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EAT, DRINK & PLAY   -   THE DISH
The Dish!
SCVians Swoon Over New Moon
February, 2008 - Issue #40
Shelby
Shelby's Sweet and Spicy Beef
Every once in a while a new restaurant comes on the scene that has it all: great food, attentive service, a family-friendly environment in a posh atmosphere and all at an affordable price. Well, get ready folks, because New Moon Restaurant is just that kind of place.

Owner Colin Tom has created a restaurant that is decidedly different from the norm. This Chinese restaurant is modern and eclectic without being pretentious. Bright persimmon-colored walls stand in sharp contrast to the cool concrete floors. Glass tile, granite and neutral tones lend an air of sophistication that is not stuffy. Double waterfalls greet you in the lobby upon your arrival and an ultra-chic jellyfish tank over the bar confirms that this is no ordinary restaurant.

The menu is extensive with appetizers, salads, soups, noodles, rice, chicken, beef, shrimp, fish and vegetarian sections. You will find unique and inspired plates that Colin personally enjoys eating and serving.

The Chinese Fried Calamari ($8.95) is far from your typical fried calamari appetizer. It is very lightly breaded and intensely seasoned, yet not overpowering. Sliced jalapenos give it a sassy little kick. The Chicken Pot Stickers ($6.50) are grilled, then steamed to give them a wonderful texture. The ground chicken and Chinese vegetable filling is light and fresh. Served with a chili, vinegar, sesame oil dipping sauce, these are very tasty.

The Original New Moon Chicken Salad ($7.95 small/$10.95 full) is their signature dish. This salad is unique in that it is not heavily dressed and is not too sweet. Roasted chicken is tossed with crisp green lettuce, cilantro, toasted almonds and sesame seeds to make this a delightful dish. The Candied Walnuts over Organic Mixed Greens salad ($6.95 small/$8.95 full) is remarkable. The mixture of flavors - sweet walnuts, fried onions, crisp lettuce and tasty Miso vinaigrette dressing - is quite enjoyable.

The Chicken Chow Mein ($9.75) Hong Kong-style consists of flavorful chicken and Chinese vegetables spooned over the top of a bed of crispy pan-fried noodles. The warm sauce softens the noodles, but not all of them, so you have a smooth and crunchy noodle experience. Minced Chicken with Lettuce Cups ($12.95) is a cool little dish that includes chicken and vegetables served over a bed of crispy rice noodles. Wrap a bit of the chicken and some smoky hoisin sauce into one of the lettuce cups and enjoy the combination of flavors. Shelby's Sweet and Spicy Beef ($12.95) is out-of-this-world good. This dish is named after one of Colin's daughters and she must be a little firecracker. It starts out sweet, but then a slow, peppery heat comes on that gives a great punch.

Champagne with Chinese food? Why not? The Moet & Chandon Nectar Imperial ($65 bottle) is light and fruity - an excellent accompaniment to the spicier dishes. New Moon offers a lovely selection of white, red and sparkling wines to enhance every meal.

Chloe's Shrimp ($14.95) is a colorful dish of crunchy shrimp that are coated in a sweet and sour sauce with a bit of garlic. This dish is named after Colin's other daughter and has quickly become a favorite dish. It's easy to see why; the shrimp are fresh and fat and the sauce is well balanced. Shrimp with Candied Glazed Walnuts ($13.95) is insanely delicious. The surprisingly-crunchy shrimp are tossed in a rich, creamy, slightly-sweet sauce. As if this isn't fabulous enough, the candied walnuts add another element of decadence. The Braised String Beans ($8.95) are possibly the best green beans I have ever tasted. They are fantastically fresh and lightly cooked to maintain their crunch. Tossed with a green onion, garlic and ginger sauce, they are delightful. Braised Hot and Pungent Eggplant ($8.95) is yet another veggie surprise. Who would think that Japanese eggplant could give you that happy, endorphin high? The flavorful sauce includes green onions, carrots and sesame seeds.

Desserts at New Moon are every bit as tasty as the other offerings. A Chocolate Vesuvius cake ($7) is a warm, creamy, not overly sweet chocolate creation that comes with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. The Berry Berry Tart ($6) is a great combination of raspberries and blueberries nestled in a flavorful shortbread crust. New Moon offers a new take on Chinese food that really should not be missed.

New Moon Restaurant is located at 28281 Newhall Ranch Road in Valencia. Reach them at 257-4321. Hours are Sunday through Saturday from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. for lunch and from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. for dinner. The restaurant is open until 11 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.
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