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Oct 16, 2007 08:03 AM

updates on acton chinese?

I'm going to be in the area tonight, and am contemplating getting take-out from Acton Coffee and Ice Cream, but am hoping to hear recent updates. I know it is new, and still trying to get an identity. What are the best home-style dishes to order, or is it best to give it a few more weeks?

Any suggestions and recent reports would be appreciated!

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  1. I have not been in a few weeks. I have photos and info on items i got on my blog. I would not recommend going if you plan on eating there. I cant even stand waiting for my food inside and have to go sit in the car or sit outside. They have no kitchen exhaust so the place fills with greasy smelly smoke quickly from the cooking. This was a few weeks ago when they still were keeping the front door and oposite window open. I have no idea what they are doing now that its too cold to keep the doors open! Maybe they bought a fan.

    Specialties include the Chow foon noodle dishes, S/P preperation, ribs in black bean sauce.

      1. re: hargau

        No, for a variety of reasons I couldn't make it there for dinner. I ended up at Chilli Garden in Medford, which I really enjoyed. We got wontons in spicy sauce, which were really delicious. Also, green bean start noodles in spicy sauce, another winner. I didn't care for the chicken with cucumber that the hostess recommended, but my fault for going with it, since I'm not a fan of cooked cucumber. Tasty bok choy in garlic sauce, and my son really enjoyed the sesame rice ball dessert. I'll definitely go back to try some of the other house specialties.

        I work in the Acton area but am not usually around at dinner time, but I'll make it to the restaurant soon.

          1. re: hargau

            Unfortunately, we often work through lunch, so lunch hour is a rare treat, but we are planning on take-out from there soon when we have a light day. I'll report when we do. I'm still hoping to try it for dinner, and thanks for the tip about the ventilation.

            1. re: bear

              Their latest menu says they will deliver but i asked the owner about this last time and he said not until business picks up enough to hire a driver.

              1. re: hargau

                I was there 10-days ago and the owner indicated that he hoped to have a driver in November. He printed the delivery information on the new menu so that he didn't have to reprint in the future.

                I wouldn't say we "ordered." The owner asked us what we liked, and then made food which was delivered on a tray. My dinner of beef, cabbage and rice noodles was delicious. My sister's vegetarian Japanese eggplant dish however was unbelievable. So good. The sauce was deep and flavorful.

                1. re: smtucker

                  Gosh, they both sound good. I'm going to try hard to get there for lunch, tomorrow. There's got to be some reason I have to go to Acton . . .

      2. Please report back, all of you!

        6 Replies
        1. re: bear

          bear, I wouldn't put it off -- it's really great. we've been twice and would go more often but we're still eating the leftovers! (we order extra in order to taste many things, then take a lot home).

          Salt & pepper shrimp is excellent, as good as Shangri - La's (maybe better, thin slices of hot pepper really enliven the dish). Eggplant - sublime. Lovely chinese broccoli with the traditional sauce that I don't know the name of. Really haven't had a bad dish yet (though s&p squid not nearly as good as the shrimp). The owner and the chef are very willing to accommodate requests, if they have the ingredients.

          1. re: chowcat

            Tomorrow im thinking of trying to get them to make sp shrimp without the shells! I love the things but cant eat the shells. They are a huge mess to peel and you lose all the tasty bits when you do. I have never seen anyplace do this. Will report back!

            1. re: hargau

              Went tonight. They did make the S&P shrimp for me with no shells. Loved them! Had a good amount of jalepenos in there too.
              Got the Ho fun noodles with chicken, Ginger& Scallion beef (owner recommended) and the thai style soup. The owner was very proud of the soup and told me how they make it with all fresh ingredients. Fresh mushrooms, tomatoes etc.. Attached are photos

              1. re: hargau

                Yum. Thanks for the pics. I guess I have no excuse but to order lunch or take-out dinner really soon. What a neat opportunity to have an up-and-coming place customize your individual meal, and do it with quality and style.

