Last night 16 of us went for a 42nd Birthday party. Part of the group wanted to make sure that I made a post of the evening, even though I have written about this two or three person operation previously.
"Chung Ching", 5842 Hamilton Ave. Cincinnati-513-541-1243, is a store front restaurant run by a wife, Joyce, and her husband, an unseen entity, but a very good cook. If there is anyone else they are also hidden in the kitchen, as Joyce is the whole front of the house staff. Don't go for ambiance, decore or a full bar but do go for good basic Chinese food served hot and as ordered. It also wont break the bank.
Our party, which took up the whole front of the restaurant, had copious quantities of food and drink( beer and wine) and left after almost three hours in "high spirits", no pun. The total cost including tax and tip just under $19 per person.
To relate the dishes, we consumed, gives you some idea of the cooks flexibility.
We started with and egg role each. Their egg rolls are large, hot and vegetarian. We had two orders of diced chicken and peanuts each with a different level of spice. Two orders, of Sesame Chicken, terrible for you, but sweetly delicious and one order of Sweet and Sour Chicken of which I did not partake. The beef dishes were sliced tender meat, one dish with fresh pea pods (young and crispy) and one with scallions. For seafood we ordered shrimp with cashew nuts, this also contained pea pods and water chestnuts. Our pork was strips of Bar-B-Que meat with fresh crispy bean sprouts, again two orders as ere the shrimp. To behave we had 2 orders of Szechuan Green beans and several bowls of steaming rice. A Chinese table further back had crispy duck, fixed several ways, which I'll try the next time.
Also we returned a week or so ago to Primavista, our favorite "Italian", located high atop Price Hill. Especially noteworthy, that evening, was the Ossobuco. Unfortunately the scampi in Sherry sauce was not up to the usual standard, which just proves they are human also. I mention the fact that I had been slightly disappointed in my dinner and was assured that they would take the proper steps. A sign of a well run establishment where the owners take a personal interest.
Last Monday night we went with another couple to "Wild Ginger", 3655 Edwards Road, Cincinnati-513-533-9500. They have expanded but their food remains first rate. They have Shiner Bock Beer, which I personally enjoy. The service is always attentive and food comes with some detail to presentation.
Marilyn and I split and order(6) of chicken pot sticker, with a nice dipping sauce. I had an "ocean king" role which included soft shell crab, scallops, eel and shrimp. A seafood dinner wrapped in rice. Marilyn had the Walleye with 3 spices, which she has enjoyed many times, it comes with wilted spinach, on top, and crisp broccoli riming the plate. Total cost approximately $25. each.