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Little Village

November 28, 2008

Parents in town, was looking for that Chinatown location offering an optimal balance of delicious food and child-friendly atmosphere. Having passed by Little Village on several occasions, snaking around the throngs on the sidewalk waiting for a table and glancing in at the glowing faces of patrons basking in subdued lighting and funky yet authentic atmosphere, I thought I might have the place.

Then I read more than a few unflattering online reviews bitching about service and subpar quality. These reviews seemed more detailed than the ones gushing in praise, but I forced down the second thoughts I was beginning to have, and went with my gut.

As usual it did not lead me astray.

With a Pinot Grigio in hand courtesy of HASR Wine Co., the around-the-corner-from-everything-in-Chinatown stop for an excellent match to any meal (and a destination worth exploring in its own right), we headed for our table toward the rear of the restaurant. The space is curiously divided into a fancier room with painted walls, hanging art, recessed spaces containing finely detailed vases and dimmed lighting, and a more pedestrian, brighter space where our table was located. This split personality has the unfortunate effect of making you wish you were sitting in the nicer section, even though the public area is just fine.

That small twaddle aside, the food was pretty spectacular, in particular the amply stuffed mu-shu and honey walnut shrimp that was basking in a sauce nothing short of astounding. The service was a little spotty, with dishes coming out untimed and in seeming haphazard order, but that didn’t bother us so much, especially when we saw the check.

Mei wei!

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