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TLO Restaurant Review: Lido Restaurant

11:11 AM EDT on August 29, 2023

While I had never been to the legendary Lido, 2518 N. Military Ave., I always had heard rave reviews about it's Vietnamese, Chinese, and even French cuisine, and always longed for its acclaimed food and wonderful customer service.

I was planning to stop by a few years ago and enjoy their mind-altering morsels, but, sadly, the pandemic and multiple strokes halted those sad plans.

But, with the healing balm of our Lord and savior, I finally made it by, and it was all I wanted and more. Much more.

I went on a late afternoon with my girl Friday at my side and, to be fair, you would never guess Lido was one of Oklahoma City's favorite restaurants.

It looks very basic and very mini-mall, but once you're through the double doors, your quickly captured by it's simple charm, greeted by a sign that reads “Lido means house to gather.”

It’s very rare for a restaurant to have a motto, but Lido's is quite apropos for the occasion.

As soon as we were seated, our glasses were filled with cool water and loaded menus were evenly distributed. After a Bible-length discussion of the complexities of what cuisine to order, we placed our orders, starting with the always classic Crab Rangoon ($8.95).

Crab Rangoon generally has a cheesy, imitational taste, but Lido's crabmeat – at least I think it's crabmeat – tastes fresh and very meaty, something that’s not always present at other restaurants.

Also called Hoành thánh phô mai, the crab meat and cream cheese are a powerful combination when combined. With six Rangoon in tandem, they are a surprising appetizer, with the fluffy cream mixed with the fried dough that makes it all work. It truly elevates beyond appetizer fare.

For the main course, my girlfriend had an old favorite in a new bowl – the Combination Vermicelli ($13.95) or the Bún Đặc Biệt.

With shrimp, pork, beef, and chicken, with a base of tender vermicelli, assorted vegetables, and fine breadcrumbs, it was memorable.

The tender meats, ranging from fried to grilled, were piled very orderly and tidy. With a small swish of the chopsticks, it was swept away with the vermicelli base, creating a soupy mixture of large morsels of meats and fine noodles. It was perfect for her, slurping up the hot bowl of noodles.

I opted to try something very new to me: Squid in Black Bean Sauce ($15.95), or Mực tươi xào tâu xi.

In this dish, stir-fried squids are cuddled with onions, bell peppers, mushrooms, and baby corns, and then smothered in a black bean sauce, making it the gothiest dish money can buy.

I've had squid numerous times before, usually on Chinese buffets, and I never understood it's allure. But this…this squid was remarkable, layered with spicy, aromatic flavors creating a modern black gold. The double delirious squid is very tenable and very tender, with the flavorful shades of the dark lighting my tastebuds like never before.

As I sipped on my soda, egg yolk, and condensed milk ($3.95) drink, I was more than satisfied with my trip to the Lido. And, even more, I finally “got” squid and I want more.

After one quick trip, I understand Lido, and see why the masses lost their mind when I nearly closed a a few years ago. If you're ever in the area, I wholly recommend you stop by to gather.

Cómpralo ya!


Follow Louis on Twitter at @LouisFowler and Instagram at @louisfowler78.

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