Asian diner is perfect for the late–night drunchies.
Open until the break of dawn on weekends, Rising Tide is well known by Chinatown regulars as the hotspot for late night chow (mein). On an early Tuesday evening, the restaurant was nearly empty, but the upbeat Chinese diner was no less quirky, delicious or noisy than it is at 3 a.m. on a Saturday.
Skimming through the menu, we had trouble concentrating. Roasted ducks hung from a rope to our left while dozens of fish (eel, lobster, rock fish… you name it) swam around in tanks behind us. Two yards ahead, a flat screen reverberated with Chinese pop music as Asian divas in fur coats and bikinis leaped into swimming pools.
Finally, we collected our thoughts and agreed on appetizers: Steamed Pork Dumplings ($6.50), Fish Maw with Crab Meat Soup ($12.95) and Bar–B–Q Eel with Honey ($8.95). The dumplings were enjoyable, but not spectacular. A dipping option other than soy sauce would have given the simple dish a much–needed kick of flavor. The soup was similarly bland. But what was missing in the first two dishes was compensated for in the third. Slices of glazed eel struck our tongues with a tangy barbeque zest that won’t be forgotten anytime soon.
We washed down Course #1 with Honey Dew Melon Tea with Tapioca ($3) — a drink that Rising Tide is famous for. The milky tea balanced subtle sweetness with fruity savor. Its freshness reminded us why Rising Tide stood out from surrounding Chinese eateries.
For our main course, we ordered two dishes that exceeded our expectations: Braised Scallops with Vegetable ($12.95) and Braised Soft Noodle with Mushroom ($10.95). The scallops were tender and dressed with the perfect amount of sauce, and the green vegetables in both dishes were crisp. The mushrooms (of all things!) melted in our mouths. We were disappointed when our once–generous plates were bare.
Contrary to some reviewing websites, Rising Tide is not BYOB. But the bar is well–stocked, the music is hot and they give you orange slices with your check.
937 Race St.
Don’t Miss: Honey Dew Melon Tea with Tapioca
Skip: Fish Maw with Crab Meat Soup