Cassia in photos


#1

Had a really good meal at Cassia today.

Tried unsuccessfully to get the scallops from the raw bar. Though it was listed on the a la carte menu was told that since they had a limited supply, would only give it to those who ordered raw platters. Felt a bit like a hustle/up sell.

The place was packed by 7. Glad to see them doing well.

Wine list could have been better with a lower markup given that it’s the same group in charge of Rustic Canyon.

We got:

King crab legs- Very good

Egg custard with uni- very good but the uni was a touch fishy. Would have been better without the uni. But these days, I guess it’s obligatory.

Grilled pig tails- served Vietnamese lettuce wrap style with various mints. Quite good but my favorite pig tail prep still goes to Night + Market.

Beef rendang- outstanding. A bit toned down vs the Spice Table version but still very good.

Singapore white pepper crab- outstanding flavor, meat is tender and delicious

Grilled lobster with pistachio- the sauce was outstanding and flavorful. Unfortunately the lobster meat tasted like it had been frozen.

Charcuterie fried rice- loved this. Especially the little but if fried baby fish. Added a nice texture and salinity to the fried rice.

Sautéed pea tendrils- mixed with long beans. Excellent.

Grilled corn- very good.

Overall quite good. A couple of hits, a couple of slight misses, and the other dishes mostly very good.



#2

Thanks for the writeup. And it’s great to see you active here on this board, Porthos.

A note on uni: Several authorities on seafood whom I trust have independently said that this will be, frankly, a crappy year for uni. Water temps from the usual harvest grounds for murasaki uni in particular have been freakishly warm, and this will definitely result in less-than-optimal uni quality.


#3

Thanks for the great photos and review! :smile:

We went to Cassia last week, and had similar feelings (mostly good) except a couple notes:

  • Their Singaporean Crab was not worth $60 in our opinion. We were looking forward to it (no bias), and afterwards?

Meh. :smirk:

There wasn’t enough meat (rather small crab), and interestingly, we only got 1 Claw, LOL.

Taste-wise was very good, but it didn’t feel like it was worth the price.

  • Everything else was good to very good. Laksa was delish.

We’d go back again for sure, just skipping the crab.


#4

I’d say the Uni comment is true so far for us as well, JL, Porthos.

We went to Connie & Ted’s (love it), and ordered their Live Sea Urchin (Santa Barbara). Usually it’s pretty amazing, but I haven’t been back in nearly half a year.

This time the Uni was really mediocre, kinda fishy, watery. It’s never been that way before for us.


#5

nice!
I forgot about the beef rendang - really good.


#6

wondering if you’ve been to Papparich Monterey Park yet?


#7

Not yet. Yelp pics look legit.

What would you recommend there?


#8

Finally remembered to grab the pics I took on our visit to Cassia.

I’ve been a big fan of Chef Bryant Ng since his days at Mozza and Spice Table. i also really dig Chef Zoe Nathan’s food at Huckleberry, so when those 2 groups combined to create Cassia, I couldn’t wait to try it! :smile:

Really bright, relaxed space. Dig the vibe! :raising_hand: We started off with:

Vietnamese Pate & Clay Oven Bread:

We were intrigued by the waiter telling us it was a housemade pate. Pretty damn tasty, some organy goodness LOL :smile:, but also buttery and creamy. The clay oven made bread had a good chew, slightly crisp.

Laksa (Rice noodles, spicy coconut-seafood soup):

Never had Laksa before. It’s Singaporean? Really bright coconut, curry style soup, really delish! Thick udon-ish noodles, had heft. Would definitely order again.

Whole Singaporean White Pepper Crab:

Chef Ng nailed it for a distinctly Chinese / HK style taste. The crab was sweet 'n fresh, but our biggest gripe was that it was too little meat. i don’t need no mammoth, Costco-size plate LOL, but it was seriously a small crab. So lots of picking around and very little meat for the effort. And $60 just didn’t seem to be worth it IMHO.

so overall we dug the place; we’d go back for sure. Their cocktails were pretty solid as well, and with a nice atmosphere, breezy, relaxing, chill, and an interesting legit SE Asian menu, it’s something we need in Santa Monica. I just won’t order the Singaporean Crab any more. :japanese_goblin: (OK this Tengu emoji has absolutely nothing to do with the sentence but I had to insert in this emoji somewhere LOL (love the amount of emojis we have on this board! :stuck_out_tongue:

Cassia
1314 7th St.
Santa Monica, CA 90401
310 393 6699


#9

Is the issue Japan sourced uni specifically - your reference to murasaki? I had some really good SB (I think) uni at Mori last week, in comparison the Bafun was just ok.


#10

Had some leftover char kway teow from papa rich a couple days ago. It was pretty legit.

So far reviews have generally been favorable from Malaysian natives.


#11

Wow. Great Photos! Me so hungry.


#12

The water’s apparently now warmer in both Japan AND the U.S. - I’ve detected a slight decline in the overall quality of uni from both Japan and U.S. this year.

BUT (thanks to global trade) Peru (yes, Peru) is stepping up to the plate - I tried Peruvian uni at Tsujita the other day, and it was excellent.


#13

Interesting. A few months ago did SB, Peru, and Hokkaido uni at Mori. That night SB was still number one. Hokkaido was last. I was more impressed with the Peruvian uni than Maru-San was.


#14

Think the San Diego Uni from Catalina OP still the best, better than most SBs. Last time, had at Urasawa. Don’t see many places.


#15

Peru has some great fucking seafood.

namely Ceviche for fucking cyring out loud.

they practically invented the game.


#16

Question: going on Wednesday for dinner, how much food do I order for two people? Is it family style? I always end up ording way too much…guess that’s a Jewish thing. Thanks so much for any help…wiener.


#17

Wiener, you’re Jewish ???


#18

Make sure to order that White Pepper Crab. Even though it’s close to fucking 2 pounds and messy as fuck there ain’t much meat in that fucker. I’m not the biggest fan, even though many have been raving about it, but it’s still quite tasty.

But the Vietnamese coffee pudding with fresh whipped cream is great.

And their drinks are solid but I do like the drinks from the GCM Burger joint much better.


#19

It’s family style and I always order too much.

The crab is great but as Kevin noted very messy. It’s a big crab but won’t be filling.

The lobster is easier to eat and the flavors are great but the meat tasted frozen to me.

I like their beef rendang.

I think crab and beef should be solid for 2. If you’re a glutton maybe add an appetizer.


#20

My husband and I went on Friday for the first time and really liked it, but ordered way too much food for the two of us. We had the Vietnamese prawns (outstanding), fried cauliflower (good, but wouldn’t order again), laksa (outstanding) and pot au feu. Apart from the marrow bone, which was delicious, I can’t really comment on the pot au feu because by the time it came I was too full to really enjoy it.