Restaurants & Bars

Lions & Tigers & Bears..0' Mei--Santa Cruz Chinese

d.doodad | Jul 30, 200212:00 PM     4

On 7/27-- various SF/peninsula hounds piled in various late-model Subarus and schlepped on down to Santa Cruz for an extraordinary experience at O’Mei, somewhere on Mission Street. Sorry for the late and rather spotty post. I’ll list the menu below and rely on hounds in attendance to supply more detail.

Appetizers—displayed dim sum style so that you could decide with dish in plain view
-Candied cashews with back and white sesame seeds
-Tofu & corn w/ Sichan peppercorns (sort of a succotash)
-Smokey (kinda roasted?) marinated red peppers with feta cheese
-Amazing marinated and cooked Japanese eggplant

Main Dinner
-Mu shu chicken (described by many to be the best they’ve ever tried, delicate sauce)
-Yuxing Calamari (the spicy-sweet sauce was excellent, I didn’t love the actual calamari)
-Deep fried orange beef on rice stick (amazing taste, smelled a little like old shoe)
-Halibut—wok grilled atop squash (the big hit) The sauce was alternately described as “Like nothing I’ve ever tasted,” “super flavor,” “elusive. It’s as if the sauce would unexpectedly move between foreground and background.”
-Chicken with sweet potatoes and smoked black dates (I absolutely loved this one, full disclosure-it was my choice)
- Bacon & Napa cabbage (I loved the smoke of the bacon)
-Spinach & Bean threads (this came last and was least sampled. I thought it provided a nice and refreshingly clean complement to the complex flavors of the other foods.)
-Ma Po Tofu w/ pork-very interesting texture combination and nice subtle spices (one of my favorites)
-Vegetable & Pine nut fried rice—not much comment but disappeared quickly

Teas & Other
-Tung Ting Oolong (strong gardenia aroma)
-Chrysanthemum (sweet aftertaste with bitter follow through)
-Coca-Cola (local bottling)

After-Dinner Sweets
-Black sesame ice cream with black sesame candied sticks (the ice cream was unbelievably creamy and had a slight taste of peanut butter).
-Ginger Crème Catalan (most present rhapsodized about the ginger glaze)
-Apple blossom tart with pippin & gravestiens (accompanied by a full discussion of apple cloning)

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