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China Buffet King review - Warden and 401

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China Buffet King review - Warden and 401

Food Tourist | Mar 16, 2005 01:48 PM

After years of enduring disappointing Chinese-Canadian-style buffets, I was pleasantly surprised that this $9 lunch buffet at Warden and 401 beside a Howard Johnson motel was packed with authentic items and a mainly Asian clientele. I enjoyed several of the dim sum choices, particularly the red bean cake (with a lovely coconut flavour) and the shrimp dumplings (har gow), which were chock-full of big pieces of perfectly-cooked crispy shrimp! However, some other dim sum items, such as steamed beef balls, were uninspired or bland. The main buffet includes several soups, a full western salad bar, and rows of hot dishes and desserts. The fried capelin was excellent, and I also enjoyed the fried squid, eggplant (even though the minced pork was missing), salmon head, BBQ pork, and mussels. The sushi was vegetarian and extremely standard (not a piece of avocado or real fish anywhere), but the soups looked interesting (I wish I had tried them but I got full very quickly). The Chinese tea we ordered was passable, but hot soy milk is available in the buffet. The red bean and green tea ice creams were ordinary (although I enjoyed the sweet creamy texture and flavour surrounding the red beans), but the red bean/coconut-rolled finger-shaped dessert was terrific. I also liked the fresh pink grapefruit wedges, although the pineapple was a bit unripe. The huge dining room has a pleasant, clean, bright atmosphere, not too crowded. Overall, an excellent value with many tasty items to choose from. 8 out of 10 for a lunch buffet.

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