Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Glowbal Lunch Special this January

So Glowbal in Yaletown re-opened after some renovations and is no longer called Glowbal Grill & Satay but Glowbal Steaks & Satay.


The good news is for the entire month of January their lunch menu is 50% off.

Being massive Glowbal fans (especially of the satay items and Caprese Salad and Kobe meatball with Tomatoe Garlic Truffle Cream Sauce Spaghetti) a few of us headed down to enoy a lunch together.

Natalie and her husband Jarod, Theresa, my husband and I arrived at about 1:30pm and enjoyed the afternoon. Two and a half hours later we paid and left. Here is how I feel about the "new" Glowbal.

There's some good and some bad to this experience. Read on....

It was their very first day open after reno's apparently, so things were a bit rocky but not bad. They were very busy for a midweek lunch.

We ordered our favourite satay items and tried some of the new items.

  • Short Rib in truffle aioli
  • Wagyū Chuck in black sea salt
  • Ahi Tuna with panko crust and tobiko aioli
  • Coconut Chicken with a spicy tropical glaze
  • Hamachi Crudo pineapple ponzu

    As always it was served with a thai slaw, ginger white soya and hot chinese mustard.

    What was different about the satay, however, was that the slaw has changed and although it seemed to use fresher ingredients, it was very bland. The Ginger Chicken had been replaced, with a much tastier Coconut Chicken and a few new items were added.

    The server suggested we add Dungeness Crabcakes which we did and it was delicious.

    The server also suggested the Hamachi Crudo after we ordered the Ahi Tuna, however, it was not very tasty and a very small, jellied portion.

    The short ribs are by far my favourite on the satay, they literally melt in your mouth. My friend Amy convinced me to try them after several visits, and I am so glad as it's the most enjoyable item on the satay in my opinion.

    I also enjoyed the new Coconut chicken far better than the Ginger Chicken, and the Waygu was excellently cooked and anice sample of the steak.

    For Salads I got my normal Caprese Salad, however, I was disappointed with the changes they made to it.

    The new menu has Caprese with vine ripened tomatoes, buffalo mozzarella
    extra virgin olive oil, which was not nearly as flavourful or even appealing as the previous which came with balsalmic vinegar, basil, a large block of cheese, a toast along with the vine tomatoes.

    My problem with the new Caprese was that the cheese did not look appealing (it was like a blob of cream plopped and dripping all over my plate - visually and texturally unappealing) and the salad overall was simply lacking the flavour from the basil (though they had a bit on there along with some other greens that were tasteless and more hard stem than leaf) and most importantly, there was no balsalmic vinegar!

    To resolve this issue I simply ordered balsalmic vinegar on the side and asked the server about the cheese, to which I was told that this way was better, it was hand-turned.... hmmm....

    Personally, everything I loved about the Caprese is gone and I don't think I will order it again, sadly.

    On to the main course.

    Natalie and I both ordered the Spaghetti Kobe Meatballs spicy tomato basil sauce, garlic confit parmigiano reggiano. It was good, but I prefer the dinner menu with the truffle cream sauce. I could only get through half after the massive satay and salad we enjoyed, along with the martini's.

    Jarod ordered the Roasted Chicken Club. It seemed to use dark thigh meat, as well as too much watercress aioli causing the bread to be saturated in oil. He didn't even care to eat it as he was looking for something a bit healthier [ such as white meat, non-greasy sandwich ]

    To promote their new steaks they had all of them for 50% off in addition to all food items on the lunch menu.

    If you are going for the discounted lunch this month I suggest trying the Wagyū which is $15 an ounce (minimum 6 oz.) but at 50% off, it's a fantastic deal.

    Wagyū, if you do not know, is like the Australian version of Kobe beef.

    Wikipedia explains:

    The meat from wagyū cattle is known worldwide for its marbling characteristics, increased eating quality through a naturally enhanced flavor, tenderness and juiciness, and thus a high market value.

    My husband got the 24 oz. Porterhouse Steak, medium, while Theresa had the Tenderloin Steak, medium rare, both served with whipped buttermilk potatoes, undercooked green beans and your choice of other side dishes À la carte.

    À la carte items ranged from Poutine (which we had, besides being a tad cold and not allowing the cheese to melt it was good), Polenta with blue cheese and crispy speck, Sweet Potato with butter poached lobster tail, Asparagus in bearnaise, Baked Potato loaded with lobster fondue, bacon and gruyère and many more.

    There was also the Wild Mushroom Risotto which we decided to try.

    Let me advise you to not try this side dish unlesss you love oily mushroom flavour. It was over loaded with the smell and taste of mushrooms, very oily and we didn't get past one bite of the large bowl they brought.

    Next time I will try the Baked Potato... the lady beside us had it and it looked delicious with the lobster fondue, bacon and gruyère cheese.

    Despite some flaws with the side dishes, the steaks themselves were done well.

    Glowbal steaks boast:

    All steaks are hand selected naturally aged for maximum tenderness and flavor. Steaks are broiled at 1700 degrees and finished with café de paris butter

    No Joke.

    These guys are taking their steaks seriously.

    So seriously they changed their name to include "steaks."

    If that wasn't enough, you should see the display they have, and chefs ready to chat about any steak cut, and history.

    Overall, Glowbal made some changes that I am disappointed with. I am used to my favourite items being removed from a resturant menu, but it is always sad.

    The Caprese is not horrible, but definately not as good as it was. The chicken club, undercooked green beans, cold poutine and questionable Hamachi were disappointing.

    The service was not as pretentious as I have seen it, and they were obviously very eager for feedback on this first lunch after renovations.

    I like that they are exploring and expanding, I enjoyed the new Coconut Chicken on the Satay as well as the addition of steaks, particularily the Wagyū.

    The two and a half hours for lunch was a bit long, even with the satay then salads then main course. Minimum Parking outside is 2 hours so I got a ticket. [ and I do not think they offer valet during the day ]

    Overall, I enjoyed myself, but will make adjustments to my order next time now that I have tried a few of the changed and new items.
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