I’m convinced that the best nights in life are when you least expect it. Such was the case at Green Leaf Chinese Restaurant, located at 376 Port Washington Blvd, Port Washington. Upon entering the restaurant, I felt like I was entering a Chinese restaurant from the 70’s. The decor is from the early ” Shlock Dynasty”, with heavy wall murals,and a lot of red and gold. The overall look of the restaurant was a bit tired. I figured this place to be standard Chino-Judaic fare. It turned out to be quite the opposite.
We were greeted at the table by Simon, the chef and owner (I presume). Simon is Taiwanese, and explained that the food served is of Mandarin and Szechuan style. As is typical of the Quest, we shut the menus, and asked Simon to take charge of the ordering. While waiting for our food, we munched on Fried Noodles and drank our Mai Tai’s and Tsingtaos. First up was Thai Style Seafood Soup, that was brought out in a huge bowl. It looked like a Chinese version of Minestrone soup. The soup was tomato based with carrots, shrimp, scallops, and hints of lemongrass and lime. It had a real nice taste, and packed a bit of heat as well.
Appetizers included Dim Sum and Spare Ribs. Both dishes were mediocre, at best. The Dim Sum was kind of boring, and really needed the side sauce to save it. The ribs looked great, and tasted good, but the sauce was too sweet for me.
Main Entrees was where Green Leaf Chinese Restaurant came to life! I can honestly say that every dish was good:
Taipei Chicken – spicy, served in a red broth with red peppers & bok choi. The flattened pieces of chicken really soaked up the flavor from the sauce.
Salt & Pepper Squid – Chinese Style calamari, with scallions, garlic, and hints of cilantro. Interesting dish!
Chinese Watercress with Shrimp – fresh watercress with shrimps in a real light tasty sauce.
Green Leaf caught me completely off guard. The meal was extremely creative, and had an overall very healthy feel to the food. I recommend requesting Simon’s help in ordering. He was really very pleasant, and took a great deal of pride in his cooking. This meal was rated very high by the Chinese Quest. I think we might have been caught up in the “surprise” effect of the evening. Not quite sure that it is the Best of the Quest, but it was a great meal, and I will most definitely be back.
Mee Tsu Yan