September 22, 2004
Sunflower Restaurant has the best spring rolls ever. You think it's not so difficult to make a good spring roll, but Sunflower's are better than any I've ever had. There is just the right ratio of rice noodle to shrimp and pork to veggies and the rice wrapper is extremely tender. You can really taste the fresh mint, where as compared to other places, they leave out the mint altogether. I've been eating at Sunflower for about 2 years now, and I often get the Shaken Beef — tender cubes of beef filet sauteed in a sweet soy sauce and garlic mixture, served with onions, tomatoes, cilantro and a little dish of salt and pepper and lime. It is one of the best things you'll ever taste. You'll want to stay away from the Pho and Vermicelli bowls (go next door to Cong Ly for that) but if you want to try other Vietnamese dishes, Sunflower is the place.
Today I ventured out and had the Seafood Claypot Rice. It was a claypot filled with steamed rice and topped with a seafood and vegetable mixture that was sauteed in a sauce that tasted very similar to the sauce the Shaken Beef is cooked in but with a lot of julienned ginger. It was really good and really filling. The waitress explained to me it was all cooked in the claypot, but I think they just served it in the claypot.
Now this is a weird thing to obsess about but I swear the white steamed rice they serve here is the best rice I've ever had. I'm not sure if it is just the way they cook it, or if it's the brand they use, but it is the most fragrant long grain Jasmine rice with the most perfectly cooked texture. I'm not sure how to explain it. You will just have to go and try it for yourself. For months now I've been wanting to ask what brand rice they cook with. I finally asked today and the waitress said she didn't know except that her boss buys it from CostCo. See, as I've demonstrated before CostCo is a good thing.
Update: I went to CostCo today and the brand of rice they had that I think is what Sunflower purchases is Super Lucky Elephant Thai Jasmine Rice. It was in too large of a bag for me to purchase just for myself, but now I am on the lookout!Posted by yi at September 22, 2004 12:34 AM