In the rare case that I'm not absorbed in catching up with GOT7 news, I'll find myself staring mindlessly out the window of the bus while nodding to recent K-Pop releases, making mental notes about the unfamiliar-looking storefronts that pop up every now and then along Yonge. By engaging in this, I've unintentionally developed a casual to-go list suppressed deep in my brain folds, ready to call forth when the time arrives for the next North York excursion.
I had recalled sauntering by its patio on numerous occasions, given the eatery's proximity to Sheppard station as well as North York Civic Centre. Digital reviews had remarked on the compactness of the establishment, limited service and seating, and speedy delivery times - all were proven to be true with our visit.
We settled for the Chicken Sate Entree and Beef Rendang, specifying the coconut rice upgrade (an additional dollar) for the former and relaying our concerns towards the spice level of the latter. The mustached man dismissed our woes about mildness, responding that it wasn't spicy in the slightest. This, of course, was a subjective opinion and he cared not a smidgen about whether his clients would be able to enjoy the dish's underlying seasonings whatsoever.
Beef Rendang was listed as "coconut based beef curry slow braised in coconut milk and spices". As a lover of all things fragrant, I retained high hopes for this dish and anticipated a strategic harmony of milky mildness. The result was scarce in nutty aroma though bursting with complex degrees of seasonings. Apperance-wise, its lack of viscosity contributed fewer attraction points than that of thicker Japanese-style curry. However, the meat was tender without being tough; each lean block was suprisingly supple despite the absence of fatty tissues. The decision to adhere to regular Steamed Rice as opposed to upgrading to Coconut Rice had been the correct one, for only when consumed in conjunction with plain grains did the subtle hints of coconut flavour materialize.
That being said, I was rather pleased with the order in terms of presentation and flavour depth. Possessing a warm, silken centre and well-marinated profile, the skewers truly impressed with their varying texture and smoky aftertaste. A sweet-savoury peanut sauce accompanied the protein sticks, pairing wonderfully with the coconut rice. More floral and less sticky than its Thai counterpart, the gluten-free source of carbs further highlighted the individual flavours of the charred chicken cubes.
The side Acar Salad was a welcome addition to the box, especially considering that it was dressed in a light, tangy sauce (sans onion pulp!) dissimilar to that of economic sushi joints
Reiterating my previous point, it's unlikely that Satay Sate will ever suffer from a lack of customers given its preferable location to the civic centre and neighbouring office buildings. Their primary focus is set on catering and quick delivery of meals, which they manage to accomplish with ease. For those that are less rushed with their meals, specifically the off-peak clients, it is highly recommended that they adopt proper serving mannerisms to better satisfy their niche. Indonesian establishments are already few in Toronto, so enthusiasm towards spreading news about tradition and culture would be appreciated.
Bake Code was nearby, so I suggested making the brief trek through tar dust territory to verify whether Thai Milk Tea had landed. Inquiring about its availability from one of the staff members ensured that I would not be lining up in vain should the beverage not have made its official debut.
Unfortunately, it still wasn't on offer yet. On the bright side, this also meant that I didn't have to join the excruciatingly painful lineup to relieve myself of the humidity.
As we departed the establishment in search of another thirst-quenching destination, I made an observation: Tsujiri would soon be making its way uptown!! Matcha heaven is within reach!