Friday, January 30, 2009

Kintaro Ramen + Qoola

So a couple months ago, my friend treated me to mortons so I decided to be nice and treat him to dinner tonight.. to kintaro ramen... HAHA. I am a broke student ok, give me a break.

Kintaro Ramen on Urbanspoon I've been to Kintaro once, but I can't really count it because it was during my insane restaurant hopping days and we went in hoping to share a bowl of ramen, but they had a 8.00 minimum, so we left. Inside is very small and we waited awhile for open seats. We ended up sitting right up front, which was good cuz I like watching people make food- but also bad because it was really hot. You see, I turn tomato bright red from heat and working out. I don't get the asian flush when I drink, but when I am near a heater- I look like I am drunk from how red I get.. oi.

There's a couple of choices and you can choose how fatty you want the meat and soup to be. Trying to be health conscious, I chose light and lean meats. My friend had the cheese ramen, which I am glad I didn't get. When he was making it, it looked so delicious because I love cheese. But it was too salty for me! Everyone should try it though, I find everything salty so it's probably fine and very delicious. I ended up getting the Shiro Ramen for around 7 dollars. It was ok, the meat was really lean and the egg was delicious. The soup base was light and not too salty. I finished quite a lot of it =)

Qoola on Urbanspoon Then we walked on over to qoola- this new yogurt place next to cookies and a new chocolate store. I got an invite from them a while back but I thought it was spam and deleted it. Inside is very bright and clean. The girl at the counter was really sweet and explained everything to us. Upon looking at the choices, my heart was set on the acai energy bowl, even though it was 7 dollars (a tad too much?) I've read about acai a long time ago from my health nut days and at the moment I am also doing a marketing research proj on an acai drink. I am very intrigued by this fruit so I was excited to try this dessert. My friend got the green tea yogurt with no toppings because he's cheap. haha jk =P in total, it cost 10 dollars.

His green tea yogurt was gross. It only had a hint of green tea taste and then there was a sweet sour taste to it as well. It was also hollow inside when he dug in...which was kinda weird? I think it would have been a lot better with at least ONE topping but asians are cheap- we don't like wasting almost a dollar more on things (side note- i bought bread with my mother..afterwards we noticed there was an in store coupon and she made me wait in line again to use the coupon- for 75 cents back... I TOLD her I would GIVE her 75 cents and she just lectured me on how much money 75 cents is. OI). My acai dessert looked kinda gross, but it was pretty good. The sweetness and chocolatey taste (maybe that's what acai tastes like I don't know) was nice, but it tasted like I was eating chocolate soup.. I was hoping it would have a better yogurt consistency.. Maybe it said that it would be liquidy and I overlooked it.. hell I was just excited to eat something with acai (a sigh-eee).

*edit-- Feb 7, 09: I went again today because the owners Jesse and Warrick wanted to tell me more about Qoola. When we got there, there were quite a lot of business and warrick was busy. We just got a quick smores d-light to share for around 7 dollars (uh I could have bought ramen with this price). This one is a yogurt with chocolate, cookie crumbs, and marshmallows. Once again, it was hollow inside. My friend wasn't a fan because she likes yogen fruz (? is that wat it's called? I don't know any of those hip yogurt/ice cream/juice places names) because she likes the sweetness, and not so much sour yogurt (she doesn't like probiotic yogurt either). I think it has a slight sour taste because it is not made of powered yogurt, but from the real stuff.. which is obviously much healthier and beneficial for the body. We quickly talked to Warrick before we headed off.. Since most blogs out there already give bg of qoola, I basically had two questions- 1. Why is it so expensive, and 2. why am I paying so much for a hole in my yogurt.

He explained that the price is from the fact that all yogurt sold is fresh and the real deal, not the powdery crap from other stores, hence why there is a greater cost to it. I think he said it is fresh daily.. but don't quote me, because I was really exhausted and don't remember too much of anything. Then he apologized for the hollowness due to lack of experience with using the machine I guess. With time, hopefully they will get the hang of it and every customer will get a nice cup of yogurt- with no holes.

Even though the meeting was brief, he was really keen on hearing my feedback and questions (which is obv an act of dedication for a business). I don't really like critizing people in real life because obv I am not a real food critic and I don't want to come off sounding like a snob but in actuality just picky, but those were my only sound complaints (price and hollow, the others are just personal preferences). My friend also thought the marshmallows were too dry (uh... ok. weirdo) so if you guys read this warrick/jesse.. there's another feedback.. haha..

I am really lazy and I should be doing something else instead of this so I'll just copy out what Jesse told me in an email about Qoola for people who wants to know their motto:

"Qoola's motto is "pure heart + pure body". We strive to have the purest intentions in the way that we approach our business while providing the best quality products for our customers. We have a three-tiered approach to our business - absolutely top-notch products with the highest quality so that we can provide our customers with a healthy alternative to the existing desserts out there, an aggressive environmental initiative that we've set upon ourselves to become a 100% green company and finally an effort to give back to the community in which we reside because we are fully aware that any success that comes our way is a result of the people that support us - thus, we should always strive to do the same for them."

Qoola is a great addition to Downtown Vancouver. I believe many many people will love this place. It is environmentally friendly and health conscious- two of the things yuppies/vancouverites care very much about. So instead of going for gelato or marble slab, try this new yogurt joint instead =)