AYCE buffet at Eclipse Asian Cuisine

December 16, 2013

At my mum’s friend’s recommendation, our family decided to have AYCE buffet lunch at Eclipse Asian Cuisine.

A reasonable, $12.95/person + tax/tip for weekday lunch.

Our first impression of Eclipse was, “Holy, heavy doors!” But we did appreciate the eclipse decor pattern on the glass.

Joking aside, the restaurant is large with 2 main seating areas, offering both tables and booths. We were greeted at the door and immediately shown to a booth. Recommendation: hooks by the booths to hang up coats!

The decor is nice and tasteful with wood and brown furniture against purple walls with circular white and yellow accents.

IMG_6023

We arrived shortly after 11:30am for lunch so it was not surprising that there were only a few other patrons in the restaurant. However, there was a steady flow of diners as we headed into lunch hours.

Before grabbing food, I walked around to take a look at all the dishes available and take a few pictures. I was quite taken aback when an employee, I assume the manager/owner as he was in a dress shirt and tie, saw me and harshly asked, “Why are you taking pictures?!” When I replied that I like to blog and was planning to write a review, and asked if taking pictures would be okay, he gave a curt nod of his head and walked away. Isn’t it easier to be friendly?

Anyway, I quite liked the set up of the food. A symmetrical, semi-circular area with an island at the centre and 2 smaller areas off to each side.

IMG_6042

IMG_6022

The presentation of the food was elegant, smaller portions cleanly plated on white square dishes. However, I believe this also allowed the dishes to cool a little quickly.

IMG_6021

There are many meat dishes (vegetarians will have a hard time here) and a number of seafood ones to choose from. Many of the classics (dumplings, General Tao’s chicken, egg rolls, stir-fries, etc) are available along with a selection of sushi, salads, soups, and desserts.

IMG_6019

IMG_6020

Hungry for food!

IMG_6025

IMG_6030

I found my mum’s side profile funny

IMG_6036

My plate. Trying to get a bite of many dishes…

IMG_6028

Unfortunately, my tiny, sesame ball with red bean filling was still raw on the inside.

IMG_6031

And 2 of us had big chunks of fat in one of our pork dishes, not a fan. Fat is the closest piece, pork behind it.

IMG_6033

Overall, the food and selection is good. Of course, the variety doesn’t match Emerald Buffet, but Eclipse still offers something for everyone in a nicer environment. Some dishes are cooked and taste better than others. I especially liked the salmon Teriyaki and salt and pepper shrimp. The sushi is decent, although if you are looking for sushi, I would definitely recommend going down the street for AYCE at Sushi Kan.

IMG_6040

Desserts were definitely disappointing, with a small selection of fruits, jello, ice cream and pre-bought desserts. Unfortunately, many pastries/cakes were dry as they are left open to the air. Would’ve loved to see some Asian desserts as well!

With reasonable prices and food, I’m sure we will find ourselves back when craving Chinese buffet!

Eclipse Asian Cuisine on Urbanspoon

Grandpa’s 80th Birthday lunch!

November 24, 2013

HAPPY BIRTHDAY GRANDPA! CHUC MUNG SINH NHAT ONG NGOAI!

Background: Our whole family thought it would be lovely to throw my grandpa a surprise 80th birthday party! Tasks were divided up in order to get everything organised for the big day. Everyone put a lot of time into the event, which turned out successful, yay! We rented a smaller room at the St Laurent Complex with tables, chairs and a screen and projector to work with. I made a slideshow with old photos from each family as I knew my grandpa loved looking at them, especially those of his family. The chosen theme colours were royal blue and silver. A lot of work was put into not only the food, but also the decor! The cranes on the centrepieces were each folded, then spray painted before being strung onto the branches. In the vases, we also put ribbon and tulle that matched the theme colours. Thank you to everyone for their time, especially the grandchildren! Couldn’t have done it without you guys. ❤

I have so many photos, so will only share a select few to help me tell the story 😀

The grandchildren (my siblings + cousins) arrived 2 hours early to set everything up, yay us!

Making sure we sign the card before the adults arrive

Gpas bday - 001

My brother Andy and Justin putting up the vinyl mural he made – a portrait of my grandpa!

Gpas bday - 005

Closer look at the mural, pretty sweet.

Gpas bday - 012

Due to the space, we decided on two long rows of tables on either side, as opposed to individual tables spread across the room, which worked well! We had an assembly line going as soon as the tablecloths and dinnerware arrived (we rented these),and things were laid out in no time!

