Asian Fusion in SoCal

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ROSEMEAD, CA– Burmese restaurants are rare in the San Gabriel Valley, and even more in Southern California… wait where’s Burma? The country was formerly known as Burma but it’s now called Myanmar after the government changed the name in 1989. Its surrounding neighbors are China, India, and Thailand. Burma is a hodgepodge of all these countries but has its own cultural identity with its own unique food.

Located on 8526 Valley Blvd Ste 106, Rosemead, CA 91770, Ah May is in the Lucky Plaza, right in front of the McDonald’s. Parking is suitable and the restaurant is clean with nice decor. The restaurant’s name, Ah May, translates to “mom”. Just like your mom’s cooking, Ah May wants its food to taste delicious and reminiscent. Ah May serves traditional Burmese food to the communities in the San Gabriel Valley. Service went really well, especially with the waitresses taking care of every order, even preparing beforehand. They asked if anything was needed, spoke politely, and were patient overall.

The menu starts with its appetizers. An order of tempura is $6.00 but any tempura additional is $2.50 more. Samusa (basically a potato and pork-filled egg roll shaped into triangles, originated from India) comes in 3 pieces for $3.50, and the fried soft crab shell is $7.00.

Burmese noodle soups are the main course in Burma. They’re are all $5.50 each at Ah May. Mohingar (fish soup), which may seem alarming at first with its extreme ingredients, has all the spicy, tangy, and unique flavors a perfect Burmese noodle soup would have. Its mild fish flavor was well-balanced out by the fresh squeezed lime. The list continues with Ohno Kauswe (coconut chicken noodle soup), Bean prata (fried flat beans), and the traditional bean fried rice.

The salad garden has items that are all $6.00 each. Tea leaf salad, which has a traditional and unique flavor, is the most popular Burmese dish, both as a snack or a meal. Ah May offers green papaya salad, a fusion dish that both Burma and Thailand share. There is also tofu salad, fish cake salad, spring ginger salad, and penny wort leaves salad (plants with rounded leaves).

Also for $6.00 each, are the rice and noodle salads. They consists of the regular noodle salad (basic in flavor but safe for first-timers), combination salad (a mixture of meat and vegetables), flat rice noodle salad, thin rice noodle salad, udon salad, and steamed rice salad.

The curry boats, with a medium-sized platter and rice, are $5.50 each. The curry choices are chicken, beef, pork, honey pork, fish cake, golden egg, eggplant and shrimp, and spicy fried shrimp. You won’t get the full Burmese food experience without these curry boats. They’re Indian-inspired with a touch of spice.

Lastly, the combo rice orders are $7.99 each, the most expensive item on the menu. They come with the choices of meat and traditional fish fresh vegetable and soup. However, the order with goat curry is $9.99.

Our group tried combination salad topped with thinly sliced red onions, coconut noodle soup, and various types of onion fries. Due to the full moon that night, Burmese people attended monasteries. Otherwise, Ah May is always packed.

Overall, the prices are in the middle. Ah May is mostly known for its fried food being crispy and perfectly served with a handmade spicy and sour sauce on the side. Its rice and noodles are mediocre, in which they could have more flavor. I do prefer my mother’s homemade cooking, but if you’re busy or aren’t able to make food yourself, Ah May is a great place to try something new!

As the years go by, Burmese restaurants are slowly expanding in Southern California. Ah May is open Mondays through Fridays from 10:00 AM to 10:00 PM and Saturdays and Sundays from 8:00 AM to 10:00 PM. It can also be reached at (626) 872-0692. Not only is there TV to watch while eating but the environment around is lively. Ah May does not take reservations but does offer takeout and delivery. Come try fresh and delicious Burmese cuisine with friendly customer service!

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