Angel Revisited

Unimpressed by Noodles, the restaurant at the Hotel Yasmin, Brewsta returns instead to an Asian favorite in the Old Town

Spice is life. It depends upon what you like... have fun with it. Yes, food is serious, but you should have fun with it.
Emeril Lagasse
I had originally planned to do a post today about the Noodles restaurant at the Hotel Yasmin. But I deleted the photos by mistake.

I still feel I should say something.

In summary, let me put it this way.

It was not good.

Their menu (not in English) offered noodle dishes from around the world, but it seems their favorites spices were salt and sugar. The Phad Thai (229 CZK) was sweet as candy. The Yaki Udon (239 CZK) and ravioli with black olive sauce (169 CZK) both needed a trip to a desalination plant.

When a restaurant cooks German, Italian, Chinese, Korean, Mexican, Swiss, and Indonesian food -- beware.

In almost every case, they are a jack of all trades, master of none. But in this case, I'd even say they don't know jack.

And now I turn to more pleasant duties: writing about a place that does know how to use spices. We returned to the restaurant Angel in Old Town.

Angel Restaurant, Prague

It was a year ago that I wrote a post about our first visit.

In the case of this restaurant, the favored seasonings are lime leaf, cilantro (coriander), coconut, and curry. All of which I love.

The interior of the one-room restaurant hadn't changed and I still found it quite attractive.

Angel Restaurant, Prague

I recycled the decor photos from our earlier trip. It has warm beige tones and cool lighting fixtures. Not a bad place for a date.

I was glad to see they were doing some business, despite the bad weather. Many nearby restaurants were empty.

Their good and unique bread was the same as last time.

Angel Restaurant, Prague

There were two warm balls of regular and two of cheese bread. The salted butter was a bit too cold and hard, but the heat of the bread melted it soon enough.

On the menu, the starters all sounded great. We couldn't decide which two to choose. Luckily, there is a taster platter for two (525 CZK). It included seared tuna roll, duck rillettes, quail breasts, and fish cakes.

Angel Restaurant, Prague

The tuna was our favorite. The fresh red fish barely touched a hot pan and was then placed with basil leaf in a cool rice paper roll.

It came with peanut and green chili nahm jim and homemade pickled ginger. The ginger was similar to what you'd get at a sushi restaurant, except that it was made in-house and was fresher and better.

The pan-fried quail was fresh and perfectly prepared. It was marinated in soy and ginger with pomelo. On the side was an Earl Grey-infused quail egg and fresh red chili sauce. I wished the marinade and chili sauce underneath were more assertive.

The sugar-and-spice-cured duck had the largest portion. The flavor was quite complex. I thought I detected some anise but couldn't put my finger on all the flavors.

There was a plum sauce, a five-spice brioche crispbread, and red chard leaves in palm vinaigrette. A tasty little salad.

The two small fish cakes were made from Balinese lilit-spiced red snapper. There was a lemongrass and shallot sambal.

They came with a green mango in coconut and lime dressing. They were dense and a little chewy. I liked them, but I'd rank the others on the plate as better.

I talked V into ordering the prawns, which I wanted to try (525 CZK). She thanked me afterward.

Angel Restaurant, Prague

They came with a sweet soy glaze. V was neutral about the sauce, but said they were the best prawns in recent memory. Very large, perfectly butterflied and cooked. There was a cucumber-and-coriander salad on top. I agreed they were excellent.

I had the Thai-style orange curry of monkfish (550 CZK).

Angel Restaurant, Prague

It came with black rice and bamboo shoot and cilantro salad.

I tried a bite of the spongy monkfish and curry by itself. I didn't think it was too exciting. But I enjoyed it much more when I mixed the flavors of the warm fish with the cool salad on the fork.

For dessert, I had the Valrhona dark chocolate marquise with sour cherry chutney and lemon and thyme anglaise (175 CZK).

Angel Restaurant, Prague

This was a very smooth, intense little piece of chocolate. They cherries were quite sour, which was good for cutting through the sweetness of the dessert.

V had a cup of Harney & Sons tea (60 CZK).

Angel Restaurant, Prague

It was a lovely jasmine. A 0.33-liter bottle of mineral water was 45 CZK. A Beefeater gin and tonic was 115 CZK. Stella Artois non-alcoholic beer was 55 CZK.

After we asked for the bill, we received more complimentary chocolates.

Angel Restaurant, Prague

The ones with almond on top tasted strongly of marzipan. If I had remembered this tradition at this restaurant, I might have skipped dessert.

I wasn't drinking that night, so that helped keep the cost to 2,095 CZK, plus tip.

I like Angel a lot. I haven't found anything else quite like it in Prague -- the pan-Asian menu, the complexity of the dishes, and the attention to detail on the plate.

It's not cheap, but you can pay a lot more for a lot less fun at dinner.

Angel Restaurant, Prague

Angel Restaurant
V kolkovne 7
Prague 1
Tel.: (+420) 773 222 422

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