Sunday, January 28, 2007

Spice Island, Mountain View

A while back, Jon and I enjoyed our first Singaporean dining experience (at Shiok Kitchen). We didn't know much about the cuisine, but were happy with what we ordered. Afterwards, however, we decided to extend a dinner invitation to a Singaporean couple we met through Jon's grad program. Yes, they would be our culinary guides!

So on Friday night, the four of us went off to Spice Islands. Located in downtown Mountain View, it appears to be one of a zillion restaurant options in the area. Even with all of the parking lots they have there, it took us 15 minutes to get a space! And that was after some serious stalking!

But it was worth it. I wish I could tell you exactly what we ordered, but I'm not sure. Our friends consulted with us, but did the actually ordering for the table. For the appetizers, there was a spring roll type of thing and some sort of layered egg dish. Both good. The entrees included curry fish head, okra, short ribs, and noodles with seafood.

Although I liked the flavor of the curry for the fish head entree, I can't really recommend it. The fish part was such a pain to eat! Too many bones. And in the thick sauce, I couldn't make out what I was spooning out; more often than not, ended up with a chunk of bones. No fun. My favorite item was the okra, which I generally just love anyway. But the flavors were sensational here — spicy with a hint of shrimp paste. And our dinner companions explained to us that in Singapore, okra is called "ladyfingers." (Quite different from the spongey cakes that we refer to as ladyfingers.)

So I guess this is only a semi-useful summary of our Spice Island experience, since I can't properly tell you everything we ate. But if you're craving some Singaporean food, you'll have to trust me — and our friends &#151 on this one and try the place for yourself. On a weekend evening, just give yourself plenty of time to find parking!

Spice Island
210 Hope Street
Mountain View, CA
(650) 961-0628