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I won’t be calling this an official review. But, it is the first time that I actually ate AT Hunan Taste in Greenvale. As you’ll recall, we took-out Chinese food from Hunan Taste a few months ago. We weren’t completely impressed with the take-out, so we knew it was only a matter of time before we did a formal sit-down review of Hunan Taste. But, tonight, was NOT that night. Tonight, the Chamber of Commerce that spawned the Chinese Quest had their annual Board of Directors Appreciation Meeting/Dinner, and this year we chose to have it at Hunan Taste. For fun, I gave everyone an official Chinese Quest review scorecard to provide their ratings.
Unfortunately, only one member of The Chinese Quest showed up this evening. And to protect his anonymity, his name will be masked in the ratings below. Hunan Taste was packed this evening. As it appears to be EVERY night. Valet parking is the only way to park, and you don’t even get a ticket. I tried to score a nicer car on the way out, but the Valet is one sharp Fortune Cookie, so I ended up with the ride that I came in with.
Nine of us gathered this evening, at a round table. Instead of sticking us in a corner, since EVERYONE aside from the waitstaff was Caucasian, and seemingly predominantly Jewish, we got to eat in a prime area. The restaurant is quite loud. Yes it was crowded, but it seemed that everyone talks loudly. Must be that Gold Coast thing… everyone NEEDS to be heard. So, we had to pretty much forgo our meeting and just concentrate on having a good time. And, we did.
We ordered a few appetizers while we waited for a few stragglers to arrive. I can’t say much of what we had was very memorable, though I did my best to try to record what we ate. As we just got one portion of everything, not everyone got to try everything. But, amongst the appetizers we had were:
- Spareribs – I must say, quite spare of meat, and spare of taste. Some people loved it. Clearly they weren’t one of us 😉
- Spring Roll – It was alright. Not too greasy
- Egg Roll – I was one of the unfortunates who didn’t get a piece
- Shrimp Dumplings – See above.
- Vegetable Dumplings – I would have gladly traded for a shrimp dumpling
- Chicken Dumplings – I managed to score half of one. I would have enjoyed the other half too.
For main dishes, we basically chose a few dishes that we each liked and I did ask for the waiter for a recommendation of their best dish. We had:
- Crispy Beef – Not bad. But lacked flavor
- Happy Family – It didn’t argue back, but I can’t honestly say I remember what that dish tasted like.
- Chinatown Shrimp – This is what the waiter recommended. We should have left ALL the ordering up to him. This was probably my favorite dish.
- Grilled Shrimp, served with Hoisin Sauce – In case you didn’t know, EVERYTHING tastes better with hoisin sauce. This was a nice dish.
- Chicken with Garlic Sauce – Not memorable.
- Kung Po Chicken – I have a feeling that I didn’t try this one. At lease I hope that I didn’t, because there was NO kung-POW!
- Peking Duck – Umm… pancakes and not buns? Really?!!! This one didn’t really do it for me.
They did serve us up a nice dessert and a bunch of fortune cookies.
I must say for a Hunan style restaurant, the food lacked a lot of spices that one typically thinks of when one thinks of Hunan cuisine.
Please remember that the ratings below are totally unofficial, and do NOT appear, and will not appear in the Official Chinese Quest Rankings of Chinese Restaurants on Long Island and New York City.
Our Fortune Cookies:
“I have a dream… Time to go to bed.” Can I pretend that this was all a dream??
“If you bite the hand that feeds you, it won’t taste as good as the food you were fed.” I might beg to differ 😉
“Life is a gamble–so roll the dice.” Snake eyes!!
“If you can shape it in your mind, you will find it in your life.” I don’t know why I find that to be a very scary thought!
“Love is the law, love under will”. I ran that one past the ex-Lawyer in our group. He couldn’t litigate that one either!
“If you can shape it in your mine, you will find it in your life.” If two people get the same fortune cookie, it must mean something. I think!
“Go to the elders when you feel a confidence crisis.” Why was everyone looking at Mee??
Please take the following ratings with a grain of salt. Everyone used a pseudonym to protect their innocence. I should have used a body double.
Please note too that not everyone understood the concept of “Jew Appeal“, so they marked their scorecards with “N/A”, and that wasn’t factored in to to the overall rating.
Though not an official metric, I must say that the Mai Tai’s were pretty good. If memory serves me correctly! 😉
On second thought, it they didn’t know what Jew Appeal was, or any of the other metrics, then there score was recorded as a zero. Either you know Jew Appeal, or you don’t. And if you don’t. It’s nothing to you. And, that’s ok.
If this had been a real review, Hunan Taste would have placed in the Top Three overall. Clearly our diners are much better Board Members than they are Chinese restaurant reviewers. And I say that out of total respect and love.
And, as you can see by the sign on their door, they ARE open for Christmas! I bet it will be crowded. But, Mee won’t be there!
Humbly submitted for your consumption,
—Mee Magnum (“Chop! Chop!”)