Monday, August 25, 2014

T.H.I.S. Place

I would like to start off my post by thanking Instagram and other social media for helping me discover food places I've never heard about before! Most of the cafes, restaurants, or food events I choose to go to have in some way been influenced by what I see popping up on my Instagram or Twitter feeds. It's because of this social networking that I was able to learn about T.H.I.S. Place (, an Asian fusion cafe-bistro located in Downtown on 105 Street. 

CJ and I had some errands to do in Downtown, so I told him I wanted to check out T.H.I.S. Place when we were done. T.H.I.S. Place is within walking distance from MacEwan University's Downtown Campus, so it isn't too difficult to find if you're familiar with the area. 

T.H.I.S. Place.

I absolutely loved the urban look of the building where T.H.I.S. Place is located. There is some seating outside if you want to enjoy your food and drink in the sunshine as well. 

The interior.

Walking inside, I was immediately impressed by what I saw. A high ceiling, quirky light fixtures, and concrete walls all gave off a modern, industrial vibe. Although there is only a few seating, I already knew this would make an awesome hangout place with some friends. 


The best part about the interior space is the local artwork displayed on all the walls throughout T.H.I.S. Place! My favourite paintings were the ones on the wall closest to the front entrance - the abstract, surrealist feel of the paintings are definitely my style of art! Very beautiful and inspiring. 

Alright, let's talk about the menu! T.H.I.S. Place offers a variety of specialty coffees, hot or iced chocolates, and other cold drinks. In terms of food, they have a few appetizers, savoury dishes, and desserts. Lastly, they even have all natural popsicles made in house! Everything sounded so delicious, especially all the different flavours for the popsicles. However, CJ and I were quite hungry so we decided to share a savoury dish with some drinks and a dessert.

Nutella Banana Spring Rolls.

When we went to place our order at the front counter, we were asked if we wanted the dessert to come after eating our savoury dish. CJ and I replied at the same time: "All at once please". Lol. CJ and I have always liked having our food arrive at one time. With that being said, the dessert we chose were the Nutella Banana Spring Rolls ($6.75) - which happened to have a scoop of ice cream with it! It had to be eaten first, of course (don't want yummy ice cream to melt!). The spring rolls were hot and fresh with a very crunchy outer layer. Maybe a little too hard and crunchy for my liking. The filling inside was sweet and went well with the cold vanilla ice cream. I really like the combination of nutella and banana, so I thought putting it all together in a spring roll was very fun and unique. 

Red Curry.

For lunch, CJ and I ordered the Red Curry ($11) over rice. You could also choose to get it served with vermicelli instead of rice. I loved the vibrant red-orange colour of the dish, and the aroma was just as enticing. The main components in the curry are chicken, potatoes, and carrots. After eating my first spoonful of the curry with the rice, I was in love. So delicious! The heat had me reaching for my drink, and the spiciness was just the perfect amount. The chicken was nice and tender, while the vegetables added greater depth to the flavours. I'm already craving this Red Curry just writing about it! 

Almond Iced Chocolate (left) and Milk Chocolate Iced Chocolate (right).

CJ and I wanted something cold to drink, so we took a close look at the flavours for their Iced Chocolates. I decided to get the Almond Iced Chocolate ($4) and CJ got the Milk Chocolate Iced Chocolate ($3.50) for himself. I really enjoyed the mild, nutty flavour of the almond in my drink - perfectly refreshing on a hot summer day. I don't think CJ liked his drink too much though, because he said it tasted just like water. "I'm not really tasting chocolate", he said. Although I thought my drink was perhaps too watery as well, at least I could taste the almond. Overall, these Iced Chocolate drinks were just okay.

Normally, I would end my post here by writing a quick summary of my thoughts about this cafe. However, CJ and I decided to visit T.H.I.S. Place again the following day! We wanted to try a different savoury dish because we were both obsessed with how good the Red Curry tasted, along with some new cold drinks. 

Green Curry.

