If you go
What: Su-Tei restaurant
Where: 5711 MacCorkle Ave. SE, Kanawha City
When: Open 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m., Monday-Thursday; 11 a.m. to 11 p.m., Friday; noon to 11 p.m., Saturday; noon to 9:30 p.m., Sunday
Info: 304-925-7562, www.su-tei.com
CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- In case you didn't see my tweets — or hear my squeals! — all the way from The Greenbrier this past weekend, Charleston culinary gem Noah's Eclectic Bistro was named "grand champion" at the 2014 West Virginia Cast Iron Cook-off after taking on some regional restaurant heavy-hitters.
Including The Greenbrier itself.
I'm so in love with the food being served at this tiny little place on McFarland Street that I cheered louder than Chef Noah Miller did when the night's big winner was announced.
I was initially a little worried the panel of esteemed judges might not see Noah's food the way I do, but then thought, "How could they not?" The food here is truly in a class by itself.
If you're one of those who still haven't stopped in to try it, I don't know what else to say. You have no idea what you're missing.
Charleston favorite Paterno's at the Park also had a good showing at the competition, winning "Best Use of Appalachian Ingredients" and the "Whistle While You Work Award" for a lively team spirit.
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Another local restaurant making waves is Su-Tei, and I know what you're thinking . . .
"You mean that place in Kanawha City that used to be a Ponderosa, then a Blockbuster and now has a temporary (I hope?) vinyl banner tied out front announcing its opening?"
Yeah, that place. And don't let the outside fool you.
The food is incredible and the inside has been transformed into a gorgeous, stylish, Asian oasis that will make you feel like you're dining in New York City, if not the Far East.
Ultra-cool lighting and decor, large high-back ivory leather chairs and semi-circle booths, cozy tables surrounding a soothing fountain, lots of fabrics against contrasting sleek, dark accents. Seriously, this place is amazing.
If you don't believe me, ask a friend or check out all the top-notch reviews on Yelp, Urban Spoon or TripAdvisor. This restaurant has quickly attracted a legion of loyal followers and I'm one of the biggest.
Su-Tei is owned and operated by Andri Purwanto, a 37-year-old native of Indonesia who managed five New York City restaurants before escaping to West Virginia, where he ran Kimono Japanese Restaurant in Beckley.