Co Do Restaurant

4251 Truxel Rd c1

Sacramento, CA 95834

Rating: ★★½☆☆ 

Located in a busy plaza in Natomas, Co Do Restaurant serves up authentic Vietnamese food to nearby residents. As the only authentic Vietnamese restaurant around, Co Do fills a much needed cuisine in the area for those looking for some Pho, Bun, or Bo Bun Hue. As we entered the restaurant, we were quickly brought to a table and provided with menus. There was a large variety of Vietnamese dishes on the menu along with a few Chinese dishes. After reviewing the menus for a while, we were ready to order.

Today, we decided to order the shredded rolls, rare beef pho, and the pork with dry vermicelli noodle (bun). The shredded rolls were interesting because it contained salty pork skin and thin slices of pork. I was not a fan of the saltiness or the chewy pork skin. The rare beef pho came piping hot. The broth was fairly light, but had some flavor. The meat was tender and went well with the noodles. When the dry noodles arrived, I noticed that they included some of the salty pork skin, which I quickly removed from my dish. The egg rolls were tasty and the shrimp was nice and charred. The flavor of the dish when mixed with the provided sauce was not as flavorful as from other Vietnamese restaurants, but it tasted OK.

Overall, Co Do Restaurant fills a void in Natomas for Vietnamese food. It is not the best Vietnamese food by far, and service was hit or miss depending on who is checking on you. But if you are in Natomas and are looking for pho, then you should not hesitate to visit.

King Buffet – Long Beach CA

530 Pine Ave

Long Beach, CA 90802

Rating: ★★★½☆ 

Located in the heart of Long Beach, King Buffet serves up a plethora of Asian food options for hungry customers. Coming in at a mere $6.99 per person, this is one of the best deals you can get for a lunch meal. After parking in the garage behind the restaurant that provides two hours of free parking, we walked around the corner to get into the restaurant. We were quickly greeted and brought to our table for our drink order. We opted for complimentary water, and we were on our way to the buffet. The buffet had a wide range of items from various Chinese stir fried dishes, Mongolian BBQ, desserts, fruit, salad, sushi, and soft serve ice cream. Some of the more valuable dishes included meatballs, whole fish, shrimp, and beef. I made three trips to the buffet line before I got stuffed and headed for ice cream. The ice cream is more on the icier frozen side, which was not as appetizing, but still tasty. Food quality is mediocre, but you get what you pay for. Each of the buffet trays stayed pretty full as there were plenty of customers, and the restaurant refilled items quickly. A server even came by to check on us and offer refills. After you finish eating, a server brings by the check. If you are in the downtown Long Beach area and are feeling very hungry, then you can definitely get a value-filled fill up at King Buffet. If you are looking for quality flavorful food, then you will not find that here, but you are definitely getting what you pay for.

Ming Dynasty

1211 Broadway

Sacramento, CA 95818

Rating: ★★★★½ 

Located at the former site of Fortune House Restaurant on Broadway across from Target, Ming Dynasty brings a new contender to Sacramento’s dim sum scene. The last time I tried Fortune House, I left disappointed due to poor service and adequate quality food. On this new visit to Ming Dynasty, it was quite hard to locate a parking spot, but we snagged one behind the restaurant. Upon entry, the hostess provided a 10-15 minute wait since the restaurant was packed. Within 5 minutes, we were called to a table where a host took our tea order. We were able to order our favorite Pu Erh Chrysanthemum tea, which arrived in a glass teapot with infuser. The tea infused very quickly and tasted delicious. We were seated near the entrance to the kitchen (my favorite), so we had plenty of opportunities at first dibs at all of the fresh food.

We ordered many favorites including har gow, siu mai, lotus leaf sticky rice, beef rice noodle roll, deep-fried shrimp ball, Shanghai soup dumpling, deep-fried pork dumpling, and egg tart. We did get to try one new dish called the crispy shrimp rice noodle roll, which I highly recommend. It is basically the shrimp rice noodle roll, but with a fried noodly shrimp inside! Unfortunately, the deep-fried shrimp ball was disappointing because it didn’t contain much shrimp and tasted floury. The rest of the dishes were delicious!

I would definitely suggest coming to eat dim sum here instead of any other restaurant in Sacramento! Amazingly, we had the best service out of any dim sum restaurant here, which is very rare. We were checked on multiple times and had our tea refilled without asking many times. If you like dim sum or want to try dim sum, you must give Ming Dynasty a try! On a side note, there was a sign saying you can order dim sum all day!

The India Restaurant – Artesia CA

17824 Pioneer Blvd

Artesia, CA 90701

Rating: ★★★★½ 

Located on busy Pioneer Boulevard, The India Restaurant serves up authentic Indian food on fancy white tablecloths. Upon seating, the server provided menus and waters.  All of the servers and staff were very professional and the restaurant itself was very Indian in decor. After a quick review of the menu, we were ready to order. There were many vegetarian options available in addition to the many meat options.

Today, we decided to order the bhel puree appetizer, naan, gralic naan, paneer masala, chicken tikka masala, and gulab jamun. The meal included some crispy wafers that go well with the tamarind and mint chutney. The tamarind chutney is on the sweeter side and almost tastes like chili, while the mint chutney is spicier and refreshing with notes of cilantro. The bhel puree arrived first, which was a very interesting dry appetizer consisting of puffed rice, crunchy flour, tomato, onion, and potato. The appetizer went well with the tamarind chuntney, which all tasted very healthy. The curry from the paneer masala was very rich, and you can definitely taste the cheesiness. The curry went well with both the naan and the rice. The chicken tikka masala was also very rich and creamy. There were only a few pieces of chicken, but each piece of chicken was tender and juicy. I constantly ate the rice with curry as well as dip my garlic naan in the curry. The garlic naan was very fresh and also had cilantro on it. The outsides were more soft and thick, which worked well for capturing the curry, but the inside was nice and crispy, which was nice to dip in the curry. The best part of the meal would be the gulab jamun dessert because of how subtly sweet the soft dough balls were swimming in the light syrup. Each bite was milky and delicious.

Overall, The India Restaurant serves up some delicious authentic Indian food. You can expect a variety of dishes on the menu including a plethora of vegetarian dishes. Prices are reasonable, but the portion sizes are not very big. If you are in the Artesia area and like Indian food, or want to try Indian food, then you cannot go wrong with the India Restaurant. This is definitely a step up from an Indian lunch buffet.

Sophy’s Fine Thai & Cambodian Cuisine – Long Beach CA

3240 E Pacific Coast Hwy

Long Beach, CA 90804

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 

Located right on the PCH in Long Beach, Sophy’s Fine Thai & Cambodian cuisine serves up a large menu of Asian dishes to the masses in their large restaurant. We were seated quickly at a booth when we entered and provided with waters. Although they had a large menu, we opted to order off of their simpler lunch menu instead. After review of the whole menu, we were ready to order.

Today, we decided to order the Phnom Penh noodles (dry) and the Such Chrouk Ahng (BBQ pork). The food arrived fairly quickly after ordering. The noodles had an interesting sweet taste to them and came with various types of meat. Although I do not know many of the meats in the dish, I can say I was not a fan of the liver because of its lingering taste. Since I opted for the dry noodle, I drank the soup broth on the side instead, which was piping hot and flavorful. The BBQ pork lunch special was well marinated and went well with the dipping sweet and sour sauce. There really wasn’t much to the dish, but it was fulfilling.

Overall, Sophy’s serves up a large array of dishes at very reasonable prices. We were both able to have a meal at under $15. Service was great and refills were offered on water. If you are a fan of Thai or Cambodian food, then Sophy’s should do the trick.

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