Unsurprisingly, CJ wanted to try the Green Curry ($12) this time. "The Red Curry was so good, but let's see how the Green Curry is!" The Green Curry consists of chicken, zucchini, red peppers, and bamboo shoots. Instead of being served over rice like the Red Curry, the rice was served in a separate bowl. Since it was our first time having these Thai dishes, we didn't really know the difference between the red and green curries. We were told that the green curry is usually spicier than the red curry. Well, let's give it a try! The Green Curry was also deliciously spicy, yet had noticeable sweeter undertones which made it more well rounded. The zucchini and bamboo shoots added a tasty crunch to the curry as well. The citrus notes of the curry made it taste fresh and healthy, making it even more addictive when paired with the warm rice. I cannot get over how good this dish is! This has become mine and CJ's new favourite eat for sure. 

Raspberry Lemonade (left) and Strawberry Lemonade (right).

For drinks, CJ and I went for the Raspberry Lemonade ($3.75) for him and Strawberry Lemonade ($3.75) for myself. Packed with ice and topped with lemon slices, raspberries or strawberries, I knew this would be the perfect summer beverage to quench your thirst. And I was right! My Strawberry Lemonade was so good! I loved the light pink colour and the refreshing strawberry taste. I tried some of CJ's Raspberry Lemonade and it was just as amazing (maybe even a little better than mine actually!). The raspberry flavour definitely packed a punch with each sip. 

After taking just two trips to T.H.I.S. Place, I am happy to say that it has become mine and CJ's new favourite place. We both loved the cozy atmosphere and the interior decor was very eye catching and appealing to both of us. And most importantly... the food here is so good!!! I mean really, really good. If only I had known about this cafe sooner (it's actually been around for awhile now too). Since our trip here, CJ has always been asking to come back. I respond by telling him we'll have lots of opportunities to come here once school starts in a week (boo!). I've mentioned a few times that CJ doesn't like cafes at all... but this place is the only exception! Wow, isn't that a miracle? The people working at T.H.I.S. Place are also super friendly - they even recognized us the second day we visited. I'm looking forward to dropping by again to try their Fall/Winter Menu starting in September. To be Happy Is Simple... words to live by! 

Check out T.H.I.S. Place on Instagram and on Twitter @THISplaceYEG. 

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Heritage Festival 2014

With Edmonton being known as Festival City, it's not hard to come up with a list of festivals to look forward to attending every summer... Taste of Edmonton, K-Days, Fringe Festival. One summer festival that has always been on my list is Heritage Festival (! Servus Heritage Festival is a 3 day showcase highlighting Canada's multicultural heritage, located in William Hawrelak Park. They feature 60 pavilions representing over 85 cultures from all over the world! At these cultural pavilions, you are able to sample a variety of culinary delights, watch performances, and shop for clothing, artwork, crafts, and other neat items. The best part about this festival is that admission is free! Transportation via bus, buying food tickets, or purchasing items would be the only instances when you'd have to spend money. You could definitely attend the festival without needing to spend money and still have a great time! 

Heritage Festival occurs during the August long weekend, but I didn't have time to go until the very last day of the event - Monday, August 4th. CJ and I arrived there early in the afternoon to have lots of time to enjoy the festival without fear of food running out! Yes, the food will always be my favourite part of the festival. Every year, I carefully look through the festival menu and plan out what food and drink items I want to get, depending on the number of tickets I buy. I usually get 30 tickets for $25.00, but this year I wanted to try even more food! I decided to go for 42 tickets which cost me $35.00. 

If you've ever been to Heritage Festival, you'll know just how large the area is! The pavilions are spread all over Hawrelak Park, so it really helps to have one of the Site Maps with you. CJ, my friends and I decided to start at one end of the festival and make our way around, checking out each pavilion along the way. 


First stop: the Dutch pavilion at Site 58 to pick up Poffertjes (6 tickets). Poffertjes are tiny Dutch pancakes served hot from the griddle, with melted butter and powdered sugar. I don't really like pancakes in general, but I couldn't resist trying out these smaller sized ones! The pancakes were light and fluffy but just a little buttery, while the powdered sugar added the right amount of sweetness. Yummy! I thought this was perfect for sharing with my friends. 

Latin Fried Ice Cream.

