Thursday, June 24, 2010

Seres Restaurant, another view

Seres Restaurant (formerly Sungari Pearl)
1105 Northwest Lovejoy Street

Happy Hour 3-7 daily, 3-close Tuesday

There were good things and bad things about our experience at Seres Restaurant. I loved the open, airy feel of the bar area. I didn't love that the restaurant wasn't open for service at the normal time (or at the time that the sign said it would be open after they were done with maintenance.) I loved the dish I ordered for myself, stir-fried chicken with fried potatoes. I didn't love the salad rolls that I ordered to share with a friend. I loved the silver chopsticks and the presentation of the food and drinks. I didn't love my drink, but I didn't hate it either.

I wanted to try Seres restaurant because I have found that it is very hard to find good Chinese food in Portland. I also know that they have a lot of specials, and I like it that they are trying to buy fresh, local, organic ingredients. I would definitely try it again for lunch or dinner, but as I mentioned, there were some things that disappointed me about my visit.

I liked the decor and ambiance, and the waiter/bartender was friendly and seemed happy we were there. The space was light and open without being over the top, and I felt comfortable. Sometimes I feel a little out of place if a restaurant seems too fancy or trendy, but I liked the atmosphere at Seres.

We started with drinks, and I ordered the Sweet and Sour drop ($6 during Happy Hour). It wasn't bad, but it didn't blow me away. It didn't really have a strong enough flavor, and I preferred my friend's Red Lotus drink. Another friend ordered the non-alcoholic pomegranate lemonade, but she was sick so I didn't get to try it. There were other items on the menu that also sounded intriguing, including a soju tonic, which the waiter said was a Korean drink (sort of like Sake?)

The tofu salad rolls ($4.50) were just not good. The rice paper wrapper felt thicker than normal, and the insides were tasteless. Even the peanut sauce was off. Salad rolls are one of my favorite appetizers, and I really was disappointed with these ones.

The highlight of the meal was the stir-fried chicken and fried potatoes ($4.50). This dish was full of flavor--it was spicy and seemed to have hints of vinegar and garlic. Having potatoes in a Chinese dish was an interesting twist that really worked! I would definitely order this dish again, and it was a substantial enough portion that I left Happy Hour feeling satisfied.

Food: Meets (except the salad rolls)
Drinks: Meets
Service: Meets
Ambiance: Exceeds
Value: Meets


Seres Restaurant and Bar on Urbanspoon

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