tried new paradise for lunch yesterday w/my husband. the restaurant is fairly large w/a bar, performance area, & a few tvs. at 2pm the room was sedate, w/a couple tables occupied. i understand the place gets lively at dinner when the entertainment kicks in.
using the photo-filled menu & a tip from hound sophique, we ordered the following: beef sticks w/papaya salad, chicken curry soup, duck feet salad. a large tub of regular steamed rice came w/the meal.
the soup arrived first. a large bowl of coconut milk & lemongrass based red broth w/ thin white noodles, chicken feet, a piece of chicken back, blood cubes, onions, & peanuts. raw garnishes were a lime wedge, shredded cabbage & eggplant, mint, skinny bitter herb i don't know the name of, cucumber, bean sprouts, & serrano pepper slices. very enjoyable. we agreed on the lovely way the flavors grew out of each other-rich body, tart, herbal, citrusy, gently spicy & sweet. the textures alternating w/ bites of gelatinous feet(the plump palms are my favorite) & al dente noodles.
next were the beef sticks, six to an order. a big hit. skewers of beef chunks marinated in a sweet concoction(pineapple?). they managed to be tender yet chewy, and tasted very freshly prepared. it came w/a small portion of papaya salad. a very simple rendition-no crab bits or tiny shrimp like the thai salads we're used to. the chile paste was set to the side so you could adjust heat levels accordingly.
finally the duck feet salad. a big heap of tossed shredded cabbage, carrots, mint, bean sprouts, tomatoes, serrano slices, peanuts, & slivers of vinegared feet. fish sauce & lime juice lurked somewhere in there. i thought it was okay, sort of boring after a while. husband didn't like the chewy texture of the feet. i think next time we'll try a beef salad & a fish dish.
1350 e. anaheim st, long beach
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