sambal

sambal

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Minh's Restaurant - San Jose

When we got there about three tables were occupied and we were seated immediately. I wasn't too concerned because it was way past lunch hours. But while waiting for our orders to arrived, a few more tables were filled. It's a good sign.

We got stuffed escargot for appetizer and Vietnamese hot pot (lau) with catfish. I went in with curiosity and not much expectation since I'm totally unfamiliar with those two dishes that we ordered.

The stuffed escargot wasn't scary at all. Even hubby who is usually not as adventurous in trying new stuff enjoyed it. Our bowl came with six escargots and dipping sauce on the side. The dipping sauce was fish sauce and chopped garlic with a bit sambal oelek on top. The escargot meat was mixed with minced pork and mushroom with a thinly slice garlic. All those then stuffed back into the escargot. Quite an interesting idea.

The hot pot was a surprising flavor. Our waiter came with one of those portable gas stove and set it next to us. He also brought along a dipping sauce bowl with soy sauce and slices of serrano chilli pepper. Then a few minutes later our hot pot came filled to the top. Look at the picture. We could see slices of green herb on top of wedges of tomatoes and slices of spongy green veggies along with chunk of catfish. Then another man brought a plate of bun (rice vermicelli) to go along with the hot pot. Using the laddle provided to us I pushed the veggies down to absorb the broth. Upon trying the broth I was surprised to find out that it's a bit sweet and sour. It's totally different from the Chinese style one that we usually do at home. After devouring half of it we figured out that the lau tasted better after the spongy veggies was totally wilted and started to taste like ham choy (chinese pickled cabbage). We enjoyed it to the last drop.

We know we'll be back to Minh's for more. Too bad they don't have menu online so we could decide ahead of time or research more on it. I find it a bit intimidating sometimes walking into a restaurant not knowing what a certain dish will look like or taste like. But hey..that's the adventure, right ?

Minh's Restaurant
1422 Dempsey Rd, Milpitas, CA 95035  (408) 956-1000