Crustaceans swimming in the Cajun sauce pool

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Wednesday, March 26, 2014


LONG before it reached the Durian City, I got to sample the boiled crustaceans swimming in a bag of sweet, spicy sauce in the City of Angels-the Boiling Shrimp at 5112 Hollywood Boulevard.

However, from the time I've had my sumptuous dead-hunger (my term for "patay gutom" aka "so hungry that I can eat a horse") repast the name of the place has changed to Shrimp Lover. It may have been an issue with the other joint that also serves crustaceans-in-a-bag-in-Cajun-sauce- the Boiling Crab-that (maybe) came to scene first.

I never had the chance to visit the latter but the according to the reviews, "it's normal to wait about 2 hours to be seated. It's even worse if you arrive during prime meal hours" which "horrible" to many. They still go anyway.

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To those who have tried both restaurants, "the food at Boiling Shrimps is just as good as Boiling Crab minus the waiting time to get a table." If that's the common review, then I'm glad my friends and hosts took me to Boiling Shrimp during that starving moment for I turn into a monster if not fed immediately. We found a table as soon as we stepped in the graffiti-filled walls of the establishment.

Run by Thais, Boiling Shrimp (I will refer to it by its previous name, if you don't mind) offers Thai cuisine along with its crustacean specialties. "Surprise me," was my reply to what I want to eat.

The food was served quickly-several pounds of shrimps and crab legs in mildly spiced Cajun sauce (the "very spicy" will make you cry, I was told), and a Thai dish (that seemed to have left untouched. Not that it wasn't good, it was just all eyes were on the seafood). The seafood was good, succulent and sweet (fresh, obviously. Frozen seafood will be bland) which blended perfectly with the spicy Cajun sauce.

Of course, "more rice" was in order. As to how many I finished, I don't even want to remember.

We must have beaten the speed of a super typhoon in clearing what was served on the table. If you can call the shrimp and crab shells the debris after a tempest, then it was that.

What I can recall is stepping out of the place with a bloated stomach, which made it difficult to breath. The calories needed to be burned -- immediately, and where we went after still evades my memory. Only the sweet and spicy flavors of the dishes remain in my mind. I know that I will return to that place when I make back to LA, or try Boiling Crab. That is, if I won't mind waiting for a couple of hours to be seated. I will make sure I am not starving.

For more travel & lifestyle stories, visit http://jeepneyjinggoy.blogspot.com/ and http://apples-and-lemons.blogspot.com/

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on March 27, 2014.

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