Despite that my first visit to Hub had occurred on a very late Monday evening (and after a half-day in Kensington followed by the intensest of karaoke sessions no less), not a single shred of satisfaction had been sacrificed.
After making a quick stopover at Yorkdale (the Peanuts-themed slippers were sold out in my size), we continued through tiny, curving paths to Thornhill.
A duo of sushi chefs and a young Korean man with brown, wavy hair greeted us upon entry. Only two other parties had been seated at this point, so the option of choosing a well-lit table remained open to us. Likely the only member of staff managing the floor (and the youngest member of the day's team), he dropped two menus with red covers before returning to the cashier to punch in takeout orders. The lime green image menu (or "scrapbook") was nowhere to be found during lunch hours.
Chirashi Lunch was requested for the purpose of sashimi-tasting. Normally, I find this dish a tad too costly for its genuine value, yet oddly enough, I had a tremendous amount of faith in Hub's version even before visualizing the dish.
When ochungg and I visited Sushi Bong, I hadn't exactly been impressed by the amount of imitation crab meat and tamago on her plate. The portions of seafood appeared minimal relative the quantity of rice present. This wasn't the story at the fusion spot north of Clark.
Sheer surprise was expressed at the uniformity of the sashimi pieces, as most chirashi usually involve bits and bobs tossed together. The amount was definitely more than our stomach capacities allowed.
As these opinions were relayed to the fellow enthusiast, it was met with an equally ecstatic response - "You need to try the Unagi Kimchi Donburi next time!" She insisted that its deliciousness was enough for her to demolish entirely by herself.
I followed suit with this recommendation, as her picks are never wrong (including the Pulled Pork Sandwich from last year's MWF).The stone pot dish required the lengthiest preparation period, and reasonably so, since rice was plated in a sizzling hot bibimbap pot and garnished sophisticatedly with strips of soft, marinated eel. Finishing touches of red tobiko and a jiggling egg yolk added colour as well as depth of flavour to the dish. Oil drops were popping as the scorching tray landed before us - a display of its temperature and indication of urgency to mix the components together, ensuring even cooking.
A minute later was the emerging of a masterpiece: the best unagi donburi on the planet took the form of crispy rice tossed in sweet-savoury sauces, and heightened with a gentle kick of slightly sour kimchi bits. Whoever invented this kimchi fried rice-unagi donburi hybrid truly deserves an award (even if we <i> were </i> a bit dehydrated afterwards).
Each spoonful guaranteed a bite of everything. It deserves recognition as the ultimate dish in Japanese-Korean fusion cuisine.
It ensured that we were able to depart Hub in high spirits and in a timely manner.
As luck would have it though, the Matcha Cheese Tarts hadn't even entered the oven yet. Neither did the Chocolate Cheese Tart reside on the rack long enough for its filling to solidify.
I eventually convinced the girl behind the cashier to sell both the Original and Chocolate Cheese Tarts, along with the Coffee Cheesecake that never fails to make a splash in our household.
An interior of cheesiness is pale in hue, yet powerful in flavour. The crust is very firm, but exhibits a stronger flour content compared to Uncle Tetsu; the brittleness was a infallible giveaway.
I'm not quite sure how I feel towards the launch of Oreo Coffee Milk Tea and regular Coffee Milk Tea, since the former bore an almost identical profile to McDonald's Iced Coffees (and I assume the latter could be easily recreated).
Wintermelon Oolong, on the other hand, is a refreshing iced tea with hints of wintermelon - mostly suited for pre-/post-work shenanigans.
Until next time, the hill of pricklies! (cough Thornhill cough)