Thursday Doors: The Quest Ends

It’s Thursday! It’s time to share some doors! What did I capture this week? Let’s find out.

ThursdayDoors DSF

It may have been a search as long as the walk those hobbits took looking for some ring, but I finally found what I was looking for (and I didn’t have to endlessly walk to do so).

Good things come to those who wait. Why, that could have been written on the message inside a fortune cookie the last time I had decent Chinese food. That’s a fine sentiment and I get it. I believed my time would come. I just didn’t think it would take this long.

See, when I lived in Delaware, a lifetime and several incarnations of me ago, I discovered not one, but two places that had the BEST Chinese food I’ve ever eaten. One was conveniently located across from my job at the time; the other, conveniently located in my favorite beach town, which I frequented, well, more frequently when I lived in the First State.

Upon leaving Delaware, was I sad about leaving the people who’d been such a big part of my life? Sure, if you mean the owners of both restaurants who knew my name and my usual dish. I mean, I missed them so much that for some time after moving back to Pennsylvania, I made trips back to both restaurants. As I lived in several places in Pennsylvania since, that could be a drive as short as 35 minutes or as long as two hours, depending on which restaurant I went to and where I lived at the time.

What can I say, when I’m devoted (and hungry for good food), I’m devoted.

In the meantime, I was on a quest to find equally delicious Chinese food in my new Pennsylvania hometown(s). I know what you’re thinking: But Tara, you live near Philadelphia, a large city. There MUST be decent Chinese food within short driving distance. One would think so. But if there is such a thing within the Philadelphia city limits, I’ll not taste it. My driving time in the city is limited only to Broadway shows I simply must see (as I won’t struggle anymore with the hassles of travel to NYC to do so).

I can assure you, though, since I returned to Pennsylvania 10 years ago, I tried most of the Chinese restaurants in the several counties I’ve lived in. I always start with the General Tso’s. If they can’t get that right, why bother with anything else? Sadly, none of the places I tried could get that right: they gave me dark meat though I asked for white meat; they made it too spicy or not spicy enough; they gave me two pieces of chicken and a thousand pieces of broccoli… NEVER GOOD ENOUGH. And two of them were Zagat rated!

Last year, I heard good things about a newish place about 20 minutes north of me. I put it on my list to try, but it’s not the easiest place to get to, though it’s close. Then, a miracle happened: a new Chinese restaurant opened within feet of me! (OK, several miles, and easy to drive ones at that.). So last Friday night, I decided to give it a try.

I placed my order for the General Tso combo with low expectations, so many times having had my high hopes dashed quicker than you can say pork fried rice. Forever the optimist, though, I keep trying, and I’m glad I did. Finally, happily, I can say that THIS is the door to the Pennsylvania place where I discovered decent Chinese food again!


Traditional red door. Lovely window art.

I asked for white meat. I got it. I asked for medium spice. It was just right. I had a zillion pieces of chicken and two pieces of broccoli. Ahhhh. The pork fried rice was delicious, as was the spring roll I got instead of an egg roll.


The remains (from when I thought ‘take a pic.’ Not pictured: spring roll.

Is it as good as my two favorite Delaware restaurants? No. But it’s the closest I’ve come to finding it. I still eat at restaurant at the beach, but the other one is so out of the way… Luckily, I have this place now to satisfy my Chinese food cravings every now and then. And to get my fortunes! This week’s:



It’s like… they know

It may have taken a decade, but I’ve found a close-by restaurant to replace the faraway ones I left behind. I’m nothing if not persistent and full of perseverance (and yummy chicken…).

This post is one of many through Thursday Doors by Norm Frampton. See other doors — from around the world — on his weekly linkup and/or on the Twitter at #ThursdayDoors. See more of my doors here.

13 thoughts on “Thursday Doors: The Quest Ends

  1. Why is it so hard to find good Chinese food? We have a couple of restaurants here, but they are not good. We have good Vietnamese, Korean, and Japanese places, but not Chinese. I like the red door! Glad you found it! 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • Seriously! I’ve heard from more and more people about this. I’m sure there are just as many who will struggle, too, as I do, finding really good pizza, but that’s another post for another day. Glad you liked the door. Thanks for commenting!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m still searching for a replacement for my fave Chinese restaurant that closed down over 5 years ago.
    I know the “pain” you went through and can only imagine the joy you must feel.
    We’re always a little sad with every new place we try that’s just not quite the same as the place we used to love.
    I’m glad you found yours, though 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Norm, I had no idea this was also an INTERNATIONAL problem. I sincerely hope you find a new Chinese restaurant in Quebec. On the flip side, I imagine that you have all the amazing French food one could ever hope to eat there… Maybe that will ease the pain a bit? A ton of that would do so for me… 🙂

      Thanks, Norm!


  3. We’ve been on a mission to create some of the Chinese foods we can no longer get due to family gluten intolerance. I’m happy to say we’ve succeeded on a few good ones 😉 Glad you found a good substitute for your Chinese food craving!


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