China Gate: going strong

Update: The thing with a three year plus blog is that you have often written about your favs a long time back. Since then your blog has evolved. As have the places you have written about. Readers have changed.

I have gone to China Gate many times before and since I wrote this piece. Went there recently when I craved for some decent Chinese at Bandra. Sassy Fork told me that she was looking forward to the review. Well the waiters remain familiar faces. Tey smile in recognition and answer your questions expertly, even if in broken English. We 'Mumbai Indians' talk to each other in English at restaurants.

The prawn batter fry was as good as ever. The prawns fresher than Jay Lenno. We tried the Cantonese noodles which were quite delectable and pleased my very unforgiving palate. The roast Hakka Lamb suggested by our waiter, when he heard what I had in mind, was suitably Punjabi but flavourful. The lamb tender. Complementing the noodles pretty well. It was good to be back, and, as Forrest Gump would say, "that is all I have to say about that".

Pardon the pic qualities but wasn't planning to review. The brief from K that night, lets go to a place you have written about. Well she was paying.

Mixed meat Cantonese noodles... good stuff

Roast Hakka Lamb

I thought I'll break my spate of Calcutta reminiscences with a post on a Bombay institution.
China Gate at Waterfield Road is the grand dame of restaurants at Bandra. It is one of the culinary landmarks of Bandra along with Lucky, Saayba, Tawa and Jai Jawan.
It has been there ever since I have been in Bombay and well before that I am sure. The entry of recent upstarts such as 5 Spice and Nelson Wang's legendary China Garden hasn't diminished the popularity of China Gate. The place is always crowded.
The ambiance works on the simple premise of 'pack in as many people as you can, give them good food and pack them off'. I don't know if this is something common to Chinese restaurants in the city but like in most other places here too there is no focus on presentation of the food. The food is plonked into a plate or bowl and brought to the dish. No fancy carrot carvings or sketches with sauces on the plate. I guess they just focus on food that tastes good. And the formula has definitely worked. I am sure that there are many like us who keep coming back.
China Gate is a favourite of both Kainaz and me. We often head there if she is treating me as I am a fan of Chinese food. (This is replaced by Out of the Blue if I am treating her).
I have found their quality to be consistent over the years. this is one of the few places which makes a well flavoured fried rice. We had a stir fried squid in black bean paste during our last visit. This was quite tasty and well flavoured. I can still feel the slightly salty and grainy black bean paste in my mouth as I write this.
Our favourite and must order every time we go is their 'golden fried prawns'. We just love biting through the crunchy batter into the big and juicy prawns. Reminds me a bit of the 'fish batter fries' of the Benfish vans of Calcutta. Just take a look at them in the picture below. Sinful!


k said…
too late! saw it yesterday.