Asian Garden

I love Chinese food but recently I have been unable to find anywhere decent to eat.  I was turned off of buffets a while ago because let's be honest, the food is not as fresh or consistent in taste.  I just about gave up when I spotted Asian Garden in Mobile.  It's very much like a Pei Wei; P.F. Chang's version of a bistro.

Asian Garden has great lunch specials. For about $6.50, you get a choice of three soups (Miso, Eggdrop or Wonton), little appetizers and an entree with a white or fried rice.  The list of entrees are diverse enough to satisfy most cravings. There's also a variety of dishes from all over Asia; from Thailand to Korea and China to Japan.
Shanghai Chicken

My brother decided to go for the lunch special.  He chose the Shanghai Chicken, spice level 5 stars, with a side of fried rice and egg drop soup.  I was very impressed with the Egg Drop soup.  The base was a wonderful clear soup then drizzled into it is the eggs.  Instead of stale strips of wontons, these actually taste like eggroll wrappers sliced thin and fried.  It provided a better crunch and freshness all around.  The eggroll was vegetable and as I stated before I'm not a big fan on those.  There were also two small cheese wontons that were good.

The Shanghai Chicken is a wok fried chicken then sauteed with onion, scallions and dried chilis.  I thought the chicken was nice and tender.  It was very well seasoned, the sauce is great even though I can't pinpoint what all is in it.  The fried rice was disappointing.  It looked like some soy sauce was drizzled over the rice while it was cooking and that's about it.  My brother did manage to find a few peas and a tiny shrimp. Overall though, I think it was a great meal for the price.

Pad Thai
I've been looking for a great Pad Thai for years and Asian Garden's is better than most places. Pad Thai is rice noodles with beef, eggs, bean spouts, peanuts and chilies.  I asked for the hottest level of spice and thought it was just a little spicy.  Granted, my family does eat spicier than most.  I love that the dish was not drowning in sauce like another place in town.  It was a good balance of sour and sweet, but I thought it needed just a little more fish sauce because I like it more salty. SN:  I've been back to Asian Garden three times since the original post and the quality of the entrees and service is just as good.  I look forward to trying more items from this menu.

Dim Sum Combo $4.50
I was very excited to see that Dim Sum was on the menu.  Asian Garden's combo is suppose to consist of har gao, bbq bun bao, shiu mai, pot sticker, and a pork dumpling.  This is actually missing the shiu mai, I think.  Instead, I got two har gao.  A word of warning though, these dim sum are tiny and the only thing really worth even trying was the bbq bun bao.  The rest is mediocre at best.

Asian Garden on UrbanspoonService was good but there really wasn't a waitress assigned to a table.  I had no less than 3 bring food, water and the check in the 45 minutes it took for us to eat.  The worst part about this place is getting in and out of the parking lot.  It is situated on the corner of Cottage Hill and Hillcrest Roads so it can take a bit of planning to make it into the parking lot without incident.


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