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Revisited. Relaunched. Take 2. Whatever you want to call it. It did. “Orient Odyssey”, the Chinese Restaurant at 501 North Broadway, Jericho, NY, after being open only a short time had closed their doors to retool. CTRL-ALT-DELETE. Restart. They did. But what did they do? For re-starters, they took all the Lazy Susan’s off the tables. Why? They also removed some of the brass railings that were keeping the waiting customers away from the seated customers. I might have an idea why they removed those. They don’t need them. At least not on the night that we were there. Barely three tables full.
When we were there, Long Island’s Newsday came with us… armed with a video camera, our stars’ shown bright. And, we gave the restaurant a good review. So what happened?
From an expert’s eye, the first thing I noticed was the revamped menu. Again, I ask why? They Americanized it. Why? Why? Why? Did they think it would attract more people? I think it had the opposite effect. People are now craving AUTHENTIC Chinese food. We are noticing more and more AUTHENTIC Chinese restaurants opening all over Long Island. Long are the days where you have to go to Flushing or Chinatown for a really good Chinese dinner.
Why was this night different from (most) all other nights? For on this night, we had a special guest. Mee Lam brought her expert culinary expertise to our table. We appreciated her company and her being able to speak Mandarin to the waitstaff, and to further our education on Chinese food.
Now ALL that being said, if you still want an authentic Chinese dinner, all you have to do is ask for it. You just won’t find much of it on the menu. Just ask! We did. And we got a nice dinner. Service was great. Very accommodating, and willing to make suggestions.
We started off with a few appetizers:
Spareribs (two orders) – Mee likey these. I would have had a few more and I would have been satiated enough to go home at that point.
Shrimp Dumplings – A wee bit on the small side…. Though they were on the Dim Sum menu, so that explains that.
Eggplant Stuffed Shrimp – This Mee doesn’t do eggplant. Other Mee’s liked it. That’s good enough recommendation for me!
Shumai – Also from the Dim Sum menu. I don’t know what was in it, and whatever it might have been, it didn’t do anything for me.
Then came our entrees:
Crispy Chicken with Garlic – I thought this lacked taste and any flavor.
Soft Shelled Crab – My favorite dish of the night (aside from the Spareribs). These were yummy and the sauce was a perfect accompaniment.
Bronzini (Whole Fish) – I don’t know what happened. Everyone loved this dish. But I can’t vouch for it, for the time I went to try it, it was all gone.
Young Chow Fried Rice – What you would expect.
Dessert was oranges (First time I can ever recall that the oranges weren’t sweet and juicy… these were kind of dry), coconut flan (for lack of a better word), and fortune cookies.
Humor usually works at the moment of awkwardness. (I can attest to that!)
Failure is the virtual way to prepare you for great responsibilities. (If they say so!)
Find a peaceful place where you can make plans for the future. (That was mine. PERFECT!)
If we are all worms, try to be a glow worm. (Umm, ok!)
Though we did order a lot of dishes, I felt that the bill was a little higher than I expected. Especially considering that we didn’t order alcohol (they don’t have their full liquor license yet… though you can order any beer…. So long as it’s Tsingtao!).
So what did we think of Orient Odyssey on our return visit? Here is our rating:
Humbly submitted for your consumption,
—Mee Magnum (“Chop! Chop!”)