It seems to me like Asian takeout places are in just about every city surrounding the Twin Cities. Sure some are better than others but it’s pretty much a seen one seen’em all type thing. Nha Sang in Burnsville stands out with their wide variety in styles ranging from Chinese, Thai, Japanese, Vietnamese, and Tibetan influences. The Tibetan influence was a bit confusing for me because if Ace Ventura taught me anything, it’s that they don’t kill animals in Tibet. Well, apparently that’s not true because many of their Tibetan influenced meals contained meat, which is damn fine with me. However, the Tibetan chanting music and soothing atmosphere inspired me to stand up and order my entire meal talking out of my rear end Ace Venture style…not really, but it would have been funny, if only to Bradley and myself. The new server that was being trained in might have quit on the spot had I did it. I have a Quick side note about our server. You know those awkward moments when you and a stranger are trying to pass each other and you end up doing that little dance step thing with them and you both feel stupid for doing so. Our server was brand new, I’m talking first day new and our entire service felt like that little awkward dance step. It was more funny than anything and I’m sure she has improved greatly by the time you read this.
We started first with an order of oyster wings. I though these were great. The oyster sauce flavor was subtle but pleasant. There is a fine line between adding flavor and overpowering the chicken and the oyster wings toe that line perfectly. I will definitely order these again.
Next were the Cranberry Curry Puffs. These cream cheese puffs were infused with dried cranberries, curry, and scallions. I have always wondered why places don’t do more with cream cheese puffs, and after trying these I understand why. They weren’t bad by any means, but they definitely had me yearning for a plain old cream cheese puff. Maybe a cream cheese puff with bacon in it? Maybe a maple bacon cream cheese puff is in my near future perhaps? Follow us on Twitter and I’ll let you know how they turn out.
A gentleman who I assume was a manager/owner recommended I try the Tibetan style Khatsa Beef. Khatsa beef is basically a sliced beef dish tossed with onions, green peppers, and a reasonably spicy sauce. This dish was truly nothing groundbreaking and was very similar to something you probably could find in just about any Chinese buffet (a very good buffet it would be if it were this high quality). My meal was very fresh and served piping hot. The quality of the food at Nha Sang is top notch, you can tell they take pride in their food and it shows in the preparation.
Overall, Nha Sang is an excellent option when you’re in the mood Asian cuisine. They have a lunch buffet with a wide variety of their menu items. Give them all a taste to see which style cuisine you’re into. I highly recommend you give Nha Sang a try…Allllllllrighty then!
Why did it almost take a year for the Food Bros to do an Asian restaurant? Ummm…. I don’t know. We both eat take-out from places rather regularly. So I guess that’s it, we both seem to think of Asian food more for take-out rather than a sit down restaurant experience. So a friend whose opinion on the matter of food I actually really trust has been telling me for a while that Nha Sang is their favorite take-out joint around. High praise to live up to with a lot of really good places around Burnsville/Savage/Shakopee area and a place that has Tibetan food is unheard of here. Upon sitting down we were told it was our servers very first day so some bumps to be expected and I was going to go into a long rant about the service we received from her; like I was going to say I wasn’t sure she had ever been to a restaurant before since she seemed completely lost. But I am not putting it on her and I expect she is now a rock star at her job. Moving on.
We ordered a couple appetizers: first up the Oyster wings. Now I am not even sure what oyster sauce is actually made of and part of me doesn’t want to even look it up for fear it may be a very literal term. But somebody recommended them so they were ordered. And they were pretty good, no overwhelming flavor just really well cooked crunchy wings with a bit of spice. Next up the Cranberry Curry Puffs: wontons with cream cheese, cranberries, curry, scallions with sweet & sour dipping sauce. I really wasn’t sure how these were going to go over but I really like them. I really enjoyed the combination of flavors while nothing over powered any other aspect. Highly recommended.
My order came down to a choice between General Tso’s(one of my favorites) and the Cranberry Curry, this was actually really close as I haven’t had the best experiences with curry dishes in the past and didn’t want this day to end with me not being able to leave my bathroom like I had just had a drunken White Castle and Taco Bell back to back double shot. But I went for the Chicken Cranberry Curry (mushrooms, onion, green scallions, Thai Red Curry, coconut milk and cranberries) and was very glad I did. I even thought the dish looked beautiful and looked like they take pride in their food. As they should as all the ingredients worked well and didn’t over power each other again just like the curry puffs to make a great dish with just a nice amount of heat. I really liked the actual whole cranberries in the dish as they added a little pop of sweetness to each bite. Good stuff.
So as I mentioned earlier we usually think of Asian food as take-out I went back to Nha Sang a few days later and did just that for lunch. I got a couple lunch specials(strangely absent from their online menu but they do have them) with some egg rolls and fried rice. The first one was Tibetan Hot & Spicy Chicken(above right), I love hot & spicy chicken and while the dish was spicy the flavor just wasn’t quite there, so I will call this ok. Next was Sesame Chicken(above left), this was your standard you will find at most places around here, so if you like them you will like Nha Sang’s as well, nothing special though, same with the fried rice. The egg rolls appear to be handmade and are very crunchy while the filling is standard for most Asian places, again ok, nothing mind blowing here but good quality.
The owner/manager is incredibly gracious and the lunch buffet while small looked very fresh and seems to draw a good crowd of people on their lunch breaks. All in all I really enjoyed Nha Sang and it will be added to my regular rotation of Asian take-out joints and you should check it out as well and don’t be afraid of something a bit different.
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