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Florida Pembroke Pines Taiwanese Sichuan

PeppersL Pembroke Pines (SW Broward) Taiwanese/Szechuan(!)

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PeppersL Pembroke Pines (SW Broward) Taiwanese/Szechuan(!)

s.m. koppelman | Sep 7, 2003 08:52 PM

I was way the hell out in Pembroke Pines at the end of the day and thought I'd check to see if I could indeed get some bubble tea.

Bamboo Garden III at the intersection of Pines aand Palm is no more. It's been redone, reworked and renamed under new ownership as Peppers. The dining room is now colorful and upscale. The bar area (beer and wine only) is still there but the whole place is nicer.

They have two menus, and Anglos get the one with all the usual Americanized Hunan/Szechuan/Cantonese stuff. Put it aside, and if they didn't also give you the longer bilingual "Chinese" menu, ask for it. It's got stuff I've never seen in Broward County (and beyond): not just the XO chicken and black pepper scallops and saltfish fried rice that the HK places in Central Broward have, but real Szechuan and Taiwanese dishes: pig intestine with yellow mustard greens! Dried scallops with sea cucumber! HK-style eggy beef stew over rice! Things with frog and jellyfish and pickled vegetables and bitter melon!

The bubble tea was disappointing. I asked for black milk tea, which is usually milky and sweet, but it wasn't either.. and they ran it through a blender, so it was full of ice chips.

But no matter. I settled in at the bar (the place wasn't busy what with it being 5:30 on a Sunday) and talked to the staff and ordered an item from the noodles-and-rice section of the menu, a humble $5 bowl of Szechuan Noodles with Beef, one of the few inexpensive items they have. It was not the usual spaghetti-like noodles with a spicy bean-and-ground-meat sauce; no, this was a gorgeous looking bowl of thinner noodles in a thin, fvavorful reddish-brown gravy hot with chili oil, topped with generous chunks of cartilaginous stew meat and tripe, all cooked to a nice chewy softness, several heads of baby bok choy, and garnished with chives and fresh minced ginger. It was as good as anything I've had in Flushing or San Francisco.

I will drive 40 minutes to eat there again. Repeatedly. I would drive over an hour to eat there, even if those noodles were their only good dish. And from the looks of everything else coming out of the kitchen and the Chinese locals picking up takeout orders and chatting enthusiastically, I kinda doubt that's the case.

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