Saturday night, Michael and I wanted to try something new (to us), but we didn’t want to go through the hassle of waiting an hour for a table on everyone’s favorite date night.  After about ten minutes of the “where you want to go” game, I pulled out my trusty OpenTable app to see if any restaurants had a table available for an ill prepared party of two.  We settled on an Asian restaurant in Mt. Pleasant that had a killer menu and an opening that worked perfectly.

Aya Cookhouse is located in a small shopping center right off of Highway 17. The décor is simple, modern, and not anything like a stereotypical Asian restaurant.  We were greeted with a friendly smile and were happily surprised to learn that Aya owned and operated by the same people as Red Orchid – our favorite Chinese lunch spot.

The Menu – Aya has such a vast selection of yumminess, your taste buds can literally do their own Asian world tour. Whether you are in the mood for Vietnamese Pho, Korean beef, Moo Shu pancakes, Thai Basil chicken, Sushi, or a range of ramen and kimchi dishes, you will walk away a happy camper. I got the Lemongrass Pork Noodles – sweet potato noodles, a few veggies, fresh cilantro, and sautéed lemongrass pork all mixed together in a savory dish with a little kick.

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The Service – The staff is crazy friendly and attentive, but not to the extreme.  The owner even brought our food to the table and explained how to best mix the ingredients on our plates so that we could experience the optimal flavor combination of each dish.

The Food Orgasm Moment– While the entire meal was so good it made me want to lick my plate, the climax came early with the sweetest buns to ever touch these lips.  You absolutely must try the Korean Fried Chicken Steamed Buns! The soft steamed rice buns are very slightly sweet, which pairs nicely with the touch of spice in the kimchi slaw. Add in a piece of perfectly fried chicken and you will reach the pinnacle of ecstasy!

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Likelihood of a Repeat Performance – We will definitely be returning…I can’t stay away from those buns!

Aya Cookhouse

915 Houston Northcutt Blvd

http://www.ayacookhouse.com/