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Restaurants & Bars 5

Guppy Teahouse in Cerritos (my first review!)

dork | Jun 21, 200411:04 PM

I don't think anyone has posted a review of this place yet, so I'll go ahead and give it a shot. I have been there quite a few times, but until now, I haven't had time to write up a review.

The inside of this place is very small, cute and casual. I think there are seats for about 30-40 inside and another 20 seats outside. They have decorated it with lots of plants hanging from the ceiling, as well as several saltwater fish tanks. Most of the waiters and waitresses are good-looking Asian high school or college students who probably have not had any prior experience waiting tables.

The food they serve there can probably be best described as Taiwanese snack food (according to my Taiwanese friend). Here is some of the stuff I have ordered there:

*Popcorn chicken: Small pieces of battered/deep-fried chicken with basil which you can get mild, medium or spicy (they also have sweet and sour flavor, but i don't recommend this). You can order this as an appetizer or as an entree with rice or noodles. This is probably my favorite entree here.

*Fried chicken/pork chop: Very thin, cutlet-style meat. I don't like the seasoning on these as much as the popcorn chicken. Also, these are kind of too thin for me, so I tend not to get this.

*Superb meatballs: 2 large pork meatballs in a broth with napa cabbage, fried bean curd and glass noodles. Comes with rice on the side. Very good on a cold day.

*Stewed pork with rice: Very small chunks of diced pork that have been stewed so they are very soft. Served in a bowl over rice with a tea egg, pickled radish and some other sides. They usually serve a very small amount of this stewed pork on top of the rice if you get the popcorn chicken or fried pork chop with rice.

*Beef stew noodles: Cubes of soft, stewed beef in a dark, spicy broth with noodles. I think the beef and broth are both pretty good, but I wish they used better noodles. They look like flour stick noodles, which I don't really care for. (I think this is the type of noodle that they use in most of their noodle soups.)

*Dumpling Soup with Noodles: Again, they use the noodles that I don't like, but the broth and dumplings are good. It tastes like the dumplings are filled with pork.

*Porridge: You can get these with seafood or beef. I haven't tried either, but my friend who ordered the seafood one said it was pretty bland. (But I guess that's usually the case with porridge, huh?)

*Boba tea: My usual is green tea with boba or green milk tea with boba. I think the tea itself is pretty good. Some people I know think it's too sweet, but it's fine for me. The boba is usually a little too mushy for me, but the flavor is pretty good. It tastes like they make it with brown sugar or raw sugar. (This probably contributes to the sweetness of the tea, too.)

*Shaved Ice: Huge mounds of shaved ice covered with fruit and condensed milk. I think this is what Guppy is known for. I actually think this is just ok, but it looks pretty impressive when you first see it.

*Brick Toast: A square piece of toast that is about 1.5" thick. You can get this with butter coconut, strawberry, or peanut butter. I've only tried the butter coconut one because after I tasted it the first time, I couldn't see how the other ones could be better. It smells and tastes really good. These take 15 minutes to make, though, so if you get one, you should probably order it when you order your entree.

*Other things I haven't tried: Smoothies in various flavors, pork intestines, pig's feet, etc.

In general, I think the food is pretty good. My one complaint with this place is the service. It can get bad when they are busy. Also, I don't think some of the people that work there know the menu very well and will ask how spicy I want a dish to be when it doesn't come that way, or they'll forget to ask me when I order the popcorn chicken or the beef noodle soup. I guess I am used to it, since I go there pretty frequently, but I can see how some first-timers might get impatient after having to remind the waitperson to bring the check 2 or 3 times.

Whew. That was long. Hope it was ok for my first review. :)

Here is the address in case anyone wants to go:
11803 SOUTH ST.
(562) 865-7288
(I think they are also planning on opening another one in the Cerritos library this month.)

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