With a few recent provocative threads regarding the quality of chain restaurants (specifically PF Chang's), I decided to write to the executive chef, asking about how processed the food is, how fresh the preparation is, etc.
Just to recap, PFC seems so be a lightning rod for many hounds' wrath. My honest feeling is that while PFC is hardly "authentic", it prepares flavorful Americanized Chinese food that is leagues above, for example, the bland rat poison that Panda Express serves. I feel that there is a spectrum of quality in chain restaurants, and while the chow experience at a chain could never reach the heights of a chow experience that a passionate chef/owner could provide, it is unfair to summarily dismiss a chain that does its part well.
So just remember, before you flame me about PF Chang's, think of Panda Express/Inn. :-)
So without further ado....
Mr. Taster wrote:
Hello, I occasionally go to PF Chang`s and I usually enjoy the food, ambiance and service. But since you are a national chain, I am curious to know how much of the ingredients are processed and how many are truly fresh, and how much arrives prepared (or mostly prepared) in a `heat and eat` manner. Is every entree prepared at the time of order? Do you make any effort to purchase organic or non-hormone fed meat? Thank you.
PF Chang's replied:
Thanks for your questions. We do cook or prepare every menu item at the time it is ordered. We hand make all of our spring rolls, potstickers and dim sum type items in house. We cut all proteins and vegetables each day for service, we make all of our sauces in house and use authentic "Mandarin Style Woks" to cook to order with. We pride our selves on these things and intend to continue to operate in this manner. We are currently looking at the actual use of non-hormone fed meat and organic products and are conducting more research on both of the categories of food.
I hope this answers your questions.
Director of Culinary Operations
Corporate Executive Chef
P. F. Chang's China Bistro
Pei Wei Asian Diner