As we were exploring restaurants in Tribeca, we ended up at Lotus Blue, an elegant Chinese restaurant. I was intrigued by the name and wondering if it was named after one of the Tintin books, Le Lotus Bleu, but I guess I was mistaken, the lotus on the wall not being blue and nothing really in the decor could have indicated I was right. But it got me there!
I was thrilled to go try their menu, composed of small and large dishes. I love small dishes because you can share, but also because it gives you a chance to try several dishes, but I admit that there were so many mouth watering choices that it took me a bit of time to decide. I started off with a Thai Iced Tea that was presented like a cocktail and had some whipped cream on top (first time I got that with my tea).
Like me, you probably wonder how they could serve a Thai Iced Tea in a Chinese restaurant. Well, Lotus Blue serves Yunnan cuisine, a cuisine from the Southwest of China, that borrows dishes, herbs and spices from the neighboring Thailand and Burma.
So, we ordered few small dishes:
Roasted duck wraps, made with vegetables and served with plum sauce. I love duck and was definitely not disappointed. I loved the sweetness of the plum sauce as well as the freshness coming from the mint, both flavors not overpowering at all the duck that was delicious.
Then, we got crispy scallion pancakes, served with aloe honey sauce and a lime soy sauce. I liked it: it was crispy as advertised and a bit greasy as you would expect your scallion pancakes to be. I liked the honey sauce, but disliked the lime soy sauce that was too strong and bitter.
In fact, we dipped the pancake in the sauce of the pork pot stickers. The presentation was great, with the crispy crust covering the dumplings that were right under. They were very good, juicy and tasty and the shell was perfect, having a bit of crispiness on top.
The last small plate we ordered was the one I least liked: the grilled lemongrass spare ribs. They were a bit too dry for my taste, although flavorful.
We also decided to share a large dish and I let Jodi pick this time. She went for the pressed tofu stir-fried in basil mushroom sauce. In other words, it was a vegetarian dish and I have to say that I enjoyed it! The tofu was flavorful and, the mushrooms and the eggplant made it a very earthy dish.
I should mention that we both got a bowl of rice with the dish, emphasizing more the fact that the dishes are made for sharing.
Last was dessert, with its original dessert menu...
We went for the banana and jackfruit turon. Little I know that turon is a Filipino snack, a sweet version of a Spring roll. I liked it: it was deliciously sweet, crispy, with sesame seeds on top that added some nuttiness.
This was a great dinner and I can't wait to go back and try some other dishes like the banana blossom (never tried that) and mango salad or the stir-fried prawns with candied olives.
Enjoy (I did)!
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