August 20, 2014

Rumbi Island Grill

936 East Fort Union Blvd, Midvale, UT 84047 801 568 3201 

With Salt Lake Comic Con coming up, my friend and I have been starting to get together to plan and work on our cosplays. On this day, we grabbed dinner at Rumbi Island Grill before heading out for pattern and design ideas. Mr. Munchimunch had always wanted to try Rumbi to see how it compared to Moki's, our favorite Hawaiian place.

Mr. Munchimunch ordered the Luau Pork Plate which is pulled Kahlua pork topped with teriyaki sauce served with macaroni salad and cole slaw. He chose to have his over white rice. (Not shown.)

I ordered a rice bowl. I chose Kahlua pork with regular Hawaiian teriyaki sauce over white rice which came with steamed vegetables. The sauce overpowered the Kahlua pork and the vegetables were bland.

Our friend also chose a rice bowl. She chose Honey Orange Chicken over white rice. Her order actually came out incorrectly, but they switch her order out for the correct one at no extra cost. (Not shown.)

I was so glad to have ordered the Chocolate Lava Cake. It was soft, moist, warm, oozing with chocolate, and simply delicious! I would revisit Rumbi just for this dessert!

Dinner was nothing to be desired. The food and service did not compare to Moki's at all. The only outstanding item was the Chocolate Lava Cake! Even though Rumbi's is a lot closer to me than Moki's, I'd rather drive to Moki's than eat at Rumbi's.

August 15, 2014

Davey's Ice Cream

This will be one of the several posts dedicated to my yearly visit back east.
Thank you for joining me as I reflect back on my trip and food adventures.  Enjoy~

137 1st Ave, New York, NY 10003 212 228 8032

After our dinner at Robataya NY, we took the short walk over to Davey's Ice Cream shop for dessert. Davey's Ice Cream is a lovely little ice cream joint that serves handmade ice cream made in store.

Which reminds me... I still remember the first time I met Dessert Zombie. We had just finished dinner at Laut and we saw the Big Gay Ice Cream Truck. My friend and I couldn't resist grabbing a cone each, but our eyes were bigger than our stomachs. Dessert Zombie ending up finishing all of our cones! That takes some serious skills!

I've learned my lesson since then. I was ready to order a single scoop when Davey's introduced me to the kid size scoop! It's the perfect size for my small ice cream dessert craving. ^_^

My kids size scoop of Peppermint Chip dipped in cookie crumbs in a sugar cone. I'm having a serious ice cream craving right now just thinking about that cone.

Dessert Zombie ordered the double scoop, Chocolate Chocolate and Strong Coffee in a sugar cone.

And Yvo of The Feisty Foodie, our wonderful ice cream hand model also had a kids size scoop of Roasted Pistachio in a sugar cone.

Dessert Zombie mentioned the Strong Coffee wasn't actually strong, but other than that, I think we were all happy with our selections. I should also mention the great service we received along with the amazing 90s hip hop playing in the background. hehe We arrived just as the shop was about to close, but we were never rushed I'll happily revisit Davey's Ice Cream the next time I'm in the area!

August 13, 2014

Robataya NY

This will be one of the several posts dedicated to my yearly visit back east.
Thank you for joining me as I reflect back on my trip and food adventures.  Enjoy~

231 East 9th Street, New York, NY 10003 212 979 9674

I hopped the train into the city after I's Cafe to meet up with Yvo of The Feisty Foodie and Dessert Zombie for dinner. Per the norm, we grabbed some delicious dinner and had ice cream for dessert. ^_^

It was easy to agree on where to go for dinner. I had just recently finished reading Nami's review of Robataya on Just One Cookbook and it seemed like the perfect place. Yvo and I tried to call in for reservations, but no one ever picked up the phone during hours and no one ever called us back. We chanced it by walking in on a Wednesday night and there was only a 15-20 minute wait.

We were seated right by the entrance in front of our chefs who sat on pillows in front of hot grills. Watching them prepare, cook, and serve each dish was fascinating.

We all started off with drinks. I ordered an Ice Oolong Tea, Yvo had the Yuzu Honey, and Dessert Zombie had a large Sapporo. We all chose the Robataya Course which ended up being about $72 per person prior to drinks, tax, and tips.

Raw oysters. While I've tried cooked oysters before, this was the first time I had ever tried raw oysters. I'm not sure why I waited so long! Raw oysters are nothing like cooked oysters and I can see myself enjoying many of these in my future.

Nama harumaki. I loved the presentation of this one! These spring rolls, filled with fresh salmon, avocado, cream cheese and rice noodles, were placed on a sweet and tart sauce.

I believe Tuna, Hamachi, and Mackerel sushi. These were amazingly fresh with just a hint of wasabi. There was no need to dip this in soy sauce!

Grilled Shishito and Satsumaimo. This was one of my two favorite dishes! Every single time I saw the chefs preparing and grilling these vegetables, I hoped it was our next course! I absolutely love sweet potatoes, especially Japanese sweet potatoes! I couldn't help but take a picture of the silly vegetable face I had on my plate before it was quickly eaten.

Grilled Shiitake and Shimeji. This was the second of my two favorite dishes! This mushroom dish can make a non-mushroom lover into a mushroom one!! Juicy and flavorful!

