Best Chinese Restaurant (2004)

Gingko Tree China Bistro

Wolfberries are believed to be good for the eyes and enhance energy. Gingko seeds are swell for memory enhancement and urination promotion (not the same as urinal advertising). Lychee nuts are good for the skin. Gingko Tree China Bistro employs all of these healthful ingredients in its menu so that we can cease being forgetful sloths with eyesight that blinds us to our own bad skin. Plus we don't pee enough, or maybe just not in straight enough streams. That's why Gingko serves delicious dishes like lychee nut shrimp and gingko shrimp seasoned with seeds from the gingko, a Chinese ornamental shade tree. Gingko is Nuevo Chinese, in effect. It acknowledges that the great regional cuisines of China--Cantonese, Fukien, Honan, Szechwan, Peking-Shantung--are blurring, with aspects of some absorbed by staples of others. Gingko fare is designed to reflect the shifts in this hoary cuisine stirred by modernity. There are nods to the past, such as ants climb tree: rice noodles infested with stir-fried ground pork, bell peppers, scallions and tiny broccoli florets. There are crafty desserts such as fire on ice: seasonal fruit surrounding a scoop of house-made vanilla ice cream that's doused with Everclear squirts and set ablaze. Desserts like this simply underscore the need for proper bladder health.

Readers' Pick

P.F. Chang's China Bistro

Various locations

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