Restaurants & Bars 4

Sabuy Sabuy, Oakland

Ruth Lafler | Mar 2, 2013 12:28 PM

Lots of recs for Sabuy Sabuy II in Berkeley, but not many mentions of the original on College at Broadway.

My parents recently moved to that neighborhood and Sabuy Sabuy is their new "local." I had dinner with my Dad there last night and I was surprised that it had some dishes I hadn't seen before.

We ordered the Soup Woonsen (ground pork and ground shrimp, glass vermicelli and Nappa cabbage in a clear broth). It was delicious -- well balanced to taste all the ingredients, which included spinach as well as cabbage, and both basil and cilantro. Not spicy (I didn't want it to be) -- apparently it's traditionally served as a cool counterpoint to spicier curries. I like that you can order "single servings" of the soups.

We asked for the panang beef "medium" and I was surprised by how hot it was. I would say this version was only a B-, but that was because I didn't actually want it that hot; this might be a good place to go all in on the heat, and I'd like to go back and try some other dishes that looked intriguing.

The place is tiny and a bit divey. The service is notably friendly and cheerful. Prices are low.

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