Blue Ocean Cafe 藍海餐廳 (Markham)

Location: Markham, Canada
Address: 8392 Kennedy Road
Website: http://www.blueoceancafe.ca/
Type of Meal: Dinner


Blue Ocean Café is a popular Hong Kong style tea café (you can read more about these in my Phoenix review) that leaves your stomach and wallet full. Most of their dishes are accompanied with soup (creamy or borscht) and tea or coffee and are big portions (ordering three you could easily feed four people).

We all chose to have borscht with our meals. Cantonese borscht, unlike the Ukrainian version, is tomato and beef based containing no traces of beet. Blue Ocean’s had a fair amount of cabbage, celery and carrots but could have used a few more cubes of meat.


Eating family style is ideal as each main is so large that it could get a bit monotonous having the whole thing. Our first dish, the baked Portuguese seafood rice ($8.99), was a little mild for my taste and could use more coconut milk, curry and even a pinch of salt. But, there was a decent amount of seafood including calamari, shrimp and fish. Just watch out for the hot plates as we weren’t warned and I burnt myself; a week later there’s still a mark on my finger.


The baked Bolognese with mushroom and ham with rice ($8.99; we switched from pasta) was a touch more flavourful from the addition of ham. But, I found it was still too subtle and lacked the rich tomato sauce essence. Perhaps it’s because I ate these after having the more powerful borscht that everything paled in comparison.


Blue Ocean’s Hainanese chicken rice ($8.50) was definitely the best of the three; in fact, one of the better ones I’ve had. The chicken is braised in a rich broth and became tender, warm and had a great salty taste. It had such great flavour that I didn’t even need the ginger oil or sweet Thai chili sauce on the side.


All in all, good portions at even greater prices but a bit too bland for me. However, if you’re eating here regularly, than something with less salt may be the healthier choice. 


Overall mark - 6.5 out of 10

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Gastro World's Grading System

  • Anything under 5 - I really disliked and will never go back
  • - decent restaurant but I likely won't return
  • 7 - decent restaurant and I will likely return
  • 8 - great restaurant that I'd be happy to recommend
  • 9 - fantastic restaurant that I would love to visit regularly and highly recommend
  • 10 - absolute perfection!

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