Eleven hounds met this Sunday (2/17) for a hunan chowdown at Shao Mountain in Fremont, organized by CheuCheu and Melanie. We had a delightful meal and good company.
First it's worth noting about the location. It is located on Boscell Rd in Fremont, south from Auto Row in a new shopping area - new enough that my 2011 version mapping software didn't show the road! It's an interesting area, with a string of attractive looking restaurants. The place is not too big, with perhaps 16 tables. We did well to arrive at 11:30 - we were nearly the only ones there. An hour later the place was full, and by the time we left it was full with people waiting, and four small outdoor tables in front of the restaurant in use. One final note is that even we requested normal full-on heat levels, none of the dishes was challengingly spicy
The dishes we ordered were:
Thousand-year eggs with chili
thin slices of preserved eggs on a small plate covered by (not overly spicy) chili oil. For me this was a revelation - I actively don't like preserved eggs, but this presentation removed the sulfur not commonly present, and rendered them with a creamy texture, Nice.
Yam Pork ribs soup
House fried noodle
Smoky steamed together
Combined steamed meats
Sauteed lily bulbs with celery
A pleasant break, with nice crispness
Shao Shredded potato
Western Hunan smoked pork
Lotus root chili with chili in wooden tub
crisped lotus slices fried with chili
Braised pork with wild bamboo shoot
a surprising and good dish. The salt level was considerable lower than a couple of the pork dishes, and the pork had an almost melting texture that paired well with the fresh bamboo
Fish filet with dual flavor
a large round platter with two halves - each with fish filets covered with a sauce - one half red, one half green. We had originally be going to order fish heads, but they were not available and this was a good replacement.
Griddle cooked pig intestine
fried slices of intestine, mixed with slices of onion and chili. For me, this was quite good - the texture of the intestine was crispy, but still with some chew to them. For me, very good.
Bullfrog with chopped chili pepper
served in a pot, with lots of onion and chili
blue berry chinese yam cake
six small heart-shaped cakes with berry preserve on top
glutinous rice dumpling in sweet rice wine
the oddest item. It's a warm soup bowl with what looks like strands of egg in it, so you might be expecting a savory soup but is in fact quite sweet with what seemed like tapioca pearls and flavored pearls.