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Wang's, Somerville: What's on the specials board (long)

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Wang's, Somerville: What's on the specials board (long)

aromatherapy | Mar 2, 2003 02:20 PM

I dropped in this afternoon for a bite and got talking to the young woman who served me.She must be a principal--not sure if she cooks, but she was very proprietary about the menu. First, some eats; then, the board!Spicy Bone-in Chicken with Dark Brown Sauce: I ordered this (takeout) thinking it was the Wang's equivalent of the fried chicken with chilis at Qingdao that Limster had. Turns out it isn't. It was perfectly okay--stir-fried pieces of chicken thigh, with a few red and green pepper squares. The sauce was dark brown (soy) but not spicy in the least. I probably would have enjoyed it more had I not been expecting something else. What I wanted is called Szechuan Style Bone-in Chicken.Steamed Meat Buns: If you're expecting soup dumplings, they're not. I haven't paid much attention to the Great Soup Dumpling Debate, but I gather there is some broth in the middle; these just had nicely seasoned pork. A good thing, too, as each took 3 bites to eat and if there were soup I would probably be wearing it. I ate them with my fingers and nobody pointed or called the cops. I also added a little soy sauce. Very satisfying.Sweet and Sour Cucumbers: These have been described, but I didn't get the picture; they are an olive drab color and halfway to pickles. Delicious. I'm addicted too now.Kidney with Cucumber in Chili Sauce (a small cold dish): The cucumbers above, with tender squares of poached or steamed kidney and some red chili. More kidney than cuke. I quite liked it, especially with extra chili from the pot on the table.Stir-fried Tofu Noodle with Chives: Strips of tofu (fresh skin? really really well pressed tofu? damn, I should have asked) that look like regular flat wheat noodles, and have a dense, resilient texture (rather like uncooked wheat noodles, actually), with an equal amount of fat Chinese chives and salt. It was interesting and good but once was enough, I think.The Board: She said it never changes. I'm going from memory and sketchy notes here:Marinated whole flounder, battered and fried.2 (2!) eel dishes: Bone-in and spicy; and not-spicy boneless, fried, in a sauce. She preferred the second.Soup of turnip (daikon, I assume) with jumbo shrimp.A cold dish of baby clams and cucumber.A hotpot of flounder and tofu.A soupy (she said it's not a soup but it comes in a bowl and it's wet) dish of spinach with preserved eggs.There are also quite a few dishes on the Chinese menu that aren't on the English one. We didn't get into detail. Obviously stuff like intestines stays in Chinese. There are frog's legs. From the regular menu, she recommended the Chestnuts with Fatty Pork and when I raved about it, the Northern Style Sparerib, which is a braise. Also the House Special Whole Fish.And she said please to ask for something if you don't see it. Whew.

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