Kelp Restaurant Review
This is Rayray, your friendly food critic who gives you the ins and outs of your favorite restaurants. What dishes do you need to try? Which ones should you stay away from? How's the service? Is this place worth your valuable time? This guide is for you.
This week I'm going to talk about the Gourmet Kelp Restaurant in Maraqua. I've heard mixed things about this place. Some say the price isn't worth it, others find it to be fitting and will spend oodles amounts of neopoints on enjoyable food. Knowing this, I took wads of neopoints out of my bank and headed over to the much talked about Kelp Restaurant.
When I walked into the building, I was immediately captured by the décor. The walls carry paintings of famous Maraqua warriors, all beautifully completed. I must know who drew such inspiring pieces... they will blow your socks off! There is a huge chandelier overlooking Kelp. I couldn't stop staring at the glimmering crystals that overlooked the dining room. What makes it magical is the water outside bounces off the light, making the atmosphere dreamlike. The room smelled like pink cyclamen, purple frillix and my nose could pick up a dash of pebeanjay flowers. Such a lovely aroma that made me feel peaceful and stress-free. As you know, pink cyclamen has a gene to make you have a sense of calm.
When researching Kelp, I found that the attire is formal. If you come in wearing jeans and a normal T-shirt, you'll end up embarrassed. Dresses and suits of all colors and cuts are worn. Many outfits are breathtakingly beautiful; pearls and diamonds are worn around the neck, wrists, and fingers. My choice of attire was a Black and Red Promenade Dress accessorized with a Fancy Diamond Necklace topped with a glittering Diamond Flower Tiara.
A Maraquan Scorchio dressed in burgundy and green asked if I have a reservation. I told the kind gentleman my name and he smiled and said, "Hello, Miss Rayray! We've been expecting you. Someone will seat you momentarily. If you need anything, please ask."
Thankfully I didn't have to wait long; as promised, a Maraquan Lupe – also dressed in burgundy and green – guided me to my seat. The dining room looks like it can hold about 150 Neopians, yet the noise level was quiet. I was very thankful because I had a huge headache... there was a bank error and I had to fork over 1,409 neopoints earlier that day! Such a random event. I couldn't let that get in my way of this lovely dining experience, so I sat down on the cushy velvet seat and grabbed my menu.
The lovely waitress who introduced herself as Maria was dressed in a black and white suit with a black collar necklace. Very chic and stylish, I felt like I was dining with King Hagan himself! Dressing yourself with class makes you feel important, and it was a great sensation.
She told me to order one appetizer, main course, dessert and cocktail. Looking at the menu, I asked her what she would recommend me. Apparently the hot cake for the day was the Succulent Cheese Dip. It sounded good, so I ordered that with the Ocean Platter for the main course, Triple Chocolate Shell as the dessert and an Aged Tchea Juice for the cocktail. She left quickly, and I looked around at the other patrons.
Elegance was everywhere! I felt like an elite member of a selective club. The glittering lighting and beautiful paintings made me feel like I was in a dream. The cocktail came, and I couldn't wait to take my first sip.
The tchea juice was very sweet with a tart aftertaste. I'm guessing the bartender added a bit of sugar in the mix to get that sweetened kick. After a few seconds I realized the they put a flaming bomberry in the mix! I love that type of fruit and was pleased to take a second taste. It was like drinking hot cocoa near a warm fire.
I was feeling relaxed and satiated when the appetizer came. The cheese dip smelled delicious, so I put down my tchea juice and dug in. The first bite was an explosive of flavor. With my acute sense of taste I could tell the cheeses used were Ummagcheese, Purple Spotted, Triple Mustard, and honey. The thickness was just right and complimented the salty chips. Cheese is my favorite type of food. It can go well with anything; pizza, macaroni, hamburger, blueberry fish pop, and even Cup-O-Slime (I personally recommend warty blue cheese with that baby). It was hard to slow myself down!
When I was finally finished with the appetizer and licking the cheese off my fingers, the main course arrived. The platter was HUGE! No breaks for this girl, I had work to do. The meat was a nice cut of the lesser spotted fish. I could tell it was marinated with lemon and balsamic vinegar. It was easy to chew; not hard on the jaw, and practically melted on your tongue. It was one of the most enjoyable lesser spotted fish dish I have had in my career has a food critic! Next were the tiny sautéed chokato's. If you garnish it will a little butter you'll want to take small bites in order to savor the juicy flavor. If you combined the lesser spotted fish with the chokato, I promise you'll never taste anything like it. The explosion of both flavors work so well together!
Last on my plate were the boiled asparagus. Unfortunately there wasn't much taste so I had to add salt and pepper. It wasn't terrible; it just didn't rank up to the fish and chokato. If they maybe included a dash of space spice or citadel stew spice I could give it a better rating. It still didn't take away from the other dishes. One little bump is hardly something to complain about.
Maria was very attentive. The moment I was done she asked how my meal was and if she could get me anything. It's hard to find a good restaurant where the customers come first, especially in a busy place like Kelp! I asked what it was like working there, and she said the staff was enjoyable to work with, and her boss was actually a top chef of Neopia back in the day. He decided to open this restaurant after years of working in the kitchens. All of these recipes are created by him, and he takes care of his employees very well. Many of the cooks are award winners, and it's an honor to be chosen to work for Kelp. If you work here, you can work in any kitchen you want around Neopia; it's THAT prestigious.
Once all the plates were out of my way, the dessert came. My jaw almost hit the floor. I thought the Triple Chocolate Shell would be tiny. What I got was a shell half the size of my head. So much chocolate was put in front of me I didn't know where to begin. The name is true; there are three types of chocolate in the pudding, along with two almond-dipped chocolate biscotti on the side. It was milk, mint, and white chocolate all mixed in one. The taste palate was overwhelming and rich. The mint flavor complemented the biscotti biscuits, and after a while I had to force myself to stop.
I was so full from the other dishes that it was hard for me to continue. There are two words for it: food coma. Something I always try to avoid at all costs. The friendly waitress asked if she could box up the rest, and I couldn't be happier to bring it home for another time. Sadly I didn't get the avatar this time, but that just gives me an excuse to go back! I couldn't have asked for a better meal or service.
I suggest Kelp to EVERYONE in Neopia! You might not be wealthy enough at first, but trust me when I say it's worth the wait. This is my new favorite restaurant; I'm excited to come back and try other dishes. Well done, bravo, muy bein, and l'chaim, Kelp. May you prosper for many years. *raises tchea juice*
- Décor: 5/5
- Atmosphere: 5/5
- Meal: 5/5
- Staff: 5/5
- Cost: 5/5
- Overall satisfaction: 5/5
**This review is on behalf of the Neopian Times. Please note that Rayray does not take bribes or sells reviews for her own benefit. If you know of a restaurant that would like to be critiqued, please contact The Neopets Team and they will direct you to the appropriate Neopian for further consideration. Not all restaurants will be taken into consideration, so please be aware that you might not be as good as the other entries. It's not us, it's you.**