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Mar 11, 2008 01:16 AM

Best Asian fish fillet entrees? (+ a report on Imperia's Miso-lacquered Chilean Sea bass)

I've been craving fish fillets lately, specifically Asian preparations of fish. This caused me to seek out Imperia, and wanted to mention how delicious their "Miso-lacquered Chilean Sea bass" was.

When dining at someplace for the first time, I usually ask the manager or server "What is the highest preference entree and appetizer?" (If I think the server won't understand the jargon "highest preference entree" I simply ask, "What do people order the most and seem to like the most?".

If the server responds with "I recommend...", I listen, but then repeat the question above (which is asking a different question than "What do you recommend?")

Upon looking at the menu, I was leaning towards the tuna, but the server both raved about the sea bass and said it was highest pref. Am very glad I ordered it. Could taste the flavor of the miso-sake marinade all the way through the 2 inch tall (at least!) fillet. This marinade made the biggest positive flavor difference on any fish I've had in a long time, without being overwhelming in a negative way.

Did not like the Thai green beans at all, and I usually love green beans. These had a flavor that I haven't tasted before and didn't like, possibly due to the chilis?. But they didn't seem too spicy hot, and I haven't tasted a (known) chili flavor I didn't like.

Enjoyed the massive slab of lit-from-behind Onyx covering the back wall above the booths, and the lights-in-wood-on-mirror effect on the side wall.

I am definitely going to return to Imperia, and I'm also going to try to reproduce that flavor and prep at home.


What other places offer delicious fish fillets with Asian-style preparation or flavors?

The only other one I've read mentioned frequently is the sometimes-excellent sometimes-soggy (my last experience) Spicy Fish from Asia Cafe discussed here:

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  1. While I haven't had it at Eddie Vs, I hear great things about the Hong Kong Style Steamed Sea Bass there. I found a recipe for it online by accident one day and have made it twice now and it's excellent. I'd love to try it there.

    4 Replies
    1. re: foodiegal71

      I want that recipe! It's the same way they do the appetizer tuna dish. Can you post it on the other board (so it doesn't get deleted by the moderators) and let me know?

      1. re: amysuehere

        Yes - please post any recipes on the Home Cooking board - the poster can post a "pointer" to it here.

      2. In a similar vein as Imperia (atmosphere-wise), the 5-spice sea bass at Mars renewed my faith in seabass. It was a nice thick, oily chunk of fish rubbed with five-spice and cooked on the money. Not entirely Asian though ... the Middle East found its way on the plate in the form of couscous IIRC.

        My preference for "Asian"-preps of fish usually come from places like Asia Cafe.

        1. Bistro 88 has Miso Sea Bass that is out of this world.

            1. re: chucklesmcfarland

              I used to be a fan of Bistro 88's miso toothfish [which is usually rebranded as sea bass; thanks for the reminder, chuckles], even when I didn't like anything else on the menu. However, the last time I ordered it—which, granted, was about 10 months ago—it had gone way downhill ( ). In fact, the food was so bad that I stopped frequenting the restaurant altogether.

              Can anyone provide a description of a recent meal there? I'm wondering if the kitchen at Bistro 88 has improved in the past 10 months.

              1. re: MPH

                MPH, I went a couple of months ago for dinner with some girlfriends and it was decent, but not as good as I remembered. I had the sashimi, which was nice and fresh. Another friend had a shrimp dish that came out much more like a typical Americanized Chinese place's sesame shrimp than what she thought it would be. It was still pretty good.

                I went back that week for lunch and the food was so bad that I swore I'd never go back. It was expensive and just not good. Sticky, gloppy, sweet ick. I honestly thought it was so bad that I can't even remember what it was.