So Much Pho-n

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“Everything I make is light and fresh,” said Chef Kimmy Tang, with sweet sincerity, as I sat next to her waiting for my Vietnamese feast to take place at 9021Pho.  Tang is well known for her successful Los Angeles restaurants Michelia and 9021Pho and also for her Euro-Asian cooking techniquesI was thrilled that my first experience with Vietnamese food would be with her.

With the grace and care of a Mama Lion, Tang took me into her food world for an evening of never ending dishes.  She had the menu all planned out, making sure I would be trying all of her favorite creations.

The Menu:

Michelia Spring Rolls:  Crab meat, shrimp. chicken, taro, shallots and tree ear mushrooms.

Fresh Rolls:  Rice wraps with shrimp sautéed with lime leaves, chili peppers and ginger, then rolled with jicama cucumber and mixed greens.

Potstickers:  Dumplings with chicken and bok-choy.

Rainbow Fried Rice:  Rice, chicken, tomato, peas, celery, onion, egg and corn.

Vietnamese Noodles:  Stir-fried noodles with chicken, egg, carrot, cabbage, scallions and peanuts.

Crispy Sole:  Fried sole filet topped with Tang’s own French spicy aioli.

Pepper Mignon:  Filet mignon in a peppercorn sauce, served with onion and mixed greens.

And of course…The PHO

Spicy N’ Sour Soup: Shrimp, sole, straw mushrooms, pineapple, baby corn, bok-choy and rice noodles in a broth of lemongrass, chili, and tamarind veggies.

All of the dishes were wholesome and flavorful.  I took a bite of carrot found in the Rainbow Rice and enjoyed it’s fresh crunch.  Tang informed me that she never cooks her vegetables for more than three minutes.  She explained, that so often in Asian cooking, vegetables are over-cooked and they loose their flavor and nutrients.  Tang refuses to lose flavor from any of her ingredients…and she succeeds.

My favorites of the evening were the Michelia Spring Rolls, The Crispy Sole, The Pepper Mignon and the Spicy N’ Sour Pho.

The spring rolls were so light and crispy and I could taste each of the fillings.  The sole was truly a simple specialty. The panko crumbs wrapped the tender fish in an even layer of happy crispness.  The spicy aioli was the perfect finishing touch.  The creamy explosion drizzled back and forth across the sole, making each bite a perfect union of meat, texture and taste.  The cubed bites of filet mignon melted between my teeth with ease.  I didn’t know what to expect before I took my first spoonful of the traditional Vietnamese soup, then I took a bite and realized that if I had been expecting something, this would have surpassed it.  The broth was spicy, but clean.  The soft noodles, shrimp, sole, and vegetables swam down my neck singing deliciousness the entire way.  This was a meal I will never forget.

Tang clearly has a way with people and a way with food.  She was extremely kind and so full of passion for her profession, that I can’t say which I enjoyed more, her cooking or her company.

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Categories: Restaurant Review

Author:The Food Pervert

Tara Redfield, The Food Pervert, is an actress, writer, host and obviously food lover. She started her blog and website, "The Food Pervert," in 2010 after an incredible visit to New York City. Her soul acknowledged a genuine passion for food and a desire to share her experiences with friends and family. She’s been sharing ever since. One of her most exciting experiences living in Los Angeles has been working on the TLC reality cooking show, “The Take Home Chef” with the charming and talented Curtis Stone. Redfield has a true love for cooking, dining, travel and story telling. She continues to spread the food love by visiting restaurants, markets, and food festivals as often as possible and sharing her finds through photos and stories. TV Host Representation: Paul Barrutia Commercial Talent 9255 Sunset Blvd. Ste. 505 West Hollywood, CA 90069 310.247.1431

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