My wife, kids, and I wanted some bubble waffle after each finishing our meals, but we were weary of the crowds in front of Bubble Waffle Cafe. Since bubble waffle was not something that could instantly be made, we knew that we would need to wait a minimum of 25 minutes for them judging from the size of the crowd. If it was any other day, we would’ve definitely given up on waiting for the bubble waffle. But since it was spring break, and since we had absolutely no set-in-stone activities lined up for the kids the following day, we decided that we could afford to leisurely window-shop while waiting for our order.
We thought that ordering two items would make the wait more worthwhile, so we ordered both the bubble waffle and the mixed street food bowl.
The mixed street food bowl came with a sesame-based sweet sauce. The sauce was pretty tasty at first. It worked well with the elastic rice rolls to create a sweet and chewy mouthfeel. But as I moved on to try the fish-balls and pseudo-shu-mai, the sweetness began to feel a little one-note. The sauce made every single component of the bowl taste exactly the same. The fish balls lost their usually detectable pan-seafood/fish flavours; they simply felt like a snappier and bitier version of the rice rolls. The pseudo-siu-mai also suffered from the same fate in terms of flavours. They were yet another sesame-flavoured sweet blob. But since they were pseudo-siu-mai (instead of real pork and shrimp based siu mai) and composed entirely of starch, they had no shrimp or meat flavours to lose. They were a teeth-bouncing blank canvas that tasted much better with the sauce than without it. The pseudo-siu-mai pieces were actually the most enjoyable item of the bowl because they had the chewiest, bitiest, and most teeth-bouncing texture.
We were fine with what we got with the mixed street food bowl because it was merely an add-on to our order. My wife, kids, and I were more interested in sampling the main attraction of Bubble Waffle Cafe: the bubble waffle. The bubble waffle was totally worth the wait. It was hot and crunchy on the outside, and the crunchiness was just right. I never got the sense that the surface of the bubble waffle was crunchy in an overdone and over-browned kind of way. In contrast to the chewy texture of a lot of other versions of bubble waffles, this version had a spongey and moist-cake-like interior that was plenty enjoyable. This enjoyable texture was accompanied by a supremely aromatic fresh-cream-flavour that, once released, permeated every crevice of my mouth with its richness.
The bubble waffle that my family got from bubble waffle cafe was simply the closest thing to bubble waffle perfection that we have ever experienced locally. Neither my wife nor I could find any fault with it. It was totally worth the wait. In fact, I’m putting this bubble waffle on my list of must-have food items (along with the roast pork from Parker Place) on my infrequent trips to Richmond.