I had quite the experience eating at a (previously) preferred hot pot restaurant in Toronto today.
I’d like to open this blog post saying that I hate lying, and my friends can vouch for me in that I’m not one to lie. I don’t have any photographic evidence (I was too shocked to whip out my phone), so this blog post won’t have any photographic evidence. I do sincerely hope that this doesn’t compel you to stop reading here.
Now to start this story, I went to Rolling Pot (Shabu Shabu) at 7077 Kennedy Rd (near Pacific Mall/Market Village) today, Saturday, June 8, 2013, at roughly 7:30pm.
I ordered the wintermelon soup base. We ordered some beef, lamb, shrimp/beef/squid balls, spinach, watercress, rice cakes, taro/spinach noodles, tendons, tripe, and some dumplings.
The soup base came, and then our ordered dishes slowly started coming. I went to get sauce to put into my soup: some spicy oil, hoisin sauce, oyster sauce, garlic, sesame oil, and barbeque sauce. I repeated to concoct what would be my dipping sauce, plus grabbing an extra bowl to store my food.
So, there I was sitting with three bowls: 1) my hotpot bowl; 2) my eating bowl; and 3) my dipping bowl.
Skipping the details of a very delicious meal session, the purpose of this post is to describe, wholeheartedly and genuinely, what occurred at the end of my meal.
With my eating bowl now having some of my dipping bowl concoction in it, and having some dumplings in my dipping bowl, ready for me to enjoy the wonderful flavours, I noticed something strange in my eating bowl.
It looked like half of a white spider (diagonally halved), orange from being well-marinated in my spicy oil + other sauce concoction.
“No, it can’t be…”
I took a closer look, and the piece of ginger root (or so I wishfully thought) had fur on its “roots” (aka legs). I took a closer look, and I saw some eyes.
Disgusted and shocked, I called the waiter over and courteously told him that there was a spider in my food (whispered it to him to not frighten the people sitting beside us) and he took it, looked at it closely, and said “Sorry” and laughed. I am not lying.
The bill came, and the fact that there was half a dead well-marinated spider in my food wasn’t acknowledged financially. The bill was ~$47, which included an automatic 10% “service charge”. No sign of any discount.
Which is why I’m making this blog post. My reasoning is: if the staff and management at Rolling Pot at 7077 Kennedy Road aren’t willing to be courteous to me after I spotted half of a dead spider in my food, then I have the right to spread the word about it.
My theory? The spider was happily crawling around the counter with the different sauces (second photo above; which aren’t covered with a cap, by the way) and missed a step with one of its 8 legs, fell into a sauce and drowned. Or it was resting peacefully on the watercress/spinach I ordered, which may not have been pre-washed. If it were already in the hotpot, it would’ve likely disintegrated due to the heat.
My first reaction wasn’t to take a picture of the dead spider, I was just in shock. No, I didn’t vomit or scream. I was simply in disbelief. So you’ll just have to go on my (good) word that what I just blogged about was all true, and if anyone at Rolling Pot would like to get in touch with me, no, I won’t be accepting any vouchers or free meals. Thank you (xie xie).
Apparently they also recycle their food (a review posted on April 19, 2010 by a Stephen C.)
Feel free to share this post on your preferred social media accounts. Friends don’t let friends eat spiders.
What happens when you don’t take me seriously and laugh at me?
Exactly what did Rolling Pot (Shabu Shabu) at 7077 Kennedy Road violate? The following policies by Toronto Public Health:
- 2. Protect Food from Contamination – “Cover food with lids or wrap”.
- 8. Pest Control – “Cover any openings to prevent pests from entering” and “Eliminate any food or water sources for pests”.
Let’s just say tonight wasn’t a good night for the spider and I.
Update (2013-06-10): my complaint was forwarded to the York Region Public Health by Toronto Public Health.
Pictured below is a digital representation of the half of the well-marinated dead spider that I saw in my bowl. So don’t scroll down if you get queasy easily.
(except mine was more orange, delicious no?)