Classics Tea Lounge (Kingston) – For bubble-tea… and more

For the uninitiated, bubble-tea is essentially tapioca put into small ball format (the bubbles) and put into a fruit slush, a black/green tea, or a fruit juice (the tea part). It was big in 2001. Since then… it has only remained popular in certain groups, namely asian university students. Not being one to fight one’s heritage, in Kingston I sought out a place to go for bubble-tea. Not only is it a place for a drink, but it is a place for young asians to hang out. Think of it… like the pub is for brits.

This is the passionfruit slush with pearl (bubbles) for about $4 for a regular size. Black pearls in a fruit slush. Simple. Tasty. Refreshing. The key to a good bubbletea is a) not be too sweet, and b) have good quality of tapioca. Not too chewy. Not too soft.

As I’ve mentioned before, Kingston is full of Korean restauranters. Classics is no different. As with any Korean run restaurant, there is a plethora of Korean dishes. This is the Spicy Rice Cake with Noodles (likely dduk boke) for $6.99. Essentially soft rice cake in a nice spicy Korean sauce. A really great dish to have when having a post-inebriation hunger pang.

The steamed dumplings (mandu). You can get them pan-fried or deep-fried too. Simple. Tasty. Thin skin. I like them. Nothing special though.

The Jaeyuk Bokkum (Barbeque pork with Korean spicy sauce) for $7.99. A great deal for this price. Comes with a few sides (though theoretically these should be included for all meals…) including pickled turnip and honeyed potato squares. The pork is reasonably tender, well seasoned, and hot. Quite a filling dish.

I forget what this is called. Essentially a egg cooked in soy sauce, some nice fatty pieces of pork belly, the honeyed potatoes, and some corn. Their version of meat and potatoes I guess. I liked the egg. A lot. Reminds me of the ones J’s mom makes in Calgary.

The pork thick soup with noodle or rice for $7.99. Very interesting flavours. Sour and salty at once. Lots of asian vegetables (cabbage, fungus, carrots). The pork is not visible but battered in pepper and fried but thrown into the soup. Get this with the rice, not the noodle. By the time I got to the noodles, they had all gone soft. I like this dish but only wish it wasn’t thickened with corn starch (I think).

I’ve been to Classics monthly for about 1.5 years now. I don’t find the bubbletea particularly remarkable but it is a nice place to enjoy a non-alcoholic beverage. It is also a nice place for a late night snack. Their hours are as late as 1-2am on weekends. It is wonderfully located beside the Grizzly Grill/Stages. I’ll keep going back. Though it is the only game in town, it is actually pretty good too.

Classics Tea Lounge, 399 Princess St., Kingston, ON, (613) 546-1626, no website.

Classics Tea Lounge on Urbanspoon

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~ by Russ on January 3, 2010.

2 Responses to “Classics Tea Lounge (Kingston) – For bubble-tea… and more”

  1. I love the pork thick soup at Classics. You’re right, it’s not so remarkable to taste, but for some reason it’s good. It’s my comfort food, haha, the lady knows that I’ve had a bad day when I go to eat it. I love it and I think you were too kind about the spicy sticky rice things. they are yum, but i think it’s just melted korean hot sauce that comes from those plastic tubs!

    • I think it is the thickness of the soup. It really feels like a solid ball of warm lead in your tummy afterwards.

      Regarding the dduk boke, I know it isn’t anything special but at 2am on Friday… it really hits the spot! Also… you should try the dduk boke at some other places, ahem, Arigato Sushi. Then you will realize that a good dduk boke is as much about the sauce as it is about the texture of the noodle!

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