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Natalia Molina

Stir Moon

Natalia Molina
This small, colorful, minimally decorated restaurant features "create a stir," by which diners select vegetables and spices from a salad bar and then hand them over to a chef with verbal preferences regarding their choices of nine proteins (chicken, meats, seafoods), ten sauces (peanut, black bean, spicy Szechuan), and five starches (brown or white rice, one of three noodles). But there are plenty more options: 83 selections on the sushi menu, 93 on the "Asian" menu. Take chicken. Take it as teriyaki, tempura, Szechuan, satay, sweet-and-sour, kung pao, dim sum dumplings, in Indian or Thai curry, with noodles, or in soup. Beef, pork, shrimp, and vegetables come in nearly as many guises. Noodles are made in-house, tempura is clean and crisp, dim sum dumplings are Chinatown-worthy. Cantonese roast duck, lamb chops imbued with green tea spicing, crunchy fried nuggets of snapper doused with chili-based "volcano" sauce -- all rewarding. Those seeking sushi or sashimi won't be disappointed by freshness of product or visual appeal, but you won't confuse this with the high-end stuff. Even cheesecake tempura, the bane of such establishments, won us over with a fried, paper-thin overcoat that contributed a clean, wispy contrast to the creamy interior. Friendly service too. All said, it's easy to see why this restaurant is creating a stir.Read our full review.