Tag Archives: Urbanspoon

REVIEW: Tubby Dog

26 Aug

Tubby Dog
1022 17 Ave SW
Calgary, AB

403-244-0694

Tubby Dog is one of the coolest places I’ve ever eaten at! I will get back to that in a bit.

My Fiancee and I visited Tubby Dog recently on a trip to Calgary. We were in town to see Weezer at the X-Fest Festival at the historic Fort Calgary. The festival was pretty good and we had a good time. The only two downers were the complete lack of porta-potties (60 or so for 14,000 people) and the incredibly hot sun on my unprotected legs. For most of the afternoon, I sat on the grass with my legs crossed, and I forgot to put sunscreen on my legs. Needless to say my inner leg at my knee was very crispy (later that evening I bought the best sunburn gel with aloe and a numbing agent!)! By the time Weezer came on, the sun was setting and it was getting a little cooler. Weezer put on an excellent show as usual! They played 19 songs and we were very satisfied at the end. We didn’t stay and watch the final band, Jane’s Addiction since we were very tired from the sun. Though I really wanted to see then, it works out we will see them later this fall at another show.

Anyways, back to the subject of this blog entry. We discovered Tubby Dog by browsing Urbanspoon. It had a very high rating and had an extremely creative and interesting menu. We visited Tubby just after we left the festival. It was located in the heart of the trendy 17th Avenue district of Calgary. It was full of restaurants, shops, and bustling night life spots. According to www.uptown17.ca, Uptown 17 is “located in the heart of the city and in one of Calgary’s oldest communities, Uptown 17th Avenue  – the Pulse of Calgary – is a neighbourhood where people come to live, work, dine, shop and to explore one of Canada’s most thriving cosmopolitan areas“.

Again, Tubby Dog is one of the coolest places I’ve ever eaten at! We walked into a dim restaurant with bright orange, yellow and red colours. In the back ground was playing uncensored music by the Notorious B.I.G. I knew I would like this place! Tubby Dog serves hotdogs and yummy deep fried goodness. There were no limits on the music and definitely no limits on the dogs they serve!

The menu was large and unique! My fiancee decided to go with the A-Bomb (cheese, bacon, mayo, mustard, ketchup, potato chips) and I ordered the Sumo. The Sumo had so many delicious toppings on it, but I was leery of what it would taste like all together. The Sumo had Japanese Mayo, Wasabi, pickled ginger, seasoned sea weed salad, and sesame seeds.  All hot dogs came on a fresh baked, steamed bun. We also ordered half orders of the Tubby Chips and the T-Rings.

When we got our food my jaw dropped and my eyes bugged out of my head! If you can’t tell by the picture, the fries and rings came served on a full sized cafeteria tray! The onion rings were massive and the fries were amazingly fresh, hot and crisp! The dogs were still steaming hot when we got them. I began getting anxious on how I was going to eat this mound of flavour. Should I pick it up and risk it disintegrating in my hand creating a huge mess? Or, do I use the knife and fork provided? My Fiancee picked hers up, so I decided to do the same. Well, the dog stayed together. I have no clue how it did, but it stayed intact the whole way. The Sumo dog was UNREAL! It was one of the best things I’ve ever eaten. All flavours were in perfect balance… not too much wasabi, just enough mayo, and heaps of seasoned seaweed and pickled ginger. All together it tasted like hotdog sushi! I would eat this over and over and over and over! The A-Bomb was really good too. The flavours of salty pork, cheese, and bacon reminded me of a more traditional hotdog. My Fiancee said she liked hers, but wished she would have ordered the Sumo.

I would urge anyone living in or visiting Calgary to try Tubby Dog! If you want a truly unique food experience, then you must eat here. The old school music, hip vibe, and eclectic space makes their food taste just that much better!

P.S.  Sorry for the complete lack of posts over the last while. We’ve been working hard losing weight since January. Stay tuned for an entry about how healthier eating has changed our lives!

 

 
Tubby Dog on Urbanspoon

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REVIEW: Collective Coffee

2 Mar

Collective Coffee
220 20th street West
http://collectivecoffee.weebly.com/index.html

Hours
Weekdays – 8am – 5pm
Saturday 10am – 5pm
Sunday – Closed currently

Friends who live in Riversdale told me that a new coffee shop would be opening in the new Two Twenty building on 20th Street. Not aware that this shop would be an artisan coffee spot, I was not excited, nor was I expecting anything other than the status quo. On Saturday, I found their Facebook page and ‘liked’ them. Their status was promoting a free shot of single origin espresso. I got the feeling that this place might be different than the norm. Since I can’t pass up free high quality coffee, I dragged my Fiancee down with me.

