Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Banquet Spectacular at Sim Sim! 11-10-2009

Location: 312 Ditmas Ave. BK
Time: 7:30pm
People: 13 Ramen and Friends: JLam from MeSoHungry, Rich, MLev, Binx2, TM, Alev, KaV, MGru. CEbert, BLee, PMont, RB and myself

Feelings: Ramen and Friends celebrated the Thanksgiving and holiday season early with an elaborate banquet style feast at Sim Sim in Ditmas. Reserving the feast for 13 people was a little difficult, especially at a quite authentic Azebaijani restaurant in which no one speaks English quite well. We had to pick a menu, pay deposit, and call them several times to confirm. But all the preparation was worth it. We experienced a four hour marathon of dishes followed by more dishes. It was an epic.

There were two or three plates for each dish, so everyone at the table was definitely able to have more than few bites of every taste. We started off with a salad course consisting of fresh vegetable salad, Stolichniy salad (potatoes), eggplant salad a la Baku, feta cheese, marinated mushrooms, Lobio (red beans), and marinated vegetables. JLam thought this was the entire meal and said it was a good amount of food for 13 people. My favorite was the Stolichniy. I enjoyed the creamy flavor as well as the small, cube size vegetables. It definitely carried more flavor than a standard potato salad.

We moved on to the cold appetizers with brined trout with potatoes and assorted meat platters. BLee especially enjoyed the trout saying, "It was clean and delicious with a great texture." However, some at the table mentioned it being a bit too rich for their taste. Around this time, the only vegetarian at the table, myself, started to realize that I might not be able to eat the rest of the dishes and held on tightly to the remaining dishes from the vegetarian first course.

For the hot appetizer course, we had pan fried potatoes with chanterelle mushrooms. When you have a chance to go to Sim Sim, please make sure to order this potato dish. The mushrooms had a fibrous texture of meat, and the potatoes had the most amazing crispiness on the edges and soaked up all the flavor from the mushrooms and onions. The other hot appetizers were pelmeni (dumpling) with meat, kutabi (crepe) with ground lamb, and dolma (grape leaves) with lamb. The creamy and delicious pelmeni was many people's favorite as well, as MGru described, "Encapsulated chicken noodle soup." The kutabi was extremely greasy, but everyone at the table raved about the dish.

When we thought we couldn't possibly eat anymore, we got our main dish: a giant platter of shish kebab which consisted of lamb ribs, chicken, lamb pulp, lamb lyulya, and pork neck with french fries and onions. The meat was tender and flavorful and wonderfully char grilled. I was surprised to see that after everyone commented how full they were, they still managed to finish. We finished our meal with tea and coffee and a round of applause for the chef and staff. We left with greasy smiles, warm cheer, and full bellies.

Many of us woke up next morning with terrible food hangovers vowing to skip breakfast and lunch. With great friends, an amazing and never ending meal, and BYOB, Sim Sim successfully brought us one of the memorable nights I won't soon forget. I actually felt like I was in a part of a scene in a Fellini movie where family and friends are enjoying themselves over dinner, except the smiles and laughter were more than real...and no one spoke Italian.

Bravo, Sim Sim.


Anonymous said...

In order to make it a fully authentic experience, your banquet had to be accompanied by vodka drinking (two 1 liter bottles for 13 people at least) and periodically interrupted by wild dancing.

ALev said...

I'm just about ready for solid food again...

No vodka but plenty of polish beer courtesy of RB and CEb! The potato salad was surprisingly good. I'm not sure but it may have had capers in it(?)(!). But don't miss out on the dumplings, fried potato/mushrooms and kebabs!