Thursday, 23 February 2012

The Real China, Eastleigh

This is the most recent addition to the Eastleigh cinema complex, and we were going to wait until a friend from work had tried it first to minimise risk if it turned out to be rubbish. Tonights dinner was mean to be massaman lamb, but unfortunately the curry paste we'd bought was different to the normal one and it was very oniony so Ian refused to use it (that's the danger of shopping online, you can't always see what you're getting). As I'm currently trying to complete the no takeaway challenge, we decided to use the opportunity to try this restaurant. 

The decor is pretty, although I've subsequently read on trip advisor that people have noticed the floor is lifting away already but I didn't personally spot that. They have a nice little pond type thing in the entry way with fish in, although I don't really see the point, it's quite a waste of space and the fish didn't look overly happy.

The restaurant is purely a buffet place so we ordered some drinks and then made our way up for starters. Not everything is labelled, but there was a decent amount of choice, although there were some normal chinese starters that weren't present (sesame prawn toast, wontons, seaweed). Everything seemed lukewarm which was disappointing. When we went back up for the duck course, there was no duck available so we moved on to the mains. There was the usual chinese selection but also some szechuan mains and a few thai ones also, although these were off to one side and could easily be missed. Again, everything was cold, and so by this point I was a bit fed up. 

I spotted they'd replenished the duck so was hopeful of a decent plateful of food finally, and stocked up on duck and pancakes. Despite only just being brought out, the duck was also cold, and didn't really taste like crispy duck should (it was not crispy and it was pretty bland) so again I was disappointed. 

Ian and I failed to find anything more than lukewarm, and so we thought we'd see what the dessert was like and then give up. There was one dessert that looked like a combination of rocky road and trifle. I asked the waiter what it was and he didn't even seem to know.  The other desserts included Mr Kipling cakes sliced in half with some extra icing on top, or jelly babies!

There was meant to be a teppanyaki station where you could choose your own food to be cooked in front of you, which I think is likely to be the only chance for a hot meal here, but unfortunately noone was around to cook anything.

I never expect great things from buffets, but I do expect the food to be hot, and for £12 it really wasn't worth it. I will not be visiting again!


Lisa said...

It's horrid when you go to all the trouble of going out and then it's rubbish.

Personally, I always avoid buffet-type places, because it's an excuse for anyone with kids to let them run about rather than sit at a table and behave properly - but that might just be me. Also, like you, I've never had properly hot food from a buffet, and I can't stand food that's meant to be hot being tepid.

If you're ever Horsell (Woking)/Guildford way, the Beijing restaurants there are very good. Even I've enjoyed eating in the Horsell one, and as a veggie I usually find Chinese food rather disappointing.

Carrie said...

Thankfully not too much bother was involved as it was only a two minute walk from our house, but I think that makes it sadder because now one of the spots has been taken by a restaurant we wont visit again, meaning we'll have to go further in future!

This place is worse with the kids, because those under 140cm eat free, and so it's a little over run with them!