So we were finally going to try the Hunan home cooking inside the Valley Plaza strip (Valley btw San Gabriel and Del Mar Ave)...but the Green Zone caught my eyes. Thinking of future necessity for my vegetarian sibling, i decided to try this place out.
Green Zone - Fine Organic Cuisine
534 E Valley Blvd, # 5
626 288 9300
First off, it's a calm and soothing interior. The food is simple and flavorful with really high quality ingredients.
The half order of grilled shrimp salad came with 3 warm grilled shrimp, over a zingy (bordering on my vinegar threshold, but I'm a whimp on that) mesculin salad with sparing, but nutty sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds. Less is more here. $6.25
The mixed appetizer plate that was recommended had 3 types of appetizers (all deep-fried): shrimp roll, prawn tofu wraps, and salmon triangles - my favorite being the rectangular prawn tofu wraps - very satisfying full piece of shrimp ball/paste with thin crispy skin.
The organic Organic Hainan chicken rice was solid, with especially fresh tasting ginger/scallion and light sweet & sour sauce. For $6.75.
They serve tea in a paper cup, but at least not styrofoam, thank God. The plastic spoon is the biodegradable kind. Other eat-in dinner ware is ceramic, which to me enhance the food so much more. Well, at least it doesn't take away from the food like styrofoam can (Don't get me started on how most of the Taiwanese places uses styrofoam everything for eat-In, which somehow puts a damper on the tasting process) It just seems that Green Zone is doing what they can to keep the cost down but still be responsible to the environment. From what I see and taste at the table and inside the small restaurant, I could be eating at some fancy restaurant in NYC, but this is in a strip where most other restaurants use flourescent lighting. With their quality of food they could easily be charging twice as much, but they don't.
I respect that.
Other offerings: Won ton/dumpling noodle soup, Grill pork chop rice, Beef or vegetarian Sukiyaki, Grilled organic tofu, grilled organic vegetables, Salmon, seabass, tunafish sandwich, Buckwheat noodle soup, Seafood pasta (the most expensive thing on the menu, $9.75), various organic drinks.