A Chinese restaurant find
Crowson Guy has put in a major plug for a Chinese restaurant in Odenton called Grace Garden. I know how desperate some of you are for authentic Chinese food, so I thought you'd like to know about it. Plus, he sent me two reviews he posted on Chowhound.com, and you know how much I like mini-reviews.
"If you go, be sure to choose from the traditional Chinese menu, not the crappy Chinese American one," he told me.
Here's what he had to say on Chowhound: ...
It's 10 at night and I'm again eating the leftovers from our spectacular lunch today at Grace(ful) garden -- Fish noodles like nothing you have had before, delicate squiggles with shards of Chinese sausage, shitake mushroom slices for texture contrast, and fresh cilantro in some bites.ma po tofu, the first I have had that reminds me of being in China, with a fierce bite, soft texture and finished off with the sharp tingle of ma la: Sichuan peppercorns (the chef asked me if I liked them, and was prepared to make the dish milder).More later...If you can, go with a party so you can sample several items from the amazing 'Traditional Chinese' menu, and the Order In Advance dishes are worth the advance planning. But otherwise, get in the car, travel up I 95 from the DC suburbs, or down 95 from Baltimore and a few miles east on 175 to get a wonderful treat.
Tonight, 12 chowhounds and friends had tea smoked duck, peacock chicken ( a cold steamed whole chicken bathed in an aromatic and spicy sauce), Yunnan pineapple steamed rice with shrimp, an off-menu dish that Chef made for us, Pork belly braised with Mui Choy, (think sauerbraten with better meat and more indulgent), Twice cooked pork, home grown baby broccoli bathed in ginger and garlic, E noodles with shitake noodles-- the noodles start off soft, then bounce back, Taiwan fish, vivid with the taste of fresh herbs,
And 2 dishes I thought were not so successful: Tofu with crabmeat sauce: not enough contrast between the mild tofu and the mild crabmeat (but the dish still got finished!) And Tamarind shrimp: huge shrimp, but the flavors did not quite meld.
Ten dishes, that included a whole duck and a whole chicken, plus seconds of the broccoli, were ample for us 12, and only cost $18 per person, tax included!
I know Odenton may be a bit of a schlep from your place, but the flavors, and the family that run the restaurant, make it well worth the journey.
(Photo courtesy of the Grace Garden Web site)