Friday, October 15, 2010

Cattle Cafe - fair price, great portion

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Cattle Cafe

4885 Kingsway, Burnaby (Map)

Cattle Cafe (Burnaby) on Urbanspoon

Food: 3.5
Service: 2
Price: Fair

I wanted to try a restaurant named Swish Swish (same concept as Posh), but before I even had the chance, they were already closed. Shortly after, a new HK style restaurant opened in the exact same location. There is definitely no shortage of this type of restaurant in Vancouver, so I was only mild curious about the place, until B left me a msg telling me he really liked it. Given B's background, I have to say I trust his judgment, so I immediately add it to my wish list.

Since R and I know that it's usually crazy busy on weekends at this type of restaurants, so we decided to arrive earlier. We were there shortly after 11am, but there was already a huge lineup. My first thought was 'geeze, is it that good or doesn't anyone sleep in anymore", but upon further investigation revealed that there was a leakage problem in the restaurant, which resulted in the closure of 1/3 of the restaurant. The good news was that they were almost finished cleaning by the time we were there.
After waiting around for 25 minutes, we were finally seated in the now somewhat wet area. As usual, all their meals come with a hot drink, which I chose milk tea. Because the place was packed and busy, the milk tea was left there for a good 10 minutes before it was brought to me. By this time, the drink was luke warm. The tea itself was good, very creamy and strong at the same time. It was left unsweetened, so I can control the amount of sugar I want. For $1 more, you can get any cold drink, which R chose the HK style milk tea (milk tea + coffee). Usually I find them quite sweet, but this one had just the right amount of sweetness.
We noticed that they had Wind-Sand chicken wing ($5.95 for 6). I simply love the ones at Wo Fung, so I had to get these for comparison purpose. Unfortunately they fell short for a few reasons: 1. they weren't as juicy, 2. it was a bit over fried, and 3. the ginger taste was not as strong. Also they were only the wing portion (although quite big), where as the ones at Wo Fung was the whole wing. With that being said, they weren't bad, they were still juicy and had a distinct ginger taste (just not as strong).
R ordered the Pork Chop with Onion/Bacon demo-glaze on rice ($8.75). I have to say the sauce was the best part, it was rich, and creamy with just the right amount of salt. However the pork could use some work. It was a bit chewy in comparison with what I had. The vegetable on the side could have been better, it was just blanched tasteless veggies. The rice was rather hard, it felt like left over rice from the previous day (IMO).
I ordered the House Special Baked Pork Chop and Seafood on Rice ($9.75). When it arrived, I was impressed with the portion size. I loved both of the baked toppings. The garlic cream side had tons of seafood: 3 piece of fish, 2 scallops, 2 imitation crab meat, 3 prawns and some squid. I couldn't believe how much seafood they put in for just 1/2 of this dish. Also, all the seafood was quite fresh as well (especially the prawn and scallop). The pork chop side was equally good, the meat was very tender and juicy. I believe the pork chop were first deep fried and then baked on rice. The sauce was also very good.

Service was not their forte, no surprise here really. They often forget what you ask, and rarely try to make eye contact. But the constant line up outside proved one thing, their food and portion are good and the price is fair. So if you are not one to care for service, give this place a try. However they are really not that big, so you may want to reserve in advance if you have a big party.

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