Addicted to Chinese Food

Columns Veg'n Out

November 24, 2013

Story By: Terri Hefner | Photos by: Nathalie Walker

You just have to have it, it’s on your mind, nothing else seems to fit, you’re in a bind … You’re gonna have to face it: you’re addicted to Chinese food.

You know it’s true. There’s just something about Chinese cuisine that begs for an encore.

Maybe it’s the noodles in all their nosh-worthy forms, or maybe it’s the myriad flavor combinations, or those yummy morsels called dim sum. Or it just could be the liberal use of fresh vegetables cooked crisp-tender perfect that keeps you coming back for more.

Whatever the reason, The Mandalay really “woks the wok” and can more than satisfy your craving for Chinese food with its authentic Asian cuisine. The regular menu is impressive in its diversity, and there’s also a listing of freshly prepared Hong Kong-style dim sum as well as banquet menus. And, according to owner Linda Chan, absolutely no MSG is used in the food.

The space is large and tastefully decorated, with classical music playing softly in the background. There’s a full bar, and the restaurant can seat up to 320 guests. It’s open daily, so you can get your fix of authentic cuisine easily, including Braised Tofu with Mixed Vegetables ($9.95), a tofu stir-fry with carrots, bamboo shoots, black mushrooms, Chinese peas and more in a shoyu garlic sauce. According to Chan, this dish is popular, and it’s easy to understand why as the texture of the tofu is balanced by the crisp-tender vegetables, so they complement each other well, bite after bite.

Another customer fave is Mu Shu Vegetables ($11.95) — shredded vegetables including cabbage, spinach, black fungus and bamboo shoots are stir-fried with egg (just ask and the egg can be omitted, assures the always gracious Chan) in a light sauce. The fun thing about this dish is it’s served with thin pancakes (made with flour, much like Mexican tortillas) for wrapping: Spread the wrapper with the hoisin sauce provided on the side, fill it with the veggies, roll it up and enjoy.

Now that you’ve faced it, why not feed your addiction at The Mandalay?

You know you want it.

Contact Terri Hefner at diningout@staradvertiser.com

The Mandalay

1055 Alakea St., Honolulu
Daily, 10:30 a.m.-8 p.m.

Honolulu, HI 96813

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