Food Porn: Chinese Cookery

Last month I visited a couple Chinese restaurants, trying narrow down my favorite take out “Chinese” place for lunch.  I didn’t try any mind blowing dishes, and while I had a some tasty dishes here and there, neither place really won me over.  So my search continued, and I eventually ended up at Chinese Cookery which is located in a strip plaza that surprisingly houses are wide range of cuisines; Burrito Bay, Elmo’s, Sushi Time, Rocky’s Indian and a European Deli.  I plan on making my way down the plaza, but the last two weeks I stuck to Chinese Cookery’s $5 lunch specials.

I decided to try menu items that I’ve never ordered before and much like our previous Chinese visits in the area, some of the food was OK and some of it was a pretty bad.

Quick Info:

  • Restaurant Type: Casual, Takeout
  • Cuisine: Chinese
  • Location: Getzville
  • Prices: Lunch $5

The location is nothing special, with the exact same back-lit menu on the wall that you’ve seen in every Chinese take-out place and a couple booths for dining at the restaurant.  For just under $5, you can order one of their lunch specials along with a can of pop, soup or an egg roll.  My first meal at Chinese Cookery was their pineapple chicken (pictured below), thick breaded fried bites of chicken and slices of pineapple that were coated in a sweet, sugary sauce with a kick of soy.  Even though the menu had a small chili pepper next to the dish (which is supposed to indicate “spicy”), there really wasn’t much heat in the dish.  The pieces of chicken, while breaded a little too much, actually had some decent flavor and texture but the incredibly sweet sauce and very solid of pieces of pineapple weren’t so tasty.  I would have loved some more heat and a little less soy.

Based on a foursquare recommendation, on my next visit I decided to try their sesame tofu (pictured above), something I’ve never ordered at a Chinese restaurant before hand.  I’m not a big fan of tofu, I know there are people who swear by the stuff but I’ve always assumed it was pretty bland and tasted only as good as whatever was coating it.  The sesame tofu at Chinese Cookery didn’t exactly change my opinion.  The tofu itself was alright with a really creamy texture that reminded me of egg whites.  The sesame sauce was a bit too salty.

Another first for me was their roast pork egg foo young (pictured in gallery), essentially a big omelet made with egg and big pieces of roast pork and onions.  The entree was served with a side of brown gravy that I didn’t use, it was way too salty (this seems to be a trend for their sauces).  The entire dish was pretty greasy but the large pieces of roast pork combined with egg and rice really worked as a strange take on breakfast.  Not sure if you should order such an item while working because afterwards I felt like I wanted to go home for the rest of the day to take a long nap.

I tried a couple other dishes, the standard sweet and sour pork and five spice chicken, both of which were good but neither are worth talking about.  On average, the dishes at Chinese were as good as any other place in the area but nothing made me want to make this place my “go to” Chinese lunch spot.  I think I’m going to make a conscious effort to try and step away from the familiar/safe Chinese-American takeout meals and start trying out the “hidden” or “homestyle” menus that I’ve seen Andrew Galarneau write about in the Buffalo News.  If anyone knows of any Chinese restaurants (or some that I’ve already visited) that have such a menu in the Getzville/East Amherst area, please comment below and fill me in.

Photo Gallery:

Chinese Cookery on Urbanspoon

One thought on “Food Porn: Chinese Cookery

  1. Mark

    China King at Maple and North Forest has a menu of “rice plates” that offer some authenticity.

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