Fat Rice is an innovative little Avondale hot spot serving up Macanese food, a mutt of exotic flavors commingling in Euro-Asian comfort foods.
Fat Rice has a charming outdoor waiting area – a necessity since you are sure to spend plenty of time out there. The inside is laden with steely-gray wood panels dotted with pops of color. The bar wraps around the open kitchen under low hanging lights.
The service is really fantastic. Everyone on the waitstaff is attentive and informative, and Chef Abraham Conlon wanders about the dining room to welcome you and answer any of your questions. The warm, neighborhood-vibe provides a lively and engaging dining experience.
We began with a refreshing rosé out of Portugal, Lagoalva Espirito 2012. It was light and aromatic with a heavy strawberry note that melted into the creamy mouthfeel before disappearing with a crisp, clean finish. The house white was out of portugal, incredibly sweet and rounded like a Sauternes. We finished with the Koehler-Ruprecht Riesling Halbtrocken 2011 out of Pfalz, Germany. It had medium dryness with a bold, fruity body and a brightness that was cleansing amongst the myriad of spices.
While we poured over the menu, we snacked on some housemade pickles. The braised fava beans were really meaty and paired with salty bits of salami. The sweet and sour eggplant was probably my favorite, served with crispy little noodles and laden with a sweet, umami loaded oil. The mixed sichuan pickles were also yummy, especially the little mouse melons. They were tiny, but explosive in cucumber flavor. We also enjoyed a braised carrot and peanut dish for the amuse-bouche, a salty little treat.
The first appetizer that reached our table was the linguiça, a portuguese country sausage served with chili cabbage, ginger and olives. The salami was super oily but rich and complex. The olives were awesome!
The balcalhau, a smooth salt cod spread with olives, chili and mint, was incredible. It wasn’t fishy, but rather fresh, citrusy and almost floral. The consistency was oily and smooth like a pureed hummus. It was served with a couple fluffy slices of Portuguese bread.