so this place has loooonnggg been on my ‘to-eat’ list (I seem to have a long list, don’t i?). i’ve seen it so many times, and curiously have always asked myself…is it really that good?!! we have even tried to go one time previously, but failed due to them being on vacay.
last saturday was my dinner date with MissP. we had already planned on going to SO (see my post SO???) for some chicken wings since she’s never been. i was ready to eat those yummy wings, get there only to discover, those darn guys are on vacation….AGAIN!?!!? Funny thing, before I left, SW said, ‘hopefully they’re not on vacation again. you know that guy is crazy and just takes off whenever!’. Well, he jinxed us 😦
Grrr…what is with these people needing to take all these damn vacations?! don’t they know people want to eat their food and they shouldn’t just close whenever they feel like?? so, with our hopes crushed because we wouldn’t get to eat SO chicken wings, we drove away thinking, ‘well, where to now?’
Miss P asks, “anywhere else you have in mind?”
I reply “nope. wanted to eat wings.” sad face.
Miss P: Yeah, I thought we’d eat Chinese food too.
I reply “hm….only other place on my list for Chinese food is Mission Chinese Food”
and so, off we go….it was a daring move. Mission on a Saturday? Even more daring–Mission Chinese Food on a Saturday? We chance it…
as we drive up, the restaurant is DARK???? but we see crowds of people standing outside. I think, “OMG!!! don’t tell me they’re on vacation too??!!”..
nope, apparently, MCF is just very very dimly lit. okay, how killer long will the wait be? the manager says, for 2, probably only 30 minutes. Done. 30 minutes on a Saturday night is nothing! Most anywhere would have a wait anyways.
This is really going to happen!!!
After our wait, we’re called into the restaurant and seated. The interior of the restaurant looks like a crappy old Chinese Restaurant (hey. it’s true!). although it is really dimly lit, with Christmas lights on the walls….the ambiance was young, hip, and upbeat. Music was good, playing such songs as “Paper Planes” by M.I.A. Totally fit the scene. I felt cooler just being there. hahah
So, with all this hype…i may have over done it with the amount of food…HEY..who knows when, and if i’d be back?
kung pao pastrami: peanuts, celery, potato, chill
i think this is one of their signature dishes, but this was the only dish neither of us liked 😦 just too salty for both of us. I’ll probably turn this into a fried rice! dislike
[i did end up turning it into a fried rice]
tiki pork belly: soy caramel, mandarin orange, pickled pineapple, shaved coconut, macadamia nuts
this was quite yummy..extra crispy skin, tender meat with a sweet flavor. LIKE.
pro: pork belly. ‘nuf said.
mapo tofu: braised shiitakes, aged chili paste, sichuan peppers, scallions
spiciest of all of the dishes because of the sichuan peppers (which still wasn’t too bad). the numbing spice will leave your tongue a bit ‘numb’
pros: mushrooms always a +, different spice used from the norm.
con: maybe a bit too much numbing spice
chongqing chicken wings: explosive chili, crispy beef tripe
of course, we had to get chicken wings! even with all those chili peppers, it wasn’t too spicy (it just looks crazy, but usually not very spicy)
pros: different flavors then other spicy chicken wings i’ve had. it has a slight sweetness, maybe five spice powder? as well as a light dustin of numbing spice. LIKE.
salted cod fried rice: mackerel confit, chinese sausage, lettuce, egg
just enough saltiness from the fish + chinese sausage gave a great flavor, and the lettuce and egg added a nice texture. I really enjoyed this one. LIKE.
mongolian long beans: xinjiang spices, horseradish, chili oil
cooked perfectly, with just enough seasoning and spice, these long beans were yummy. LIKE.
So here’s my thought on this place: I’m honestly not sure how this restaurant has achieved such popularity and success. It was good, and their items were a little different..I guess, it is what it is–which is American Chinese Food. If people from my parents generation went there, they would probably wonder “WHY is this place so popular??” (Sorry, that probably sounds mean. eek.)
Just this year, Bon Appétit Magazine named it #9 Most Important Restaurants in America (http://www.bonappetit.com/uncategorized/article/9-mission-chinese-food-san-francisco-and-nyc-the-20-most-important-restaurants-in-america)
Short films made on this restaurant? pretty high quality and semi entertaining..
So, i suppose, in the end, it wasn’t so bad that SO was closed! Finally got to try MCF. I would venture back, one day..or possibly order delivery! woot! prices were super reasonable, which makes it more appealing also. other items on the menu look interesting (perhaps it’s their description), and still worth another shot.