No, I'm not cheering for the Orioles. Well, I am, like everyone else in Baltimore, but that's not what the title references. Instead I'm referring to RA Sushi Bar and Restaurant, where I was invited to a Media Dinner for the opportunity to sample their new menu items. RA changed up their menu earlier this summer to include some new, fresh items, and because EP is so busy preparing for her big move (look out Silver Spring!), I brought Dave along with me to the tasting (lucky guy).
RA, as always, has a rockin' vibe, with red globe fixtures providing mood light and pounding music (a little too loud for this old lady, but the rest of the crowd seemed to be enjoying it). The place was pretty packed at 7pm on a Wednesday, with lots of people taking advantage of the great happy hour specials.
Dave and I were seated and were lucky enough to be taken care of by Scott, the General Manager, who was super-attentive and helpfully explained each course to us. And there were a lot! But first, cocktails.
I had the Ginger Blossom (Tito's Vodka, fresh muddled strawberry, pink grapefruit, fresh lime and ginger beer), and Dave had the Coconut Mojito (light rum muddled with fresh lime, sugar, soda and fresh mint). The Ginger Blossom was tasty but just a tad too sweet for me, but I'm a sucker for anything coconut and I thought the coconut mojito was excellent. Dave must have liked it too; by the time I went to steal a second taste, it was gone!
|Dip not pictured|
Before we could say "we're losing the light!" the next course came out: a sampling of their new crispy Asian tacos.
|Last picture before the sun went down|
OK, at this point, I admit, I was getting full (those tacos were BIG). But, a food blogger has certain duties, so we pressed onto the next course. Small bowls of Drunken Black Mussels were brought out, along with spoons so we could drink the broth. The mussels were excellent but man were we happy about those spoons! The broth was to die for. The mussels are cooked in garlic, seasoned soy sauce, and butter. I could have drunk a vat of the stuff. Yum!
The final plate contained samples of three new dishes: Salmon with green beans, Black Pepper Teryaki Chicken Wings, and Chili Ponzu Asian Chicken Wings. While everything was tasty, this plate had the least "wow factor" as far as uniqueness. That said, the salmon, served with still-crunchy green beans, was well-cooked, not dry at all, with an excellent spicy yuzu sauce. The wings were nice and meaty and both had great flavor. I especially liked the Black Pepper wings, which had huge black pepper flavor but weren't too spicy- magic!
Dessert- oy, I could barely eat another bite but when they brought out a teeny portion of mochi (ice cream wrapped in sweet rice cake) I couldn't resist. A nice sweet bite to end a delicious evening.
Thanks so much to RA for the great meal-- rice paper taco shells, now why didn't I think of that??