Thursday, August 2, 2012

Part One of Our Mini Vacation - Coriander Cafe

Last weekend, we took a mini vacation to Oklahoma City/Norman.  Matt always refers to the OKC/Norman area as "my hood" but so much has changed in the last 12-13 years, it's almost unrecognizable.  Good grief, has it really been that long?!  It doesn't feel that long, but when you see it in print, it kinda stings a little.

Anyways, our first stop was Coriander Cafe.  This little eatery is nestled in Norman on Campus Corner and is the product of my old friend Chris and his partner Jeremiah.  As long as I can remember, Chris has been involved in the food industry - bartending, waitering, or managing...usually sushi restaurants, so he has a pretty good handle on how a restaurant should run {smoothly}.  He may have his degree in Architecture, but his passion has always been food and I'm so happy for him that he took a risk for something that he loves and so is my belly :)

Address: 323 White st.  Norman, OK 73069
# 405.801.3958
Hours: M-S 11am - 9pm

Fresh local ingredients + traditional Vietnamese recipes = Amazing flavor! The menu is simple, so you won't spend hours perusing your choices (I'm talking about you Cheesecake Factory...seriously?  It's too many things!!  Your menu makes me want to cry.).  They also serve a couple staple Korean dishes - I like to think I had something to do with that....oh wait...I didn't?  Whatever Chris. That's what I'm going to tell people. 

Vegan and vegetarians!  He didn't forget about you!  Many things on the menu can be animal free.  Normally, I would call you guys weirdos, but my sister in law is a hardcore vegetarian, so I will refrain :)
We started out with egg rolls and pork spring rolls.  I have this thing...I always order egg rolls at an Asian restaurant.  If they can't get the egg roll right, 9 times out of 10, the rest of the menu is lacking as well.  It's such an Asian staple and most people order egg rolls, so make sure they taste good is all I'm saying.  If you bite into an egg roll and cabbage is all you taste...BOO.  To me, that just means you didn't even try. 

Their egg rolls had meat!! Very exciting :)  I ordered me some pork spring rolls...I LOVE spring rolls.  (My mom and I will sometimes just have a spring roll day - we eat them as we make the end it's just an empty plate and 2 full ladies) The pork had a nice flavor and they added a "crispy" (I think it was a rolled up fried wonton skin) inside which gave it a nice crunch :)   They really were de-lish.  LOL -  How am I doing as a food critic???

Yes, they have a kids menu.  You pick your meat (i.e. roasted chicken, pork, etc), rice or noodles, and an egg roll.  Christian mostly played with the noodles, but he ate all his chicken...I think Matt ate the egg roll.  The portion was a good amount.  His belly was sticking out...that's how we know he's full.  It's like the thing in your Thanksgiving turkey that pops out when it's done. 

Matt had something similar to what Christian had.  I appreciated that nothing was greasy...everything tasted clean. 

I had the banh mi sandwich.  I think I saw it on his website and that was really the only thing I wanted to try.  I think since it's 115 degrees outside (I'm not exaggerating), the thought of hot soup didn't sound appealing.  I'll come back in the fall for that :)  So, you get to choose what kind of meat you want, so I chose the roasted chicken.  (See vegetarians, this is a sandwich you could have - no meat!  Still would be tasty).  I've never had a banh-mi, but it was SO GOOD.  The bread was soft and toasted (and local!), the veggies were fresh, the chicken just came out of the roaster...Mmmmmm....I want one now!!  It really was good folks.  If you're ever in Norman, you should really give this place a try. 

Now I know what you all are thinking...he's your friend!  Of course you're not going to say anything bad, but it really was delicious.  Matt is one of the pickiest eaters and he loved it.  He even liked the soy sauce, LOL.  They use a Maggi brand.  Matt then says, "Well it ain't no Kikkoman!"  Jokingly of course.  Way to sound like a  hillbilly husband.

Hands down though, if I lived closer, I would be a regular.

This is Chris - I always like to put a face with the name.   He's single laaaaadiiees ;)  Ambitious, smart, funny...basically he has his $h!t together :)  Stop by and see him sometime ;) Heehee...sorry Chris, but just trying to get the word out about your awesomeness.  =D


Anonymous said...

The photography sums up how great the vacation was! Which is why I am not forgetting to take lots of pictures for my vanity poses when I arrive in hotels lancaster gate this spring.

Gabriel James said...

Oh! seems like you guys fully-enjoyed your visit at Coriander Cafe, even the your little boy liked the food very much. Perhaps I should pay it a visit some other time together with my family to try out some Asian dishes there too. By the way, thanks for your thoughts about the place!

Chong said...

This is great!

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