Saturday, February 2, 2013

China Dynasty a Couple of Weekends Ago

China Dynasty 1.25.2013

The Spicy Dumplings
Art and I had some book business to deal with two weekends ago so we decided to head over to China Dynasty, which is a couple of blocks from his house in South Austin. It’s in the shopping center with the Cherry Creek/Tanglewood Village HEB, on the northwest corner of Manchaca and Slaughter. At this location for 24 years, the Chen’s restaurant is first rate; the best in South Austin we think. We were there for lunch, so ordered off of the lunch menu.

We both got bowls of soup instead of cups (which come with the lunch). We opted for their hot and sour, which is excellent: rich porky-chicken stock, tangy with just the right amount of Chinkiang vinegar, strips of luscious pork meat, and spicy from black pepper and chile paste. I always add extra chile paste, but I eat spicy. I think it’s one of the better hot and sour versions in town. We got a side order of their “spicy dumplings”, which are pork wontons swimming in a bowl of sweet and tangy soy with ginger and chile paste. We add the wontons to our hot and sour and take the hot and sour soup to the next level; we use the wonton sauce to add to our rice.

Their eggrolls are flaky and crispy and actually have pork inside, unlike most in town. They are killer here, with big porky deliciousness…..

I am a sucker for their chicken with fresh mushrooms, which is bathed in a rich brown sauce, while Art is a sucker for their version of General Tso’s.

They use boneless chicken thigh meat for their fried chicken dishes, and it’s far superior to boneless breast meat. Chicken breast is for suckers, and I can’t believe that so many idiots demand it. Thigh meat stays moist and has tons more flavor than breast. I suffer the idiots, but at least the Chens know better and use thigh meat.

I guess they were shamed by my mentioning in a Chronicle post that we had to bring our own fresh green chiles, so they have added a special dish called chicken with jalapeño. They brought us out a small dish of it to sample, and it is fantastic: rich with just the right spicy edge from lots of jalapeños, and dynamic jalapeño flavor. This dish is a keeper. Love China Dynasty.

P.S.: they don't have a website...we are trying to shame them into the 21st century by getting one, or at the very least, a business Facebook page, but if you go online and see a menuism link that claims to have their menu, it is BS!  NOT their menu, and much more expensive than they actually are, and the lackluster reviews are not for them. Menusim should be sued, and menipix copied menuism. Both are incredibly lame.

Mick Vann ©   

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