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Restaurants & Bars 1

Weekend at SG Asian Mall

Kathy | Mar 10, 200211:19 PM

Saturday night, after Jonathan Gold's review in the LA Weekly I had to get down as try out Green Village. To the letter I found JG's review (as always) accurate and a great roadmap. Our group of 7 tried nearly everything in the review and one (ordered when I wasn't policing the non-hounds at the table) beef stir fry. As written, the beef dish was disappointing (not worth more than a first bite) but the Shanghai style dishes were right on target. The braised fish tails -- perhaps not the most inviting title, turned out to be my favorite dish. Sunday 9I never get my fill of Chinese) I made a return to the 140 W Valley mall and was a bit disappointed to find that many of the places in my notes from past postings are gons. No Happy Family, no Chu's (unless that really is Q's -- which looked a deserted), No Seafood Strip. We wandered into Juon Yuan (after deciding that Seafood Hot Pot Buffet looked a little like Chinese Sizzler -- probably quite authentic said my fellow hound). Juon Yuan may have become one of my favorite Chinese places. Although I must admit a bias towards Shanghai cuisine every dish we ordered was a delight. We started with seasoned beef in Chinese pancakes, followed by a huge bowl of spinach and bamboo fungus soup (very delicate with a slightly smoky taste), Icefish (anyone know what that is) with soya topping (maybe it was called sauce) had me wrestling with my manners to keep me from licking the serving plate. The crunchy sauce of minced soy beans quick fried with delicate spices was a revelation. Delicious Shanghai style rice cakes with thin strips of pork and delightfully oily greens sat on our table next to perhaps the best pea greens I've ever had -- light, light, light sauce hardly oily with barely toasted garlic -- Icould have eaten a tableful of those greens alone. While we waited for the Eight Treasure Rice Dessert ; we waited quite a long time but the staff was so pleasant (they apologized on a regular basis for the wait) we took the opportunity to "eavesdrop" on other table's orders. The Maitre D, who had taken a special interest to make sure we were enjoying our meal ("Let me introduce you to this soup") was happy to come by and tell me what was on the tables around us. For me the rice dessert was just too, too sweet -- but the rest of the table were big fans (I'll bet the carryout container didn't make it all the way home). I would have liked that dessert better if the surrounding rice had been less sweet letting the fruit and bean paste carry the combination. All in all a great food weekend.

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