Mario Pacetti Thursday, January 8, 2015 0

asia frontChelsea and I were recently invited to the re-opening of Asia, located inside L’auberge Casino and Resort, by Kerry Anderson.

I have eaten at Asia only a couple of times, and I loved it, so I was very much looking forward to trying their new menu.

We were seated at a table filled with people who worked at KPLC, and I must say we had a great time, and met some very interesting and fun people. Chelsea’s mother’s name is Theresa Schmidt, and people always ask Chelsea if her mother is the same Theresa Schmidt from KPLC, so it was nice to finally meet KPLC’s Theresa and tell her she wasn’t the only Theresa Schmidt in Lake Charles, which she found to be quite funny.

As we were walking into the Casino, we happened to catch Kerry taking pictures of the amazing Christmas display right in front of the elevators. As we were talking with Kerry and admiring the display, she informed us that the gingerbread house in the display is real, and that everything on it was edible, except for a few accent pieces.

The house was very impressive, and I can only imagine the time it took pastry department leader chef Bill Foltz’s team to put the masterpiece together. It didn’t look like food at all.

The entrance to Asia had a more open and welcoming feel to it than the old version; the old entrance felt very crowded as you came in. So this was a nice change right off the bat. The place has a lot more room now, with a more open feel. It’s also more aesthetically appealing, which is always a nice thing.  ASIA4

We ordered several things from the menu, but we only picked dishes that were listed as “new” on the menu, and I must say we made some great choices. The first thing we tried was the ceviche-minced red snapper, with avocado, cilantro, fresh wasabi, red onion, tomato and lotus root chip. The fish was perfect, and the cilantro gave the dish a great pop of flavor. The lotus chips were great to use to scoop up a mouthful of the dish.

Our next choice was the tuna tapas: tuna, sliced apple, lime slices, fresh wasabi and garlic chips. I have found that the longer I write this column, the more raw food Chelsea and I are eating — and I love it. The apple was an interesting addition. The tuna was clean and fresh-tasting, and it was amazing to just be able to feel the freshness of the food in your mouth.

The last thing that we ordered was the lobster roll: fried lobster, crab stick, cucumber, mango, yuzu microgreen and Rock-n-Sauce. I have had lobster rolls before, but never with mango, which gave it a nice, fruity flavor. The microgreens were a nice addition.

One of the people at our table ordered the spicy tuna taco: spicy tuna, avocado, pico de gallo in a corn tortilla. I love Mexican food, and tacos are one of my favorites, but the spiciness of the tuna made this an Asian dish, and, truth be told, I could have eaten a plate full of just the tuna. ASIA2ASIA4ASIA3