One of the food items that caught my eye was Latin Fried Ice Cream (6 tickets) from Nicaragua at Site 37. When we got there, we only ended up having to pay 4 tickets instead of 6! Apparently the rainy weather was affecting the number of ice creams being sold, so they decided to reduce the cost. This dessert is deep fried vanilla ice cream rolled in crispy flakes with brown sugar and cinnamon, topped with whipped cream and strawberries on the side. The fried outer layer was a little hard to break through at first, but when I got around to taking a bite of the crispy flakes and ice cream together, it was heaven in my mouth. So good!!! The brown sugar and cinnamon definitely made the crispy flakes more flavourful, and I thought the strawberries were the perfect touch. While most people return to Heritage Festival for the classic Elephant Ears, I would come back for this ice cream! I highly recommend giving this dessert a try for next year! 


Now for something savoury: Takoyaki (3 tickets) from the Japanese pavilion at Site 32. The first time I heard about takoyaki was while watching an episode of One Piece. After finally reaching the Red Line, the Straw Hat Pirates help a mermaid named Keimi and talking starfish named Pappug, who offer to give them some takoyaki to express their thanks. I clearly remember Luffy cheering for takoyaki along the way to meet with Hatchan, who runs a takoyaki stand. Since then, I've always wanted to try this dish! Takoyaki is essentially an octopus dumpling served with sauce. I've never had octopus before, so I was a bit nervous to try it! Unfortuately, this particular dumpling wasn't as pleasant as I thought it would be. I thought the flour-based batter was a little gummy for my liking, and the octopus itself was a bit tough to chew. The sauce it was served with was mildly spicy, but overall just okay. If I ever try takoyaki again in the future, I'm hoping it will taste better than this one. 

Fresh Lemonade Drink.

Several years ago at Heritage Festival, I remember wanting to get something refreshing to drink. I ended up getting the Fresh Lemonade Drink (4 tickets) from Borneo at Site 30. At the time I was thinking, "this is the best lemonade I've ever tasted". Since that time, I've always gotten this drink every year at Heritage Festival. Unfortunately, every year after that one just hasn't been the same. Instead of the amazing, sweet lemonade I had in the past, this drink is now just your average lemonade. I don't know why I still keep getting it though. Maybe out of hope that one year, it will be the same lemonade that it was before! Oh well. 

Mango Slices with Sticky Rice.

Right next to the Borneo pavilion was Thailand, at Site 29. Here I wanted to try the Mango Slices with Sticky Rice (5 tickets), which is a popular Thai dessert. This dessert consists of coconut milk sweetened sticky rice with ripe mango slices. Once I had this dish in my hands, I could immediately smell the sweet coconut aroma from the sticky rice. Yum! The mango was perfectly ripe and juicy, and the sticky rice was sweet and melted in my mouth. This dessert is definitely on the heavier side compared to more classic Western desserts, so I would give this one a try if you're looking for something new and different! I'm looking forward to getting this dessert again if I ever check out some of Edmonton's Thai restaurants. 

Melon Drink.

Whenever I go to Heritage Festival, I do my best to sample food from places I usually wouldn't try. In other words, avoid all Asian pavilions - particularly the pavilion of my own heritage! However, there is one item from the Philippines pavilion at Site 16 that will always keep me coming back: the Melon Drink (3 tickets)! I absolutely love this drink. Sometimes my mom makes this at home, and I'm pretty sure I'm the one drinking most of it! This chilled drink is composed of shredded cantaloupe and sugar, so it is nice and sweet but also very refreshing. CJ and I grabbed a fork because we knew we'd want to scoop up the remaining pieces of cantaloupe after the liquid would be all gone (why let something so good go to waste? Haha). If you're going to get a drink, make it this one! So good and only 3 tickets! 

Chicken Curry.

Okay, time to get a more filling meal for CJ and myself! I decided to get us Chicken Curry (7 tickets) from Fiji at Site 14. This dish consists of chicken pieces cooked with spices, garlic, and oil served with either rice or roti. We chose to get ours with rice. I thought the chicken was cooked well with a unique combination of spices, and the bed of rice underneath was fresh and warm. This dish was hearty and was a perfect break after having so many desserts and sweeter beverages. Both CJ and I wished that there was more chicken though! 


