Jelly Modern Doughnuts

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After Tubby Dogs, we decided to head down a few streets to grab some desserts! Jelly Modern Doughnuts is a chic yet casual little shop offering creative gourmet doughnuts in Calgary.

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They also seem to have a Jelly Food Truck, which sounds really cool. I’m not sure where they are located though, so any Calgary foodies out there can let me know!

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When we arrived, most of the doughnuts were already sold out! The place isn’t packed, but they have a steady amount of customers coming in and out. Look at that kid trying to decide from all the delicious flavours!

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Lots of customers buy boxes of their doughnuts for take out as well. If you choose to eat in, you still order and pay at the counter.

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I love the atmosphere in the shop. It is girly but also family oriented. They have low sofas and wooden chairs with pink lanterns and couches. If I lived in Calgary, this would totally be a cute place to hang out and chat with friends during the day.

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S’mores Hand Filled Doughnut

The customer in front of us actually bought the last ones by the time we got in line, but luckily the baker came out and we asked him if there would be any more. Luckily, he had just made another batch! A few minutes later, he brought us a large S’mores Doughnut! Surprisingly, it wasn’t as sweet as I had imagined. I loved the marshmallow at the top though. The doughnuts are quite big though, so one is already plenty.

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Maple Bacon Doughnut

The second doughnut we ordered was the Maple Bacon Doughnut. It was glazed with a maple glaze and topped with some bacon. Sweet and salty at the same time, but it totally works.

Doughnuts are $2.45 each if you purchase singles, but if you purchase more, I believe there are bulk discounts. Of course, they are more expensive than Tim Horton’s doughnuts, but they are gourmet! However, I actually think that Cartems Donuterie in Vancouver are much better! Their bacon doughnut was much better and the general doughnut dough tastes more fresh. I guess this is their go-to place for gourmet doughnuts in Calgary though!

Jelly Modern Doughnuts on Urbanspoon

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Tubby Dog

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Day 2 in Calgary: Shortly after lunch and some presentations, S, H, J and I decided to go explore the city a bit and look for some snacks. S had previously checked out the top places on Urbanspoon, and Tubby Dog was one of them. Since it was quite a far walk, we decided to take a cab instead. Upon arriving, there was a man cleaning the windows, hence the bizarre picture.

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They had their menu on their door, and it reminded me of Japadog, but North American style. The prices are quite high for a hot dog, so I was hoping they better be good.

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Inside, they have the menu again, but also with some specials. I wish I got a picture of the kitchen area, since  you can watch your hot dog get cooked and assembled in the front. You basically order at the counter, and they call your name when it’s ready.

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The place is super retro and hipster. If I were still in high school, I would probably think that this would be where the “cool” kids hung out. I love how they had a cabinet full of food items that seemed to be collectibles. They definitely weren’t the typical packaging you could find in a grocery anymore. I’m guessing some of them might’ve been limited editions.

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And they even have a mini arcade! I can totally picture some skaters coming here for a hot dog and playing games after school. It’s so old school and almost gives you a “back in the day” vibe. The place has posters hanging around the walls, and they all add to that hip vibe. Even the employees have a retro vibe to them.

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Tubby Dog – homemade chili, bacon, cheese, onions, mustard

And now finally onto the food! We decided to share a Tubby Dog since we had just ate lunch. We weren’t sure which hot dog to choose, but I guess you can’t go wrong with the one that’s named after the store! It was layered with tons of chili, onions, cheese and bacon bits along with a mustard sauce. It is definitely quite a large hot dog for one person, and would be decent to be shared between two for a snack. You basically need to eat this with knives and forks though, since there is no way to avoid a mess. I actually found that the bun was a bit soggy though, and wasn’t as crisp and toasted as I would’ve liked it. The onions were also barely cooked so the taste of raw onions were quite pungent. I loved the chili, bacon bits and loads of cheese though!

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T-Rings

We also ordered a side of T-Rings. These are essentially double battered onion rings. I can almost be sure to say that they are also double fried… These things are deadly and oily! Because they are double battered, the batter is extremely thick and oily. I actually found that distracting and would’ve liked a thinly battered onion ring instead. It felt so unhealthy eating all that oily batter! The onion rings, however, were huge in circumference! Each order came with 5 onion rings.

Overall, I wasn’t extremely impressed with Tubby Dog’s food. I didn’t think it was as amazing as the reviews said. If I were to pay a price of around $7, I  rather buy a Japadog instead. I guess Calgary needs to try some Japadogs, and they may rethink about what a good hot dog is! I do, however, love the atmosphere at Tubby Dog. That retro vibe is difficult to find, and they definitely played it well at this diner. A really cool place to hang out with some friends and devour some greasy food!

