Straits has locations in San Francisco, Burlingame, Palo Alto, Atlanta, and Santana Row and was started back in 1987 by Chris Yeo. They focus on Singaporean cuisine, which blends Malaysian/Indonesian, Chinese, Indian, and Nonya. We have been to the San Francisco and Burlingame locations. Our last visit was in September 2015.
Decor, Vibe – Fusion of modern decor with Asian elements like a big Buddha. We have been to both the Santana Row and Burlingame location.
Straits Restaurant Menu
Straits has a fairly wide selection of items from salads to appetizers to poultry the beef and seafood. Their dessert menu was very weak, with only 4 selections.
Straits’ happy hour is great with $6 cocktails, $4 beer, $5 appetizers. Happy Hour 3pm to 6pm Everyday. Mondays 3pm to Close. Saturdays 9pm to 11pm
Straits Food Picks:
Roti Prata ($7) Crisp griddled Indian flatbread with yellow curry dipping sauce was delicious. Wish there was more than 2 pieces. Curry dipping sauce is a little spicy. This costs $5 at Happy Hour.
Open Face Pork Belly Slider ($5 Happy Hour) had 4 small but tasty sliders. Nice fatty meat with a bit of a kick.
Chicken Satay ($10) is a popular starter and highly recommended by us. It was sitting on top of a. It was sitting on a very nutty, peanut butter sauce. This costs $5 at Happy Hour.
Crispy Calamari ($12) Kaffir Lime Aioli, Galanga Cocktail Sauce was high on quantity and satisfied those deep fried food cravings.
Wok Fired Mussels ($15) Fresh P.E.I. Mussels, Cracked Black Pepper, Oyster Sauce, Garlic Butter Glaze hit the spot. Very nice flavors and a finger licking good sauce.
Spicy Basil Chicken ($13) Tender Chicken, Peas & Carrots, Shiitake Mushrooms, Bamboo Shoots, Thai Basil was definitely spicy. Good curry coconut flavor though.
Straits Spare Ribs ($12) Honey-glazed Bali style barbecue pork ribs were a little messy but very good. A little on the burned side though.
Lemongrass Beef ($24) Grilled marinated USDA prime skirt steak served with sautéed seasonal greens and frites. Pretty healthy size big plate. Meat was medium rare, like we specified. Be sure to specify it, we received over cooked version last time. Frites were really salty.
Straits Shaking New York ($32) 12 Ounce New York Strip, Green Onion, Shimeji Mushrooms, Watercress Salad was expensive but worth ordering. A bit overcooked, but still full of flavor and silky meat.
Straits Butter Chicken – ($14) Cilantro, Tikki Masala Sauce, Toasted Almonds had a nice kick and a fair amount of tender, rich chicken.
Crispy Hainan chicken ($15) were juicy and possessed a nice crispy skin. Rice had a hint of chicken flavor, while soup was pretty bland.
Black Pepper Crab ($40) Another Singaporean Favorite. Fresh Dungeness Crab with Black Pepper, Garlic Butter was recommended by the server. Extremely messy, but an excellent dish.
Coconut Rice ($4-$6) Why eat plain rice when you can have something special. Coconut flavor makes this rice a little creamy. Tamarine’s is more silky.
Wok Fired Long beans ($11) with chili sambal were good. They had a little dried shrimp to accent the beans. Pretty expensive for veggies.
Wok Tossed Eggplant ($8) “Bijang” Sweet & Tangy Eggplant, Peppers, Onions, Sesame, Oyster Sauce was low on eggplant quantity. This dish was full of onions, yet it still satisfied us.
Garlic Noodle ($11) wok fired, basil, black pepper, roma tomatoes, shitake mushrooms were very good. Flavorful combination with tender noodles. This costs $5 at Happy Hour.
Origami Sea Bass ($30) Baked in parchment with ginger, longan, shiitake mushrooms and rice wine. It has been better in the past, the bell peppers just do not fit the dish. On our last visit in 2014 it improved.
Mangopolitan ($10) with House infused Mango Vodka, fresh sweet and source, and splash of Cranberry juice was a good drink. Medium strength, so it was not too foo foo.
Lychee Martini ($12) was a bit fruit, but packed a good kick.
Peach Mojito ($10) was a little on the sweet side. Get it only if you like sweet drinks. Mojito ($10) was very strong and sweet enough, and very balanced.
Wok Vegetables ($11) was a mishmash of brussel sprouts, broccoli, carrots, and more. OK but a bit ugly and mushy.
Straits Caesar Salad – ($9) Hearts of Romaine, Reggiano Parmesan, Dijon Miso Dressing was a bit odd with its spicy flair.
Strait’s service started out well then started to tail off after we got our food. On another occasion, service was pretty scattered. Straits serves up some good Asian food and has a fun atmosphere, making it an easy choice. Prices add up, so beware. We easily hit $30 a person without trying hard or eating a lot.