Another more filling dish: Latkes (5 tickets) from Israel at Site 2. Latkes are fried shredded potato and onion pancakes, served with apple sauce. The pancakes were hot and quite flavourful, and they were actually very filling as well! I was already feeling stuffed after eating the first pancake. The inside had a fluffy texture but the outside was perfectly crispy. I think I would've liked the dish better if the apple sauce itself was sweeter! I thought it lacked much needed sweetener, like sugar or honey. Unfortunately, CJ didn't enjoy these pancakes as much as I did. 

Shrimp Chips.

At this point, 5 tickets remained out of the 42 I purchased earlier. However, one of my friends needed to leave early, so she gave her 6 remaining tickets to CJ and I! More food for us! I hadn't really planned for having extra tickets, so it took me some time to figure out what to get. CJ just wanted something simple and didn't want to walk too far, so I chose to get a bag of Shrimp Chips (4 tickets) from the Hong Kong pavilion at Site 24 which was nearby. Both of us have had shrimp chips countless times, so why did I choose to get this? Because it's addictive and colourful, that's why! This is definitely one of my favourite snacks - light, crunchy, and full of shrimp flavour. 

Jugo de Pina.

CJ is always looking for something to drink, so we ended up getting Jugo de Pina (3 tickets) from Ecuador at Site 25. This pineapple juice was smooth, sweet and very thirst quenching. Delicious! 

Empanada de Queso.

Last food item of the day! CJ and I were ready to go home, so we just got another item from Ecuador instead of walking around some more. We got the Empanada de Queso (4 tickets), which is a deep fried dough filled with mozzarella cheese. The empanada had a beautiful golden brown colour, and was flaky after taking a bite out of it. CJ and I actually thought it would be filled completely with the mozzarella cheese, but we found that it had a hollow interior with the cheese lining the inner sections of the dough. Very simple and satisfying dish to finish off our day at Heritage Festival! 

Heritage Festival 2014 was so much fun! All the food and drink I sampled were delicious, and I loved being able to try new things from different cultures all over the world. It's a great experience to see so many people coming together in one spot to celebrate Canada's multiculturalism and cultural diversity. Mine and CJ's favourite dish of the day had to be the Latin Fried Ice Cream, hands down. I'm already so excited for next year's Heritage Festival, which will be their 40th Anniversary! See you then!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

K-Days 2014

Yes, I know it's already mid-August... but I just had to include a K-Days 2014 recap! Anyone who's ever lived in Edmonton knows about this annual 10 day exhibition that occurs during the summer at Northlands around the end of July. Along with lots of different rides, there are also carnival games, concerts, performances, and many other indoor and outdoor attractions. Definitely a lot of things to do for people of all ages! The two main reasons why I like to visit K-Days ( are for the food and games. Summer fairs are all about indulging in crazy, deep fried food and trying things you've never had before. Deep fried oreos and Mars bars, wiggle chips, scorpion pizzas... you name it. Winning prizes from the carnival games are just as fun as well. CJ was actually the one playing all the games to win prizes for me, so I was very happy whenever I got a new stuffie! Thank you bb! 

He won all of this for me. Of course I had to include a picture <3.

K-Days 2014 was different for me, because this time I actually went on a few rides! It's been many years since I've gone on the rides at K-Days. That being said, I only went on about four rides: the Megadrop, the Giant Yellow Slide, the Ferris Wheel, and one of those rides where you have to walk through them. I'm not that crazy about going on rides anyways, but I did wish I got to go on one of the roller coasters. 

Now let's talk about food! My friends and I decided to have our lunch at the Food Court in Hall E, inside the Edmonton EXPO Centre (also at Northlands). This area is specifically named "Eat at The Grand", which is presented by Coca-Cola. Here you'll find a variety of food options at this international food court.

Lemon Grass Chicken with Rice and Vegetables.

CJ and I were both very hungry since we had skipped breakfast. I decided to go for a more filling option for us - Lemon Grass Chicken with Rice and Vegetables ($8.95) from Lemon Grass Wok. You could also choose to have the chicken served with vermicelli. I found the chicken to be quite flavourful, and the vegetables gave off a nice aroma. When paired with the warm rice, it definitely made for a satisfying lunch. I would have to say this was my personal favourite eat at K-Days. 

