Wednesday, July 21, 2010

I'm a creature of habit: Sea Urchin Pasta @ Blue Marlin

We headed over to Orris to take advantage of BBE's 30% discount, only to find out that they are closed on Mondays! Darn, should have done a bit more research.. I was bummed because I love Orris and used to go very often. Unfortunately I always over ate when I was there i.e. my own order of their shrimp ravioli in creamy, rich mushroom sauce + loads of their crusty bread to sop up the sauce. Bad Bad. So instead, we darted across Sawtelle Blvd to the restaurant row that houses other Japanese dining options such as Hurry Curry, Blue Marlin and Restaurant 2117. Blue Marlin is another spot that I used to frequent often so it would be a good Plan B.

Blue Marlin serves Japanese dishes with an Italian influence. Even though the menu is quite expansive with specials, curries, omelets, hamburg steak and pastas, I can never order anything except the uni pasta. It must have been fate because I tweeted (yes, I kindda sorta tweet a bit now and then, still dunno how to do alot of things though, like add links or photos.. but all in due time...) to weezermonkey about the uni pasta when she was asking for suggestions.

Fresh warm bread and butter was served.

Our entrees came with a side salad which was really good. I typically don't care for side salads but I enjoyed the dressing which had some sesame, a hint of ginger and carrot slaw.

Their calamari was also really good. It was seasoned with salt and pepper, and sat on a bed of cabbage and carrot slaw with the same dressing as the salad. I liked that the calamari was breaded with panko instead of the heavier American breading. It was a pretty large serving for $6.50.

Sea Urchin Spaghetti
Simplicity at its best. There are no frills here. No other ingredients. Just uni, al dente pasta topped with nori. The sauce was creamy, rich and fishy but I somehow tasted a hint of mustard. I hope not.. cuz I don't like mustard. I've never tasted that tang before when I've had this dish so I hope it's not a new addition. Otherwise, this dish was perfect. Every strand of spaghetti was coated with the uni sauce and chunks of uni. The best part was underneath the noodles, where there were slightly larger lumps of uni. I scraped up every last gonad. Delicious. I can't wait to try this at home.. or rather, I can't wait for my friend LB to prepare this at her home...

Chicken curry
The portion was HUGE, it looked like there was a paella pan worth of curry and rice. You can choose how spicy you wanted your curry to be. The chicken, albeit white meat, was tender. My friend typically prefers Indian curry over Japanese curry but she always orders this at Blue Marlin. She's also a creature of habit.

One of Blue Marlin's specialty is the Om-rice which is an omelet made with Jidori chicken eggs. They offer different topping options including uni, beef, seafood and cutlets.

Chicken cutlet curry Om-rice
Another large portion. These people don't mess around. I mean seriously, how many eggs did they use?? This is like a hodgepodge of dishes. You have an omelet, rice, curry and cutlet, but they all worked well together. The rice inside of the omelet was actually fried rice with some veggies mixed into it.

Blue Marlin never fails. The dishes are always satisfying (even if I do only just order the same dish over and over again). The way I see is, you go with what you know and love. I don't know of any other place in the vicinity that serves Uni pasta so Blue Marlin is my go-to place if I need to get my fix. Not bad for Plan B.

Hits: uni pasta, calamari, portions, open on Mondays!
Misses: nothing
Rating: ***1/2 (for the uni pasta)

Blue Marlin
2121 Sawtelle Blvd.,
Los Angeles, CA 90025
(310) 445-2522


sku said...

Yum. Haven't been to Orris or Blue Marlin in years. I should make it out West. Thanks for reminding me.

glutster said...

wow. I remember coming here when I was 17, back in my super early days of blogging!

I also remember being pissed cuz they didn't serve us bread, ha ha. I would go back for that omelet rice though :)

thanks for writing and making me reminisce--

weezermonkey said...

Mmmmm. I will have to try this some day. I ended up going with an old fave, but I definitely appreciated your tweet! :)

Banana Wonder said...

I might just have to add sea urchin spaghetti to my bucket list now that you've tempted me with it.

Anonymous said...

does that mean you like Spoon House in Torrance as well?

Diana said...

Ohhh I think I might love this almost as much as our beloved squid ink pasta! I was gaga for the spagghetti with uni at Providence - like sea butter!

stuffycheaks said...

sku- for uni, i think you can definitely make the drive. which reminds me, i gotta check out that farmers market for the fresh uni

gluster- omg that was a long time ago :) pretty funny that you didn't want to walk to get your camera.

weezermonkey- i hear ya, there are sooo many options on sawtelle so I always overlook blue marlin

anna - DO IT!! Its kindda like a carbonara... haha well. a fishy carbonara

sinosoul- torrance is too far for me lol. but i think i did go there once, i remember loving the pasta, not sure if i got the uni though.. hmmm might have to check it out sometime

Diana- yeah, its a very close tie between the two. mmm squid ink.. now you got me thinking :)