On a bit of a whim, the hubby and I stopped into China Taste. A small storefront at Bob Wallace and Triana, you can opt to dine in at a handful of tables under dim fluorescent lighting or carry out. A majority of the patrons we saw were picking up food for carry out.
The menu was expansive and each paper copy had a section at the bottom which could serve as receipt and ticket…setup to optimize for what I assume is a large lunch crowd. Spicy dishes were clearly marked and spice levels could be requested. After perusing the menu, we ordered our selections at the counter. A sesame chicken combo dinner for me and an off menu chicken lo mein combination dinner for the hubby. (Notably, his substitution request was happily accommodated with no fuss.) We added a bottle of diet pepsi and a water which came from a small cooler to the side of the counter.
My sesame chicken (shown at the top of this post) included a generous amount of breaded chicken, coated in sauce and sprinkled with sesame seeds. The chicken was fairly average in texture–not overly chewy, not fall apart tender. The viscous sauce was lightly sweet and underwritten with a vinegary tang.
The fried rice featured bright saffron colored short grained rice sprinkled through with bits of meat and vegetables. Bits of white onion added some crunch, and the bbq style pork was packed with flavor, but the rice and other veggies were a disappointment. The rice itself was dry, as were the peas. The carrots were soft, but not particularly flavorful. I liked the idea of using Chinese bbq pork in the fried rice, but wished the rest of the dish could have lived up to it’s promise.
The egg rolls were..odd. The wrap was thick and chewy, almost as though they had been double wrapped before frying. The filling included shredded cabbage with a familiar flavor that I couldn’t quite place. I suspect some form of brining, since it was bringing to mind coleslaws and kimchi. Mixed in with the cabbage were little red/pink flecks. Shrimp? Possibly. The menu had only stated “egg roll”, but they do offer shrimp egg rolls as appetizers.
The hubby enjoyed his meal slightly more than I enjoyed mine, but neither of us were blown away. Our main dishes were executed cleanly, but the sides were disappointing. The food is plentiful (neither of us could even approach finishing our meals) and inexpensive but if you are looking for truly great Chinese food, continue onward.
Total for the meal: $15.22 (included two combination dinners and one bottled soft drink)
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