Using the title of a belated birthday get-together as an excuse, I set out with the intention of realizing this goal.
The event took place after two strenuous weeks of planning, booking, RSVP-checking, calling/messaging, and logistics-arranging. Successfully gathering fourteen people hailing from different regions of the GTA to try out bubble soccer currently stands as my greatest feat yet.
Thankfully, a member of staff soon arrived to open the doors for us. Inside the building were three soccer fields, each consisting of one set of orange/blue plastic spheres and fully enclosed in netting for safety purposes. We were directed to clean our shoes using the provided brush apparatus, place our belongings in the cubbies, and utilize the row of tablets to sign in/sign the waiver before assembling on the field.
Given that a maximum of twelve people were allowed on the field at one time, the remainder of the group would observe from the benches and switch in once the previous group became tired.
While one's arms and face are protected by the bubble sphere, scraped knees and bruised hands were frequently found to be side effects of playing while wearing shorts and being bumped onto the artificial grass surface. At one point, I fell directly on my behind after being shoved by a member of the opposing team. Although I had specifically worn long pants on this occasion, the landing was still far from pleasant.
As a result of our prolonged period of changing and group-photo-taking, we arrived approximately fifteen minutes late for our reservation. No annoyed glances were cast in our direction though, likely due to the fact that few customers were in the restaurant during off-peak hours.
View the full album, along with the names of each individual dish, HERE !
The Korokke placed just above standard: each piece was approximately four inches in length and properly fried to a gleaming golden brown hue. Its crisp-crunchy breading was further enhanced by the herby Rosemary Mayo, though the mashed potato filling erred on the mushy side.
Practically glistening in grease, the Convention Roasted Pork Belly arrived atop a bed of baby greens and, to our surprise, pickled white onion slices. A tad too rich for my liking, I took to munching on the small pile of salad directly beneath to try a taste of MeNami's dry rub seasoning - it did not disappoint! The tart pieces of onion were also great for cutting through the fattiness of the pork belly slices.
Green-tinted xiao long baos were my first pick. The soup dumplings were executed properly in all aspects: size, flavour, quantity of filling, soup to filling ratio, etc. The small, golf-ball sized dumplings were undeniably one of my favourite dishes of the evening - a runner-up to the delectable Fish Fillet in Sweet & Sour Sauce. (Authentic sweet and sour fish is difficult to locate back home, so I was more than ecstatic to find a flavourful, crisp variation of the dish, even if the presentation was slightly lacking.)