Gpas bday - 009

Dining area set up beautifully, ready to go!

Gpas bday - 010

Gpas bday - 016

My sister, Jenni, also made party favours for everyone

Gpas bday - 011

There were also 3 tables set up for all the delicious food! Everything but the roasted pig and bread rolls were hand-prepared by a family

Gpas bday - 018

Gpas bday - 017

Gpas bday - 019

Gpas bday - 027

The 2 Family made: Fried wontons, crispy garlic chicken wings, steam buns, flan and also brought an assortment of other things like cucumber, bread rolls, and chocolate.

Gpas bday - 020

Gpas bday - 022

Gpas bday - 026

The 3 Family made: A fruit platter, Vietnamese pork roll shaped into 80s, deviled eggs, and sweet egg desserts made with agar with a mung bean egg yolk. He also took care of a few vegetarian dishes for my grandma’s friends who attended, as well as the symbolic bowl of 80 clementines!

Gpas bday - 021

Gpas bday - 028

Gpas bday - 030

Gpas bday - 035

Gpas bday - 034

The 4 Family made: Seafood soup, water and canned drinks

Gpas bday - 064

The 5 Family made: A veggie platter and a sandwich platter, also bringing along coffee and tea for dessert.

Gpas bday - 023

Gpas bday - 025

The 6 Family (us) made: Quinoa salad, pandan and Vietnamese coffee flavoured coconut jelly. I made cupcakes!

Gpas bday - 024

Gpas bday - 029a

Gpas bday - 032

It was a feast! Definitely lots of food leftover that we took home with us 🙂

Grandchildren, assemble! In order to greet my grandpa when he walks in the door!

Gpas bday - 040

We hope he was surprised, especially because my sister wasn’t supposed to be making it but eventually decided to fly in for the weekend!

Gpas bday - 041

Some of my grandma’s guests

Gpas bday - 044

Photo with all the grandchildren + Mike

Gpas bday - 051

Photo with all five children

Gpas bday - 054

We also took individual family photos, here is ours

Gpas bday - 059

My grandma’s friends were not told in advance that the event was for my grandpa’s birthday. Here they are just apologizing for that and giving gifts anyway!

Gpas bday - 062

Grandpa giving us a thank you speech before eating lunch, thank you grandpa!

Gpas bday - 066

Gpas bday - 067

Soup assembly line, haha!

Gpas bday - 076

Ready to eat

Gpas bday - 078

Kids table

Gpas bday - 079

Birthday cake! A nice, fluffy green, pandan flavoured cake

Gpas bday - 091

Gpas bday - 097

Oh, don’t be shy grandpa

Gpas bday - 100

Make a wish!

Gpas bday - 104

Cutting the cake

Gpas bday - 106

Check out the paparazzi!

Gpas bday - 108

Being the one who made a special trip home for his birthday, Jenni had the honour of presenting the hand-made card!

Gpas bday - 109

Gpas bday - 111

Giving our presents! In case you didn’t see in a previous post, our family got him a number of interesting goodies to try and share with family and friends 🙂

Gpas bday - 123

Gpas bday - 135

Gpas bday - 155

There are A LOT more photos, especially the ones including all the other families. I couldn’t possibly bore you with all of them! 😛 PLEASE CLICK HERE if you would like to see the complete album.

Otherwise, our-what’s-now-becoming-a-tradition: Cousins’ Photoshoot

All 13 grandchildren lined up by age, with 2 outliers – Michael and Martin, an honourary grandchild for the day.

Gpas bday - 158I really like doing these group photos… 😛

Gpas bday - 160

Quality’s not the best, but this one is my favourite!

Gpas bday - 161

The serious, just got arrested look

Gpas bday - 162

And lastly, a few family photos!

With Janet and her dad (part of the 5 Family)

Gpas bday - 167

The girlies!

Gpas bday - 168

Us!

Gpas bday - 166

There will never be a family photo of us without a silly one first…

Gpas bday - 169

Gpas bday - 172

Or two silly photos…

Gpas bday - 174

Look how pretty the 5 Family looks!

Gpas bday - 176

The afternoon passed by so quickly, it was soon time to start cleaning up in order to return the room.

I hope everyone had a great time and enjoyed the atmosphere and the food, especially my grandpa! I hope you enjoyed the slideshow too! Thank you again to the whole family for making this day possible! 🙂