After Saturdays picnic in Golden Gate Park, I drove to SFO to pick up a friend arriving from London. Hard to believe after the chow day Id had, but we were to have dinner together. Offered a choice of Chinese or Japanese eats, he voted for Chinese so I headed to Millbrae where we wound up at Broadway Bistro, a first visit for both of us.
The manager came over to our table to see if we had any questions about the menu. He was quite attentive, checking back with us several times. He even pointed out how clean the floors are here! Marc was the only non-Chinese customer in the place and we joked that he might be looked upon as a curiosity.
The tiger prawns with salted egg yolk ($14) the manager recommended was a winner. The headless prawns were large but not as gigantic as real tiger prawns. Butterflied with the shell-on, they were dusted then flecked with bits of garlic and salty yolk then deep-fried. The shells werent crisp enough to eat, but we nibbled all the tasty coating off them. Sweet and succulent, the firm-fleshed prawns hit a perfect doneness. The oily, salty crumbs of garlic and egg yolk piled over the prawns hit the palate with bursts of intense flavor. Deliciously addictive, we kept returning to these tasty bits.
We tried the yau choi with garlic for our plate of sautéed greens. This was the best yau choi Ive had in ages, and they made Marc sigh for how much he missed California produce.
Wed been having a hard time choosing between the Portuguese style baked chicken and the Macau chicken curry. The manager said he would make a special that was a combination. This was not so successful, watering down the curry sauce. Offered a choice of rice or spaghetti on the side, we asked for spaghetti, as wed also been interested in the spaghetti Bolognese. We cracked up when the the plain boiled spaghetti noodles without sauce was served.
For drinks we ordered fresh watermelon and mango juice. When the manager asked if we wanted tapioca, I insisted that Marc try it in his mango juice. He looked dubious when his drink arrived asking, uh, isnt tapioca white, is this dyed? But after a few chewy mouthfuls, he decided he liked boba and wondered if he could find it in London. Both juices were deliciously ripe and freshly made with a fair amount of pulp.
We were happy with our dinner, although at nearly $50 including tax and tip (and one Tsing Tao) it felt pricey to me. Marc had found the choices on the menu entertaining, his first exposure to the Hong Kong-style of western food. He thought the setting and service made it easily accessible for non-Chinese and hed happily return if he lived here.