Tasty China

I discovered this gem about a year and a half ago when one of my friends took me and about eight others for lunch.  Some were skeptical at first, it’s in a sketchy strip mall with a burnt out hotel and shuttered latin discos, but they were all true believers an hour later with numb tongues and full bellies! All you need to know is that I have been over 20 times! Peter Chang is a great chef, but I will not wax poetic here, as plenty others have covered that topic:    

http://blogs.ajc.com/food-and-more/2010/12/15/peter-chang-the-enigmatic-chef/    

My focus will be on the many dishes I have had and offer my take. When you walk in, it just looks like every other Chinese place…that is until you try the food!  The service is also great; while the wait staff doesn’t speak much english, they are very curteous and the water glasses never run dry.  The depth of flavors is astounding and the execution in the kitchen is usually spot on.  My one complaint is the obvoius difference when Chang is not in the kitchen, the eggplant tends to be mushy and the beans lack that spark of flavor.  Hopefully he can get all the chefs up to par now that he is in Atlanta full-time.  The menu is a little daunting ( approx 196 dishes when you add in all the specials) so start with the Chief (Chef) Specials and don’t be afraid to ask about the daily specials.

You know it's authentic when you can order Chief Specials!

Braised Fish with Vegetable in Hot Chili Oil Extra Spicy!

This is my all time favorite TC dish; the fish is silky and almost melts in your mouth and the cabbage brings a nice change of texture.  The broth steals the show and if it wouldn’t be akward and strange, I would bath in it. A bowl full of rice is a great way to absorb the broth and enjoy it throughout the entire meal!   

Don-don noodles with Pork

This is a great way to start the meal and comes with either pork or beef. A lot of great flavor and the noodles are usually perfect! Onto the veggies:   

Dry-fried Green Beans

Stir Fried Cabbage

Dry-fried Eggplant

Another must order is the Dry-fried Eggplant. Its crispy exterior layer gives way to gooey eggplant that almost melts in your mouth. The cilantro, schezwan peppercorns, ginger and lemon grass oil explode in your mouth and leave you numb for a minute or two. Don’t drink water directly after eating this or the peppercorns will make it taste a little peculiar!  

Deep Fried Pork Belly...need I say more!

Make sure you have at least three-four people if you order this because it is super rich and your sodium levels will not register in clinical tests! 

Iron Griddle Cooked Chicken with Scallion and Chili

The cumin in this dish was intense! The chicken contiues to cook on the serving dish and the more it cooks the spicer and more flavorful it becomes.  It’s also worth noting all of the different serving vessels and presentations they use, as they definitley add to the overall enjoyment of the meal!

Carnage!

Other dishes to try (straight from the menu so excuse their typos/misspellings): Fragrance Spicy Duck, Whole Fish with Spicy Sauce,  Chicken with Three Kind of Mushroom, Hot and Numbing Combination, Crystal Shrimp with Broccoli, Shan City Chicken with Red Chili Pepper,Fried Spare Ribs in Sichuan Sauce Wuxi Style.

Peter Chang has just opened up his new eponymous restaurant that is much larger, more expensive, and in a nicer, stand alone location. I have only been twice so I want to go one or two more times before I post about it, however the food was amazing both times.  I have been back to TC twice since the opening of Peter Chang’s and it’s still great.  Please give Tasty China a try and don’t embarass yourself or your friends by ordering sweet and sour shrimp, or any other dish for that matter from the “American Menu”…

http://www.tastychina.net
Tasty China on Urbanspoon

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One thought on “Tasty China

  1. Pingback: ATL Food Snob » Ordering Guide for Tasty China & Peter Chang

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