lol. I should’ve just gotten the Jasmine green tea on its own.

I think the option of adding aloe vera to my drink is what’ll bring me back to this cafe. Not many other bubble tea shops offer the addition of aloe vera. I’d also like to give their bubble waffles another shot.

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

CAFE EGGSTATIC
+1 604 616 7623
Central Burnaby
Crystal Mall, 1021 – 4500 Kingsway, Burnaby

The Coffee Bun

KitKat had purchased triple slider tickets to Slide the City, and we decided to make the most out of the day with a North Van adventure. We took the SeaBus over to Lonsdale Quay and strolled around the market. We were hungry as usual, but not wanting to ruin our appetites for dinner, we opted for a quick snack at The Coffee Bun.

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When we arrived, there were only a few flavours of coffee buns left as they’re baked fresh in small batches. The cashier told us that a new batch of their Earl grey flavour will be ready in about 8 minutes, so KitKat and I decided to go for a walk. We watched as people happily danced away on the streets to some sultry salsa. After we had enough of people watching, we checked out the toy store nearby. KitKat and I awed over all the innovative toys with our cute little clients in mind (we do behaviour intervention with bright young kids diagnosed with ASD). We returned to The Coffee Bun shortly (in about 10 minutes), but they had already sold out in the span of 2 minutes! Sadly, I didn’t get to try their Earl grey. Out of the remaining few options available, I was undecided between the original, cream cheese and the vanilla bean custard. The cashier said that the vanilla bean custard was among her favourites, and is one of their more popular coffee buns, so I took her word for it. KitKat opted for the hazelnut coffee bun ($3.50), which was filled with Nutella.

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My vanilla bean custard coffee bun ($4) was airy, and pillowy soft, almost marshmallowy in texture. The warm innards of the bun had a very aromatic sweet and savoury butteriness to it. The coffee crumble baked on top was crisp and had a hint of coffee flavour. The vanilla bean custard was just lightly sweetened. It didn’t have a very prominent vanilla taste, but it had the eggy flavour of custard and it was so smooth and creamy.

The coffee bun was mouthwateringly good. I definitely prefer The Coffee Bun over Papa Roti. North Vancouver is a very long trek for me, but while I was searching The Coffee Bun up on Zomato to get the code to link my blog, I discovered that they have another location at Henderson Place, Coquitlam. I’m so glad I don’t have to travel all the way to North Van for these babies.

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THE COFFEE BUN
(604) 988-7900
Lower Lonsdale
Lonsdale Quayside Plaza, 147 Chadwick Court, North Vancouver

Milk & Sugar Cafe

After brunch at Yolk’s, while Sunshine was driving me home, he started telling me about this bubble tea place that was good. I have heard about their unique flavours and glorious daily specials from KitKat, but I never gave them a personal visit. After discovering that I haven’t been there before, Sunshine immediately rerouted and we were headed to Milk & Sugar Cafe.

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One of their daily special offerings on this day was strawberry vanilla cheesecake slush, which I ended up getting. Can you believe that it’s only $2.50 for a small, and $3.50 for a regular? And did I mention that pearls and coconut jelly are free? What a gem.

After brunch, I was pretty full so I was afraid the strawberry vanilla cheesecake was going to be too heavy, but I got it anyway because it was on special, and well, because it’s cheesecake. I saw them add what looked like 2 big scoops of vanilla ice cream and 2 big scoops of cheesecake ice cream, frozen strawberries and a bit of ice to a blender, which made me worry even more about how heavy it was going to be. But I was pleasantly surprised with how refreshing and light tasting it was! Sunshine said so too when he tasted it. It wasn’t too thick or too sweet either! I also appreciate the fresh frozen strawberries as I’m not a fan of artificial fruit syrups.

I tried a sip of Sunshine’s milk tea as well. The tea flavour was strong and it was just lightly sweetened. It tasted more like a Hong Kong style milk tea than the usual Taiwanese milk teas you get at other bubble tea joints.

Needless to say, I will probably be back to try their other delicious offerings whenever I’m in the area! I definitely need to introduce Baby-Paca to this wonderful place.

