Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Exits 12B-C - MD-372 (Wilkens Ave., East and West)

I worked late today. I had some time to eat, and I work pretty close to Wilkens Avenue, so I headed right onto Wilkens and then right onto Maiden Choice, to a Chinese place my family used to frequent often - Golden Gate Chinese Restaurant (map). It's in the Mars Shopping Center on Maiden Choice Lane, not the Giant (map) Shopping Center on the other side of Wilkens. Golden Gate has gotten better over the years, I think. The last time I went was during a visit from California a few years back. My sister and I went for dinner. I got horribly ill from the shrimp and vowed never to go back.

Okay, so I did go back. It took a few years but I did indeed go back. And...

It just hit me: I've been eating a lot of Chinese lately!

Anyway, there's a hell of a lot of dim sum at the Golden Gate now. Dumplings, steamed rice cakes, potstickers, etc. Tasty stuff. But I ordered the General Tso's chicken ($5.20). I had my reservations after the utterly lackluster meal from Grace Cafe the other day. But I got it hot, not unlike the last place. This time it came in cardboard Chinese food containers instead of the impersonal, less sturdy styrofoam box. Again, just rice; no egg rolls or anything of that sort.

I don't know what it was, but this General Tso's was much better, tastier, crispier, tangier and more vegetable-y than the orange chicken I had at Grace Cafe. In fact, I really enjoyed my General Tso's chicken. Yeah, it's still the same old breaded chicken in a sticky sauce, only not citrus-y. And even fewer pieces of broccoli this time. But that sauce! There was something good, garlicky, scallion-y and sweet about that sauce. And yet the chicken pieces still managed to stay crispy.

I know where I'm going for Chinese in Arbutus from now on.

Oh, as for the other direction on Wilkens? University of Maryland, Baltimore County straight ahead, and farther up on Valley Road, past Catonsville High, across Rolling Road lies Catonsville's campus of the Community Colleges of Baltimore County. I have eaten in the cafeterias of both places, and I promise you: there is absolutely no reason whatsoever to go out of your way to eat at either campus if you can help it. Unfortunately, most people can't help it. But I just figured I should spread the word. It's college food; it's not very good.

Places I visited:

Golden Gate Chinese Restaurant (Chinese) -1056 Maiden Choice Lane, Arbutus, MD 21229; Phone: (410) 242-4788

  • Would I eat there again? Yep!
  • Would I go out of my way to eat there again? You know? I think I would!
University of Maryland, Baltimore County (cafeteria / food court) - Commons Building, 1000 Hilltop Circle, Catonsville, MD 21250

  • Would I eat there again? Nope!
  • Would I go out of my way to eat there again? Why would a person do that?
Community Colleges of Baltimore County, Catonsville Campus (cafeteria) - Building K, 800 Rolling Road, Catonsville, MD 21228

  • Would I eat there again? See answer for "UMBC"
  • Would I go out of my way to eat there again? Ditto.


Anonymous said...

You can't find the Grace Cafe on the internet because it recently changed its name from "China-Thai Restaurant."

Also, the address is 5201, not 5401. The full details are:

Grace Cafe (formerly China-Thai)
5201 East Dr.
Halethorpe, MD 9999
(410) 242-8585

Anonymous said...

I had carry out from the grace cafe yesterday and was puking all night fallowed by the other end in the morning. I haven't been able to eat all day. i will never eat there again