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Mandalay on California

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Andrew H Apr 8, 2010 11:20 AM

I was headed to the Fillmore and didn't have the time to wait at Burma Superstar so I went to Mandalay on California instead. Very nice interior, great menu, great service.

I had the Ginger Salad and the fish soup and a ginger lemonade. All were delicious. One caveat, they brought a dish with extra lemons and cilantro. I put some cilantro on my ginger salad - big mistake. It had a very harsh metallic taste. Clearly the cilantro was for the soup.

I recommend Mandalay. Its a more relaxed place than BS which I still like and will return to. Can't get enough Burmese food!

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Mandalay Restaurant
4344 California St, San Francisco, CA 94118

Burma Superstar
4721 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA

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    SteveG RE: Andrew H Apr 8, 2010 03:21 PM

    I'm partial to Pagan Burmese over on Clement street, quite close to the others and my meals there have been better than my meals at Mandalay. Give it a try!

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    Burma Tea Leaf
    731 Clement St, San Francisco, CA

    4 Replies
    1. re: SteveG
      chefj RE: SteveG Apr 8, 2010 03:59 PM

      Interesting I would say the opposite. I thought that the flavors at Mandalay were more bright and assertive. The Tea Leaf Salad is a great example. Mandalay doesn't "cut" theirs with lettuce like Superstar and Pagan. I also think that both Superstar and Pagan are making their food too sweet. I do not know if this is to cater to western palates but I find that it really muddles the flavor.

      1. re: chefj
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        SteveG RE: chefj Apr 8, 2010 05:22 PM

        Hmm, maybe I've mis-ordered at Mandalay. I do agree about the tea leaf salad, but nothing else I've ordered at Pagan has struck me as too sweet, whereas I've mis-ordered at Mandalay and gotten gloppy things that were more Americanized Chinese than Burmese.

        What are your go-to dishes at Mandalay? At Pagan, I always order the sour vegetable and the tofu salad. The rest of what we order depends on the size of the group.

        1. re: SteveG
          chefj RE: SteveG Apr 9, 2010 03:49 PM

          The Nan Gyi Duk ( Curry Chicken and Noodles) is very good. I also like their curry and the sour vegetable dish. I think that I had the Smoked pork dish with cabbage and liked that too.
          I agree that the "Mandalay Chicken" is a gross mess. They definitely have some left over Chinese dishes from when they were trying to be dual cuisine restaurant. I hope that they ditch those and add some less known Burmese dishes
          I not saying Pagan was bad I just liked Mandalay better.

        2. re: chefj
          ChowFun_derek RE: chefj Apr 9, 2010 10:22 PM

          I would also say the opposite..the Chowdown we had at Pagan was "forgettable" and they put lettuce in their tea salad. I've had only positive results at Mandalay.

      2. v
        vulber RE: Andrew H Apr 8, 2010 05:12 PM

        Mandalay is still my favorite Burmese in the Bay Area, followed by Burma Superstar, Yamo (yes, I know it's partially Chinese) then Burmese Kitchen. Still need to try Pagan, Yellow Pa Taut, Little Yangon....

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        Yamo
        3406 18th St, San Francisco, CA 94110

        Yellow Pa Taut
        15 Boardman Pl, San Francisco, CA 94103

        Burma Superstar
        4721 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA

        Little Yangon
        6318 Mission St, Daly City, CA 94014

        1. alpine chef RE: Andrew H Apr 9, 2010 06:49 PM

          i grew up in the avenues and mandalay has been a family favorite for quite some time.

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