Located in the sleepy area of old town Whittier is Golden Triangle, a family-run Burmese restaurant. The choice of location is strange; I don’t know of any major Burmese population in Whittier. Their menu consists of Thai, Chinese, Burmese, and even some Indian-influenced dishes. After talking to the owner, I found out that the Thai dishes were mostly remnants of the Thai restaurant that sat in the same place this one did before the Burmese family took over.
We started off with the tea leaf salad (vegan). It had shredded cabbage, some crunchy yellow peas, fermented tea leaves, and a delicious dressing. The dish tasted pleasantly of tea without any of the bitterness one would expect of tea leaves. It was a refreshing introduction of what was to come.
Next came the battered and fried onions (vegan). They were thin slices of onions clumped together with a light almost tempura-like batter. Yes, these were better than onion rings. The dipping sauce was the perfect blend of salty, spicy, and sweet without being too cloying. Another plus is that the sauce was vegan as well.
As an entree, I had the catfish chowder with rice noodles. The broth was so warming and tasty it was like a flavor party in my mouth. I could taste a savory fish or seafood paste, some tomatoes, and a bunch of other yummy spices that I can’t identify other than it tasting Asian. The dish also came with some crispy chips with yellow peas crumpled on top, which gave a satisfying crunch to a mouthful of soup. While I didn’t have any actual pieces of fish, I did find sliced fish cakes in the broth as well as slices of hard boiled egg. The bowl looks small, but I was stuffed by the time I was 3/4 of the way done with it.
The BF ordered some sort of country-style red curry sans coconut milk (vegan). It was more watery and soupy than the curry I was used to, but the flavor of the broth was present in full force. The waitress also offered a 1-10 scale of spiciness; the BF picked 8.5.
The restaurant also makes their own ice-cream and even though I was beyond stuffed, I ordered a pandan ice-cream. Unfortunately, it was so delicious that I dug in without taking any pictures of it. The pandan flavor was strong, but the ice-cream wasn’t too sickingly sweet — perfect for me.
Golden Triangle is situated in such a strange area culturally, that it wasn’t surprising that there were only a small handful of people eating lunch at the same time we were. I hope they get the business they deserve because even compared to the dearth of Burmese restaurants in LA, every dish that we ordered was great and had that home-made-with-love taste to them. The waitress and owners were also very helpful with our questions about what dishes to order. The owner even suggested I break up the fried onions and sprinkle it over my fish chowder, which made the dish even more awesome.
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7011 Greenleaf Ave
Whittier, CA 90602