Watercress Express is a place we’ve been looking to try for a long time. Located on Calgary’s bustling 17th Ave, home to many delicious international cuisines, this Vietnamese place was recently recommended by another local food blog: Food Karma.
This isn’t your typical restaurant as it has a bit of a cafeteria-style setup for customers who want to eat and go. You order and pay first (including tip) at the counter and the food is brought out for you. This place doesn’t hold many people, but we saw quite a few people come in and order for take-out.
• Grilled Shrimp Salad Roll
• Sate Pho
• Korean Kalbi Beef Chuck Bao
• Mango milkshake with bubbles
• Vietnamese Iced Coffee
Our total came to about $50 including tip, which is pricier than most Vietnamese places we’ve tried but the food was delicious and the service was great. (If you’re eating on 17th ave in Calgary, don’t expect a cheap bill)
Now, about the food.. The Korean Kalbi Beef Chuck Bao was amazing– it had the look of a burger but didn’t taste anything like you’d expect – in a good way! The bun was stuffed with kimchi, fresh veggies and a Korean aioli sauce. The meat was similar to bulgogi, very tender and juicy. I’ve never tried anything like this in Calgary, and it far exceeded my expectations. This is a very messy dish with all the sauces, try and avoid if you’re on a first date 😉
The Sate Pho was what I was most looking forward to but I was a little bit let down by it. Perhaps we’re spoiled in this city when it comes to portions for pho, but I did expect something a little bigger. The Sate flavor was quite strong and to be honest, drowned out the taste of anything else- all I could taste was spice! Not a flavourful spice, but a strong heat. This dish would be much better if it had more flavour and they were a bit more generous with the portions.
The grilled shrimp salad roll was delicious and well-presented. I like that they sliced up the normally hard to eat salad rolls into bite sizes. Very impressed with this!
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Grilled shrimp salad roll
Korean Kalbi Beef Chuck Bao