I walked into the Ocean Buffet Asian lunch stop on the corner of the Oaks Mall Plaza, and the first thing I saw was rows, and rows of lighted food trays. Lunch time customers were busy scurrying from the lines of food trays searching out their favorite ABE. That's Asian Buffet Entrée for the non-eating professional.
You have to trust me, GLOBers. I was witnessing a lunch-time professional eating convention where the weak, or timid lunchouter could be trampled, kicked under the buffet line, and left for the afternoon clean up crew.
The Ocean Buffet has EVERYTHING!: Appetizers, soup, low mein, chow mein, egg foo young, beef, chicken, vegetables, and even a line of American dishes like pot roast, baked ham, baked fish, roasted turkey, and non-stir fried vegetables.
Ocean Buffet also has a complete sushi and sashimi bar, a raw bar of oysters and an assortment of crab and crab claws.
Last but not least, there is a spectacular dessert bar!
Of course all of this is subject to change as the eating professionals (EPs) attack these islands of gluttonous, masticating delights.
This isn't my first buffet foraging rodeo, so I had a strategy. I casually strolled the isles searching out my favorites, AND making sure sure I didn't miss any special yummy entrees gems that would pleasantly surprise my taste buds.
I quickly adopted the EP assumption that this lunch would be a two-trip visit to the food islands. My plan was to first select my favorite lunch time goodies, and then capture a second helping of my buffet world favorites.
My mother would have been proud of the OB choices I made on my first lunch plate creation (pic at top), which consisted of fried rice, a vegetable medley of broccoli, carrots, baby corn, peppers, and mushrooms. For proteins I selected some stir-fried pork, fried shrimp, and an interesting looking raw oyster. I added a dollop of some of the hottest Chinese mustard I have tasted in some time.
Stir-fried veggies done right have to be the crispiest, most colorful, crunchiest and flavorful way to please a homo sapiens palette. Mixed with the fried rice, the veggies won the GLOB Master best lunch entrée of the day award. The pork was just OK, with an unremarkable taste. Still, I ate all my pork. The fried shrimp were too heavily battered for my prawn pleasure. I think the oyster was of the smoked variety, albeit on the dry and chewy side of yummy. There is an image of my first lunch plate at the top of this feature.
I also picked out a spring roll for the same reason I always order a taco in Mexican cafés. When in Hong Kong . . . ? The roll was crunchy and provided a nice scoop for the Chinese mustard. How hot was the mustard? Imagine one of those Looney Tune cartoons where the top of your head explodes. Imagine your sinuses swelling and burning so bad you can't breathe.
Then I went back for a second Ocean Buffet plate of gastronomic pleasure. It would be disrespectful not to try all the entrees or at least as many as possible, correct?
I did get some more fried rice and veggies the second time and they were very good. I also went American and tried the sliced pot roast and gravy. The pot roast was ok but a little chewy and on the dry side. (Just like that unusual looking oyster!!)
I skipped the dessert bar, however there were some baked goods that ALMOST pulled me into their web of sugar love.
The buffet lunch is nominally priced at $8. It is easy to see why this is such a popular lunch spot for serious Hogtown eaters.
I'm going back to Ocean Buffet -- but not any time soon.
The pluses and minuses of Ocean Buffet:
Ocean Buffet (+) indicators: A zillion lunch time choices; fresh, crisp veggies; and excellent fried rice.
Ocean Buffet (-) indicators: Crowded, lunch line-like attitude; I ate too much.
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- Phone Number: 331-1700
- Address: 6795 W Newberry Rd., Gaineville, FL
- Urban GLOB Location: Newberry Road
- Web Site: Ocean Buffet
- Latitude: 29.65861
- Longitude: -82.41482
Jerry Thursday, 17 August 2017 13:41 Comment Link
Ocean Buffet Wontons were the worst I have ever seen. Otherwise decent buffet