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chinese--in and around the twin cities


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#16 SLBunge

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Posted 05 January 2008 - 11:39 PM

Me: Now we're going to make a new rule. When you put the dan dan noodles in their tiny bowl on the table and you see us trying to stir them..or if you don't see us trying to stir them..or whatever the fuck you see us doing with them it means the bowl is too small. That's means bring us a bigger bowl. Do you think you can handle that?
Waiter: Yeah.
Me: Good. Now why don't you start right now and get us a bigger fucking bowl!

....

It was a good lunch. I think I may experiment a little bit with the leftover duck. I was interested in the taro but the dish didn't seem right. I think you may have been onto something when talking about how much sauce there was and how we really didn't know how to eat it.

I agree that the chicken was surprisingly good...better than the kung pao chicken we had last time. As Mrs. Jones said, it would be hard to not get the tendon...and the bamboo tips...and the dan dan noodles.
Suffocating under a pile of cheese curds.

#17 SethG

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Posted 05 January 2008 - 11:57 PM

Mongo, you go out in public with cyclists?
Why yes, I do have a rock climbing blog! Climb and Punishment

#18 mongo_jones

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Posted 06 January 2008 - 12:09 AM

as long as they're not in costume.

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current restaurant review: house of curry (sri lankan in rosemount, mn)

 

current whisky review: glen ord 28

 

current recipe: white bean curry with green peppers

 

 

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#19 SLBunge

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 08:17 PM

Dim sum at Jun Bo in Richfield (near-south suburban Minneapolis) today with mongo, mrs. jones, and a few of their colleagues. Standouts included the jellyfish salad, the seaweed salad (particularly the marinated carrots and radish below the seaweed), the smaller of the two barbecued pork items, the fried garlic shrimp bun, and the steamed shrimp bun with chives.

Mongo played point guard and ran the offense. At one point in the meal it looked like he had over-ordered and things were bleak. We all seemed to get our second wind and by the end the only plate with a substantial amount of food left on it was the rice with bacon and peanuts.
Suffocating under a pile of cheese curds.

#20 mongo_jones

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 09:41 PM

you mean the fried garlic shrimp and shrimp-chive dumplings, right? those were good, and the seaweed and jellyfish were indeed standouts. i also thought the chicken feet were excellent.

it was better than i was hoping for, but also substantially more expensive. not that $22 per head is that expensive in the abstract, but i'm used to paying more like $15-16 per head for a spread like that. but we'll be back.


my annoying opinions: whisky, food and occasional cultural commentary

 

current restaurant review: house of curry (sri lankan in rosemount, mn)

 

current whisky review: glen ord 28

 

current recipe: white bean curry with green peppers

 

 

facts are meaningless. you could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true!
~homer simpson


 


#21 SLBunge

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Posted 10 February 2008 - 09:48 PM

Yeah. Those. Clearly I'm using the word bun too loosely.

The couple of dim sum experiences I've had seem to have been around $20 so I wasn't surprised. Come to think of it, both of those times there were doctors present so I assume because of their struggles making ends meet with insurance and loans they were really clamping down on the high priced items.
Suffocating under a pile of cheese curds.

#22 SLBunge

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Posted 22 March 2008 - 04:37 PM

Another good meal at Little Szechuan last night: dan dan noodles (in their tiny bowl), bamboo tips in chili oil, fish-flavored chicken, and shrimp with tofu and wild chilis.

The shrimp/tofu was far better than a fish/tofu version I had had previously. Fairly mild sauce with fairly spicy bird chilis floating around. A good foil to the spicy cold dishes. And the fish-flavored chicken was as solidly good as last time.

Something didn't feel quite right and about halfway through the meal I realized that it was because there was too much room on the table. Apparently I had gotten used to eating there with the drs jones and getting so many dishes that it overwhelms the table.

I think I want to try the Tea House in Plymouth. Maybe when the weather improves.
Suffocating under a pile of cheese curds.

#23 SLBunge

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Posted 05 April 2008 - 10:21 PM

Great lunch at Little Szechuan with mongo, mrs. jones, and one of their colleagues today.
  • Standard starters of bamboo tips in chili oil and beef tendon with green onion.
  • Tried a new cold dish: bean jelly strips in a chili sauce. Excellent dish with nice balance of tanginess and heat.
  • Mongo thought the tomato and egg soup was boring but the rest of us know he's a moron and thought it was a good counter-point to the spicy cold dishes.
  • Crispy duck wasn't very crispy but was nicely tender and had good flavor.
  • Fish and tofu in spicy sauce came with a ladle full of chili flakes on top and turned out to be one of today's favorites. Tender chunks of mild fish and soft tofu with chinese cabbage at the bottom. Great flavor that was not overwhelmingly spicy until the end when you couldn't avoid the clumps of chili flakes.
  • Lamb in spicy broth was a bit gamey in a good way. Sort of a soup which was slightly different than what I expected. The lamb was very thinly cut.
Surprisingly few leftovers. We did end up having an overflow of dishes on the table and had to use an adjacent table to hold the remains of the cold dishes after the mains were served. Next time we're going to ask for a 6-top for the four of us.

This week's tense moment came before the meal when mongo was trying to explain to the waitress that we wanted our food spicy and she misunderstood and thought we wanted Minnesota-hot. Could have been tragic.
Suffocating under a pile of cheese curds.

