PaPa Jackie MontrealFeb 21 2013 · 2 comments · Dining Out
Okay, granted PaPa Jackie‘s is far. It’s the South Shore – but it’s not even at the tip. It’s deep in there, I’m talking neck deep. You probably won’t be casually stopping by because you’re in the area. You’re going to go because you’ve planned to – if excellent, affordable Chinese food is what you’re looking for then PaPa Jackie’s is where you need to go. Saturday night was particularly busy – every table was filled. Make sure to make a reservation before you go if you’re making the trip.
Note – if you can’t read Chinese or don’t have a friend to read it and translate it for you, you’re missing out on the good stuff. This is true for any Chinese restaurant you go to, FYI. Truth. Depending on which server you get and their proficiency in speaking English, you may or may not be able to swing this and get the best out of the real authentic Asian stuff.
We started off with a big pot of clear(ish) soup, filled with deliciously tender pork knuckles, carrots and a sweet unidentifiable fruit. Pork knuckle fans – this is your jam. So, so, so good.
In an attempt to balance out the meal to come, we ordered a couple of dishes in from the seafood section – black soybean fermented clams, spicy (and I mean spicy) shrimp with really great crunchy, fried Chinese dough with green beans and your typical Chinese greens with mushrooms. Not too much to say about these – if you know Chinese food, just by looking at the pictures you can probably imagine what they would taste like.
The fried lotus roots wrapped in beef was interesting – I’ve personally never had that combination of ingredients before and I liked it. It’s like the Chinese take on a burger, minus the buns and like 5 ounces of meat and fat.
I particularly liked the Old Grandmother Crossing the Bridge Steak – I found it cutely inventive, not in terms of flavor but in the way it was presented. Uniformly sliced pieces of steak – perfectly tender, mind you – were placed one across the other on top of two large, flat bones, creating an edible bridge. The Grandmother bit represents the special sauce they doused the meat with which was thick and mildly spicy.
The Cantonese duck dish was super fatty – thick skin, juicy though. In retrospect, we shouldn’t have ordered the dish – most of us were pretty full at this point. In any case, it was one of my least liked dishes of the night. To me it was a little too heavy and pairing the duck with taro (both heavy) felt like overkill.
Dessert is included. A typical sweet soup came at the end, filled with tiny tapioca balls, chunks of soft taro and shredded coconut.
If only PaPa Jackie’s weren’t so far…
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