Lite Bite.

Jeline got herself the Lite Bite ($6) from Baba's Kitchen. This dish comes with 3 perogies and one kobbasa (better known as kielbasa) sausage. A small amount of sour cream and slaw was served on the side as well. I only tried a piece of the sausage, and the slight smoky taste I got from it was enjoyable. 

Pizza Dog.

June's pick for lunch was a Pizza Dog ($5) from Blaine's Burger Bar. This hotdog comes with pizza sauce and mozzarella cheese on top. I didn't try it myself, but I don't recall hearing any complaints from June either. 

5 Food Items.

After having lunch, my friends and I spent the rest of the day walking around the fair grounds and attempting some of the carnival games. Of course, we were all bound to get hungry again. We returned to The Grand food court to fuel up and rest before continuing our K-Days adventure. CJ and I shared yet another dish, but this time we decided to order 5 Food Items ($9.75) from Chopstix. Specifically, we got their egg fried rice, ginger beef, black pepper chicken, vegetables, and green onion cake. This is the type of food you see offered by most Asian establishments at food courts. That being said, I wasn't expecting the most amazing food. It was just decent but enough to fill me up. I think the best food item on the plate was the black pepper chicken - nice and crunchy and reminiscent of popcorn chicken. 

Mini Donuts.

Getting a bag of fresh mini donuts is a must at any fair. For the past few years I've gone to K-Days, I've made a point to always purchase some mini donuts. It's a tradition. This time however, I wasn't really craving mini donuts enough to buy them myself. Good thing Jeline got a bag of 20 donuts (~$5) and shared with everyone! The donuts were light, fluffy and tasted delicious since they were hot and freshly made. I just wish that they were tossed in more cinnamon sugar to make them sweeter than they already were! 

Beef on a Bun.

Last food item of the day! I do realize that I was talking about trying all the deep fried goodness offered by many places on the fair grounds, but ended up not getting anything fried at all! The reason why? Everything is so expensive and over-priced! Haha. Unfortunately, I just didn't feel like spending any more money. Anyways, Jeline decided to get Beef on a Bun ($7.50) from Beef on a Bun. I thought it was amusing how the name of this item matched the name of the vendor. This dish is essentially some pulled beef in between a bun... I'm pretty sure there weren't even any other components to it! Although Jeline ate most of the beef, she didn't finish off the bread because it eventually got too soggy and unappetizing. Hmmm... was this really worth the price she paid? 

View from the Ferris Wheel.

I had an awesome day at K-Days with CJ and my friends. While the food we had was just okay overall, you can't really expect the most delicious food at summer fairs. After all, it's mostly there to fill you up so you can enjoy the rest of the attractions! Leaving K-Days with 5 new stuffies won by CJ was definitely the highlight of my day. Maybe next year I'll actually go on more exhilarating rides and try more of the food from the outdoor vendors. See you next year, K-Days! 

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Coco Deep Fried Chicken

Hey everyone! I'm excited to say that this is the last food adventure I went on before Taste of Edmonton. That means my blog posts will finally be in order after this (at least I will try to keep it that way). Just two days after mine and CJ's monthsary date at Nineteen, my friends and I ended up planning an afternoon playing golf. We went to Bogey Busters Driving Range which is located in South Edmonton on Ellerslie Road. This actually wasn't our first option... we were considering several other golf courses. But after some research, I soon found out that these other golf courses followed a particular dress code... and I did not own any proper golf attire! I'm not the most athletic person... I only own the most basic sweats and running shoes. With that being said, Bogey Busters was the best option (for me, at least. All my friends had actual golf clothes). No one would care what you wear, and the pricing for the baskets would most likely be not as expensive as other golf courses. 

Alright, here's a summary of my day at the driving range. I paid $12 for a large basket of golf balls, and my friend Jeline let me borrow her golf clubs. Of course, being the noob that I am at sports, I could barely hit the ball. I didn't even know how to properly stand and hit the ball in the first place actually. Good thing I had my friends and CJ to teach me how. I was very happy whenever I did hit the ball and watched it fly off (even though it didn't go that far). I guess all it takes is lots and lots of practice. If you're hanging out with your friends and don't know what to do, I would suggest going to the driving range! This was definitely something out of the box for my group of friends, considering we usually like to go to the movies or shopping for our hangouts. The only thing to note is that you'd have to bring your own golf clubs to use. 

