Like a Boss!

Boss HogsBoss Hog’s Smokin’ Chophouse that is! Well, superfoodies finally headed a bit further west than we usually do to attend a happy 40th 🙂 in London, ON, on Saturday. Excellent party, interesting people, and an actual bar set up (nice!)… superfoodies took particular advantage of that feature, and our wise and caring host took care of our cab ride back to the hotel. This kind of Saturday however, leads to the inevitable “Sunday Morning After”, and this time was no exception.

The only thing that will expel us from our hotel room earlier than checkout time is an overwhelming need to find a “cure” for what ails us! We set out just before 11 and had no plan in mind.  We pulled into a Golden Griddle, but neither of us really wanted to go that predictable route.  We searched the google machine while in the parking lot, and found a little diner not too far away where we could get some standard, but hopefully less chain-like, breakfast fare.

On the way there, we spotted a sign that is a nickname of one of the kiddos and while we pulled in to take a pic, we spotted a little BBQ joint… and though just 11 am… it was open! Score! Lets have some ribs 🙂

Boss Hog’s had obviously gotten a head start on the rest of the city, since the 15-20 table, clean, and nicely decorated joint, was still empty. We were quickly greeted and told to sit where we liked.  Menus in hand, a drink offer was met with my usual answer on days like these: a caesar with extra spice, and L went with club soda.

When the drinks arrived, we mostly knew what we wanted… and then the server mentioned that it just happened to be all you can eat rib day. Um, easy call for L, he went with that, and I got the rib and brisket combo with a side of sweet potato fries and mayo, and the fries just happened to be my favourite: lattice! We also had to go with the Loaded Potato Soup to share for a starter.

The caesar went down fast, and was delicious and spiced perfectly… tasted like a couple more, but a long car ride ahead steered me to a soda instead. The soup arrived and it was as great as loaded potato soup should be, so let me point out the best reason to order it: it is loaded with pulled pork, not just a little garnish on top. We are already feeling a million times better. As we waited for our entrees, the country music played, and L regaled me with his extensive knowledge of the Smokey and the Bandit movies (1,2, AND 3) and the Dukes of Hazzard. The things you learn…

Here come the ribs… and brisket… etc… Big portions compared to the other smoke/bbq places we have previously reviewed here and the cost was comparatively lower.  Based on this, we thought it might not be as good as the other places, but have to say, it was fantastic.  Meat came off the bones easily, but the meat still held a solid, but tender texture. The sauce looked thick and super sweet, but it wasn’t at all, just tasty and added to the flavours instead of overwhelming. It had an undercurrent of vinegar and apple.  The brisket was thin sliced, and though I’m a fan of thicker, it was still enjoyable due to the pull apart, but still the right amount of chew going on, as well as a nice smoked flavour. Have to include a mention of the little corn bread muffin on my order too, just how I like it, didn’t crumble to dust when picked up and the right amount of sweetness.  Perfect.

L downed 2 plates of ribs and some brisket and lattice fries and made himself a “slider” with the last of the brisket and the soft little garlic bun on his plate and that was all folks! Over and out. So happy that we stumbled across a place with such great service and food. On the way out, noticed a truck full of wood and an add on to the restaurant, sporting a large chimney. We presumed that this was the “smoker” area and a new load of “fuel”. We were glad to see that they are obviously doing the real deal here. So head on in if you’re in the area… the Boss wants to see you.

K&L 😀

Boss Hog's Smokin' Chophouse on Urbanspoon

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Kimchi Kontinued!

Alirang Ori BokumBefore we head back to Las Vegas and MESA Grill, I thought I would write up a quick post on a delicious little Korean restaurant in Ottawa called Alirang, since it goes along with the last post about kimchi burgers and will save me time explaining what that’s all about again!

This marks my 3rd visit and L’s 2nd.  It was my first choice for belated birthday dinner with my daughter and her boyfriend, who isn’t a totally adventurous eater, but is learning to humour us :). I could say it’s one particular dish that keeps me coming back (kimchi pancakes, I’m looking at you!!) but really all of the things we order there are fantastic, with solid portions and decent prices.

The place itself is not terribly big or fancy, and is always quite busy, so if you do want to go, 5 pm seems to get you a table and fast enough service, after that, it seems to steadily fill and there really aren’t convenient places to stand/sit while you wait if you aren’t able to get a table right away. We arrive at 5!

Ordered usual wine for us and some edamame and 2 kimchi pancakes.  They are simply sour, soft, delicious! and are exactly what you suspect… pancake with lots and lots of kimchi embedded in it.  What’s not to love? I have also made these myself after my first acquaintance with them last March. Remember to chop the kimchi before blending into the batter, it’s a lot harder to cut up when it has been dunked first… yes I know this from experience!

Next our main courses arrived, BIG fan of their Galbi beef,  just sweet enough, and tender and filling.  L had the Bulgogi, but this time in stone pot with noodles and broth.  We also ordered the Ori Bokum, which is vegetable stir fry duck.  The usual Korean sides were included: kimchi, bean sprouts etc.  Everything was cooked perfectly and tasty as always.  No disappointments.  Very relaxed dinner, the place was definitely packed when we left.  Highly recommend you stop here if you are looking for authentic Korean food while you are in Ottawa, just get there around 5 if you want to get a seat!

K&L 😀
Alirang on Urbanspoon

Wastin’ Away

Margaritaville Vegasin Margaritaville! Our first Vegas post since it was the first place we ate… mostly because it was across the street, we were tired, and figured why not??? So it was time to put our new ideas about how to eat on vacation to the test. Our strategy was to split dishes/drinks, leave things that weren’t delicious, or should be delicious, and were sub par, and generally not eat if we weren’t hungry. That being said, we ordered one Havanas and Bananas frozen drink (banana, baileys, rum, coconut etc.), one crab corn chowder and one cuban sandwich with fries.  Oh and a glass of wine of course.  The drink, was divine, partly because we don’t usually indulge in those types of sugary concoctions and partly because it was just damn delicious.  We finished that no problem, it wasn’t terribly large.  Then onto the soup, also quite good, not 5 star quality, but tasty none the less, it didn’t stand much of a chance. Finally the cuban sandwich. Quite standard and did the job, but not one we would rave over.  The fries, well, they were underdone, not hot enough, and a little limp.  We managed to do the right thing and eat a few and then wait (as patiently as possible) for the rest to be removed from the table before old habits kicked in and they started to disappear one by one.

I would call our first exercise in restrained eating a success.  We had enough, we had things we wanted and we did not eat what wasn’t worth the calories.  I would recommend Margaritaville mostly for the name, but the food, and I say this of course with limited knowledge, I would only rate as passable.  I will add that the service was good.  All in all a happy start to the trip. Stay tuned for the rest of the Vegas posts, they are on their way as soon as I can write them!

K&L 😀
Jimmy Buffett's Margaritaville (Flamingo) on Urbanspoon

Havanna Banana MargaritavilleCrab Corn Chowder Cuban Sandwich