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Boston Area Sichuan Brookline

Sichuan Garden, Brookline

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Sichuan Garden, Brookline

limster | Jul 8, 2006 04:10 AM

Good slices of pork, half white fat, half lean in a chilli dressing with garlic. Served at the right temperature -- slightly chilled. Modest kick to the dish, and I'd be quibbling but if there was only more garlic it's be better (the Chinese name = garlic mud and fatty pork).

Decent wontons in sauce of chili oil, soy, a dash of fermented bean paste.

Strange flavour chicken needs more of that herby strange flavour; lots of salty umami fermented bea paste.

A cold crispy fish appetizer topped with whole beans was bland and unedible.

Wen jun prawns were pleasant but on the mild side, only a faint tingle from a hint of Sichuan peppercorns, and more smokey flavours from the dried chilli would be great. Only the most nitpicky eater would quibble that the prawns could be a shade less cooked for an ideal texture.

Tea smoked duck wasn't smoked slow and low. The meat wasn't supple and prosciutto-like, it was "well done" although some parts of the leg were good. The duck was overwhelmed by a charcoal-like flavour, I'm guessing the tea leaves might have been burnt.

Yu-xiang eggplant, eggplant in a garlic sauce, was undercooked, the eggplant pieces far from ideal softness.

Dry fried potato shredded with green pepper was nice, but the texture of the potato was a little softer than necessary, the best renditions leave a snap to the potato, an elegant echo of rawness that is present here but muted.

The dishes we sampled would be fine as examples of home cooking, but we all felt that refined technique and skilled balance of flavours were not evident. Perhaps I should stick to Sichuan comfort food like twice cooked pork next time.

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