Mission Chinese: the Good, the Bad, and the Yummy

I don’t have good recall, but I vaguely remember writing how much I love Commonwealth. It must be divine intervention that my new favorite restaurant is one apartment building over. Any budding restauranteur would be wise to open up shop in the retail space sandwiched between Mission Chinese and Commonwealth. Cha-ching!

I don’t know about y’all, but I’m not really a fan of chinese food. The only time I get a craving for honey walnut prawns is when this piggy forgets to eat, throws back the cocktails, and wakes up to a pig pen of a day. Completely shot and wasted.

Not in the mood for food, but knowing that grease makes it better, I drove us shell-shocked at 2pm on a Saturday afternoon to the Mission.

“This place gets mixed reviews,” I told Dean. “Let’s check it out.”

Over a year old, the place retained the sign of its predecessor Lung Shan with Mission Chinese written in sharpie on a piece of 8×11 paper taped to the front door. Despite the lack of formalities–including seating yourself–this joint ain’t no dive. A dive is Tu Lan on 6th and Market. A dive is Cordon Bleu on California. Mission Chinese is like the downstairs area of R&G Lounge! Cmon, people, quit saying Mission Chinese is a dive. It even has one of those long, sparkly dragon puppets strung up on the ceiling.

The service is regimented–a whole gamut of non-English speaking and American-born asians who aren’t into feigning friendliness.

Our soda cans arrived on our table like they’d rolled out of a vending machine. What you see is what you get. No extra glass, no ice, no straw. I was having major doubts until the food came.

A tea cup of well-spiced szechuan pickles–which was more napa cabbage than pickles.

The tiger salad should be renamed fresh spring rolls. Not sure why they called it a salad. This was too minty. Use half the mint, please. But so fresh. I guess it was too fresh for my hungover taste buds.

Salt cod fried rice–the god of all fried rice. So light, fluffy, and tasty. Best fried rice of my asian life.

Pork belly. Ok, I already said the fried rice was the best. Do I also have to say the pork belly was the best? I must. That was the crispiest, yummiest pork belly in all my years of dreaming of fried pig parts.

A little over $30 including the tip plus leftovers for later.