Eating Your Content: Soupfest XI
I went to Soupfest on a whim a couple of years ago as I wanted to get more involved with Hamilton’s community. The fact that delicious food was involved obviously served to draw me in as well. This year I had the day off and lucky for me both Kathy & Marie got off work early so we hit up the 11th Hamilton Soupfest before the dinner rush came in (they arrived as we were leaving). I sampled a wide variety of soups. They’re ranked from least enjoyable to most.
Jack & Lois – Roasted Garlic Potato with Candied Bacon & Chives
Chances are if you’ve asked me about Jack & Lois in the last 4 months I haven’t had the nicest things to say. They’ve got a solid reputation in Hamilton but my experience there was… less than pleasant. It’s on my “give it one more shot” list of places I’d like to review. I decided to give them the benefit of the doubt for this soup as the name had components that I love. Sadly it was horribly underwhelming. The soup was honestly bland. It was missing salt and I couldn’t taste any of the garlic. The bacon brought no flavour to the broth either. Marie and I both got this soup and were disappointed.
Ontario College – Cajun Chicken
I had high hopes for this soup but it fell to the wayside quickly. The “cajun chicken” has nothing cajun about it. It essentially tasted like grilled chicken chopped up and dumped into the broth. The texture and lack of taste in the chicken ruined everything else. This would have come off far better as a Vegetable Soup to be honest. It was loaded with beans, corn, and tomatoes. To put it in perspective, this was the only soup that I didn’t finish. I think I got 2 spoonfuls before throwing it away.
My Thai – Lemon Chicken
I was very impressed with My Thai last year and had high hopes for this year’s entry. It was a solid effort but I enjoyed last year’s entry far more. I wasn’t happy with the texture of the chicken in this bowl either. It was a major texture contrast to the fantastically cooked mushrooms. The broth was flavourful. It was a hair too tart for my liking as there was bit too much Lemon in it. That’s a personal issue though as Marie loved it. The broth had amazing heat. It doesn’t punch you in the face but you taste it in the back of your throat after a couple spoonfuls and stays there. This is the kind of soup you eat when you’re not well. It’ll open up your passages that’s for damn sure.
Vicar’s Vice – Cheeseburger
This was the first soup I tried. The smell lured me in as soon as I walked in the door. My love of burgers is no secret. This tasted just like a cheeseburger. All the flavours came right through and it was really enjoyable. I would have liked it thickened just a bit but otherwise no complaints. I’ve never been to Vicar’s Vice before. After perusing the menu I’ll definitely add it for a visit.
Thirsty Cactus – Lobster Poutine
Yeah… there was no way I was going to pass up such a ridiculous soup. This was thick, creamy, cheesy, and wasn’t overpowering with Lobster. I’m a huge fan of The Thirsty Cactus in the summer time with their Tex Mex style of food. I’d never think to go in the winter but after eating this delicious soup, I may have to pop back in and try some other warm comfort food.
The Collins Brewhouse – Creoled Bison With Tomato & Black Bean
Two minutes up the street from The Thirsty Cactus is my go to restaurant The Collins Brewhouse. I’ve posted many a photo of their delicious pub fare over the years. As with just about anything I’ve eaten there, this soup didn’t disappoint in the least. This was a hearty helping of Bison (consistency was essentially ground beef) with strong helpings of vegetables. It was seasoned perfectly and I enjoyed every bite. This soup and my favourite on the day were the only two I’d consider good enough to order if I were to drop in to their respective restaurants.
Mustang’s Big Ol Grill – Fire Roasted Red Pepper and Chicken
My… GOD did I love eating this. I was initially going to pass as it didn’t look like anything special. Kathy ended up getting it first and hated it. I figured I’d try before throwing it out and it was the best decision I made all day. This was FANTASTIC! The Red Pepper flavour was perfect. The broth had a slightly thickened consistently (I hate watery soup). The chicken, unlike other restaurants was cooked just right and lifted the soup to another level. This hit on all levels for me. The next time I go to Mustangs I’m getting The Chicken Club (my favourite Club Sandwich) and a bowl of this soup if it’s available.