Koasan Kosher Bistro Rocks My World!
A really exciting new addition to the kosher restaurant scene is Kaosan, located at 1387 Coney Island Avenue in Brooklyn, btwn. Aves. J and K (there is no sign, but look for a slick glass veneer with red trim). I've been there twice, and everything I had was good, while some things were truly outstanding. Kaosan's pan-Asian focus makes certain dishes (well-executed versions at that) finally available to the New York kosher community that (as far as I know), have not been available before. Yay!
Among appetizers, the Malaysian beef satay with peanut sauce and the grilled stuffed grape leaves -- thin cigars of spiced ground beef wrapped in grape leaves -- were standouts. Feeling adventurous, we tried the Korean beef tartare and found it tasty (though certainly not for everyone, what with the raw meat and egg). The Thai fish cakes and spring rolls were good too.
From a menu category entitled Broth Noodles, we had the Pho, a large bowl of superbly rich and tangy broth with chunks of beef and a mess of wide rice noodles, and on the next visit the Spicy Duck Broth, which was thick with flavor from pieces of duck that were tasty but not too gamy, shiitake mushrooms and spices.
Among main courses, Massaman and Indonesian chicken curries where both rich and scrumptious, with thick, but light, spicy coconut milk sauces that we perfect for sopping up the delicious rice beneath them. Vietnamese Barbeque Ribs were small but tender, in a tasty BBQ sauce. A must have, though, was the Black Cod with Miso, a perfect rendition of this famous dish that left me craving it for months after.
Desserts are light and good, including stuff like gingered mangoes, tropical fruit sorbets, honeydew melon soup, and anise chocolate mousse.
The service (as far as I know, one waiter) is relaxed and friendly. They also have an enclosed patio in the back.
Check out this charming place and let me know what you think!
I've been meaning to write about this place. Since it opened in November, it has become one of my favourite places. It's a bit pricey, so I can't eat there as often as I do at Olympic Pita (on the same block), but in the past 5 months I've probably eaten there about 10 times, working my way through the menu, and I haven't yet had anything that I haven't liked.
So far, my favourites are the Panang Thai Beef Curry, the Spicy Duck Soup, and the Minted Cabbage & Chicken Salad. The desserts are yummy too, and in that category my favourite is the Cold Honeydew Soup, with the Sweet Wontons coming in a close second.
The decor is nice, and the enclosed patio in the back was heated all winter, and was a very pleasant place to sit - it should make a great sukkah, too.
One caveat: they don't accept plastic, so bring cash or a cheque book, or be prepared to pay a fee for using their inhouse ATM.
The hechsher is from the OK, and the meat is from Rubashkin. It's on Coney Is Ave between J and K, next door to the Palace Grill, and 2 doors up from Eichlers.