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03/21/08 Burma Superstar Report: Some Truly Unique Asian Delights

opinionatedchef | Mar 23, 2008 10:32 PM

Thanks to you very helpful SF CHs, we had our first lunch of our annual SF visit here on Clement.Apparently, we had the unusual weekday experience of walking right in and sitting right down, (but that was shortly before closing i think.).

Highlights: Rob.L-you was riiiighhhhht!:
Tea Leaf salad and Samusa soup. Also the Tofu Tower.
The salad was extraordinary for a number of reasons. There were maybe 8 separate components including romaine , peanuts, fried garlic chips,etc etc -that were tossed with this never-before-experienced mixture of lime juice- and tea leaves fermented with dried anchovies(imported from burma in packages; I'm hunting for it now.) Just a big mouthful of delightful textures and bright flavors. This tea leaf mixture got me into a discussion with Korean table neighbors- about the ubiquity and great variety of salty condiments found in asian rice-dominated cuisines.Koreans and Japanese have their plethora of pickled condiments; Vietnam and Cambodia have their fish sauce and many many more examples.

I got a real kick out of the pieces of felafel in the very rich, unctuous curried soup. This
was a very complex,multilayered bowl of flavors.

Also many vegetables and notes of flavor and texture in the Tofu Tower with a light glaze of black bean sauce.

I would not recommend the rather one-dimensional (in sauce and components)Shrimp with Pumpkin (really the delicious kabocha squash) and Flour noodles w/ curried chicken.I was thinking of ordering the noodles w duck (or pork) but was told that they were stirfried w/ soy sauce only....

The desserts sounded great but were dreadful:
- fried coconut cream dumplings -wicked heavy lumps of coconut flavored cornstarchy modelling clay.
- chocolate candied ginger flourless cake. ughhhhhh. good texture is the only positive thing i can say about this. Lousy chocolate brand; ground ginger and waaaay too much of it, in the cake. Candied ginger only on top.

When next we visit, i will ask about the vegetable components of a given menu item- in order to get the more multi-dimensional dishes there,( to supplement the 3 great things we had.) I tell you, though, experiencing that one amazingly unique and delicious component- the fermented tea leaves- made this one of THE dishes of the past few years for me.

btw, in conversation with 2 chef/diners at Cortez the next day-they told me that the foods at BSuperstar can vary alot depending upon who's cooking. And they said next time I have to get the amazing flatbread ? there.

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