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eat here now.

January 25, 2012

there is a restaurant in oakland that is so perfect.  as you make your way through the various dishes, each bite is more vibrant than the one before.  every song that comes bumping through the speakers elicits an “i love this song!”  there is dynamic street art on the walls, a glinty disco ball dangling from the ceiling & everyone seems jazzed to be there.  the restaurant is hawker fare & it might be my most favorite place to eat.  i am slowly making my way through the menu, having never ordered the same thing twice, & have not been let down.

green papaya salad.

hawker fare serves dishes based on southeast asian street food.  there are six options from the “snack aisle”, seven “rice bowls” & a few “extras”.  i enjoyed the sticky siamese peanuts & the nicely chewy beef larb but the blistered green beans & the green papaya salad were both incredible.  the beans were complex & gooey with a salty bacon-y bite & the papaya salad was crunchy & refreshing with a spicy kick.  i’ve tried four of the rice bowls & always with the fresh farm egg on top (the way most people feel about bacon, i feel about a soft-cooked egg.  & bacon).  the 24-hour pork belly was meaty & gelatinous & rich.  i also thoroughly enjoyed the issan sausage – casing-free chunks of deliciousness.  my favorite however, was the shrimp curry special that is not on the regular menu – spicy, coconutty & complex with fresh coriander.

issan sausage.

shrimp curry

i have been reading rave reviews about “the sugar stall” – four desserts – & though i always welcome more sweetness into my days, i rarely leave room for dessert.  next time i’ll keep my eyes on the coconut-rice-pudding-with-roasted-banana-jam & spiced-sesame-crumble prize.  also sweetening the pot?  menu prices top out at $9.50.

One Comment leave one →
  1. January 25, 2012 3:57 am

    Damn you for saying “southeast asian street food”! Them thar’s fightin woids! I could get really annoyed by having to be subscribed to your blog, when my food choices are so limited, but I’ll chose to feel blessed for the vicarious tasting. Besides, you know there’s lots I couldn’t eat — this way I can enjoy it all.

    p.s. Don’t think I don’t know how much YOU enjoyed saying “blistered” and “crumble prize”. I’d enjoy it just as much, if I weren’t so busy with my vicarious tasting.

    Try the damn desserts already.

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