Mulan Asian Bistro: Dinner with Dad

IMG_3655Last night after work, eager to catch up with my dad after returning from his trip to Denmark, we went to dinner at Mulan Asian Bistro in Memphis, the former burger place, that was formerly Dan McGuiness, an Irish style pub whose club sandwich I miss very much. We arrived about seven thirty, and it immediately struck me as odd that this restaurant was so empty on a Friday evening, perhaps a bad sign, but nevertheless we were led to our table and seated right away. The waiter brought over the menu, that was very large and contained sections of food from several Asian countries, reminding me of the Seinfeld episode where Babu Bhatt opens up the dream cafe that features a myriad of different cuisines from around the world. We looked through the menu for a while, and decided to order a few appetizers to share rather than picking a single dish, thus allowing us to try several different options to get a general feel of whether we liked this restaurant or not.

While we waited for the food to arrive, I scrolled through pictures my dad had taken on his two week vacation, as he told me all about his trip, mostly spent in Copenhagen, while venturing further into Denmark on several occasions to check out some art museums that sounded absolutely fascinating. The food arrived, teriyaki chicken skewers, vietnamese spring rolls, fried shrimp, and crab and cream cheese wontons, the table now full of delicious food for us to try. As we ate, we talked more about the trip, and how the only downside was the food in Denmark, which sounded pretty terrible, a complete contrast from the meal we were enjoying. As someone who can’t stand mayonnaise, my dad quickly found that Danish food was not something he particularly enjoyed, as they tended to put mayonnaise on everything, including pizza, which sounds positively revolting.

Our meal was delicious, the teriyaki chicken being the standout performer of the evening, perfectly cooked and tender, full of great flavor, however the vietnamese spring rolls were something both of us could have gone without, a cold wrap of lettuce, white noodles, and shrimp, that fell apart and littered the plate after the first bite. Perhaps there are people out there, healthier than I, that enjoy a mouthful of assorted greens with each bite, but I’m the type of person who would have preferred a better ratio of shrimp to lettuce. The fried shrimp was okay, as it’s a hard dish to mess up, but it was pretty bland and didn’t have the explosion of fresh flavors I’d come to expect in shrimp in my years of dining in Orange Beach, off the Gulf of Mexico. The crab and cream cheese wontons were delicious, and the sweet sauce provided a nice contrast to the savory flavors of the filling. Overall the meal was good and I would definitely return to Mulan to eat again, next time staying far away from the vietnamese spring rolls.

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