#24 mongo_jones

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Posted 05 April 2008 - 11:21 PM

i'm always unsure about how to eat those meat in broth dishes. are we supposed to eat the broth as soup? are we supposed to add rice? are we supposed to just pick the meat out? who knows? it was a tasty broth though. the fish-tofu-veg dish was better than any other tofu related dish we've had there--i think that might have to make the regular rotation.

that was a very good lunch, and we left embarrassingly little of it to take home. all this food, 4 beers, tax and tip: $100 for four people. not bad at all.

my annoying opinions: whisky, food and occasional cultural commentary

 

current restaurant review: house of curry (sri lankan in rosemount, mn)

 

current whisky review: glen ord 28

 

current recipe: white bean curry with green peppers

 

 

facts are meaningless. you could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true!
~homer simpson


 


#25 SLBunge

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Posted 10 May 2008 - 10:26 PM

Excellent meal last night at Tea House in Saint Paul. They have changed their main menu so now it includes the Szechuan items and the Americanized Chinese stuff. All of the dishes we ordered were listed as Szechuan items.

Dan dan noodles were good, but not as good as they are at Little Szechuan. Here they use angel hair pasta which has less tooth. They did bring it out in an appropriately sized bowl and they stirred the whole thing up for us.

Scallion pancakes were excellent. Expertly fried. Light and airy. Sauce was nothing special.

Boiled fish with tofu in a broth with lots of red pepper reminded me of the dish I had with Jones's last time we were at Little Szechuan. The fish was thinly sliced flounder. Lots of Napa cabbage wilted at the bottom of the bowl. Great flavor and not quite overwhelmingly spicy.

Szechuan style kun pao chicken was excellent. Boiled peanuts instead of roasted. Touch of sweetness to the dark sauce but not cloying. Really good food.

A really strong contender to the more familiar Little Szechuan. I need to return to each several times to continue the research.

Suffocating under a pile of cheese curds.

#26 kuan

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Posted 15 May 2008 - 11:04 AM

Boy MPLS talk consists of three people. smile.gif

Mongo, if it's congee you just use a spoon. In a broth/noodles dish it's chopsticks in one hand, chinese soup spoon in other.
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#27 mongo_jones

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Posted 21 June 2008 - 06:13 PM

two recent meals at little szechwan:

1) impromptu dinner a few weeks ago with some colleagues on the way home from a dept. gathering in the cities. our colleagues were new to the place, and mostly went along with our suggestions. one, however, does not eat any meat other than chicken so we mostly ordered fish and chicken. the exceptions were the beef tendon appetizer, and the cumin lamb. this latter was picked by one of the newbies, and was excellent. also got the sauteed stringbeans, and these were great too. also on the table: kung pao chicken, the spicy tofu with fish fillet, an appetizer of crispy lotus root (also quite good) and the spicy bamboo tips.

2) lunch yesterday with my parents. my father is not allowed red meat so we stuck with fish, pork and chicken: dan dan noodles, spicy bamboo tips, fish fillet and pickled vegetable soup, sauteed green beans, fish-flavour chicken, and the spicy tofu with fish fillet. a good meal but i didn't detect very much of a sichuan peppercorn note.

also, i have been told by mrs. jones that i need to stop asking for the tofu/fish fillet thing extra spicy--it was almost unfeasibly hot yesterday.

my annoying opinions: whisky, food and occasional cultural commentary

 

current restaurant review: house of curry (sri lankan in rosemount, mn)

 

current whisky review: glen ord 28

 

current recipe: white bean curry with green peppers

 

 

facts are meaningless. you could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true!
~homer simpson


 


#28 mongo_jones

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Posted 21 June 2008 - 06:18 PM

QUOTE(kuan @ May 15 2008, 06:04 AM) View Post
Mongo, if it's congee you just use a spoon. In a broth/noodles dish it's chopsticks in one hand, chinese soup spoon in other.


so, the broth is meant to be all eaten as well? so would one normally get a soup or a broth dish but not both?

my annoying opinions: whisky, food and occasional cultural commentary

 

current restaurant review: house of curry (sri lankan in rosemount, mn)

 

current whisky review: glen ord 28

 

current recipe: white bean curry with green peppers

 

 

facts are meaningless. you could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true!
~homer simpson


 


#29 kuan

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Posted 22 June 2008 - 02:22 PM

QUOTE(mongo_jones @ Jun 21 2008, 01:18 PM) View Post
QUOTE(kuan @ May 15 2008, 06:04 AM) View Post
Mongo, if it's congee you just use a spoon. In a broth/noodles dish it's chopsticks in one hand, chinese soup spoon in other.


so, the broth is meant to be all eaten as well? so would one normally get a soup or a broth dish but not both?


The noodle/broth dishes are meant to be eaten individually. Soups are meant to be shared and normally come out in a huge bowl and traditionally portioned out at the table.

However...

Some soups which are meant to be shared contain transparent noodles which don't normally go into noodle/broth dishes. Noodle/broth dishes that are meant to be eaten individually normally contain white rice noodles of different shapes and sizes or egg noodles, normally thin and long.
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#30 mongo_jones

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Posted 22 June 2008 - 03:13 PM

QUOTE(kuan @ Jun 22 2008, 09:22 AM) View Post
QUOTE(mongo_jones @ Jun 21 2008, 01:18 PM) View Post
QUOTE(kuan @ May 15 2008, 06:04 AM) View Post
Mongo, if it's congee you just use a spoon. In a broth/noodles dish it's chopsticks in one hand, chinese soup spoon in other.


so, the broth is meant to be all eaten as well? so would one normally get a soup or a broth dish but not both?


The noodle/broth dishes are meant to be eaten individually. Soups are meant to be shared and normally come out in a huge bowl and traditionally portioned out at the table.



hmm the broth dish i referred to upthread also came in a huge bowl. slbunge, do you remember if they gave us additional small bowls?

my annoying opinions: whisky, food and occasional cultural commentary

 

current restaurant review: house of curry (sri lankan in rosemount, mn)

 

current whisky review: glen ord 28

 

current recipe: white bean curry with green peppers

 

 

facts are meaningless. you could use facts to prove anything that's even remotely true!
~homer simpson