Zephyr is not easily visible from the main road. You have to enter through via the Sein Lann So Pyay Gardens (a fee of 400kyat? is required to access), which is a huge garden compound surrounding the large and idyllic Inya Lake.
Take a short stroll through the gardens and you’ll quickly spot the rustic restaurant at the edge of the lake.
We enjoyed the wonderful view of the setting sun in the evening from our table next to the water. Unfortunately the mosquitoes also enjoyed making a meal of us. The staff make regular rounds throughout the evening to “smoke” under the tables but too much of it gets into your eyes and lungs *cough cough*. Better to wear long pants/tights or use a mighty insect repellent!
Fortunately, everything else goes uphill from here on!
A charming litter of kittens welcomed us with their gamboling all over the patio.
We were initially puzzled why the staff kept saying that there will be other customers (pointing to the empty centre of the patio) and did not allow us to adjust our table inwards for more comfortable seating. Well, soon after, Mummy cat and her litter strode right in and made themselves at home, clearly familiar with the staff, snacks and playtime. Meow!
Then, the food!
Zephyr offers a variety of local and general Asian food. My favorite was the Lahpet Thoke (Burmese tea leaf salad or pickled tea salad). It is savory, sour, and spicy… all in one! The chili padi gives it a real kick and goes well with the fish paste. This salad makes a great accompaniment to rice or plain noodles. I have not tried the many different versions around, but I certainly enjoyed this one!
Next we had the minced and dried fried catfish “floss”. Certainly a first time for me, very interesting dish. According to my friend working in Burma, it is boiled, dried and fried. Just thinking about the effort to make this dish makes me appreciate it so much more!
Then the Soft Shell Crab Masala. For me, a twist on the usual Japanese style soft shell crab we are familiar with, lathered with rich spicy gravy.Great with rice!
Stir fried squid (sotong), with the familiar tze char style. But look at that gorgeous presentation… the pretty swirls of thinly sliced cucumbers circling the plate. Such effort!
I have to say that I am very impressed with the standard of the roast duck here! A bit closer to the style or Hong Kong/ Beijing Roast Duck. Fatty, tender, and a bit gamey. YUM.
Note: As of August 2015, they no longer serve any alcohol (including beer) due to the proximity to the University opposite. The rule also applies to other establishments nearby.
Zephyr Coffee & Restaurant
Address : Inya Rd (Inside Sein Lann So Pyay Gardens), Kamaryut Township
Tel : 098568622