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Indianapolis - Chinese Food, good news and bad news


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Indianapolis - Chinese Food, good news and bad news

Matt | Oct 2, 2003 02:29 PM

Well fellow Indy chowhounds, I've got some good news and I've got some bad news on the Chinese restuarant front.

First the bad news. YUMMY, which had ranked up near the top of the list of Indy Chinese eateries for years, is no more.

Now for the good news. In the same building a new and excellent Chinese restaurant has opened, SHEN YANG. Shen Yang, which features food specialties from nothern China, should have no problem filling the void left by Yummy's departure. They have been open about 2 weeks and have retained most of the staff from Yummy. The interior remains pretty much the same except that the fish tanks are gone from the entrance.

As for the food, it seems to me, although I have never been to China, very authentic. Items on the menu include duck tongues, pig stomach, tripe and a host of other items not found on the menus of most the Chinese places in town. At least not on the menus that non-Chinese people usually get.

Our waitress, who was very patient with my wife's and my lack of knowledge, explained that in the northern province that the chef is from (don't recall which one it was) the food tends to be spicier and more noodle dishes are served. The appetizers that we ordered definitely fit that bill. I ordered a dish that they called "TIGER VEGETABLES". Of course that's not the name on the menu. This dish was essentially a plate of cilantro (stems included) with slivers of fresh green chili peppers (either jalepeno or serrano) with a light dressing of what tasted like rice wine vinegar and sugar. A very simple yet delicious dish. It had enough of a kick to leave a nice warm glow in my mouth.

My wife ordered one of the noodle dish appetizers. This was a good sized bowl of fresh homemade noodles, not quite the thickness of a chopstick, served cold with slivers of cucumber. On the side was a bowl of brown sauce that was added to the noodles to taste. The sauce was salty and almost certainly some sort of fermented bean. Another great dish.

We ordered the green beans which had lots of garlic in the brown sauce in which they were served.

For the main dish I ordered the green chili chicken which was bite sized pieces of chicken that were fried and served in a delicious brown sauce with pieces of fresh green jalepenos. As ordinary as this dish sounds, we were impressed with the flavors that were in both the breading on the chicken and in the sauce. They made this dish a winner in our opinions.

My wife ordered on of the fish dishes for her main course. This turned out to be bite sized pieces of white fish that were breaded and fried and served on a bed of shredded vegetables. There was no sauce with this dish, and with one taste we knew why. The breading, which was slightly thicker than a tempura breading, had a subtle yet delicious spicing that would have been lost if served with a sauce.

I almost forgot that we both a cup of hot and sour soup. I know, incredibly boring! But, I do love hot and sour soup and this was a very good version. Not as heavy on the meat and vegetables as some versions, but it had a nice vinegar bite to it that so many versions lack.

They don't have a beer and wine license yet so we drank water and tea.

They still serve weekend dim sum with the carts.

I apologize for not doing a good job of writing down the names of the dishes. We will definitely be going back and I will make sure to take copious notes. Maybe with enough time to prepare myself I'll give the duck tongues a go!

Shen Yang
3902 Georgetown Rd. (just north of 38th where Yummy used to be)
Indianapolis, IN 46254

(317) 280-1978

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