It took us over a year to finally check out X-Site. We first came to be aware of X-Site when we posted our visit to the LA Grill in Richmond. Back then our readers were pointing out to us that LA Grill has the same concept with X-Site. So X-Site had been on our to-try list for a long time already but it has been so long that it dropped way down to the bottom of the priorities.
We had pretty much forgotten about X-Site until Novi left a note for us and reminded us of this place which serves $4.95 Lunch Specials.
Like Richmond’s LA Grill, X-Site is a gem of a place which everyone should take note of.
X-Site is located on Hastings in Burnaby. That is the thing — it is so far away from home otherwise we would have visited this place earlier.
Suanne and I went to X-Site for our Friday dinner date. You know, I really enjoy dinners like this to cap off the week … slow, unrushed and put work behind for the week.
Look at the interior above. You would not have guessed that they serve $5.95 Dinner Specials here. Where else could you get a $5.95 with choices like Top Sirloin Steak, Gourmet Burger, Chicken Souvlaki or Grilled Salmon? It is amazing to think how they can even make money at all.
But they had been doing this for many years already and that is why this place is so close to the hearts of many people.
The dining area is large and spacious. We expected X-Site to be very much like LA Grill but this is definitely much better and conducive for a nice dinner. The place is dim with the section at the back so dark I wonder how people are going to eat in that kind of condition.
We observed that the kitchen, bar and till was manned by Asians but all the servers are young pretty Caucasians. That stood out because it was exactly the same thing that was glaring when we were at LA Grill. No, no … it’s not a problem. It was just an observation which makes me think that beside the facade one could be very surprised who the people are behind the restaurant. Does any of our readers know if LA Grill and X-Site are run by Asians? Who are they?
Service was excellent. There is no difference from any other more expensive restaurants.
We meant to take our time for the dinner. You know, we wanted to order drinks and appy first before we decide what we want for mains and such. For a place that serves $5.95 dinners, I would somewhat understand if they want to turn the table as quickly as they can but we did not have such pressure at all.
Our waitress was perfectly fine and even asked if we wanted to just start with the drinks and appy first and decide on the rest of the meal later. We were impressed.
I ordered a 2 oz Martini called X-Site Perfect. Between Finlandia (vodkha) and Tangueray (gin), I asked for the gin. This is $5.50.
It was very strong. It was like drinking jet fuel. No, I did not like it at all.
For appetizers, we shared a plate of Garlic Prawns which is $6.95.
We were kind of dismayed with the size of the prawns but otherwise, this is great. The garlic bread is fragrant that you could smell the moment they brought it to the table. It was excellent and particularly good when we wipe that bread on the garlic butter and white wine sauce from the plate of the prawns.
Like I said, the size of the prawns was a disappointment but this was a very nice appetizer for us. Enjoyed this.
We did not get the $5.95 Dinner Specials because they are only available for Monday through Thursdays.
We decided to get a steak which costs $9.95. There were two choices: the NY Peppercorn Steak or the NY Teriyaki Steak. We thought that we try the Teriyaki Steak because Peppercorn sounded so common.
The New York Teriyaki Steak sauce is made with a blend of Japanese soya sauce, … pineapple juice, honey, wine and ginger. That sounded so good, doesn’t it? The sauce had a very interesting flavour.
The mega sized plate included rice pilaf, roasted potatoes, green salad and the same garlic bread we had earlier. We were glad to see that bread because we like it so much.
The pilaf rice, well, it was cold and dry. No, it was not terrible at all but it is far from perfect. Anyway, I don’t really care at all because it is only $10.
The steak is small. Maybe like 6 oz. Certainly not premium beef. As expected, the meat is not tender, moist or all the attributes you would associate with a great steak. Put things into perspective, folks. It is respectfully good and a good deal for the price.
The second main we ordered was from the X-Site’s Gourmet Burgers section of the menu. They have 10 different types of burger ranging in prices from $5.95 to $7.95. A lot of them were interesting to us — took a long time for us to decide. I know it is burgers but we are such indecisive people.
For me, I wanted the blue cheese burger but it come with chicken (burgers MUST be made with beef, never chicken!) and Suanne hates blue cheese. Suanne wanted to try the Salmon burger but I just hated the thought of eating salmon burgers. Then we thought that the Cali Burger sounded interesting because it has crisp bacon and avocado but that also came with chicken meat.
We finally opted for the Harvati Burger ($6.95) — Harvati cheese and crisp bacon. Harvati is our favourite cheese and we like the sharp and buttery taste. But the cheese here was just so-so — not as pronounced as we expect it to be.
The burger is served with a side of green salad and potatoes. The green salad (also given as a side with the steak) is drizzled with balsamic vinaigrette.
We like the burger a lot. The bun is great and crisp on the outside and it was moist all round. For just $7 and all that we had, it was really satisfying for us.
That was a lot of food that we had.
But despite all the food, we also ordered a dessert. They don’t have the dessert on the menu but if you asked, they will tell you what they have for the day.
We got the Key Lime Cheesecake. It is served with some chocolate and fruity sauce. Suanne as you know is quite a critic for cheesecake. She did not like it. She said it has a powdery texture to it and it is not smooth. I thought it was quite OK but I’ll go with the expert’s opinion.
X-Site is not a place for the food snob. Such restaurants has a place in the community. It is more than a decent place. As a matter of fact, I find X-Site pretty good. They had managed to keep their prices so low after all these years.
I just checked the menu from LA Grill from back in 2008 with X-Site’s and the prices are the still the same. Look at the menu too, both X-Site and LA Grill are identical … not only the menu items are the same, even the printing and the paper color is exactly the same. I am 101% sure they are operated by the same people.
Good restaurant. We will be back.
Here is the menu … please click for larger image: