[Mountain View] Samovar Deli & Catering (Russian/ Eastern European)

Got some good homecooked Russian food from Samovar. The cooked food is from the refrigerator inside the store while the baked goods are near the entrance and the register.

I got:
Solyanka/ smoked meat soup
Beef cabbage roll
Samarkand-style lamb pilaf ($7.99)

Baked goods:
Mushroom pie
samsa (baked meat pie)
feta cheese pie
lamb pirozhki
cabbage pirozhki

I am quite fond of the cooked items. The smoked meat soup is cooked with lots of dill, and a variety of smoked meats- sausage, meat cubes, shredded meat, and either cucumbers or pickles that gave the flavors to the soup. A bit tart, a bit smoky- comfy and delicious.

The beef cabbage roll has minced meat in the middle combined with rice, wrapped with cabbage on the outside. Simply prepared but well seasoned.

The Samarkand-style lamb pilaf is based on pilaf styles from Central Asia. Moist saffron-colored pilaf came with well seasoned and tender lamb cubes.

My wife and I are less fond of the baked goods. Perhaps those are more catered to Eastern European tastes.

They got a number of other soups as well- the borscht, chicken noodle, yogurt soup. Other items such as salad and meatloaf were also available.

I didn’t get the pelmeni/ vareniki as I was in a hurry and didn’t want to wait for the dish to be prepared in the kitchen. So I will try that and the other soups, especially the reputable borscht, next time. Samovar provides good, simple homecooked Russian/ Eastern European prepared food for the South Bay. They have 3 tables where you can eat the food and they can heat it up for you. They also sell grocery. Not quite incognito, but let’s just say their sign is pretty small on the outside.

What else do people like here?

Their borscht- their number one selling soup. Got the usual ingredients- beets, tomatoes, dill, carrots, cabbage, etc.

My wife and I had an amusing discussion about the taste. She said she preferred the Cantonese version. I said, but that’s more like a tomato veggie soup but not real borscht, isn’t it?

Those looking for a hearty version probably needs to look for one with bigger chunks of meats and vegetables. This rendition’s beef and vegetables are more finely chopped.

The Samarkand-style chicken pilaf use the same rice base. This time its not as moist, and preferred. Though the chicken is dry. I’d stick with the lamb pilaf.

Mushroom soup is intensely mushroom-y with chunks of portabella and shredded dill throughout the soup. It has plenty of umami and a bit of herbal/ fresh grassy flavor from the dill. Nice soup. The only complaint is one piece of portabella had a bunch of dirt/ grit hiding in it so I had to split it out.

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If you like Russian food and happen to visit Homer, Alaska, try this place.

And if I ever eat there, I will certainly report back. You should hit the Mountain View Samovar and do a taste test between their borscht and the Homer Samovar’s LOL.

OoI got the buzhenina- pork meat leaf. Though the seasoning was well, the meat was super dry. Is buzhenina supposed to be like this?

The beef tongue was ok.

Also saw some stuff I haven’t seen before. Eggplant roll, eggplant sald, Georgian beans salad, chicken kabob with potato.