Restaurants & Bars 4

Oriental East

Minger | Jan 21, 2008 10:19 AM

I made my second visit in several years this Sunday. I want to add my cents -- and compare notes -- on one of the perennially hot topics in this board. I think the food works here because they do the basics very well with tidiness and restraint. They hold back on salt, msg, grease on dishes that are well presented and still warm on the carts. For the vegetarians, we ordered shrimp wonton soup and stir fried vegetables. The wontons were excellent -- the shrimp balls were firm and without the signature black veins of lazy kitchens; the broth was peppery and slightly vinegary and infused with the flavor of spinach (or watercress?) The vegetable dish was blah, a basic dish of broccoli, cabbage, and snow peas. (Not sure why we bothered with it since the Chinese broccoli already filled the vegetable bill.)

Our big group ate a lot and the total with tax and tip was merely $15. Great deal.

The biggest complaint about the experience is the service. While the cart servers typically came around often and were eager to push their dishes, the waiter responsible for supplying the initial plates and utensils and fulfilling tea and water was AWOL. (The cart ladies seemed happy to take or convey orders.) (The busiest New York dim sum restaurants watch the tables like hawks, perhaps to shave time off dining time and boost turnover.) ((But unlike eating at truly busy New York dim sum restaurant, never did our group feel rushed.))

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