Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Mai's Now Open!

When you think of Mai's Restaurant, if the first thing you think of is that quaint little Vietnamese joint in downtown near 59, as the place to go after a night of partying or just for a quiet, late local spot for 2, well you can say goodbye to that.  That Mai's was a thing of the past.  Due to an unfortunate fire last year that took that memorable casual hot spot is now a new, big, fully updated, Vietnamese restaurant!

Lunch hour was packed with guest standing around the front in and outside, waiting for a seat to open up.  Thankfully, I happen to know the owners, but definitely wasn't expecting any special treatment.  Anna, the owner's daughter, offered to get me in sooner, which was very nice of her.  They originally told me the wait would be about 20 minutes.  It might be because it just recently opened, as of the last 2 weeks, but I get a feeling it's going to be crowded for a while.  I did notice the people waiting "before me", did happen to get in soon after me.

After being seated with Buddy, I was admiring the interior and in awe of how different it now looks.  They have an upstairs section and an elevator now!  It was a little bitter sweet seeing the new Mai's.  I think everybody loved Mai's for it's casual, local, quaint feel, as well as the food.  The good thing is that, they now have plenty more seating, even have booths!  We all know how crowded Mai's can get, so it's nice to have a much bigger space.  I didn't try the restroom, that restroom was always a little tricky, the combination of the slippery floors and that door and the corner.  The layout did seem to flow better.  It's a nice looking restaurant.

We ordered the Vegetarian Spring Rolls, Vietnamese Egg Rolls, Bo Luc Lac (Garlic Beef), and the Tofu Luc Lac (Garlic Tofu), and honestly it all tasted the same to me.  I thought the Vegetarian Spring Rolls tasted much better.  I remembered long ago they were starting to get thinner and hard.  But, they're good again and probably have been, I just haven't been back to Mai's in some time.  I've always liked the peanut sauce at Mai's, more hoison than peanutty.  I think the concern was the food was going to be different, but I can atest to it, it's the same.

Overall, a really good experience, minus those nostalgic feelings for the good ol days.  Other than that, the food is the same, more servers, different atmosphere, same location, same owners.  I see good, big things in Mai's future...maybe even some expansion in other locations some day.

1 comment:

  1. Mai's Garlic Chickem is the Best! Thanks for the review. I forgot about them since the fire put them out of business.