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MILK & SUGAR CAFE
+1 604 559 5477
Renfrew-Collingwood
101-3365 Kingsway, Vancouver

Little Bubble Tea House

Due to the convenience of location and my undying love for bubble tea, my family and I drop by the Little Bubble Tea House 8/10 times that we go grocery shopping at T&T Supermarket. The place doesn’t get very busy, but it has never been completely empty the times that we’ve visited, by virtue of the T&T crowd that pop by for a quick snack or drink. Baby-Paca and I always order the milk cap red tea and the butter biscuit toast. Little Bubble Tea House has been doing a promotion for their milk cap series for awhile now (Only 2.50! +50 cents for pearls).

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Milk cap red tea (奶蓋紅茶) with pearls : Now I gotta mention that the quality of milk cap teas really fluctuate. Sometimes it’s not sweet enough, or sometimes it’s a little watered down (they add water if the the shaken tea doesn’t fill the cup). The worst we’ve had it was when the milk cap was lumpy. I don’t think anyone would appreciate globs of congealed powder in their drink, the texture is just super unappetizing. But when that happens, we simply mix the milk cap into our tea and have it as a regular milk tea, leaving the lumpy bits that won’t dissolve at the top. Most times the milk cap red tea is decent, the flavour of the tea is not too weak, the milk cap is creamy, thick, and frothy and the pearls are faintly sweet and have a bounce to them. However, they tend to give waaaaay to much pearls, I always need to remember to ask for less.

Butter biscuit toast (奶酥吐司): The slice of bread is lightly toasted, the crust provides a nice crunch. The soft bread absorbs all the buttery goodness from the butter biscuit spread without turning soggy. For those who don’t know what butter biscuit spread tastes like, just imagine a mixture of butter, milk powder and sugar that have combined to form a crumbly, decadent paste, much like the yellow topping and filling of cocktail bun (雞尾包), but without coconut shreds. For only $2.25, I recommend giving this a try. I think it’s pretty tasty.

Baby-Paca and I usually look forward to grocery shopping as it usually means that we get milk cap tea and butter biscuit toast (but also because we enjoy picking ingredients to cook dinner with too :))

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LITTLE BUBBLE TEA HOUSE
+1 604 251 7979
Hastings-Sunrise
104-2800 E 1st Avenue, Vancouver

Forty Ninth Parallel Café & Lucky’s Doughnuts

I have heard many good things about Forty Ninth Parallel and Lucky’s and it has been on my list of cafes to check out for the longest time, however, it’s a long trek just for doughnuts and coffee so I never made my way out there. Luckily, my friend KitKat was there when I texted her about when we were gonna hit the gym later in the day and she started raving about this glorious Earl grey lavender blueberry bismark ($3.50), which she graciously offered to buy for me. She went as far as saying that it was the most delicious doughnut that she has ever tasted (and I’m sure she’s tasted a fair share of doughnuts. Hahah)IMG_1169I was afraid that the doughnut would be placed in one of those paper bags that you would get from other doughnut places like Tim Hortons, but this lovely doughnut came in a box so that the icing on top wouldn’t get smeared everywhere.

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The bismark was covered with a lavender blueberry glaze and sprinkled with candied citrus peel. I’m a little hesitant about food with floral elements as the taste reminds me of soap, but the lavender in this bismark was light and fragrant, and blended perfectly with the blueberry. The doughnut was filled with an Earl grey creme that is gelatinous in texture which was not too sweet and had just enough Earl grey flavour. Neither of the components overpowered the other and they came together in a delectable medley. The dough was soft yet chewy, just the way I like it. The candied citrus peel added a nice crunch and zesty taste, I just wish there was a little bit more of it. It took me a lot of self control not to devour the whole doughnut by myself. I was tempted to steal into the depths of my room with the bismark but I ended up sharing it with Baby-Paca (because I’m such an awesome sister). This calls for a visit to Forty Ninth Parallel Cafe & Lucky’s doughnuts some time in the near future.

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FORTY NINTH PARALLEL & LUCKY’S DOUGHNUTS
+1 604 872 4901
Mount Pleasant
2902 Main Street, Vancouver