Four starving Canadians in downtown Seattle, roaming the streets for somewhere to eat. Compared to downtown Vancouver, I noticed that the food options in downtown Seattle were more limited. As our street count rose higher and higher, and the grumbling in our stomach got louder and louder, I noticed this “PF Chang’s” restaurant sign while we were looking for a place to eat.
I casually suggested it, as the building it was in looked nice and decent, and I was so hungry I didn’t even care if PF Chang’s was authentic Chinese food, let alone Chinese food at all. To my surprise, Maki and Nigiri had been to PF Chang’s before, absolutely loved it, and agreed to go. Okay, that’s all my starving stomach had to know.
Walking in, I was in a bit of a culture shock and I had a hard time wrapping my head around the concept of PF Chang’s, this Canadian girl has never seen such fancy Asian-Western fusion before. I have never seen people of non-Asian ethnicity work in Chinese restaurants.
The decor of this PF Chang’s location was very warming, clean, and had both Asian elements (the Terracotta warrior as seen above), Chinese artwork, and Chinese music contrasted against an open concept kitchen, stone tiled walls, and table set ups seen with Western restaurants.
At this point, I was pretty impressed with the fusion and friendly service. I decided to completely strip away my expectation of authentic Chinese food, and try this place as a new Asian-Western cuisine experience. Here is how that went.
For starters, I decided to order their cucumber strawberry limade ($3.95 US). I am a HUGE fan of adding fruits into my drink, those who have dined with me are used to it and I get made fun of all the time. Even though this came first, I decided to wait for my lunch entree before trying this as I wanted the full flavours of cucumber and strawberry to come out (yes, I have fruit water nailed down to a science..I love my fruit water).
I was in love at first sip. The tartness of the limeade went really well with the strawberry sweetness, while the cucumber gave it a really refreshing and crisp end. I also loved how the strawberries were fresh, and weren’t the syrupy ones.
The downside to this drink was that it’s not bottomless, as many of their drinks are. But that goes to show you how much fresh strawberry and cucumber is put into this delicious drink!
After taking a long time to decide on what I wanted, I chose their lunch special which comes with a choice of brown or white rice, a choice of soup (veggie or sweet and sour), and the entree.
I decided on getting the hot and sour soup. I didn’t really enjoy this dish as much because I felt that it had a strong soya sauce and teriyaki taste to it. I would have liked it more if there was beef, chicken, or prawn.
There was a good amount of spicy and sourness to it though.
To this day, I still miss and can’t stop thinking about their chicken-orange rice dish. I have been trying to find a way to copy the recipe so I can still eat it at home, it was that delicious. This was the main lunch entree, orange peel lunch ($9.95 USA) which came with fresh oranges, Hunan chili sauce, and garnished with sprouts.
This was absolutely delicious and I found myself conserving every last bite. The oranges were sweet, fresh, and juicy which mixed well with the spicy chili sauce.
The brown rice was cooked perfectly to my liking, and the chicken breast was lean and juicy. I also liked how my dish was filling, but I did not feel bloated or greasy afterwards!
Maki ordered the lunch bowl as well, she chose Chang’s Kung Pao lunch with choice of scallops ($11.95). I had a bite of this and liked how crunchy the cashews were. She also had no complaints about her food!
Instead of getting the soup for her side, she chose the salad which I really enjoyed. It came with a light, sweet and tangy taste and a variety of different dark greens, my favourite type of salad! Not to mention, the size of her salad was enourmous!
Another entree we got was the pad thai ($12.95). I didn’t try this, but Nigiri enjoyed this dish.
Da boyfriend ordered dan dan noodles ($10.95), which came with a spicy red pepper and garlic sauce, minced chicken and scallions, cucumbers and bean sprouts. He was not expecting his dish to look like this, but ended up enjoying his dish. I had a bite and I liked how the egg noodles had a bounce to them. We both agreed that although the sauce was very flavourful, but was very salty.
All in all, we made a good decision coming here and I left with a good, new opinion of Western-Asian fusion dishes. I’ve never really been a fan of Western-Asian fusion dishes, but PF Chang’s had delicious dishes and lovely ambiance. We had many questions about the menu and our server did a really great job in explaining everything patiently and informatively. He even gave us a sample of the black iced tea!
I wish that PF Chang’s will open in Vancouver one day, as my waiter told me every other Canadian customer has told him. #PFChangstoVancouver anybody? Haha 🙂