Coffee Collective is a beautiful little spot. The emphasis is on little! Seating is very limited, but don’t let that deter you from trying it out. There is ample room by a very large garage style glass door. I can’t wait until summer when that door will be open spilling the aroma of coffee yum all over 20th! Rich browns dominate the space at Collective Coffee. The bottom third of the walls are covered with an interesting lacquered wood. Looking closer it’s revealed that the wood is plywood.

We both ordered the sample espresso and a cappuccino. I’ll start with the free espresso. First, the smell was really nice! It smelled toasty, rich, and almost chocolaty. Second, it tasted very acidic. The bitterness was surprisingly low, and the texture and mouth feel was good. The tanginess was just too off-putting for me. Generally, excessive acidity is a sign of poor quality beans. I’m sure that low quality isn’t the case here since they use a very reputable product and a tremendous amount of care and experience goes into pulling each shot. I would guess that it was caused by something not quite perfected with the extraction process. I’m very certain that these kinks will be worked out.

This cappuccino was yummy. Made from medium roasted beans, It had a pronounced acidity from the espresso (discussed earlier). In the drink, the milk softened the acidity. The crema was densely rich and the milk foam was airy and creamy. One other issue I would have was the temperature of the drink. It was a little cool. Well, lukewarm is a good descriptor. I know that proper steamed milk isn’t overly hot, but this was a little too cool.

“Our vision is to join the ongoing effort to bring the city of Saskatoon to the next level of Coffee awareness…”

After trying Museo earlier that week, and experiencing Collective Coffee, I am very excited that Saskatoon is becoming more interested in and passionate about coffee! For many years I have longed for a spot where ‘real’ coffee is the focus. Sure, Saskatoon has the Broadway Roastery, Starbucks, and other small coffee shops, but they are all alike. Their espresso is over-roasted and their drinks are pumped out with out any care or cognition. Collective Coffee, Museo, and Cafe Sola seem passionately determined on informing us Prairie folk on the idiosyncrasies of Coffea Arabica. I will definitely be back!

Check them out @
Collective Coffee on Urbanspoon

Restaurant Review – New Island Sushi

30 Nov

Locations:
2036 Quebec Ave
Saskatoon, SK S7K

and

240 22nd St E
Saskatoon, SK S7K

http://newislandsushi.com/

Prices:
Lunch – $14.99
Dinner – $24.99
A-la-cart – Who cares

Well, what can I say about New Island Sushi? It definitely is NOT authentic Japanese food. It is typical Canadian sushi and noodles… very dumbed-down and bastardized. That said, it has some OK flavours at times and shwackloads of bang for your buck if you like rolls. I have tried both locations and I think the Circle Drive location is superior.

Expect fish and sauces cholk-full salt and MSG. The flavour is evident in their raw fish, soy dip, and tempura dip. Though spiking fish and sauces with MSG is weird and wrong in my opinion, I suspect a business would do that to cover up sub-par ingredients, and make you bloated and full faster. I suspected something was up after we left the restaurant. I felt like I ate a 10 piece bucket of K-Fry even though I used almost no soy sauce for dipping.

What to order:

Tempura Shrimp
Tempura Vegetable
Salmon Sushi
Deep Fried Curry Chicken Cutlet
Teriyaki Salmon Belly
Seafood Fried Udon
Dynamite Roll

What NOT to order:

Most generic rolls
Udon soups (Mmmm, MSG flavour!)

Here are some pictures:

New Island has a no waste food policy. If there is any left over food at the table they will charge you per individual piece. Because of that, DO NOT over order! If you do, the food keeps coming out and coming out! Our second last visit was traumatizing. We decided to try the downtown location this time. We ended up ordering too much and the food kept being served. We were getting extremely full and they kept bring us plates. We did not want to pay extra for wasted food so we kept eating. I was getting so sick I literally contemplated emptying my contents in the washroom and then continue, but I refrained. The only thing that really bothered us (besides being too full) was the wait staff. They were standing right by us making sure we did not waste food. It was embarrassing. Needless to say we have not returned to that location.

I give it 2 stars out of 5.

New Island Sushi - Northend on Urbanspoon