Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Grub Club: Ba Shu 888

We are rapidly coming to the end of the school year, and grub club as we know it.  It's kind of sad, because there have been weeks when Wednesday night was the layover that got me through the long stretch, and many of the people who have been involved are leaving...or are already gone.  To this end, I was planning on my last pick for Grub Club being a good one.  I was planning on picking...a newly opened restaurant whose name will not be mentioned, in case someone steals it.  My new-ish friend, l'Homme, mentioned it the last time I saw him, and I thought it would be a great contender.  Unfortunately it hasn't opened for dinner yet, so that idea was a bust.  Instead, I decided to go to the other end of the scale: I made a play for the Epic Fail Award*.
That's right - Chinese.  Specifically a place next to the State Department Store called Ba Shu 888 (the number 8 is ba in Mandarin, so it's really Ba Shu ba ba ba, which I've been saying as often as possible over the last 24 hours because it is just FUN).  Over the last school year we've eaten at a few of them, but never for Grub Club.  One of the times we had Chinese I went into this place instead of the one my friends were at - when you tell me something is across from the State Department Store, I assume you can walk out the door and see it - and was intrigued by the fact that they have Peking duck. 
I've had Peking duck all of twice - on two consecutive nights when I traveled to Beijing from Korea.  The first night it was so delectable, I decided I needed to have it again.  Since then, I've been wanting to have it again.  Well, since it IS sort of a Chinese thing to do, I suggested we all share, so no one had to pay for the 35,000 tugrug duck all by themselves, and we all got to try it (Domestic Goddess wanted to be sure I actually planned to share.  When I pointed out it was my idea, she brought up Le Triskell...)  The duck was so-so.  The head was particularly gruesome, possibly because they seem to have broken off the beak.  It also came with steamed buns to put the meat in, rather than pancakes.  Some people liked that alright; I have only a Tobias Funke quote to say about that, "You, sir, are a mouthful."

(Have you seen season 4 of Arrested Development yet?  I'm so jealous.  I am dying here.  Tell me - no!  Don't tell me.  Don't ruin it!  I will get a VPN and a month's subscription for Netflix, I have to!!!)
We ordered a ton of food.  Some of it was decent, but most of us gave it a 5 or a 6 out of 10.  I think my favorite was the fried dumplings.  This chicken, the spicy sesame chicken, was good too, but a little dry.  Engrish wanted the fried beans, and they were pretty good, but not what was pictured, and not quite what we expected, either.  Overall it was okay, but if you're looking for Chinese food, the place next to Seoul Hair Salon, on the south side of Peace Avenue, is better, and at roughly the same location. 

*You may have figured this out, but no, I did not win the Epic Fail Award. That dubious honor remains with Fearless Leader's choice of New Orleans Cafe, by a margin of 1.3 points.

No comments:

Post a Comment