As a belated 21st birthday celebration, my aunt and uncle took me out to the city to eat at Asia the Cuba, an Asian-Cuban restaurant. My aunt made a reservation, which was confirmed twice, but when we got there our name was nowhere to be found on the computer. They accommodated us, however; we were there super early, so there was hardly anyone there yet. I was afraid it would be one of those places where the portions are small but the price is large, but everything was family-style and DELICIOUS. Here’s what we ate:
Calamari Salad: Crispy calamari, chayote, hearts of palm, banana, cashew, chiccory and radicchio, sesame orange dressing
A pleasant salad. The calamari wasn’t as crispy as I would have liked and the banana was a little overwhelming, but nothing really turned off my tastebuds.
Beef Dumplings Two Ways: Crispy with plum sauce, and steamed with coconut rice and mango ponzu
These were great. I lurv dumplings. The fried ones were basically empanadas with picadillo (Cuban ground beef hash) inside.
Cuban BBQ Chicken: with Thai coconut sticky rice, avocado cilantro fruit salsa, tamarind sauce
Yummy, but the flavor reminded me too much of familiar (American) Mexican food to be novel.
Honey-Rum Glazed Pot Roast of Pork: Sauteed Shanghai bok choy, fried plantains, enoki mushrooms
This was my FAVORITE. The pork was sweet, juicy, and tender. I’m going to be dreaming about this dish.
Yummy and it was a huge portion. The three of us couldn’t even finish it.
Cuban Opera Cake: Devil’s Food Cake, Kahlua, Milk Chocolate and Coffee Mousse, Coffee Brittle Ice Cream
Absolutely beautiful, and delicious. It reminded me of tiramisu. The cake stood straight up and regal; you could practically hear it bellowing, “FIGARO! FIGARO! FI-GA-RO!”
Homemade Sorbet of the Day
Refreshing and pretty. It came with scoops of different flavored sorbets. The grapefruit one made me cringe; I’m not a fan of grapefruit.
I also had a Coconut Cloud Cocktail (Cruzan coconut rum, stoli vanil, coco lopez, topped with coconut.) Hey, I’m 21 now!
I liked the decor and they played salsa music that made me long for a dance floor, but it’s kind of small and quite dark (hence poor pictures.) Great birthday dinner, and I’d definitely go back again someday.