Is it terrible that since we've found Grace Garden, we eat very little Chinese food? Once a quarter or so, we venture out for dim sum, but Grace's lip-smacking offerings have really spoiled us for dinner-time dining. Odenton is a 45-minute haul for us, so sadly, eating Chinese food has become a special occasion. And what more special an occasion to celebrate at Grace than Chinese New Year? Mr Minx and I really enjoyed last year's feast, so I made sure to sign us up as soon as the first chatter started on the Charm City Chowhounds list.
A few of the ten courses served for the Year of the Rabbit were identical to those we ate to celebrate the Year of the Tiger - the soup, the amazingly plump and delicious lamb chops, the 8-treasure sticky rice-stuffed duck - but the rest offered new taste experiences.
We also had two vegetable courses this time around, one a stir-fry of Chinese chives that taste a bit like a cross between asparagus and scallions, but better (and stinkier), and one of a green vegetable with caramelized garlic cloves. There was some discussion over the type of vegetable in the dish; one diner was pretty sure they were snow pea shoots, but I believe they were more closely related to choi sum or another member of the brassica family.
Finally, our dessert was better, but no less-odd than last year's: the chef's version of a Jell-O salad, made with lime gelatin, pineapple, and cream. Better than bean jelly, IMHO.
We were just told of the virtues of Grace Garden! I cannot wait to check it out. I hear it's worth the trip!
I think the food looks great and maybe I would have ventured too on eating the tripe and tendon dish, because it looked amazing. I’m not a big fish fan, but this one looked nice even though it was quite un-sauced. And I also like the dessert, maybe just because I like pineapple a lot.
Throw some pecans and that dessert and it sounds like one my southern mom used to make for dessert at Thanksgiving! Very strange, how worlds collide?!?
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