The experience

Joy Luck BBQWow!  The weather out there is pretty bad. My initial plans for some tasty beverages on my only night off in two weeks went quickly out the window into this freezing wintery night.  Instead, Ogre informed me we would be doing Chinese BBQ…with Grandpoo and Oma.  Hmmmm.  Chinese BBQ?  We can’t eat at First Chinese, that would be against the rules.  There are two other Chinese BBQ joints nearby.  Plano Chinese BBQ and Joy Luck BBQ.  I’ve eaten at Joy Luck BBQ once before so we decided on that.  I was impressed that Grandpoo and Oma were braving the weather to join us.

Not very surprisingly, we were seated right away when we arrived.  The staff almost outnumbered the patrons, as we were the only diners there tonight.  We all perused the menu.  Grandpoo informed us that we could order for the table, but he wanted to know what we ordering so he could be prepared.  Ogre asked the waiter for some clarification about some of the menu items.  Our waiter made us all laugh when he said that there were some items that, really, only Chinese people order as it’s a little like Fear Factor! 

We decided on some Noodles (for Benji), Roast Duck, and BBQ Pork.  Someone brought the idea of actually ordering some vegetables and our waiter suggested the Chinese Mushrooms and Bok Choy.  Sounded great!

I brought Mina’s chopstick trainers and chopsticks and Mina was busy teaching Oma how to use the chopsticks.  Mina has become quite masterful in her use of chopsticks even without the trainers and let Oma use the trainer.  Oma was doing pretty well, but informed us that she’d probably switch to a fork once dinner arrived.

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Dinner did not take that long to come out thankfully as Benji already escaped once from his seat.  I let him out until dinner came out.  Benji was quite ready to be seated once he saw the “doo doo” (noodles) and “rye” (rice).  Mina was also ready to dig in and we had to hold her back to be able to photograph the food before she jumped in!

As we all converged on the food, we decided a second order of the BBQ Pork would definitely be in order and put that in right away. It’s quite a sight to watch the Phipps family dine!  I still get chills, or is it a shiver down my spine? (Grandpoo is going to get me for that comment!!)

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Anyway, we happily ate our dinner and Benji ate his fistfuls of noodles and then pointed at the BBQ Pork and said, “Want dis” (I want this).  I gave him a few pieces and now he’s hooked also.  As the food disappeared and we all wound down, Mina climbed into the chair with Grandoo to play some “slappy jaw” and “don’t hit yourself.”  Those Grandpoo games

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Benji also took delight in watching them, hitting himself with his fingers.

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Once Benji was bored, he started to escape again, so I let him out as we were pretty much done with dinner anyway.

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While I settled the tab, Ogre ran into the Muy Hua grocery store to get some Mochi Balls with Red Bean Paste.  I don’t particularly like these, but he seems to.  We ended dinner with some ?tasty treats from the grocery store (he also brought candied ginger for Oma and Yan Yan for Mina) before heading out into the freezing rain.

 

 

 

The food

This is more traditional Chinese food and they taught their roasted pork and duck.  They do have some of the Americanized Chinese entrees also.

We order family style, so I’m just going to list and describe…

The BBQ Pork and Roasted Duck are located on the BBQ Pork/Appetizers part of the menu, if you’re looking for it.

BBQ PorkThe BBQ Pork was very good.  It is served warm with a little bit of sauce.  It’s thinly sliced with some pieces having just a touch of fat.  It has nice sweetness to it and not too strong of a Chinese spice flavor to it.  I still like First Chinese BBQ a tad better, but this was great also!

The Roasted Duck was also good.  I don’t know if I’ve warned you in previous posts, but you have to be very careful when you order this dish because they basically hack the duck so there are a lot of bones in weird pieces and shapes and some are even shard like.  I remind Mina every time I let her have some duck to be careful and try to find pieces with no bones about them.  The duck was nice and juicy and had a good flavor, but not as good as JS Chen’s Dim Sum and BBQ.

BBQ Pork and Duck

 

Chinese Mushrooms and Baby Bok ChoyThe Chinese Mushrooms and Vegetables (which was Bok Choy) was excellent.  Loved, loved it.  I don’t know what those types of mushrooms are called except that I call them “Chinese mushrooms.”  It’s those big wide thick meaty mushrooms that I think might be rehydrated??  I could be wrong about that. Anyway, I love those mushrooms.  I think they have a great texture.  These and the bok choy were served in an oyster type sauce, which was very complimentary to both the mushrooms and the bok choy.

BBQ Pork NoodlesThe BBQ Noodles were  a stir fried, thin, egg noodle with sliced BBQ Pork and was also pretty good.  I did not think it was nearly as good as First Chinese BBQ, but it was tasty.  There were a lot of noodles and not as much “other” stuff.

They do not have a kids menu, but you can eat family style.

 

The service

Service was average.  Nothing to brag about, nothing to complain about.  Our waiter was really friendly and very helpful.  He kept calling Benji, “Superboy,” which I thought was really cute.  The food comes out as it’s ready, so that makes for minimal waiting/bored/tantrum time.

 

The kids

Well, it’s not kid un-friendly.  Don’t expect a kids menu or kids activities.  The staff is super nice and the restaurant is family oriented (most Asian restaurants are).  If you can do family style and pick some of the more palatable dishes, I don’t think you’ll have any problems eating here with your family, even if you have little ones.

This is nice Plano alternative to Chinese BBQ when you can’t make it into Richardson for the First Chinese!

 The total: $45.25 (4 adults)

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