A WORLD AWAY
Mike Ponluang, owner and Executive Chef of Coco Asian Bistro & Bar, has come a long way. His first experience with cooking was as a child in Thailand, where he helped run a small family restaurant. Since then, he has strengthened his cooking skills and worked with innovative flavors and influences to create some of the best Asian fusion in SoFlo! Coco Asian boasts a relaxing environment with soothing purple LED lights, elevated private booths, a sushi bar, a cocktail bar, and live entertainment. During my visit, there was a wonderful singer performing various genres that I thoroughly enjoyed as I started off the evening with some sweet Plum wine.
Delightfully warm Thai Eggrolls arrived at my table, with season vegetables, and bean thread noodle all wrapped in a crispy egg roll skin. On the side, I had another plum treat: Plum sauce, which I used to generously dip each roll in. Soon, my entrée made its way to my table: The Lobster Pineapple Fried Rice. An 8 oz. Maine Lobster Tail was placed on the side of half of a pineapple shell, and on the inside of the carved-out pineapple was a plentiful mountain of jasmine rice, egg, cherry tomatoes, garlic, cashew nuts, onion, carrots, pineapple, and raisins! Spoonful after spoonful of the flavorful dish was welcome each time, as sweet touches of pineapple and cherry tomatoes mixed with the vegetables and well-cooked rice. A lobster lover, I saved the tail for last to enjoy the essence by itself, which was buttery, soft, and yummy!
After finishing dinner, I had just enough room for dessert as I had my eyes on the Molten Lava Cake! Once it arrived at the table, I could not wait to taste the chocolatey goodness! It came perfectly plated with whipped cream and garnished with a strawberry on the side. The warm dense chocolate cake had a smooth texture and with my first bite, I had already reached the silky liquid chocolate center that I had been longing for. It was mouthwatering; don’t miss out on this tempting dessert!
By Vanessa C. Guzman