Thursday, July 30, 2009

Goodbye everybody!

Health issue’s force Victoria’s Buffet King to call it quits


VICTORIA, B.C | JULY 30, 2009 - - Guy Alaimo, the main writer and creator of the Victoria Buffet Blog, has called it a career and is retiring from the world of buffet reviewing at the age of 24 citing declining overall health.

In an interview conducted with the CBC mere months after launching the blog, Alaimo mentioned heart palpitations and other health issues he suffered due to extreme overeating. Sadly the sound of those palpitations has grown too loud to ignore.

“I just got out of hand,” says Alaimo. “I was obviously suffering from a severe eating disorder, and I was channeling that energy into my blog. It’s time to get serious and change my life if I plan on being alive in a few years.”

Alaimo provided the people of Victoria with one of the city’s first specialized food review blogs, reviewing every buffet restaurant in the city in just over a year of service.

As of July 29, 2009, Alaimo tipped the scales at 270 pounds, 50 pounds more than what he weighed when the Victoria Buffet Blog debuted in March, 2008.

Alaimo is also a contributing writer for the Victoria Burger Blog, though it is not known whether he plans on retiring from his burger reviewing career as well.

Listen to Alaimo's official retirement announcement

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

B.C Ferries Pacific Buffet - Breakfast - Spirit of British Columbia, Spirit of Vancouver and the Coastal Celebration -

I, like my older brother, have had many, many wonderful childhood memories of eating on the ferry buffet. From school field trips, to traveling across for sports competitions, I always looked forward to gorging on the immense offering while sailing between the island and mainland. Of course, not all ferries offer this opportunity, and I would always become extremely disappointed when I did not see the distinctive exhaust stacks of the Spirit of British Columbia, or the Spirit of Vancouver Island slowly pull up to berth from my car window.

On a recent concert trip to Vancouver, my friends and I hit up the glorious Pacific Buffetlocated at the stern of the Spirit of British Columbia on the main passenger deck. Of course it being the 9 A.M. sailing, we just had to have breakfast, and I must say – the breakfast buffet on the ferry has always been my favourite – especially after becoming food poisoned by the seemingly harmless and legendary sunshine breakfast during a sports trip back in ‘06.

The breakfast buffet is separated into three lines – one for main dishes, another for fruit and cereal, and another for dessert/sweet breakfast items.

From the main line, items included – scrambled eggs, hard boiled eggs, corned beef hash, grilled sausages, ham, cheese omelette, dim sum, ratatouille, potato patties, cinnamon swirl toast, and croissants.

The first item one sees entering the main line is the “scrambled” eggs… I’m sure some people remember their first trip to the breakfast buffet and questioning the compact looking yellow substance in the metal tray in front of them at least for a second or two. Yes the eggs look a bit off; however, they are not farm fresh, but powdered. If you prefer whole/real eggs, you’re only option is to grab the hard boiled eggs adjacent to the “scrambled” eggs. I’m not sure if the cheese omelette uses real eggs or powdered, but it was very good regardless.

To be honest, I don’t like breakfast sausages. Every time I have had them at breakfast buffets – hell, even at traditional breakfast, I have found them to be fatty and disgusting. I’d rather stick to bacon. Unfortunately, bacon was not available so I did eat the sausage and I must say it is the BEST breakfast sausage I have ever had. Perhaps it’s due to the fact it is grilled, or the combination of spices, but I’m glad I did not pass it up.

I’ve always enjoyed the corn beef hash provided at the buffet. The mix of potato, corned beef, and some other ingredients I can only guess at always makes me go back for more. Other items on the main line that I tried and found decent are the ham, potato patties and dim sum. I found it quite odd the buffet was offering dim sum for breakfast as I have been informed by a friend it is traditionally an item offered at brunch.

After filling up the first plate from the main line, I personally love to douse the eggs, corned beef hash, potato patties, and sausage with sweet maple syrup. In the good ol’ days, one would be able to bring back individual servings of maple syrup back to the table for a discrete pour. Alas, gone are those days, and I had to pour the syrup from a single flask located near the toaster into a small bowl to bring back to the table. I still get raised eye-brows from those I sit with.

From the line next to the main, items included – fresh fruit, organic yogurt and assorted cereals complete with toppings such as cranberry, granola, and dehydrated bananas. The yogurt served was in individual cups of the brand Olympic , and if I even remotely interested in eating cereal at a breakfast buffet, I’m sure I would have enjoyed the toppings offered.

From the third line, items included – Belgium waffles with strawberry and whipped cream, assorted cold cuts, candied salmon, and other sweets. The candied salmon was exquisite and definitely worth filling half a plate. Belgium waffles are always oh so good and absolutely wonderful with the supplied toppings. A friend of mine had the following to say about the waffles.

“I must say the waffles with whipped cream and strawberries topped were some of the best I’ve ever had, mainly because it wasn’t overly sweet like how a lot of breakfast places offer. The strawberry syrup wasn’t laden with sugar, and neither was the whipped cream. It allowed the flavours to come through instead of being overshadowed by the sugar.

Finally, many drinks are available for enjoyment such as orange juice, coffee, assorted teas, 2% milk, hot chocolate, and Coca Cola soft drinks. Of course with many buffets, the glasses provided for the cold drinks are fairly small so one must walk back and forth several times or fill up more than once. As a remedy in my younger-years, I would always grab a couple large cups from the cafeteria, and stuff them in my backpack before entering the buffet. Several trips back to the drinks section were reduced to one or two.

Overall, the breakfast ferry buffet is a great start to the morning aboard a BC ferry. Not only do they provide a variety of traditional breakfast items, but also healthy items such as fruit and cereal. As mentioned by many people, the view can’t be beat and I feel my brother has previously summed the experience up nicely - “The Pacific Buffet has a monopoly on ferry buffets, and offers a relaxing view of the ocean, far away from the rat-race of the white-spot cafeteria and sandwich bars on the other side of the boat”

If you’ve got the stomach real-estate, the cash-flow, and will be traveling on either the, Spirit of British Columbia, Spirit of Vancouver Island, or Coastal Celebration between 7-10 AM, be sure to grab a table inside the breakfast buffet while sailing between Swartz Bay and Tsawwassen.

Price: $16.50 + tax for adults

$9.50 + tax for children 5 to 11 years of age.

3.7 / 5

Kuku's Continues to Tease

Sick of hearing all this buzz about Kuku's on Burnside opening a buffet?

Yes, well so am I.

Nonetheless, here's an update letting you know they STILL have not opened, but this time with a picture showing decals placed on the windows of what looks to be the area for their restaurant/buffet.

Does anyone else think the guy in their logo belongs at an Italian restaurant?

Just Saying.

Oh and look for a new review up later tonight.