Wagyu with dipping sauce. This didn't come out looking very appetizing. It was tender, but a bit bland even with the dipping sauce.

Grilled Ebi. These prawns were bigger than the chef's hand and we were excited to try this. This dish was hard to split as there are only two pieces of each head, body, and tail. I will not divulge any gross details, but this was only acceptable. The meat was a bit tough as though it were overcooked.

Deep Fried Japanese Itoyori. This was our last dish of the night. The fish meat was soft and juicy. We almost fought over the fish cheeks and eyes, but we all managed to share. The universe must have known I was craving fresh fish. I had steamed fish for dinner at Sunny Palace and then fried fish the next day!

Dinner took slightly over an hour and a half to two hours total. We didn't feel rushed, although we did wait a a bit between dishes and service. Our server spoke with us a little as well and it was interesting to discover how fluent his Japanese was since he had lived in Japan for a few years.

Out of all the dishes we had, I'd have to say my top three were the Grilled Shishito and Satsumaimo, Grilled Shiitake and Shimeji, and Deep Fried Japanese Itoyori. Nothing else impressed me as much nor left a lasting tasty memory. That's not to say that I didn't enjoy the experience. I would totally recommend Robataya for the experience and food. You'll just have to decide for yourself whether or not the food and service are worth what you pay for.

August 6, 2014

I's Cafe

This will be one of the several posts dedicated to my yearly visit back east.
Thank you for joining me as I reflect back on my trip and food adventures.  Enjoy~

45 Easton Ave, New Brunswick, NJ 08901 908 938 8858

I's Cafe is a familiar fixture on Easton Ave at Rutgers University's New Brunswick campus. For those that know the area and I's Cafe, they rave about the bubble teas and sweets there and are on a first name basis with its owner Iris.

I still remember when I first met Iris over 10 years ago. My friend mentioned a bubble tea shop opening up on Easton Ave. with a super nice and cute girl working there. He brought me to I's Cafe just once and the rest was history. Iris and I started chatting and from then on, I would stop by frequently between classes for one of her freshly made bubble teas. Even after I left the area, I would always stop by whenever I could to say hi and catch up with Iris. This time was no different.

My brother and I stopped by I's Cafe before I caught the train into the city. As soon as I walked in, I was greeted by Iris's friendly smile. I honestly don't remember what we ordered. I think my brother's had strawberry and lychee in his while I had rose water in mine. But it doesn't even matter what you order, because everything tastes good! The bubbles are soft and chewy and even though they are in a cold beverage, they never harden!!! Best bubble tea in Jersey!

Since Iris knew I was visiting, she saved me a special macaron for my arrival. ^_^ Not only does I's Cafe serve bubble tea, but Iris personally bakes cupcakes, whoopie pies, cake pops, and a many unique flavors of macarons, like Black Sesame, Red Bean and Minions from Despicable Me!, to be sold on display. I believe Iris also caters her bubble tea and sweets for special occasions and events, subject to advance notice and orders.

Over the years, I's Cafe has evolved from a small, narrow store front serving only a few select bubble teas to a full sized cafe with plenty of seating areas inside or outside serving a large selection of bubble tea flavors along with sweet treats. It's amazing how far I's Cafe has come, but if you know Iris, you know it's her passion and love for bubble tea that has shaped the place into what it is now.

If you haven't visited I's Cafe before, you absolutely must! You won't regret it and you'll be a life loyal customer just like me!

August 1, 2014

Sunny Palace - Dinner

This will be one of the several posts dedicated to my yearly visit back east.
Thank you for joining me as I reflect back on my trip and food adventures.  Enjoy~

Sunny Palace 
1069 New Jersey 18, East Brunswick, NJ 08816 732 651 8668 

My dad chose to have dinner at Sunny Palace a few days later. I'm not sure if the restaurant meant to differentiate between us and the other Asians at the restaurant, but they seated us upstairs with the other non-Asians. The other Asians in the restaurant were seated on the lower level. In any case, the service wasn't any different.

Since it was just my dad, my brother and me, we only ordered two meat dishes and a vegetable dish. Of course, white rice was included.

Ging Do Gwat 京都骨. I'm actually unsure as to what this is called or translated to in English, but a quick Google search shows me that this is sometimes called Peking Spareribs. This use to be my brother's favorite entree when he was younger so we would order it all the time. This version was just as I remembered. Sweet and a bit tangy with a delicious sauce.

Steamed Sea Bass 清蒸斯啤. For some reason, I was really craving a freshly steamed fish. This was exactly what I was looking for!  Delicate flakes of fish meat and other unnamed parts that I shall not speak of in order to not gross out my readers. haha

Steamed fish is quite easy to make at home, but Mr. Munchimunch and the little guy don't like seeing a full fish staring at them and hate to mess with bones. Which reminds me...when we were younger, my brother had the same issue with bones. My mom ended up having to bribe him by counting his bones at the end of the meal and giving him a nickel each bone!

Chinese Broccoli with Oyster Sauce 蠔油唐芥蘭. A simple, classic dish!

Dinner at Sunny Palace was pleasantly satisfying. It was nostalgic since we ordered familiar dishes. If given the chance, I'd definitely revisit Sunny Palace for dinner and order other favorite dishes of mine. So not only is Sunny Palace good for dim sum, it's also good for dinner as well!

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