Sunday, October 14, 2012

Dragon Pearl

 Monday October 15, 12:25 a.m.

Well, it was the family birthday dinner for my niece. So we gave the Dragon Pearl a shot up around York Mills and Don Mills. The parentals and I had done takeout from there a week ago with some impressive results, so we all decided to give the buffet a try.

I guessed it was still pretty new. Not too new so that there were stumbles in the menu and service but new enough since the staff actually looked eager to please. There was a small squad of wait staff at the front to greet customers as they came in, and one would peel off from formation to guide the diners to their table.

My brother remarked on how big the dining area was. Yep, it was quite roomy inside but all the tables filled up quickly. The variety was pretty good as buffets go. About a quarter of the food on display was Western....I went up twice for roast beef and mashed potatoes. The rest of course was Chinese stuff: everything from Singapore Noodles to Peking Duck. We also got our chits to get one serving of lobster. I gave my chit to Dad since I was never a huge fan of shellfish....only because I don't want to work hard to extract every little sliver of lobster meat from the shell.

I was rather surprised to realize that I was 80% done by the second round. The mashed potatoes and the high-fiber banana bubble tea probably did me in there. Perhaps it was them or it's just age creeping into my metabolism. I used to make 5 trips easy to the buffet tables back in the day. Heck, I used to terrify the staff at The Farm Grill, the legendary buffet restaurant near Ginza. They begged me to make a reservation before I showed up. Not anymore. I went a third time to convince myself I still had something in my belly besides an overcapacity alarm going off. I didn't even go for dessert...but then again, there was my niece's birthday cake back at home.

Told the Anime King about the place, but he basically told me that it was a no-go zone for him since it just seemed to attract too many white people to convince him that it had authentically good Chinese fare. As for me, chop suey or siu mai....both worlds of Chinese food suit me just fine.