Jim Leff raved about a secret Sichuan menu at Imperial Wok on North Broadway (Route 22) in North White Plains a few months back (http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/783577). Last night, I went to see if that menu was still there, and if it measured up.
Score another one for the Alpha Hound.
First of all, it's not a menu you have to ask for, it's got it's own page on the general menu. Obviously, it's not as extensive as Sichuan-only places, but the classic dishes are well-represented (wontons in hot oil, dan dan noodles, double-cooked pork, etc.).
I decided to go with a good litmus test for Sicuhan places: dan dan noodles and double-cooked pork. The dan dan noodles were a solid rendition, the chili oil left my mouth pleasantly buzzing and ground pork was crisp. One quibble: I didn't detect much Sichuan peppercorn.
The double-cooked pork was right-on: nicely cooked strips of fat-streaked pork belly with leeks, peppers and fermented black beans. I asked them to make it a little spicier, and they didn't disappoint. The best thing was, they didn't just dump a bunch of red chili flakes to overpower the dish, they added the chili in a way that made me do a slow burn.
Is Imperial Wok as good as the top Sichuan-only places in NYC? Probably not, but it's a 5-minute drive from White Plains, and if anyone can get this level of Sichuan cooking elsewhere in Westchester, I'd love to know about it. Imperial Wok will definitely be in my regular rotation from now on and is a nice complement to the Cantonese offerings at Aberdeen.
P.S. Right under the Sichuan menu, there was a short menu of Taiwanese specials, including sauteed pea shoots and dishes with Chinese sausage. Anyone tried anything off this menu? How does it measure up?
P.P.S. Neither the Sichuan or Taiwanese menu is on the takeout/delivery menu, so I'm not sure if those dishes are eat-in only.
736 N Broadway, White Plains, NY 10603