Sherman's Food Adventures: Alleluia


There once was a time where I played hockey every Saturday night at Richmond Ice.  The group was a good bunch of guys (and sometimes gals) who would eat out afterwards.  There was one problem though...  They loved to eat at only one place - Alleluia.  Hey, I personally didn't mind it because the food was decent, well-priced and the staff were friendly.  But for blogging purposes, it was not the best arrangement.  Due to my busy schedule, I drifted away from this group and lost my full-time spot.  Fast forward to the present and I am once again playing at Richmond Ice every Saturday with a different group, ironically at the rink beside the former group.  Hence, nearly 4 years later, I joined them for late night eats at...  you guessed it, Alleluia.  I dragged Gordo with me since he has been my de facto eating companion on Saturday nights (or should it be Sunday mornings...).

As with my previous visits to Alleluia, I went for the 3 Item Meal which started with a choice of soup.  I had the Cream of Ham & Corn which was a typical HK-style cafe starch-thickened concoction.  It was a bit lukewarm, mild in flavour and a reasonable thickness.  As for my 3 items, I had the Chicken Steak, Ox Tongue and Rib-Eye Steak. It came with mixed veggies and spaghetti (or rice), with a choice of sauce, which was black pepper in this case.  I found the chicken steak to be pan-fried nicely where the dark meat was moist and juicy while the exterior was crispy.  The ox tongue was soft while maintaining a bite. As for the rib-eye, it was pale, chewy and not very good.  The black pepper sauce was good though, having a good consistency and a nice peppery hit.  Gordo had the Rice Noodles with Brisket and as the visuals would suggest, there was a lot of meat (which was decently tender.  The soup wasn't anything to write home about while the noodles were not mushy.

On a subsequent visit with Gordo and Emilicious, I decided to try the Spaghetti Bolognese. For those who are not familiar with HK-style food, this is their rendition of the dish.  Yes, it contains meat and diced carrots, onions and tomatoes, but that is where the similarities with the Italian dish end.  This one was passable with slightly soggy noodles and a sauce that was more tomatoey with hits of star anise. I found it a bit too meaty and saucy which essentially drowned the pasta.  Seeing how I was famished (and when am I not), I added a Ham and Egg Sandwich as well.  I found the bread not as soft as I would've liked and the skimpy amount of filling didn't help things.  Since the sandwich and spaghetti were essentially the same price, I found the ham & egg to be not worth the money.

Emilicious decided on a dish which I am not a fan of being the Bitter Melon and Beef on Rice.  She thought it was decent with a good amount of ingredients on top of the rice.  The beef was mostly tender with some chewy parts while the bitter melon was still a bit crunchy.  The flavours, other than the melon itself, were mild.  Gordo spotted the Pan-Fried Udon with Soy as we walked in which made him want to order it.  He was happy with the decision as the noodles were still chewy while there was enough seasoning.  It was a tad greasy though.  Overall, Alleluia did the job (both times) with predictability and at a low price.  Sure, there are better HK-style cafes out there, but Alleluia surely satisfies the value criteria, especially for late night eats.

The Good:
- Inexpensive
- Decent food
- Decent service

The Bad:
- There is better, but will probably cost you more
- For those who have never been, it is hidden from the street

Alleluia Cafe 歡欣餐廳 on Urbanspoon


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