Tuesday, July 16, 2013

My trip to New Brunswick!

Have you ever heard of Cap-Pele? ... didn't think so... Cap-Pele is just outside of Moncton, NB. From what I read on line, it is rich in Acadian history and has a lot of smoke houses, fishing boats, beaches. But we went for the FRIED CLAMS. A small, unassuming place called Chez Camille has picnic tables outside and you order inside, pay, they call your number and you go grab your food. Don't expect a tip if I am doing that much, okay? Just kidding. (I'm not kidding).
There was a smallish selection of fried fish, shrimp, scallops and clams. I ordered the clams because when in Cap-Pele, right?
I ordered a large fried clam platter with fries to share with the BF. It was WAY too much food. Could only finish half between the two of us. It was good but I found it to be too much batter. I don't like it when the batter outweighs the thing inside. The thing inside is why I ordered it. Here's a picture -
It came with coleslaw. I love coleslaw. The vinegar kind is my favourite but if it's not too creamy or heavy I like that "other" kind too. I love it when there are different options in different regions of Canada. For instance they had a gingerale I had never heard of before - "Sussex Gingerale!" Look at it - Have you ever seen it before? It was good. Not too sweet...
I wrote a blog about fried clams in NB at another place about a year ago called "the Lobster Deck". Sorry Chez Camille but I liked the Lobster deck better. Less greasy and less batter. To each his/her own though... We travelled an extra distance to get to Cap-Pele to have these clams because my "sister-in-law" (it's in quotes because I am not technically married. Just common law. "Sister-in-law-common-law" seems too wordy) ... anyway, Chez Camille was her favourite place. Do I really want to officially marry into a family that has sub par taste in clams? I'm lol-ing over here. When we first got to Moncton we had a big family dinner at a Japanese restaurant called "Osaka". I had been there once before and it was good and fresh so I was looking forward to going back.
We had a private room for our group which was really nice. However when we got there a very young baby was crying really loud for a really long time. Come on. I know some of you will be mad at me because I am child-less but seriously? Your baby is like two seconds old and clearly did not leave the womb only to go out to a random restaurant while you eat a California Roll. Go home, make some shepards pie or something and cuddle your infant. Before you get too upset, my "sister-in-law" who has a kid completely felt the same way. She went as far to say that she left the house so she didn't have to listen to crying. Burn! Take that! Even the server was saying sorry as she closed our sliding door to our private room. I felt a little bit like I was in the first class section in the restaurant. Where's my hot towel?? We all decided to order various items and share them. We got so much food. I ordered a Japanese beer called Kirin Ichiban because I am extremely cultured. It's probably not a cultured choice at all. It tasted like coors light. Ironically it was served with a Coors Light glass. A Japanese person would probably see me drinking that and call me a peasant.
The meal started with the miso soup and garden salad with ginger dressing. Love the ginger dressing but this one tasted like they made it more "palatable" to the Moncton people because I could taste a hint of Kraft Italian salad dressing. It's not like Moncton isn't a sophisticated enough of a city for pure authentic cuisine so I don't know.
I could be wrong but... The smaller the city the further away from authenticity. Like in Cornwall, Ontario, when I was a kid, they served french fries with their Chinese food because white rice is a bit out of the comfort zone for red necks. "What is this? It's not french fries, I'll tell you that much." (Spits chewing tobacco and grabs crotch). Someone at the table, we won't mention names... ordered this seaweed salad that came with octopus. I have no desire to ever eat octopus. I am scared I won't like the taste and also I am afraid the suction cups will stick to my tongue. I'm going to be honest, I didn't like the the seaweed salad AT ALL. It tasted ... gross. I don't know how to articulate how it tasted. It was almost "tinny" tasting with a fish undertone. Bleh. Not my thing. This is it -
HOWEVER, the tempura shrimp and vegetables were delicious. Very nice, light and flavourful. I like to dip my tempura in the thin, sweet type sauce they give with it but I also enjoy soy sauce with wasabi. Both are tasty I am just obsessed with wasabi. I love that hot you feel in your nose. My soy sauce looks muddy it's got so much wasabi in it.
I bit into one of the tempura expecting an asparagus but it was... drum roll... AVOCADO!!! Deep fried avocado??? Yes, please. I really enjoyed it but I couldn't eat very many of those. Even though avocado is the "good fat" deep frying it is fat on top of fat. A bit rich. But good! And unique!
We also had a variety of rolls. Here are the pictures. There was a vegetarian, a dynomite, one with eel on it, (I don't have all the names), one with avocado on the outside presented in the shape of a snake, some more boring ones like a California Roll (I ordered it) (maybe I am a peasant), yam roll, etc. All of the rolls were very good. However, there was one of the rolls with fish eggs. I am not a fan of the fish eggs but again, just my preference. Overall, excellent!
We also got fried tofu which was nice but a bit mushy in the centre. I was told by people who had it before that it was prepared better before - less mushy more crispy. But I am just being picky. We also got some edamame. Hard to screw up edamame and they didn't. It was good too.
I recommend this place if you're ever in Moncton. It's very good. Very fresh which might be the most important thing when it comes to sushi.

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