Ta Hua on Memorial
I would like to encourage those of you who live on the west side or visit there for the Town & Country Center, Pizaro's Pizza and the like, to give Ta Hua a shot. This once great place deteriorated into Really Bad Food over the years, but we noticed it is under new ownership, spiffed up on the outside and always full of cars again, so we ordered for delivery. It was all fantastic. Aside from Chang's in Katy, this is the only American style Chinese food eatery in the area I find to be good (with apologies to North China restaurant on I-10 @ Hwy 6 which has a different sort of menu).
I've been under the weather this week, so I was craving soup last night.
Thought of Ta Hua, which as noted in my post above, we used to frequent but hadn't hit in quite a while.
The restaurant has been totally redone on the inside since I had last been there, (new Management). I recognized one waiter from the old days, but our server was a young girl who confessed that she was new and couldn't answer any of my questions.
I wanted soup, but I didn't want a huge bowl of dumpling or wontons. (To be quite honest, we quit going there maybe seven or eight years ago after I got sick on a bowl of what until then had been a wonderful rich wonton soup.)
Anyway, I ordered an app of pan fried pork dumplings and a bowl of egg drop soup. I've recently been enjoying egg drop soups after eschewing them for years and years. (Tan Tan makes a great one, BTW.)
My buddy ordered the chicken fried rice.
Fairly quickly, the soup arrived and it was a HUUUUUGE bowl of very viscuous, bright-yellow-almost-orange soup. I ladeled a cup and while it wasn't awful, it was just a little too close in consistency to what had been clogging up my head all week, and frankly just wasn't that appetizing to me. I can't blame them for my mental associations, but I probably wouldn't order it again.
The dumplings arrived pretty simultaneously but were steamed instead of the pan fried I had requested. I like steamed dumplings just fine so I didn't make an issue of it.
The pork dumplings were also very large and quite tasty. I WOULD order them again, but I would try to be very clear about the preparation next time.
The fried rice was fine, but my friend said the Tan Tan and Tay Do offerings were much better.
Lastly, aside from the dumpling snafu, the service was barely adequate. They kept my tea filled, (a full time job in itself), but we waited on 1) chopsticks, 2) chili oil, 3) the check.
All in all, I probably won't go back. The truth is that there are lots of similar places that haven't disappointed me yet, so why bother?
Glad to hear you are in tippy top shape again! Sad to hear of your experience at Ta Hua. The take-out was so promising. I still intend to visit myself, maybe it was a bad day! Anyway, I wish you would let me know the names of the "lots of similar places" that you like. I've tried most American style Chinese restaurants in the area, and the closest one that I really like is in Katy (Chang's). We tried one that recently opened around Memorial @ Eldridge area- the name is blocked from my mind- and it was awful. Gimme some ideas!
Firstly, it's been decades since I was in "tippy top shape", but I do expect to survive. Thanks for the kind thoughts tho'!
As for my comments about other places which haven't "disappointed me yet", I actually meant the ones I haven't been to yet, but just off of the top of my head in our general neighborhood:
Tay Do - Westheimer/Hwy 6
Chef Deng's - Memorial in the Kroger Center east of Ta Hua
Tan's Hunan - Dairy Ashford near Briar Forest
Hunan Emperor - Westheimer around Fondren
Yao's - Westheimer and Gessner
TanTan is in another class all by itself.
I have and would eat at any of those.
(And I like ALL of their egg drops better than Ta Hua.)
We used to eat there quite regularly. Then as you note, it went pretty far downhill.
About six months ago my mom called and asked me to recommend an Americanized Chinese place and since I had recently seen the "Under New Management" banner, I suggested it to her.
She and my aunt and uncle went and really liked it. They've been back several times, but I haven't been back there yet.
Thanks for the reminder. I'll definitely try it out soon.