The Pansodan Pop-up: a hip new Burmese eatery
20 Jun 2019
Open for only three months, The Pansodan, a Burmese brasserie in Yangon, is making an appearance at Potatohead with an extensive a la carte menu and a selection of botanical cocktails. With Burmese cooking not so well known in Hong Kong, we had to give it a whirl.
The tasting menu started off with a creamy Burmese chicken pate with a slightly sweeter note than the ones we are used to, which of course, we loved. The samosa with masala-spiced sweet potatoes was also slightly sweeter. Both of course, we loved-- the dishes were familiar, but with a slighter sweeter take.
We went on to try the signature Burmese ‘Laphet Thoke’ that comes with fermented & pickled tea leaves with crunchy fried beans, tomatoes and lime dressing. Using fermented tea leaves in the salad was definitely new to us, a refreshingly different, very herby flavour.
The mains included the steak with fermented tea leaves and chimichurri sauce-- cooked medium rare, the steak was perfectly cooked and seasoned. Let's us take a moment to say: what is with the growing Hong Kong trend of steak dishes becoming better and better in modern restaurants rather than steakhouses? That’s for another article, let's carry on.
The fish curry was not entirely different to the ones we’ve had in other parts of South East Asia, and definitely not as memorable as the other dishes.
The panna cotta was divine. Rich, creamy with gelatinous coconut jelly, the tart sweet mango sorbet balanced it all out. Not too sweet, it was a fresh finish to the meal.
Standing on the border of China, India, Bangladesh and Thailand, Burmese cooking takes influences from all sides. But the plethora of dishes shown in Pansodan and its small unique tweaks on otherwise slightly familiar dishes show that Burmese cooking stands on its own. If you’re new to it, as we were, Pansodan is a great place to start.