Monday, November 17, 2014

Spot Dessert Bar - KTown Adventures

This past weekend, I went with the Big Red Marching Band to NYC for the football game against Columbia and Sy Katz' Parade, which included marching on 5th Avenue in celebration of Cornell's 150th birthday. Aside from the band stuff, our manager was generous enough to give us around 2 hours of free time after dinner to explore the city ourselves. Guess which rebellious sax end up going dessert-hunting with the clarinets? This hardcore foodie right here. 

Since we had limited time, we ran/walked-like-a-New Yorker to the closest opened dessert place - Spot Dessert Bar's branch in Korean Town. Located on the 2nd floor of a busy food court, the place was filled with people on a breezy Saturday night. 
Part of the Display 
 The cooler had a display of Asian-fusioned (would that be the appropriate word? Correct me if I'm wrong) desserts, including taro cake slices with a mini macaron shell on top, green tea ├ęclairs, etc. Aside from the appealing displays, the Signature Dessert Tapas s are the must-trys. 

With a group of approximately 6 people, I had the chance to try (or watch other people try) 4 out of the 8 signature ones. Unfortunately some of them were not the first choice since the cashier said 4 out of the 8 signature tapas are unavailable, which also happened to be 4 of our top choices (Matcha Azuki, Banocoffee, etc...seriously). Maybe something they can try next time is to state the availability beforehand to avoid disappointment from their long-travelled costumers? Just a thought. 
The Signature: Green Tea Chocolate Lava Cake 
Foodie trips with a Food Science major almost always involves a fun "dissection" of the dish. Ethyn and I both thought the cake had a matcha-infused appearance but lacked majorly on the green tea flavour on the inside. Though beautifully plated, the dish is basically green tea ice cream and chocolate lava cake with minimal green tea taste. Though a little disappointed, this was the least sweet dish out of all the ones we've tried, a favourite dessert for those who can't tolerate over-sweetness, I guess. 

Thursday, November 6, 2014

Establishment - Cornell's Own Student-Run "Restaurant"

The classic menu at Establishment, a place where a casual dining/studying lounge becomes a "restaurant" at night

Though still busy and exhausted from midst of the second round of prelims (term for midterm exams used in our school), Cathleen and I still decided to take a short break from all the pressure and chose Establishment - the student-ran "Restaurant" at Statler Hotel. This is actually a course for Restaurant Management at Cornell, where Hotel School students become servers, greeters, chefs - staff running a restaurant.
Since the roommate is also a student at the School of Hotel Administration, part of the other reasons  we went was also to let her experience Establishment as a guest before she becomes the server (and serves me haha). 

Occasionally, groups of students host themed-nights where there are new additions to the regular menu. We decided on going to the Hong-Kong Themed Night - a reminisce of home for both of us I guess. 

The regular menu with special additions

happy roommate, happy day

The night's additions included the Wushu Trained Flying Wings, Kung Fu Char Siu Master and Yin Yang Dessert. Very creative course names indeed, let's take a look at the actual products.

We ordered all three of the special courses, with 2 more items from the regular menu - Erza's House Salad and Dashi Salmon. 

Wushu Trained Flying Wings

the menu description described this course as: oyster-sauce glaze. I expected salty wings, as the impression of oyster sauce has always been more on the savoury side. The wings surprised us both- it was sweet, tangy, but not the kind of sweet and sour sauce you get at Americanized Chinese restaurants. Definitely consider re-ordering this if it still exists.