Chinatown is the obvious move for your Chinese food fix, but let us introduce you to Sun Wah BBQ in Uptown. There are some things you need to know about Sun Wah, so rather than duck the obvious and let you find out from a friend, we are going to tackle it head on.
One: The whole peking duck here is straight up bananas, and it's why this place is well-known. But we'll come back to that. Two: Yes, we are aware Sun Wah has had issues with city health inspectors in the past. But before you start researching the specifics, here's our official stance on the matter: As a wise man Jay Cutler once said, DONNNNNN'T CAAAAARE. Granted, Cutler's comment was in response to something totally unrelated, but the point remains that a little health code violation doesn't scare us and you should dismiss it too.
The reason for our steadfast support of Sun Wah goes back to point one. The peking duck is their "off menu" special and the reason you need to go. Sun Wah's specialty is Chinese barbecue in general, but in reality you need to order duck, and more duck. They say ducks are available on a limited basis, but Sun Wah is usually pretty good about making sure they don't run out. You don' bite the hand that feeds you, and in this case that hand is a beautiful table-side carved duck.
The place itself is reminiscent of a small, slightly updated warehouse, and it kind of gives off a cafeteria feel. It's also BYOB, which is always a plus, but truth be told we don't often bring alcohol here. A bottle of red wine or a couple hearty beers will make do if you're in the mood.
Aside from the duck, the menu is kind of a crapshoot, which is why we've kept Sun Wah at an overall 8.1. But the fact one item can carry a restaurant so far should tell you all there is to know.
Here's how it works. A server will cart over the whole duck and carve it for you table-side. Along with the platter of meat, you'll get some plain baos, daikon, radishes, and a delicious sauce. Act like you've been here before and make yourself a duck bao sandwich with these ingredients. The server then takes the remnants of meat and bones back to the kitchen where they whip up some duck fried rice and duck bone soup to bring back out. Sun Wah claims the meal can feed up to three, but we don't think it's quite enough for three hungry dudes. At $40 a duck, it's cheap enough to go overboard and make sure you have enough food.
Good for mixing a little green with your meal. Simple and tasty.
If a second (or third or fourth) duck is too much but you feel you need a little something else, go with these ribs. The honey sauce gives a nice touch.
Walnut shrimp is supposed to be fried shrimp in a mayonnaise based sauce with sugar and honey. This version is fried shrimp smothered in straight up mayonnaise. Not the best.
Standard and solid noodles that makes for another good extra dish to share.