A most interesting, totally unexpected and weird B-B-Q experience!!!
A new eatery has opened up directly across from the Richmond Hill Center for the Performing Arts. With a name of ' Klassic Kitchen - B-B-Q Specialist ', I decided to give the place a try, expecting it to be another Southern B-B-Q joint?! Man! was I in for a big surprise!!!
Upon entering the establishment, we were welcomed by a heavy dose of 'Indian curry/spice aroma'. The place was decorated to the hilt with Coca Cola memorabilia, posters and products! A HDTV above the order counter was showing a Cricket game and a gentleman was on the phone taking a take-out order in some Indian dialect! Shall we stay or shall we go??! That was the $$$ question!! Hack! after coming so far, we might as well give it a try.!!
To our relief, the menu does have a special dedicated 'B-B-Q section' featuring Lamb chops, T-Bone steak, Ribs, B-B-Q Chicken and something called 'Mishkaki'. They also have a B-B-Q combo section featuring.......wait for it...... B-B-Q Philly Cheese steak!! Beef Burger!!, Hot Dog!! and Special Chicken Poussin!! At $9, the hot dog with medium fries and a small bottle of 375ml Coke must be the most expensive Hot-Dog combo I have seen in a pseudo/dine-in place. ( And no! they do not add Louis 13 Cognac to the meat! ).
Since my son was expecting and dying for some B-B-Q ribs, he went ahead and ordered them. As for myself, No! I did not order the 'Indian Philly Cheeses Steak'!! but instead, decided to give the Mishkaki a try. I was subsequently told it was 'some type of red meat, very tender and comes in small pieces??!! I just hoped they were not the neighborhood squirrels or some type of road kill??!! Both orders were accompanied with 'spicy fries'. The wait for the food was excruciating long! ( BTW, During that time the score of the cricket game went from 155 for 5 to 170 for 7!! Ha! ). After a 40 minutes wait we decided to have the food packed and take-out rather than eating in!
In the car, the aroma of the food was quite appealing. Haven't seen the food and not knowing what to expect, we were trying to guess what type of spices were used to create that exotic smell? Indian? Moroccan? or Cajun?
When we got home and opened up the food container, we were in for a big surprise! The ribs were no big slab or chunk of pork or beef ribs slathered with B-B-Q sauce or equivalent, but rather, the so-called 'ribs' were two 'ultra-thin' slices of 'Korean B-B-Q like' veal short ribs. Dry and overcooked, the taste was acceptable, neither sweet nor spicy, Asian nor Western? Lost for words to describe them exactly??!!
As for my Mishkaki, there were about 8 to 10 morsels of the mystery meat, The size were smaller than your typical Middle-Eastern kebobs. Seasoned with some type of spices, they were indeed very tender. The texture resembled more like a meat ball?! Again, the taste was hard to describe!
The fries were crispy but very spicy, coated with some type of chili/Masala seasoning. Overall taste was very good though! Two small can of pops also come with the package.
However, at $30 for a take out meal for two with totally inadequate quantity of food, I think it was a total rip-off! I would rather see that place turn into an Indian restaurant serving curries instead!!
Mishkaki (Google it) regional East African cuisine. Basically soft kebabs on a stick. Can't find good ones in Toronto. Bamiyan has great skewers but not same Indian spices as mishkaki has. You can try Pili Pili grill 1960 Lawrence Ave east. They are Tanzanians and cook a good version albeit small quantity for $10 price.
Mishkaki is not Indian, but it is part of something that Indians from Africa have as a part of their cuisine.I learnt this from The Karibu ( Indian take out on Yonge and Elgin Mills).Karibu has Indian cuisine which is from Africa, so some of their stuff has Indian names but is very different from what one would find in India( things like Haleem etc).
May be the new BBQ also is from the same part of the world.
i wonder if its a spin-off of Overlea's Ruby's which, as you may know from ample discussions on this board, has a menu built by 7 superchefs from each continent, hunkered in a bunker 3000 feet below the earth's core, and crafted with care and love in order to represent every continent's cullinary delights.
if i want a bbqed hot dog, at least i now know where to go. especially if i have 45 min to kill and money to burn.
Sorry you didn't enjoy your experience but East Indian BBQ ribs won't ever be identical to southern classics...as for figuring out what spices were used, that's sometimes a closely guarded family secret--but Vij's does short ribs, maybe their more descriptive menu can give you some clues as to what's usually used--they describe their beef short ribs as being marinated in a yogurt, tomato and cumin based curry: http://www.vijsrestaurant.ca/index_in...
Oh, and how long was the drive home? Just a thought but food quality can really suffer in a 20+min drive.
East Indian B-B-Q??!!
With a name like 'Klassic Kitchen - B-B-Q Specialist', a menu that serves beef burger, Philly Cheese steak and BBQ Chicken and nothing in the store front to indicate to passerby they serve 'East Indian BBQ'. How would one know what to expect when the food was handed over to you in a closed plastic bag??!
Interesting you mention Vij!! FYI, two years ago in Vancouver, I just happened to eat the short ribs at Vij's. Totally different!!! The KK version tasted more like a Korean Bulgobi. Still, should not over-cook the beef to dryness!
BTW, drive home took less than 10 minutes!