After the eventful afternoon at the driving range, the first thing on my mind was obviously food!!! Standing outside in the heat of the afternoon sun, of course I would get hungry. CJ, June, and myself headed over to a place that I've been wanting to go to for awhile now: Coco Deep Fried Chicken (! This is a Korean restaurant located in a strip mall on the intersection of 34 Ave and Parsons Road. Considering I live in the south side, this restaurant was very easy to get to for me as I've passed by it many times before! There is also plenty of parking available as well. 

The interior.

Walking in, I was actually expecting to see a more formal restaurant set up... a hostess to seat you at a table, servers, individual menus. I'm not sure why I was thinking that in the first place, because I soon found out I was wrong. Coco Deep Fried Chicken is a casual restaurant where you order at the front counter then choose to dine in or take out. Good thing there were just a few empty tables left for my friends and I to sit at! 

Special Set 1.

We decided to share an order of Special Set 1 ($29.99). This comes with 10 pieces of half and half chicken - specifically, crispy chicken and sweet & hot sauce chicken. It is also served with a side of pickled daikon. Lastly, you can choose any 2 drinks or beer bottles. I loved how large each piece of chicken was... perfect for sharing with two other people! 

Crispy Chicken.

I went for the crispy chicken first. Wow! The exterior was nice and crispy, and the chicken itself was beautifully moist and tender. So delicious, and very addicting. 

Sweet & Hot Sauce Chicken.

Next I tried the sweet & hot sauce chicken. This is a traditional Korean sauce - my first time trying it! I loved the sweeter notes in the sauce, and the heat definitely came through with each successive bite. The heat even had CJ in sniffles. Like the crispy chicken, the meat for the sweet & hot sauce chicken was just as juicy. Considering the addition of the sauce, I would say this chicken would be the more flavourful option between the two. Just a warning: eating this chicken gets pretty messy! CJ and I had to use several paper napkins to clean up the mess on our fingers and faces. Hahaha. 

As for the side dish: I don't think I've ever tried daikon before, so I was a bit hesitant to eat it at first. June convinced me to give it a taste... and I'm glad I did. For those who are unfamiliar with it like myself, daikon is a winter radish native to east and south-east Asia. I really enjoyed the mild flavour and the crunchiness of it. I thought it made for the perfect palate cleanser. 

I highly recommend checking out Coco Deep Fried Chicken if you're ever looking for some delicious and flavourful fried chicken lunch or dinner! They claim to serve the "Best Deep Fried Chicken in Town", but until I've tried all of Edmonton's fried chicken eateries, I can't make that call yet! While they specialize in chicken, they do offer some sides which include fries, sweet potato fries, onion rings, caesar salad, rice, kimchi, coleslaw, potato salad, and finally the daikon I mentioned earlier. I'm looking forward to coming back here for some more KFC - Korean Fried Chicken! 

Thursday, August 7, 2014


On July 11th, CJ and I celebrated our monthsary together. But it wasn't just any monthsary... we happened to be dating for 700 days the exact same day! How often does that happen?! Of course, this called for an extra special monthsary celebration... lunch at Nineteen (! Earlier that day, the idea of having lunch there actually didn't cross my mind - I was expecting a date at a more casual food place. However, I soon remembered that Nineteen recently opened up for lunch in addition to their dinner hours! I knew I had to take this opportunity to finally go to Nineteen for lunch with CJ! 

Nineteen is a fine dining restaurant located in Southwest Edmonton. Specifically, it is down Rabbit Hill Road heading south just before reaching the Anthony Henday. This restaurant is very close to mine and CJ's houses and has been open for quite some time now, so I guess it isn't so hard to put together why both of us were really excited to finally go here! We even dressed up a bit more fancier than we usually do. 

Although I didn't think it would be too busy during lunch time, I asked CJ to make a reservation for us anyways. I soon found out that we would've been fine without a reservation beforehand considering there were only a few other diners. We were told we could sit in the main dining area inside, the lounge, or the patio. CJ and I have never eaten out in any patio area before, so of course I chose the patio! It is patio season, after all. 

