A couple of years ago, I was in San Francisco for the Nike Women’s Marathon and went to dim sum in the second Chinatown on Clement St. As I checked in on Foursquare, reader Turk Fontaine (@TurkFontaine) tweeted, “I’m at Burma Superstar. And YOU’RE NOT.” The restaurant sounded familiar, so when I got home, I looked in one of my hard copy guidebooks to see why Turk was mocking me.
Sure enough, Burma Superstar is in all the books. Everyone raves about it. Here I had squandered my stomach space on sub-par dim sum, while Turk was savvy enough to stand in line with the hordes of people who knew where their next outstanding meal was going to be.
When we finished Bay to Breakers, we were thinking of places nearby to have lunch, and one of the first places I wanted to try was Burma Superstar. Timing was great — we went at a time when the wait was just 20 minutes. As we sat outside, the most amazing aromas from the kitchen wafted out, with spice and herb combinations that I had never smelled before. I’ve been to Southeast Asia, and although the regional cuisine should all be similar, this is but isn’t.
Let’s put it this way: This is a small gallery, and the photos are lousy because I took them with my iPhone. But I rarely have such a transformative meal, so I felt I should give it its own blog post. My descriptions are weak because I have no idea what I really tasted since I’m not familiar with Burmese food, but at the very core I can tell you that everyone in our group kept moaning, “Everything is good!” (While you read this, I’ll be researching how to get on a plane to Burma.)
Lunch at Burma Superstar (10 of 10)
Finally, make sure you order the coconut rice ($2.50 per serving) as your starch. It's cooked with coconut milk and topped with fried onions, and tastes like dessert — if you're familiar with Filipino food, it tastes like bibinka. Yes, the coconut flavor is strong, if you like that, and it's an amazing contrast to the spicy foods with the sweetness and the subtle richness.
309 Clement St.
San Francisco, CA
Reservations not accepted