Face Cafe: Plain Steamed Rolls

Eye Candy: 4/5 Stars
Smelloscope: 3/5 Stars
Taste Test: 5/5 Stars
Wallet Breaking: $
Recommend-ability: 4/5 - Mouth Watering Goodness

Anyone who knows me knows that I'm a Cantonese Cafe fanatic. I can't seem to get enough of my own heritage. Perhaps a lot of it is due my childhood nostalgia. Nevertheless, Cantonese Cafe is probably one of the most affordable cuisine to be obsessed over.

There is one big drawback for Cantonese Cafes in the San Gabriel Valley, their lack of consistency. One day a dish may be fantastic, but a few months later, it may turn up disgusting. It's happened to me so many times. My favorite has also moved from one cafe to another. Lately I seem to have moved on from the few that I've been deeply into the past couple of years. Fortunately for Face Cafe, it's moved slightly upward on my list of cafes after they increased their health inspection grade, not that it means much to me to begin with.

Originally I was going to blog about my Chicken Steak and Pork Chop, but that dish was highly disappointing. I remembered it to be much better the last time I had it. No cafe seem to be able to keep the quality of that duel right. Fortunately my parents decided to order the plain steamed rolls as a part of our meal.

Steamed rolls are made of vermicelli noodle wraps. There's nothing inside these rolls at all. They are steamed and then served with two or three sauces. Face Cafe's version came with the standard three sauces: Soy, sweet soy paste and sesame paste. All three were mild in flavor, perfect for the steamed rolls.

The presentation of the rolls were nicely organized. There really isn't anything fancy about it, but it's not a fancy dish. It's a simple common man's food, street food at its best. I had them literally from little carts off the streets of Hong Kong when I was a child. There isn't a whole lot of smell to them either, since they are plain. The sauces emitted a light aroma if one stuck their nose close enough. It's a bit difficult to smell when the restaurant is filled with so much stronger smelling foods. But I suppose no smell is a good smell when it comes to steamed rolls.

The rolls themselves were very smooth, just the way I like it. They were freshly made and very soft as they should be. It can be a little tricky picking them up cause they could break in half if you squeeze too hard with your chopsticks. You can dip each individual piece in one, two or all three sauces and they all taste just fantastic. The portion was also big enough to satisfy my whole family of 4's craving. I didn't feel like I didn't have enough by the end of the meal which can be rare when it comes to steamed rolls.

Good steamed rolls are hard to come by. A lot of dim sum restaurants serve semi-hardened rolls that ends up on the dry side. Face Cafe did a great job keeping them moist and soft. When they finally end up inside my mouth, they just kind of melted and then slipped down my throat smoothly.

I personally think steamed rolls are among the best simple foods out there. But I have taken a friend once who found the texture disturbing. I suppose the slipperiness of it could seem wacky if your mind took you to that place. But if you like soft textured foods, this plain steamed roll will certainly satisfy your cravings. It may not be the absolute best steamed roll I've ever had, but it's certainly good enough for me to go back for more.

Face Cafe
301 E Valley Blvd
Alhambra, CA 91801
(626) 282-8899

Plain Steamed Rolls - $2.95


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