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Feb 3, 2010 07:18 AM

Best General Gau/Tao Chicken?

The best General Gua chicken I ever had was upstairs in the old Chinatown eatery. The chicken was crispy, saucey, sweet and spicy. All the General Gau I had are sweet and soggy. Missing the crispy and spicy.

Recommendation anyone?

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    1. re: gourmaniac

      Shanghai in Allston does a very good version. Chicken is nicely crispy and the sauce has a great balance between sweet, spice, and acid. I didn't expect to like it when my more timid eating friend ordered it, but it's was really surprising.

    2. :I was pleasantly shocked to find a tasty, light, not so sweet and mildly spicy rendition recently at PF Chang's (really) - it was crispy, but I think it was also 100% white meat....

      1 Reply
      1. re: rlh

        The all white meat part would be a deal breaker for me...I've had General's chicken that way and while the one I had was crispy and delicately sauced, the chicken breast itself was bland and flavorless.
        I guess a lot of people prefer the white meat though, because I'm seeing more and more Asian places touting the fact that they use ONLY white meat in their chicken dishes.
        One I went to even refused to sub it with dark meat!

      2. One of my favorites, though I rarely eat it anymore, was @ Great Chow in Quincy.

        1 Reply
          1. re: Taralli

            Seconded - the General Gau's chicken there is AWESOME, especially if you can get them to do the "authentic" style version.

            Thanks to Vin Ordinaire for the suggestion of Shanghai Gate - I don't think I would have thought of ordering it there. Jo Jo Taipei also has a good version, though it's got a non-obvious name, something like "crispy spicy country style chicken."

            1. re: Allstonian

              Fuloon's version was mind-altering. So very different from the usual dough ball junk.

              1. re: lergnom

                I have had both the "authentic" and normal versions at Fuloon, and both are fabulous.

              2. re: Allstonian

                How does the authentic version differ from the Americanized version? I had General Gau's at Fuloon last Saturday and it was wonderful, but I'm assuming it was the American version since I didn't ask for the authentic. Can anyone clarify?

                1. re: Eatin in Woostah

                  I have never heard of authentic general gau - it's an Americanized Chinese dish.

                    1. re: jgg13

                      At best, Dunlop makes a case for a chef trained in classic Hunan cuisine developing and introducing a similar dish in Taiwan, not that this is a traditional dish in Hunan or anywhere else in China. Unless a Chinese person has lived abroad, unlikely you will find anyone who knows what this dish is. Her own case for adding it is because so many Westerners like it.

                      1. re: kobuta

                        Interesting stuff here. Reminds me of some delicious Orange Beef I enjoyed that was supposedly in 'authentic' style...not as sweet as the Americanized version commonly available, and not thickly battered and deep fried as is common. I can't vouch for the 'authenticity' of what I was served, but it was delicious, and much better than what is usually served as 'Orange Beef'.

                        1. re: The Professor

                          Where did you have this? I had the orange beef at Qingdao once and it was pretty good! Crispy beef (not battered... battered beef sounds a bit horrifying to me, but maybe it's better than it sounds?), pretty sweet sauce, but tasty and somewhat spicy.

                    2. re: kobuta

                      Me neither, but both Allstonian and Delhiwala have had an alternate version at Fuloon, so I'm wondering how it differs.

              3. I like the version of The General at Mary Chung, it is neither super sweet nor soggy.

                2 Replies
                1. re: jgg13

                  2nd Mary Chungs. I also like the Lotus Seed Chicken at Changsho.

                  1. re: Gabatta

                    I used to like Mary Chung's, but the last two times I've had it, it was pretty gross and I don't think I'd order it again. Overly bready, soggy, and with a weird taste to the sauce.

                    Golden Temple actually has one of the better versions I've ever had, though it might've been white meat. Unfortunately, that would require actually going to Golden Temple and nothing else I've had there was really worth going back for.