Tubby Dog on Urbanspoon

Ichi Rock [ra:ku]

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For dinner, we took a 15 minute walk to an area with more food. S had urbanspooned some popular restaurants, and Ichi Rock [ra:ku] had some pretty good ratings.

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The place is essentially run by a young Japanese couple. The man is the one cooking and behind the sushi bar, and the lady does all the serving and order taking. The interior is decorated with a modern twist, with lots of Ikea lights (Don’t ask why I recognize them..). The restaurant itself is quite small and can probably only fit 30 people max. It was still almost half full on a weekday night. Not bad for a small business. Food of course came out a little slower since there is only one chef.

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Green Tea

I was surprised that we were actually charged a $1 each for our green tea when I looked at the bill later. However, I was fine with that as the green tea didn’t seem to be too watered down. It also came in fancy little cups!

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Risotto Roll – avocado, crab meat, chopped shrimp, cheese, mayo topped with honey mustard sauce (served warm)

S and I decided to share two items. They have a variety of special rolls, but the Risotto Roll especially stood out for us. It said it was served warm! I’ve never had warm sushi, so I was curious what it would be like. It was served on a plate covered in tin foil, and the sushi was covered with sauce, mayo and cheese. It was stringy and definitely reminded me of risotto! Japanese style of course! It was essentially a California roll, but with a twist to it. Quite creative and worth a try!

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Okonomiyaki – Japanese style pancake with seafood

The second dish we chose was the Okonomiyaki. I really enjoyed this dish. You can choose from bacon, seafood, or vegetables, but we chose seafood. It was filled with oysters and squid and tons of cabbage. It was then covered with cheese, mayo, fish flakes, and seaweed. I loved how the cheese added a stringy texture to it and it almost felt like there wasn’t any batter to it. Really flavourful and the portion was huge. We ended up sharing it with the other girls.

Overall, I was quite content with the food at Ichi Rock. Although the service was slow, I can understand since they are run by only two people and the friendly service definitely makes up for it. They also have some homemade desserts that looked quite good. The prices are average – not exactly cheap, but not ridiculously expensive. After trying two Japanese restaurants in Calgary, I still find that Vancouver has better restaurants at a better price!

Ichi Rock [ra:ku] on Urbanspoon

Koto Sushi Lounge

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Last week, I went to Calgary for a school competition. There was still snow on the streets and the temperature was in the negatives! Totally appreciate Vancouver weather now… Anyways, we were trying to figure out where to eat for a late lunch, but most places were not within walking distance. We walked out of the Westin Hotel, and one block down we saw Koto Sushi Lounge, so we decided to check it out.

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The interior is quite nice. The place was filled with high tables and high booths. Unfortunately, we were eating at around 4 pm, so there was only one other table. There was also only one server working who definitely failed to give a good service. We understand that the place is completely empty, but doesn’t that mean that it’s easier to provide service to us since you only need to keep an eye on one table? But no – after waiting for 10 minutes waiting to place our orders, we literally had to walk up to her to give in our order sheet. The Japanese restaurants here seem to use order sheets a lot even though it’s not all-you-can-eat.

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Spicy Salmon Crunchy – salmon mixed with volcano sauce, jalapeno pepper, fried red onion chips on top of a crunchy roll of tempura asparagus, tobiko and mayo
Koto San’s Seared Salmon Roll – seared salmon, Korean sweet and spicy sauce, imitation crabmeat, mayo, cucumber, avocado and sesame
Yammy Yammy Roll – avocado, yam tempura, mayo, mango sauce and crispy yam tempura slice

Our food, however, came quite quickly. We chose three of their specialty rolls. The one in the back was the Spicy Salmon Crunchy. It is definitely full of spice with the jalapeno pepper! At first, I ate the pepper on its own, which was definitely a bad idea, but when you eat the whole roll in one bite, the spiciness isn’t as apparent. In fact, it tasted much better with the spice mixed with the sauce.

In the middle is the Koto San’s Seared Salmon Roll. This was opposite to the first roll, where it was a little sweet with the mango. Definitely good to eat after the first one! A cleanser almost!

The roll in the very front, called Yammy Yammy Roll, was surprisingly really good. At first, I thought it would be a typical yam roll, but it actually had a spin to it. I loved how it came with yam chips, which were really crunchy and gave the roll a nice texture.

Overall, the food was alright. I found the sushi rice to be a bit hard though. The service was definitely poor. Even when we wanted to pay, it took forever to get her attention. The prices are also a bit pricey, but I guess it’s because it’s right in the heart of downtown with business people everywhere.

Koto Sushi Lounge on Urbanspoon