Now I finally go to Lake Spring with some friends because my mother in law says that there is a $1.99 duck dish if you order $20 or more. I'm jazzed and tell my friends about it, so we go last week wednesday. The sign outside, in chinese, shows the specials, so I know that there should be a $1.99 special. None of us read chinese, but we can figure it out from the sign.
We sit down and look at the regular menu and then the chinese menu. There are no translations for the specials menu, like they have at NBC, so we sit there thinking, "Damn, who is going to translate for us." Being the cheap bastard that I am, I really wanted to order off of the special menu. Those items are $6.95. The regular menu plates run $8.75.
Eventually the waitress translates most of the $6.95 itmes for us and just mentions the $18.95 fish dish specials. From the specials menu, we order a stir fried lamb with green onions, a beef or lamb with tofu. From the regular menu, we order the pork pump, some noodles, and the $1.99 duck. We just had to have the pork pump.
The food came out lightning fast. The stir fried lamb was succulent and savory. Great hot wok flavor. The meat with tofu was equally flavorful. Pieces of pork, beef/lamb, tofu, and peanuts in a tasty brown sauce. The pork pump was as good as people have discribed. Probably equally scarry is the layer of fat around the meat. What the heck, you only live once. I ate some fat and loved it. The noodles were good, and the duck was also pretty good. The duck seem smoked before they deep fried it, so there was a wonderful smoky crispy duck eating sensation with each bite. For dessert, we had a tasty sweet rice with dried fruit pastry that was quite good. Much better than the standard mung bean with tapioca.
Now I've heard from a friend, who used to work at a chinese restaurant, say that they used to mislead people who didn't read chinese on what was on the chinese only menu. They'd say that the specials were only for lunch, or that the set menu price was for each dish and not for the complete dinner. That really sucks, but if you find a place that will explain the menu to you, keep going back if it is good. Maybe the wait staff's english in not so good, but what the heck, I want to know what is on there.
The meal was better than I expected, so I dragged my parents down there a couple of days later to find out what is on the rest of the special menu. They read off some of the dishes to me and we end up ordering some those and one of the $18.95 specials, braised fish head stew. Worth $18.95 for a fish head? I say yes. The fish is smoked before being braised, so there is a complex smokey, savory, and spicy flavor going on that I haven't experienced before.
Now I'm on a mission to find out what is on the rest of the menu. If someone has a copy in english, please post. Or I'll have to do the leg work myself and post at a later time. There are 10 more items on there I need to find out about. Oh the sacrafices one must make...