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Blame it on Roy

April 21, 2010
I was anxious to release the “foodie” in me and explore Chicago’s culinary gems while I was travelling last week.   Unfortunately, real work and homework (for the Kellogg Marketing course) consumed my evenings and only left room for a few noteworthy dining experiences.   I told you about my “frites-less” dinner at Bistro 110 a few days ago, now let me tell you about my downfall at Roy’s.

Roy’s Hawaiian Fusion


Roy’s is a popular c____  restaurant in Chicago.  I’m reluctant to say the “c” word because I’m concerned about how you will react.  What kind of “foodie” would waste a precious night in Chicago dining at a c____ restaurant?!  If you haven’t guessed it yet, Roy’s is a “chain”.   When I heard this, images of Jack Astors and Kelseys flashed before me.  I was persuaded to give it a try based on multiple plugs from the locals.  So I politely followed their recommendation as a Canadian should.  

I was relieved when I walked into Roy’s and was greeted with good music, a great ambiance, trendy crowd, and unfortunately, a long waiting list.  This was bitter sweet –  it tells you this is a desired place to be, but the physical waiting stinks when you’re hungry.  So we accepted the invitation to sit at the bar.  Seemed like an innocent thing to do, until we were placed directly in front of the dessert chef’s station where we watched them make molten chocolate cakes…for 3 hours!  Mistake #1. 

Chefs in the kitchen

Rembember…I am still on this Elimination Diet which means no dairy (ice cream), no gluten (cake or pastries) and no sugar (dessert).  So pretty much everything is out of the question.  Here’s how I went down hill slowly but surely.  

We each received an amuse bouche (a little taster as soon as we sat down) and a bowl of spicy edamame which hit the spot.  Then an hour passed by and we had yet to receive our meal.  We politely mentioned this to the manager who was making his rounds. As an apology, he offered us free desserts.   Mistake #2.  

For dinner I ordered the Hawaiian Style Misoyaki Butterfish off their gluten-free menu:)   It was a glazed piece of butterfish on top of steamed bok choy, and it exceeded expectations (as it should for $29).   Everyone had a taste and agreed it was paradise on a plate.   What is Butterfish?   It’s often referred to as a sable fish and also known as black cod.  Butterfish has a high oil content which gives the fish it’s smooth buttery texture.  It’s especially high in the good Omega-3 fats.  

Mmm Butterfish

Then the disaster started.  The waiter confirmed that the chocolate cake was flour-free (aka “gluten-free”) as he placed this beautifully presented dessert right in front of me.   Mistake #3.    

Chocolate Flourless Cake

Chocolate Flourless Cake - Before I got my hands on it

 Since I had been SO good this week, I convinced myselft that I deserved a relatively “guilt-free” treat.  Yes, I ignored the fact that chocolate (and sugar) were the basis of this dessert but I was sharing it with others.  First it was just one bite, then another, then… 

Chocolate Flourless Cake - The Aftermath

Turns out this “guilt-free” dessert wasn’t so guilt-free after all.  Perhaps I should have sampled it as planned and not licked the plate clean.   

I’m home now and back on the healthy bandwagon. 



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