Dave and I joined good friends to try out the Coney Island Cafe on Dewdney (near the RCMP Depot and Government House) this week. It’s a place Dave and I likely would not have gone to without the suggestion of our friend (it was her birthday, so she got to choose the restaurant).
Coney Island Cafe’s claim to fame is the “best poutine in Regina.” I wasn’t too excited about trying it, because the thought of poutine kinda grosses me out. Not that it isn’t good. It is. But, I feel like I am shortening my life every time I eat it (clogging arteries and all that).
I also have to be honest that I can be a bit of a restaurant snob. As we entered, I was underwhelmed because it felt like a diner/fast food joint, with all of the menu selections written on the wall in chalk. But, the place was really busy, and that is always a good sign that the food must be tasty. Because you have to stand near the front to decide what to order, then head down a long corridor to place your order, I really didn’t like how cramped and crowded it felt. That is never a good experience for me.
Once we ordered, we sat down and waited for our numbers to be called. In the meantime, our friends got their milkshakes… which were huge! They raved about them and really enjoyed each one (lemon, chocolate, lots of varieties to choose from). I started to wish I had ordered one (but by the end of the meal was glad I didn’t, because our friends had trouble finishing their meals – so full from milkshake).
We each ordered a hamburger (mine was a simple cheeseburger with all the fixings, Dave chose one with bacon – of course). I was impressed by the size of the burgers and how fresh the buns were. I actually really enjoyed it. Much better than a typical fast food burger. Strike one against my snobbery.
We shared an “original” poutine. Your typical cheese curd and gravy and fries variety. I loved the deep flavour of the gravy, but generally stayed away from the cheese curd. Dave really liked that though. It was also a huge serving, so it could easily be a meal in itself. Especially if you choose one of the many varieties (like mexican or pulled pork poutine). As I looked around me, I saw people eating all kinds of poutine and seeming to really enjoy it. It still kinda grosses me out.
Overall, I enjoyed the meal at Coney Island Cafe, but the ambience didn’t work for me. If I go again, I think I will choose the takeaway option (which I really can see myself doing sometime).