Sunday, April 10, 2011
GOLDEN GREAT WALL RESTAURANT
Shanghai Noodles. This is why we keep coming back to this restaurant. Stomach and my two daughters love this restaurant’s version of the dish. There is good flavours, nicely textured noodles, “wok hei”—which is a wok’s high heat which creates the nice natural caramelization that is so sought after by cooks. Plus, the dish isn’t soggy from too much cabbage. Instead they employ pieces of fresh spinach. There’s ample strips of pork tenderloin too. Cakebrain’s rating: 5.5/6
You don’t realize how difficult it is to take pictures of menus with a tiny iPhone4. Here is a sample page of the lunch menu from which we ordered. I usually like to order the Sliced Beef Pan Cake, but since we already had two other dishes with pancakes, I decided to pass on it until next time.
I love anything that is wrapped: Lettuce wraps, Crepes, Moo Shoo Pork, Tacos, Burritos and Sushi. If you can wrap it, I will eat it. I particularly enjoy Moo Shoo Pork. Unfortunately it gets a bad “rap” (har har!) from being associated with Westernized food; kind of akin to the stigma of eating Sweet and Sour Pork or Chop Suey. I love Sweet and Sour Pork by the way, but don’t particularly like Chop Suey. That being said, I’m not going to apologize or make excuses for ordering Moo Shoo Pork. I love it.
Moo Shoo Pork Filling: This dish was full of fresh bean sprouts. Good if you love sprouts; not so good if you don’t. The thing about sprouts is they add great crunch and texture to a dish. However, if you take it home and look at it later, the sprouts will have lost all their plumpness and they will be stringy and pretty yucky. Anything with fresh sprouts should be immediately eaten. This version doesn’t have the requisite egg. I think I miss it because the little bits of egg seem to catch and hold the sauce better. This dish was very fresh-tasting though and went well with the wraps. Cakebrain’s rating: 4.5/6
Moo Shoo Wrappers. These come in a covered container to keep them moist, warm and pliable. These are probably the best wrappers I’ve had anywhere because they’re large enough to hold plenty of filling, they’re pliable for quite a while and they don’t break apart when you have filled them. In fact, they are slightly stretchy/chewy and you can pull the edges of the wrap around the filling easily. Only problem is there are never enough wrappers to go with the filling. Don’t you just hate that? The Moo Shoo Pork comes with 6 wrappers. You can order more if you like, but I don’t like paying money for more. Cakebrain’s rating: 6/6
Here’s an assembled Moo Shoo Pork wrapper. You drizzle Hoisin sauce all over it, wrap it up and mmmm. No apologies.
Green Onion Pancakes/Choong Yau Beng. My kids love Green Onion Pancakes. They like the texture of this version. It’s not too greasy and though it has layers, it isn’t particularly flaky. Inside, the interior is tender and it’s layered with plenty of green onion. Funny—just about the only time they’ll NOT pick green onions out of a dish—and the exterior of the pancakes is crispy. Cakebrain’s rating: 5/6
Golden Great Wall is a clean, well-lit place to eat. Service is efficient and friendly. I have often seen Tojo eating here at lunch with his staff in one of the big tables at the back (staff meal?) I guess that makes sense because Tojo’s is just a hop and a skip away from Golden Great Wall. Shanghai food is economical (read carb-loading). Parking can be a problem, but they do provide for parking at the Holiday Inn parkade. There’s a sign indicating the restaurant’s patrons can park there for free. You just have to tell the restaurant what your licence plate number is so your car won’t get towed. There’s street meter parking and several nearby pay parkades because of all the medical buildings. There are plenty of buses that traverse W. Broadway, and a bus stop is also nearby.