When diners see fire erupting inside Dai Bai Dang, they needn't panic. Those flames are under the control of Chef Anna Wang and her fellow chefs, who whip up a bulk of the eatery's cuisine in open woks. The fire show is the first visual treat for diners, who then receive gorgeously plated Asian-fusion dishes. Said cuisine includes shrimp tossed with caramelized walnuts, duck smoked in tea leaves, and japanese eggplant braised with ginger and chili paste. To complement feasts, bartenders not only serve plenty of wine, cocktails, and liqueurs, but also showcase their barista skills by making cups of the house roast with a french press.
When the owners of Crawdaddy's decided to put a little bit of New Orleans' distinctive flair right in the heart of Visalia, they knew it would take more than great cuisine. What makes New Orleans so unforgettable is that it caters to all the senses and makes the smallest outing a special event. To fill that tall order, they took residence in a spacious facility that could be an exciting venue for music, parties, libations, food, and sporting events, all in one electric, lively place.
The second-floor dining room welcomes guests with a menu of fresh seafood such as blackened catfish and bayou butter prawns. A fully stocked bar wets whistles, and balcony seating offers couples a romantic setting under the stars?all 50 of them. Meanwhile, more than a dozen flat-screen TVs light up the crowd in the first floor's sports bar, where a mixologist whips up creative cocktails and TVs whip up the big game. In the dining area of the first floor, Keith and the Crawdads treat diners to lively tunes during the evening, and on the second level the nightclub sends crowds into fits of dance spasms as late-night DJs spin everything from hip-hop to disco six days a week.
Ocean Basket started in 1995 as a six-table hole-in-the-wall joint in South Africa's Pretoria?one so casual that it was not only BYOB, but BYO salad. The culinary team saved their energies for one thing and one thing only: serving tasty, fresh Mediterranean deli-style seafood dishes like prawns, calamari, hake, and other aquatic eats.
Since then, the eatery has grown immensely. That applies both in terms of locations?it now has 189, in 11 countries?and in terms of its menu. There's no need to BYO salad anymore, thanks to beds of greenery topped with seared salmon and grilled calamari. Platters are filled with options like prawns, calamari, and mussels, and fillets are fried for fish and chips. Finish meals with baklava, which is made from founder Fats Lazaride's family recipe.
At Zen Asian Diner, chefs are versed in cuisine ranging from traditional Chinese to American-style dishes. They sear and fry fresh ingredients to create egg foo young tossed with vegetables or barbecue pork, chop suey with meats such as chicken and shrimp. Additionally, the menu includes mouth-watering Asian fusion dishes such as curry-drizzled chicken and Mongolian-style spicy beef. Zen Asian Diner also serves aromatic cuisine beyond its doors—they have a catering team that assembles party platters for off-site events.
Head chef Scott Sauer oversees a rotating menu of inventive cuisine catered to discerning Fresnan tongues fluent in gourmet. The dinner menu raises the curtain with an appetizing aria of jalapeno-enhanced sweet-potato fries ($9) or calamari ($10) dotted with roasted sweet peppers. The feta-cheese and poppy-seed dressing of the strawberry and spinach salad ($12) likewise provides a sweet counterpart to savory evening entrees such as the osso bucco–style short ribs ($27), served with braised greens and polenta cake, and the Peruvian potato-crusted salmon ($27). Dining dates, meanwhile, can keep their busy hands doggy-bag-free for a romantic evening of casino implosions and roller-tango with light entrees such as the petite filet mignon ($26) and the crab cakes with house-made tartar sauce ($16). Before capping things off with a dessert of cinnamon-raisin bread pudding ($6) or crispy boysenberry pie ($5), be sure to take a scenic detour among Max's extensive list of wines by the bottle or glass, draft beers, and specialty martinis, including the Pretty Woman ($11), which blends Stolichnaya strawberry, orange juice, and strawberry puree with a champagne float and a lock of Julia Roberts's hair.