Monday, August 25, 2008

Café Hiro - 07/13/2008

10509 Valley View St
Cypress, CA 90630
(714) 527-6090

Cafe Hiro is a quirky little eatery blends Japanese cooking with touches of French and Italian. The restaurant is always crowded and seems to have quite a loyal following. The food actually reminds me of several cafes I saw in Tokyo that basically serve Italian or French food but done for a Japanese palate.

Sea Bass Spring Roll - with mushrooms
A thick crunchy wrapper surrounds firm moist fish lightly seasoned and paired with mushrooms. I was very pleasantly surprised by this appetizer, the flavors and textures just worked very well, nothing overly complex, but very good in its simplicity.

Uni Spaghetti - with toasted seaweed
One of our favorites, the briny uni flavors the spaghetti wonderfully. The warm chunks of uni are a bit firm and not quite as fresh as I would expect from a good sushi restaurant but it works very well here. The toasted seaweed complements the flavor of the uni very well; resulting in something similar to uni nigiri but with its own unique characteristics.

"Wagyu" Beef Curry
I was a bit surprised to find Wagyu beef at what amounts to a neighborhood eatery. I was a bit wary of ordering this and it turns out my instincts were right. Not to say the curry was bad, it was just very standard. The long slow braising left the meat so tender I could cut it with my fork, but almost any beef cooked long enough ends up like this. Ultimately there were many better choices this one

Panna Cotta - with fresh fruit
A softer panna cotta than I am used to but it seems to be the standard dessert here at Hiro. Very light in flavor the dessert has moderate richness and a soft creaminess that is very refreshing.

Chocolate Pot de Créme
The pot de créme was fairly good, nothing particularly impressive, the texture was a bit firm but it did have a surprisingly pure intense chocolate flavor.

This trip wasn't quite as good as my first visit maybe because I branched out and tried to be daring, still it was very enjoyable. If you are looking for a simple and quick meal Cafe Hiro can be a tasty and enjoyable choice. Next time I'll have to ask about the 6 course tasting menu, a steal at $30.


Tubs said...

Oh a new post that looks delicious and the tasting menu sounds very interesting (particularly the price).

I am looking forward to your post for the Water Grill event given that I cannot attend. Transport in California is to difficult to arrange for a girl without an American driver's license.

Also if you have any nice recommendations for something in the Orange County area that would be much appreciated.


Tangbro1 said...

Cafe Hiro is in the Orange County area. I recall you mentioned you are more inland, Napa Rose is in Anaheim that might work for you.

If you come out to say South Coast plaza for some shopping there are plenty of good restaurants there, Marche Moderne, and Leatherby's Cafe Rouge in particular. If you head down to Laguna Beach, Studio is very good but a bit overpriced.

Remind me where you will be staying and I can focus my recommendations a bit.

If you'd like to go and wouldn't feel too uncomfortable with my friends I could see if we could add one to our party for the 5x5.

Tubs said...

Oh thanks for the offer that would be very much appreciated as I am dying to go to this event!!!

If you email me on my bogus email then I can contact you on my real email and we'll see if I am to far away to arrange etc etc

Thanks so much for offering!!!