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Jan 20, 2010 05:41 AM

Tang Pavilion

Just wanted to let you all know, my SO and I tried Tang's Pavilion this past Sunday and were disappointed. The food was QUICKLY served to us so it was already PRE-PAPERED in the back. Plus, it wasn't really good. It was lacking flavor. Overall, it just wasn't worth it! The price was not worth it at all, especially for Lunch, and I don't care that it was NYC. It was definetly a MISS.

Tang Pavilion
65 W 55th St, New York, NY 10019

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    1. Surprised at this, we've eaten here probbaly 20 times at least - mostly at lunch, most recently about 3 weeks ago - and like it very much as have people we've brought with us. We order Shanghainese dishes from the regular menu though (they're listed on it, not on a Chinese-only menu). They have a very good chef and their special dishes are delicious and authentic (tofu skin with green soybeans and pork, chicken with yellow leeks, and scallops with pickled vegetable and bamboo shoots are particular favorites).

      7 Replies
      1. re: buttertart

        Having been there in the past and enjoyed it, I was surprised to see such a negative review. I went there this past Sunday for dinner, and everything was quite good.

        We had the soup dumplings (not the best I've had, but certainly above average), the salt and pepper shrimp, sliced duck with pineapple, lamb with scallion and tofu sheets with green beans (new dish for me, it was basically pasta made with tofu).

        The waiter was a bit gruff, but otherwise no complaints.

        I'm really curious to know what the OP had!

        1. re: lexismore

          Me too, big time. The tofu sheets with green beans is a particular favorite and the one you had is probabaly the best (most refined) one in the city. That's an actual Shanghai home cooking dish. I love the slight texturing on the beancurd sheet, made by its being drained on a cloth. OP refers to wanting Shanghai shrimp - as far as I know there is no one specifically Shanghai shrimp preparation - what was s/he expecting? The service is very professional if not terribly warm (although the owners of the restaurant are very charming.) The room is nicely appointed with gorgeous oxblood ceramics any one of which I would be delighted to own - and the CC Wang paintings in the corridor to the main dining room are beautiful.

          1. re: buttertart

            Those tofu sheets with green beans sound interesting. I wonder if they bear any resemblance to a dish that I love at Fu Run: Tofu sheets with chunks of somewhat spicy green peppers and bathed in a very light broth that is probably chicken based.
            The tofu sheets have that texture you are referring to--like they have been pressed against fabric. This dish is so simple but so wonderful.

            1. re: erica

              That sounds great - Fu Run had escaped my notice, love Beijing-style food, must get there. The xue cai mao dou bai ye rou si (pickled veg/green soybean/doufu skin/pork strips at Yeah Shanghai for example is less refined than Tang Pavilion's - and the chicken sauce you noticed is I think a result of its being cooked in chicken fat. Umami city.

              1. re: buttertart

                Oh, YES! Let us know how you like them. I really like Fu Run and would like to explore their menu in much more depth.

        2. re: buttertart

          Sorry, I didn't order anything Shanghai. Maybe I should have.

          1. re: littlecmad

            Given that the menu specifies Shanghai and Soochow (also spelled Suzhou) cuisine, I would think if one were looking for especially good Chinese food and not just a cheap lunch one might inquire as to their specialties and get something one might actually enjoy. I only hope that parties who might consider this restaurant don't just see your what I believe to be very unfair trashing of it and say "well, cross that one off the list". This is a serious Chinese restaurant run by two gentlemen who are epicures and connoisseurs of Chinese art as well as cuisine. It is not a chop suey joint.

        3. Did you order the bargain lunch special?

          2 Replies
          1. re: erica

            I wasn't shown or offered any bargain lunch specials. Maybe I should of tried the Shanghai noodles but I was in the mood for shrimp and they didn't have Shanghai shrimp.

          2. We had another great meal at Tang Pavilion Saturday - scallops w xuelihong pickled vegetable and bamboo shoot; nian gao rice cake w little coins of xiangchang (Chinese sausage), splendidly chewy and savory; nubbins of peeled asparagus, and yellow leeks (a New Year's special), great tender shizitou lion's head meatballs; and doumiao and chunky-cut FRESH bamboo shoot in a thin clear wine sauce served on a rectangular plate w a separate pile of perfect doumiao. That was a New Year's special too. Love their food, the Shanghai specialties are delicious indeed.

            1. Seems to me that the OP knows she might have made a mistake in terms of what she ordered, and there's no need to keep asking her to tell us what she got. I also wouldn't worry that her review would deter others from trying the place. In fact, if anything else, the other reviews in this thread have piqued my curiosity and now I'm adding this restaurant to my list of places I want to try! So sometimes a negative review that begets contradicting opinions can actually help create more interest in a restaurant.