                1. re: bear

                  Another great meal there tonight.
                  Got the s&p shrimp again, Singapore rice noodles, black pepper beef and a special chinese spinich that he had tonight.

                  1. re: hargau

                    In the Concord Jounal there was a dining out supplement in which they had a full page ad with their menu.It ws probably included in the other local papers as well! I think they will be getting very busy!

        2. We finally made it there last night for take-out. When my husband is away, it's all about take-out. I'm guessing we missed you, Hargau, because no one was there while we waited for our food, but a friendly couple did stop in when we were leaving. The people are soooo nice. The woman who took our order could not have been sweeter. I'm not sure if she is one of the owners or not. The man who I am assuming is the owner came as we were getting ready to leave and he checked us out. He seemed a wealth of information and we wished he had been there when we were wrestling with what to order.

          We had chicken dumplings, black pepper sirloin, steamed ribs, vegetable ho fan, baby bok choy, and hot and sour soup. The food was very fresh and good. The dumplings, fine, nothing special, the soup had a good depth of flavor, the sirloin was tender but I would have liked a little more pepper kick to the sauce, and the ribs were chewy deliciousness. The bok choy and the ho fan were very flavorful, too. He said the ribs, ho fan and baby bok in particular are Cantonese specialties.

          We'll definitely go back when we're in the mood for yummy comfort food. Thanks for the recs! In particular, we'd love to try the traditional South China slow-simmered pork and vegetables. They were unfortunately out of it, but the menu description sounds great.

          Oh, and glad to hear they are advertising. I hope they do well!

          2 Replies
          1. re: bear

            Yea definately missed us as the woman wasnt working when we went last night, just the owner and the cook. The dumplings are straight from the freezer bag, ive seen him take them out. Look like a super 88 or even a trader joes type package.

            We had the black pepper beef last night too, 1st time on that one. The beef they use is top notch. I didnt care for all the green peppers in that dish though. I much prefer the beef with scallion/onion that we got last week. The ho fun is excellent there, i have had it several times. Its one of his specialties.I imagine the prep on your baby bok was similar to the chinese spinach we got last night, very tasty! I got the hot and sour once and wasnt a fan of it. My gf loves the Tai soup he has though, it can be very salty though.

            1. re: hargau

              Yup, on the dumplings he said they are Joyce Chen. Since they're frozen, they'd probably have more flavor if they were pork. Anyway, we'll probably pass on them in the future. The beef in the black pepper dish was very good, but I agree about the green peppers, and not much black pepper in the sauce. The owner said that is not typically a Cantonese dish. If he had been there to guide us, we probably would have ordered something else, but it was worth trying, and was of good quality. I'll have to check out the beef with scallion. I had commented to my son after we ordered that we probably should have gone with that. We also didn't notice the spinach dish, but were happy enough with the bok choy. The hot and sour soup was definitely different, and not that sour, but we were sort of intrigued with the somewhat unusual flavor.

              All in all, a fun and tasty experience, and with one veggie son and one adventurous carnivore, a repeat place where we all can be happy.

          2. Have enjoyed their stuff for a while, but called last night and a recording said that they were temporarily closed. Apparently the owner canned the whole staff (of maybe 2?) and he says that he hopes to reopen soon, after finding new people. I'm already jonesing the salt and pepper ribs there so I hope he does it soon.

            3 Replies
            1. re: ChrisConcord

              Love this place but wondered how they'd make it given the location. Staff? LOL, yeah, a cook and a person at the counter! Hope the closing is truly temporary and if they re-open, they keep the quality.

              1. re: three of us

                most of the times i went it was just him and the cook. I think once i saw a woman who was at the counter

                1. re: hargau

                  Once she was there and we had a large take out order, afterwards we saw that we were missing an entree, but it was late and I didn't bother to call and complain. A few weeks later she called me at home to ask why I hadn't ordered again and to remind me that she owed me the entree. She seemed nice enough, but the missing entree/wrong entree thing happened a few times.