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Monday, July 06, 2009

Burma Superstar Restaurant - San Francisco (Inner Richmond)

After my little shopping trip at The Wok Shop, my friend M with the lovely French name, picked me and the middle '87 up from the gateway to Chinatown. How time flies. I hadn't seen her in more than two years, since our dim sum at Restaurant Peony - Oakland. Funny how I measure time now by when and with whom I had eaten. She was moving out of California the next month so it was lucky I was caught her when I did.

5 Burma Superstar Restaurant - San Francisco (Inner Richmond) 1

I've tried Burmese food at a few restaurants in SoCal, but either hadn't ordered enough dishes or revisited to blog about them yet. I had heard good things about Burma Superstar Restaurant though, so I immediately said yes when my friend suggested it. Apparently, they do not take reservations and get quite busy with an hour's wait at times. My friend called to check and they said if we came right away, there wasn't a wait. So off we went.

My friend ordered a lychee mojito that was quite nice.

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The tea leaf salad with fermented tea leaves, fried garlic, peanuts, sunflower seeds, lemons, sesame seeds, tomatoes, romaine lettuce, and dried shrimp, $9. The fermented tea leaves were imported from Burma. As far as I know, at all three restaurants where I've eaten this dish, the fermented tea leaves aren't available in the U.S. and they all go to Burma to get it directly from there. How to describe fermented tea leaves? A little sour, a little fermented in a wine-y way. Which nicely contrasted with the crunchy and fresh parts of the salad.

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This was pretty good, but I liked the version at Hot Stuff Cafe - San Gabriel better. Unfortunately, they no longer have the fermented tea leaf salad on their menu.

We also got Moh Hinga (Burmese catfish chowder) with rice noodles and ground catfish, $9.75 for a medium. This soup reminds me of Vietnamese seafood noodle soups so I've liked it both times I've tried it, here and at Yoma Myanmar Restaurant - Monterey Park.

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We also got the Burmese chicken casserole with cardamom cinnamon rice, braised chicken leg and shrimp buried in a claypot and baked with biryani rice, raisins, and nuts, $15.75. I loved the lightly spiced rice and the crunchy almond slivers.

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Nan Gyi Dok (Burmese mild coconut chicken rice noodle curry) with eggs, split yellow peas, and onions, $9.75.

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I think we ordered enough different dishes that I got a better idea of Burmese cuisine. How to describe it? I hate to make comparisons because I try to think of each cuisine in its own right, but I think Burmese food is largely unfamiliar to most people. So if I say it's a milder version of and a cross between Thai and Indian cuisines, would that make you wish to try?

The prices at Burma Superstar are a little more expensive than SoCal's Burmese restaurants, but I think the quality is just a little bit better.

All Northern California posts can be found with the tag, Series: NorCal, but I suggest reading this particular trip in this order:
San Francisco - Oakland Bay Bridge
La Boulange Cafe & Bakery - San Francisco (Cow Hollow)
The Wok Shop - San Francisco (Chinatown)
Burma Superstar Restaurant - San Francisco (Inner Richmond)
Ti Couz - San Francisco (Mission)
Behind the Scenes: Jamba Juice Headquarters - Emeryville

Thanks again to Neighbor Agency, which handles PR for Jamba Juice, for sponsoring my trip to San Francisco. They paid for my plane fare, and pick up and drop off from Jamba Juice headquarters. All other excursions were mine and paid for by me.

Burma Superstar Restaurant
309 Clement St.
San Francisco, CA 94118
Lunch: Monday to Sunday 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.
Dinner: Monday to Thursday, and Sunday 5 p.m. to 10 p.m., and Friday and Saturday 5 p.m. to 10:30 p.m.

1 year ago today, Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies.
2 years ago today, late night Mexican food at Carnitas Michoacan - Los Angeles (Lincoln Heights).


  1. Burma Superstar is a place I definitely want to hit up the next time I'm in SF. Thanks for the reminder! I've not yet had Burmese food, but am definitely intrigued.

  2. How timely! We will be in San Francisco early November and were just starting to look at places to eat. This was one of the places we were looking into. =) I await more from your SFO series!

  3. hi wc - i wanted to eat here too but we didn't have enough time to go to all the places on my list. i liked the tea leaf salad at yoma myamar as well - but it is kind of salty. too bad there aren't any burmese places (that i know of) in san diego.

  4. Marie,
    There's several Burmese restaurants down here we could try.

    I still have another SF Bay Area trip and restaurants to blog.

    The tea leaf salad here is better than the one at Yoma. I think the dishes are slightly more refined here.


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