Aug 29, 2010 3
Through the years, I have had the misconception that I need a really good reason to go to P.F. Chang’s. In order to obtain worthiness of such an experience, it had to be my birthday or a family celebration.
My friend suggested we have lunch at P.F. Chang’s this past weekend. I arrived early, so I waited in the bar. I saw an advertisement for Happy Hour. I couldn’t believe my eyes! Most of the food was perfect for Almost Veggie Houston.
After greeting my friend, we sat at a booth in the bar. We discussed waiting an hour so we could order from the Happy Hour menu. This turned out to be a fabulous idea!
The manager stopped by to check on us, and we discussed Almost Veggie Houston. He was enthusiastic, offering several ideas, and answering questions about the menu.
P.F. Chang’s offers an inexpensive Happy Hour. The drinks and food range from $3.00 – $6.00. Besides great prices, the portions are generous. Most restaurants serve a smaller portion for Happy Hour, so we were pleasantly surprised!
After ordering, the Executive Chef, Jonald Veneracion, came over and introduced himself. He suggested I come in the following day for a private tasting of several items on the Happy Hour menu, as well as dessert! Double Please & Thank You!
I should have a part time job assisting chefs with their ego. The happiness and awe that comes with the coat… it overwhelms me.
The day to meet with the chef arrived this week, and I could not have been happier. I walked in and was immediately greeted by the manager. The chef then invited me to a table in the corner of the dining room. For the next hour, we discussed the different selections as the chef brought them over to the table.
The Seared Ahi Tuna is served cold with spicy mustard and fresh mixed greens. The tuna is mild in flavor with an incredible texture. The freshness and quality of this sushi grade tuna make it unique.
The Crab Wontons consist of a crunchy wonton filled with rock crab meat & served with a side of spicy plum sauce. This is my favorite item from the Happy Hour menu. The taste is similar to a crab puff, without feeling you inhaled a block of cream cheese. A complete taste of quality crab meat, without the heaviness. The plum sauce is outstanding.
The dumplings are handmade in the kitchen each day. They are served steamed or pan-fried. The shrimp dumplings are light and delicious.
The Dynamite Shrimp consists of crispy shrimp tossed in a delightful sauce. This item is super spicy and will leave you wanting more!
The Banana Spring Rolls consist of six rolls served warm & crispy, with coconut pineapple ice cream, drizzled with caramel & vanilla sauces.
A gluten free dessert offered at P.F. Chang’s is the Chocolate Dome Dessert. Served with fresh berries and raspberry sauce, this is a work of art.
Other desserts offered at P.F. Chang’s are The Great Wall of Chocolate, which consists of six layers of chocolate cake frosted, served with semi-sweet chocolate chips, topped with raspberry sauce. Also on the dessert menu is New York-Style Cheesecake, served with fresh berries & raspberry sauce.
After the last item was taken from the table, Chef Veneracion sat down with me for about an hour. Our conversation was not just about food, it was about the the place of all places…New York City! To my surprise, the chef spent much of his life around New York City and shared many stories with me.
I enjoyed my time at P.F. Chang’s and am forever grateful for the hospitality shown by everyone.
FIVE: High 5!
FOUR: Please & Thank You
TWO: Double Wow
ONE: Wow + Ouch = Wouch