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Is Cuisine Szechuan still good?

s
sweettoothMTL Jun 20, 2012 07:31 AM

A couple of years ago, it was the best Chinese in the city, and now, it's hardly mentioned anymore? Has it lost it's game?

Thanks

  1. nochainsplease Feb 17, 2014 12:06 PM

    I ate there tonight, and two weeks ago. It's still good. But it's lost that loving feeling. Portions also seem a little smaller than in those heady early days.

    The former chef has gone (temporarily) to Palais Imperial in the West Island - more here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9246...

    2 Replies
    1. re: nochainsplease
      s
      Shattered Feb 17, 2014 03:18 PM

      That too bad, because portion size was the one little problem for me when I was first going there in late 2012, early 2013. I wouldn't say they were small or I left hungry, but they weren't huge portions that left me completely stuffed like most Chinese restos. So if they're noticeably smaller now, I would probably leave hungry.

      1. re: Shattered
        p
        Plateaumaman Feb 20, 2014 02:28 PM

        I was there last week and the hot and sour soup is not at all what it used to be, far too much soy sauce and not much hot. The eggplant dish was not bad, the spicy beans still pretty good but I noticed they have a new menu and most of the other customers were having selections from that, with individual burners on each table. I guess it is time for change.

    2. s
      Shattered Dec 16, 2012 04:21 PM

      The hot and sour soup is amazing; there's something in it I've never tasted before in h&s soup that gives it an extra edge - cumin, I think.

      The lamb with cumin was great, too. The kung pao chicken was very good, better than most. Beans with pork was pretty good.

      1. l
        Lolaray Dec 16, 2012 02:22 AM

        I had the Szetchuan Dumplings in Chile Sauce.It had absolutely no flavour.

        Hot and Sour Soup was good .

        Mistake to order Dan Dan noodles.Same sauce as dumplings .No flavour.Zero Spice and I ordered spicy.

        1. l
          Lolaray Dec 15, 2012 10:01 AM

          Went for the first time today.I can't imagine it was ever good.

          1. m
            mtlfoodguy Aug 16, 2012 11:12 AM

            yeah its still quite good...went last week at abuot 9pm on a friday...was packed and food was amazing! had the dumplings in spicy broth and twice cooked pork.

            1 Reply
            1. re: mtlfoodguy
              p
              Plateaumaman Aug 27, 2012 03:06 PM

              I had a really disappointing lunch there today, had to send back two cold bowls of rice, eggplant was burnt, hot and sour soup was sweet, mosquitoes in the bathroom. Am really hoping I just hit a bad day so I might have to be careful to only go back on a busy night. Seems to be a fair number of us hitting a bad day fairly often though. I wish we could keep track of our great chefs in Chinese restaurants the way we do in other places.

            2. c
              canadiandina Aug 15, 2012 04:13 AM

              what are the best dishes to order for take-out?

              1 Reply
              1. re: canadiandina
                cherylmtl Aug 15, 2012 12:24 PM

                Most of the tofu dishes stand up well to take out, and most meat dishes with sauce (ie - cumin beef). Chili chicken will lose some of its crispness, but none of its flavour. I don't think they will do any of those large bowls of chili broth with varied ingredients for takeout, though (but they will do the wonton in hot soup, as it fits in a small-ish container).

              2. m
                mattlane Jun 21, 2012 11:23 AM

                I was there a few months back, and was quite disappointed. CS is my Szechuan fix a few times a year (when I am not in London chowing down at No.10).

                This was a mid-week lunch of cumin beef, green beens w/pork, and twice cooked pork. Each dish was nowhere near as good as usual. Strangely, the restaurant was almost empty - usually full from memory.

                I will definitely head back when the lure of a hot wok, chillies and peppercorm becomes too great - and I will report back. I hope it was just a single off day.

                Best,

                Matt

                1 Reply
                1. re: mattlane
                  d
                  DDD Jul 24, 2012 02:28 PM

                  I hope tonight was a 'chef's night off', because the food was not nearly as good as previously. Our shrimp dish contained cold shrimp - a couple still had ice on them, the dumplings were watery. Only the hot and sour soup and cumin chicken were still good.

                2. wokhei Jun 20, 2012 09:49 AM

                  Definitely good, but give KanBai in that area a try- I think it eclipses CS.

                  9 Replies
                  1. re: wokhei
                    humbert Jun 20, 2012 01:59 PM

                    I only went to Kanbai once but in no way I thought it was even close to Cuisine Szechuan! Except for the mapo tofu which was great the rest was sub par and not comparable.

                    1. re: humbert
                      SnackHappy Jun 20, 2012 02:16 PM

                      I've been to Kanbai four times and I still can't figure out what the big deal is.

                      1. re: humbert
                        mainsqueeze Jun 22, 2012 08:47 AM

                        I agree CS is superior to Kanbai. I have been to both a number of times.

                        I also enjoyed Niu Kee tremendously but I've only been once and I was starving so maybe everything tasted extra delicious for me that day. I have to go back, stat.

                      2. re: wokhei
                        porker Jun 21, 2012 12:00 AM

                        I carry the banner for KanBai, but have to say their food is uneven at times.
                        Also, KanBai=alcohol License.......... Cuisine Szechuan=no license........ Porker eat @ KanBai

                        1. re: porker
                          t
                          The Chemist Jun 21, 2012 12:02 AM

                          I thought they had beer now at CS?

                          1. re: The Chemist
                            porker Jun 21, 2012 12:23 AM

                            I wouldn't know.....too busy drinking wine and sake @ KanBai - hehe.

                            1. re: porker
                              t
                              The Chemist Jun 21, 2012 12:27 AM

                              Off the top of your head, know any good Szechuan like CS in Boston? I'm getting a bit exasperated with a lack of authentic anything.

                              1. re: The Chemist
                                porker Jun 21, 2012 12:40 AM

                                Ahhh, not really off the top of my head...
                                I've been to Boston 3 times, the last being about 12 years ago. I was too busy swilling craft beer out of hand pumped taps to look for Szechuan joints. Maybe check the Boston board?

                            2. re: The Chemist
                              m
                              Mr F Jun 21, 2012 01:59 AM

                              It's been far too long since I've been to CS, but I'm pretty sure they've had beer since almost the beginning.

                              Agreed about KanBai being uneven... I am sure there is a chef's night off when everything falls apart and those who are truly in the know stay far away.

                        2. s
                          sweettoothMTL Jun 20, 2012 09:00 AM

                          Great, thanks.

                          1. c
                            catroast Jun 20, 2012 02:36 AM

                            still good

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: catroast
                              p
                              Plateaumaman Jun 20, 2012 05:19 AM

                              Agreed, very good the last few times I went.

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