Day 13 Dinner Debriefing: The New Jade Garden

We both felt like Asian food tonight, and we were going to go to the Japanese place, but the menu ran mostly to Sushi and Bento Boxes, with just a few entrees. So we opted for Chinese instead, and braved the humble looking New Jade Garden, that shares it’s building with the Dirty Donkey, a biker bar. No online menu for this place, Sue. Humble or not, there were far more cars parked at the Jade than across the road at a shiny modern Chinese restaurant. So we went inside, and Lo! there were asian people eating there, and locals, and people phoning for take-out, so we done good. As is often the case in Chinese restaurants, the wine-list was short and vague. Choose from Chablis, Chardonnay or Blush… no thanks. So we ordered our food to go, passing on the paper plates and plastic forks but asking for chopsticks. Our hostess was very nice, and reminded us a little of the late Mai Wong, especially when we heard her say “twenty minutes” on the phone.

Lugged it all up the slope to our hill-top hotel room. Those of you who know what kind of hill I live on in Kenora will be appalled to hear that this is similar, but perhaps twice as long. The staff use golf carts to get around. If I’d known we were going to do take-out, I’d have driven.

Have I mentioned lately how much we like having our pink floral picnic-pack? I look absurd carrying it, (see a picture of this thing by clicking the ‘more photos’ link and finding image 2121) but it has plates and cutlery and wine glasses and a cork screw, even a little cutting board and tiny salt and pepper shakers. Usually we augment it with some small plastic bowls, but this trip we forgot. A shame, because they would have been perfect as rice bowls for Chinese food. Way easier than using chopsticks with a plate. I could have had a Tsing-Tao beer at the restaurant, but I settled for an imported British beer in one of those fancy cans that make it all foamy, cause that’s what I had in the fridge. For her part, Caroline had Smoking Loon Chardonnay.

Dinner was good, and by far the cheapest yet. For $26.00, we got Mu Shu Pork (we order this everywhere, because: A) it’s like a clubhouse, it’s almost impossible to make a really bad one, and B) we can’t get it at home.) Then Sweet and Sour Prawns for Caroline and Hot Ginger Garlic Beef for Tim. And extra rice. The Mu Shu was encouraging, a good version of this dish. My beef was a stir-fry with lots of zucchini and gravy, and a few little seared hot peppers. I ate just one of those to see if it was an allergy trigger, and it was not, but it was hotter than I needed. I would rate this dish as good, but we probably wouldn’t order it again. Caroline was delighted with her prawns. Often in the US, we get Sweet and Sour sauce that is very bright pink and very sugary. This was more like Sam Wong’s version, with a darker hue and pronounced vinegar flavour.

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