Tuesday, 24 February 2009

RESTAURANT REVIEW: CHOP CHOP


Something to believe in

CHINESE FOOD HAS NOT REALLY EXCITED ME SINCE I WAS EIGHT, WHEN SKEWERS OF BEEF WERE BROUGHT TO ME WITH A LITTLE POT OF FIRE AND FORTUNE COOKIES HELD INEXPLICABLE PROMISES. BUT SINCE I'VE GROWN UP, I'VE GOTTEN BORED WITH IT ALL AND USUALLY CANNOT FEIGN ENTHUSIASM AT THE PROSPECT OF ORDERING CHINESE. HOWEVER, I AM VERY PROUD THAT MY SENSES HAVE BEEN SWAYED AND AM DUTIFULLY REPORTING THAT ALL MUST MOZY ON OVER TO MORRISON STREET FOR A CHINESE FEAST THAT IS SURELY THE VERY BEST IN THE WEST.

The restaurant is bright and friendly, clean and trendy. On arrival, we are not the only table but because of the highly-audible birthday celebration in progress, the room is cleared as bottles of Chinese beers go down a treat. The patient and kind gentlemen that greets us explains that the food is Northeastern style and is meant to be ordered collectively, served randomly and shared by all. Their specialty is dumplings, all of which are homemade with the freshest ingredients.

The dumpling menu is almost infinite and divided into fried or boiled. Our group orders four different bowls of 16 dumplings (bowls of 8 are available too): pork and celery, beef and chili, pork and sauerkraut and finally, lamb and carrot They are all tasty (and slippery, careful with the chopsticks!) but unanimously, the chili and beef ones proved the crowd favourite. And for every pair of us, we got the cool and creative opportunity to concoct our own dipping sauce using fresh minced garlic, vinegar and soy sauce.

A couple of us also decided to share the Northern chicken (£9.25) and fish balls (large £8.25). The latter were just great, however overpowered by the best thing that happened to me last week, that Northern chicken. Cuts of chicken are crispy-fried and bathed in an absolutely unstoppable sauce of soy, vinegar and sugar that although screams of fresh coriander, not a leaf can be found. Tremendous. I scraped my plate clean, and then moved on to someone else's Northern chicken remains.

Chop Chop also do a great looking banquet menu for big parties. Bring all of the expectations you can muster up because this place has made even me a believer.

Chop Chop
248 Morrison Street
Edinburgh
EH3 8DT
0131 221 1155

OPENING HOURS
Tues-Fri 12-2pm and 5.30-10.30pm
Sat and Sun 5-11pm

Also in Bite Magazine

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