Thursday, February 23, 2012

Mainland China, Guwahati

Mainland China
Dona Planet, 4th Floor
GS Road

0361 2466 222/3

Mainland China is one of the 2 Speciality Restaurant franchises opened in Guwahati and both of them have been our favourites here, since the day we arrived. We kept returning to Mainland China and Machaan time and again because of the wonderful service and excellent quality food.

Mainland China offers weekday lunch buffets which are excellent VFM given the huge range of items on the menu. However, since they do not offer dinner buffets, we mostly ordered a la carte and have been rarely disappointed.

Mainland China does not  serve typical Indian Chinese. The other day I was dining alone and the older gentleman at the next table was complaining loudly to his son " yeh kaisa Chinese restaurant hain?  Manchurian chicken, Chilli Chicken, Chopsuey, Garlic Chicken - koi bhi nahin hain!" (What kind of Chinese retaurant is this? They don't even have Manchurian chicken, Chilli Chicken, Chopsuey, Garlic Chicken on the menu!)

I don't know about that old man, but we have loved their food and have been regulars at the restaurant. Service is muted and attentive without being overbearing.

Complimentary starters of  pickled cucumbers and cabbage khimchi are laid on the table, before you even settle yourself. They also offer complimentary Chinese Jasmine tea and keep refreshing your cup through the meal. They offer a choice between traditional cutlery and chopstics.

Wontons 170/- are served with sweet chilli sauce and dimsum (pan fried / steamed) are served with a choice of 3 different sauces - a spicy red chilli paste, a herby green leaf ginger salsa and honey mustard sauce. We especially love their pan fried chicken & mushroom dumplings 190/-

Some of the other starters that we have enjoyed, include their Diced chicken with assorted pepper & ginger 330/-, crispy corn chilli pepper 280, sliced chicken with chillis 340, drums of heaven in Schezwan sauce, Mongolian skewered lamb 370/- (served on your table on a mini chhula) and fried sichuan chicken with dried chilli & peanuts 360/-

Among their soups, the hot & sour chicken soup 150/- is excellent, but the Shangsi crabmeat soup 120/- is average. I could not taste too much crab in my soup.

Their main courses are very good too. Crabmeat fried rice in XO chilli sauce 250/-, Burnt garlic fish 395/-, Chilli garlic noodles (vegetarian) 230/-, Chicken Shaoxiang with cashewnuts 360/- and the Roast chicken fried rice (subtle bursts of flavour from the chicken) 270/- are some of our favourites. The black Pepper lamb has been heavily recommended and I will try it the next time I visit.

For a Chinese restaurant, they do have a large selection of non-fruit based desserts and that makes me very happy indeed. The darsaan -honey noodles with almond flakes 130/-, hot chocolate rolls with vanilla ice cream 120/- and steamed coconut dumplings in a honey butter sauce 120/- are among the best. You can always add 2 scoops of ice cream 90/- to your dessert for varying temperatures and textures. However, their best dessert s something called fried milk balls which are not on the menu. They are sometimes available during the buffets. This is a dessert that I can skip appetisers and main course too, to ravish.

They do serve alcohol and make some good cocktails. Alcoholic caipirojka 190/- and non-alcoholic Mint storm 105/- are my favourites. A Johnny Walker Black label large costs 520/-

The staff here is almost like family. Extremely helpful, polite and well mannered and are part of the reason why we keep going back.

Rating : 5 / 5

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