After all suggestions and procrastination for a meal out, we ended up in Lu Bu — a restaurant serving Greek food.
My first impression of Lu Bu was not much; the indoor area was too dark as there were only some small light bulbs hanging from the high white ceiling. Just another nice place at the foreign quarters, I thought.
First and foremost, the menu was challenging. Being pretty confident about my food vocabulary, I actually struggled with new words. All and all, we had to ask the waitress. Her answer seemed to give our ordering game a level up. We were pondering upon some salads and asked the waitress about their sauces. Her answer was simple but absolutely not helpful, “that is our restaurant’s special sauce”. The waitress kind of gave us a mean look, so bravo; we should eat all the food and get all the allergies we could.
After the “looking up in the dictionary” process, we ordered a twice-cooked giant octopus salad, a green salad as a side dish, a Canadian scallop with mint pea risotto as a starter and a bratwurst with lentils as main course. Go ahead and judge us for selecting Canadian produce and German food in a Greek restaurant, but the food choice was pretty good.
Even though we told the waitress that food should come up in the order of salad, starter, then main course, we had our two salads first. Both salads seemed a bit sour on normal standard, but fine for me. The texture of the twice-cooked octopus was interesting. It no longer has the gummy texture of seafood. The octopus seemed tear-able as a piece of meat. Despite the funny (in a good way) octopus, other components do not compliment the protein. There were some diced cooked potatoes, croutons, roasted cherry tomatoes, olives and watercress. The cherry tomatoes were very on point. However, after one or two bites, we started to feel a weird smell. It was the croutons absorbing too much of old olive oil smells and the oil released from fresh oregano accidentally cooked by residual heat of other food. That really pulled us off, not to mention the olives that were not pickled and tasted totally irrelevant.
Our starter and main came to the table at the same time, oh what did we expect?!? The Canadian scallops were served with some pea risotto and some mint sauce layering on top. Mint and pea, classic! I did not have much expectation, but that’s exactly when the food supersedes your imagination. The scallops were perfectly cooked, buttery on the outside, soft and moist on the inside, and tasted like the ocean in your mouth. The risotto was also very on point. The rice was not too hard, not too mushy. Somehow I could imagine the diligent chef calmly stirring the risotto rice while gradually adding white wine, of course with no complaints. To be honest, I always underestimated green peas because either they are too hard (with no flavor) or they are too soft and broken down. This scallop dish totally changed my view on green peas, perfectly cooked and still taste very refreshing.
After the incredible scallops, we could not think how the main course could top the experience, but indeed it did, or at least was equally tasty. I was afraid to order bratwurst because sausage has never been respected in a menu full of other stuff. The bratwurst surprised us. Filled with pork of pate texture, the sausage was very well seasoned. The lentils were cooked just right to preserve its slight crunch. We were happy and packed.
15 minutes after our meal, we decided not to order any dessert because most of our food choice was great. A disappointing dessert would ruin the whole experience. 5 minutes after, a puffed up and fully risen soufflé was brought to the table next to us. All we know was we would have to come back here for that soufflé.