The lunch menu (first page).
The lunch menu (second page).

The lunch menu at Nineteen varies day by day, so there is currently no set lunch menu available on their website. I found that the lunch menu at Nineteen featured mostly salads, but there were a few more filling options as well. Our server also informed us of their Pasta of the Day, Soup and Sandwich of the Day, and Catch of the Day. I went with the Pasta of the Day, while CJ decided on the Mongolian Beef Bowl for his lunch. 

Mongolian Beef Bowl.

The first dish to come out was CJ's pick - their Mongolian Beef Bowl ($16). When this dish was set down at our table, I was blown away at how beautiful the presentation was! Very vibrant with all the different colours. This dish features sautéed Mongolian beef, diced cucumber and tomato, steamed jasmine rice, a sweet soy glaze and finally topped off with a 63 degree egg. It is also clear that there were some other vegetables present on the dish as well. Although I didn't try it, the Mongolian Beef Bowl appeared to be very refreshing from all the vegetables, yet still substantial from the meat and rice. Watching CJ eat his food, I wasn't sure how he felt about it! He then told me that while it tasted good, he obviously would've liked it better if there was more meat and less vegetables. A typical request from him. 

Pasta of the Day.

Next up was my Pasta of the Day ($16). Yet another eye catching presentation! This dish didn't have a description on their menu, and I didn't want to start taking notes of the full description in front of our server. Luckily, I tweeted at Nineteen and they responded! Yay! The Pasta of the Day consists of grilled chicken breast, gull valley cherry tomatoes, and bocochini cheese with a creamy rose sauce. I thought my chicken was cooked nicely, and the slightly spongy texture yet mild flavour of the cheese was very pleasant. The one component of my dish that I thought could've been done better was the texture of the pasta itself. I think it needed to be cooked longer because I felt that it tasted a bit slimy. However, when paired with the chicken or the cheese, the pasta can easily be overlooked. I didn't really touch the tomatoes - not because they didn't taste good, but because I don't like tomatoes that much! Overall, a delicious and satisfying dish! 

Drinks and dessert menu.

Nineteen also has a very long list of wines available: red, white, sparkling, you name it. This is definitely a good place to go if you're a lover of vino. They also have their non alcoholic beverages, followed by their desserts in this bright orange menu! 

Passion Fruit Cheesecake.

Our monthsary celebration would not have been complete without a yummy dessert! I chose the Passion Fruit Cheesecake ($13) to share with CJ. This dessert also comes with orange puree, fresh BC berries, and mint. To be honest, I was actually expecting the presentation to be a lot better than what was given to us. A small cheesecake with a tiny mint leaf and some berries on the side... I don't think that was worth $13. Nevertheless, CJ and I still dug in, splitting the cheesecake and berries between us. I thought the cheesecake had a nice tang to it and wasn't too sweet. It was also very light and refreshing - perfect to beat the summertime heat! The berries also added on to the sweetness of the dessert, but in a good way. Very delicious! I just wish the presentation was better for the price we paid. 

CJ and I had an amazing time at Nineteen to celebrate our monthsary! I've always been wanting to go here ever since it first opened! I would suggest to celebrate my 19th birthday at Nineteen, or to go there with all my friends before we turned 20. Now, I've finally gone! The pricing at Nineteen is slightly higher than at other places, so we would only come back here if it were for a special occasion. Our server was very friendly and regularly checked up on us to see how we were doing. I thought our first time patio experience was a success! I guess one of the downsides about patios are the bugs flying around. There was actually quite a lot of different bugs crawling or flying near us, but I suppose it wasn't too bothersome. That's one of the given downsides of sitting outside with food anyways. I would recommend Nineteen if you're planning a fancier date with your loved one, or if you want to have a chance to look more slightly put together during dinner time! It was fun for both CJ and I to dress up and look good for each other. 

Thank you Chef Andrew Fung for the delicious food, as well as all the team at Nineteen for the awesome experience. CJ and I would definitely want to come back sometime in the future (maybe with our friends next time too)!