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Ming Dynasty offers a special Valentine’s Day menu

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Honey Chicken at Ming Dynasty.

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Christina Ruotolo

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

It’s Valentine’s Day! If you still haven’t picked a dinner destination for tonight, there is still time. Ming Dynasty is a perfect choice offering a romantic atmosphere, great food and affordable prices. It specializes in Mandarin, Schezwan and Cantonese dishes and provides gluten-free, low-fat, peanut-free and vegetarian options. Ming Dynasty has been in business for more than 30 years, providing customers with excellent service and incredible food. Enjoy sitting in comfort at artfully decorated tables or plush booths with linen napkins, order a drink from the full bar offering beer, wine and cocktails, or delight in the expansive dinner buffet.

Ming Dynasty’s everyday lunch and dinner menu offers a variety of items from appetizers to chicken, pork, beef, seafood and vegetarian options. There are traditional favorites like Moo Goo Gai Pan, sesame chicken and shrimp with mixed vegetables.

Today through Sunday, Ming Dynasty will offer a special limited menu for $15 per person plus tax and tip. First, choose your favorite imported or domestic beer or enjoy a glass of red or white wine. Some of the wines available are Kenwood Vineyards Chardonnay or Cabernet, Robert Mondovi’s Pinot Grigio. You can try a zinfandel blend with a mix of zinfandel, syrah, barera, merlot, petite syrah and sanglovese. I selected the Kenwood Vineyards Merlot from Sonoma, Calif. It’s deep garnet in color and has aromas of plum and cherry. It’s a full-bodied wine with an intense pepper front flavor on the tongue with a velvety mouthfeel with back notes of deep vanilla and cinnamon. If you want an additional glass, all beer and wine is offered for $3 through Sunday.

After you select a beer or wine from the menu to start your Valentine’s Day lunch or dinner, you and a guest can enjoy a crispy egg roll with tangy duck sauce and a choice of your favorite soup. Choose from the egg drop, wonton or hot-and-sour soup. I selected the creamy egg drop soup for my starter because I love the rich and savory taste. The soup base is a glossy golden yellow loaded with soft ribbons of egg running through it.

Next, select one entree from a limited menu. Choose from sweet-and-sour chicken, General Tso’s chicken, honey chicken, pepper steak, beef with mixed vegetables or the shrimp with mixed vegetables. Each entree comes with either a bowl of fluffy, white rice or fried rice. I selected a few menu items to taste. The first was the honey chicken. Chicken chunks are breaded and fried then glazed in a glossy, sweet sauce made with honey and spices. The top is dusted with sesame seeds and is surrounded by fresh, steamed broccoli spears. Mine came with a large bowl of steamed white rice. The dark, rich sauce was satisfying, a perfect sweet dish for two sweethearts to share.

Next, I tried the beef with mixed vegetables — tender slices of marinated beef with colorful vegetables stir-fried in a fragrant sauce made with wine, oyster sauce, pepper and garlic. This dish was beautifully presented. The rich beef was paired with sliced snow pea pods, bok choy, carrots, zucchini, broccoli and mushrooms. The sauce was a combination of savory from the beef and sweet from the carrots, bright broccoli and tender vegetables.

If you are one of those people who likes to eat a little bit of everything and you’re into instant food gratification, then you can enjoy the lunch or dinner buffet. Ming Dynasty’s buffet offers guests more than 20 selections. They include crab Rangoon, chow mein, sesame chicken, vegetable lo mein, chicken with broccoli, hot and spicy bean curd, sweet-and-sour chicken, General Tso’s chicken, seasoned meatballs, pepper chicken, pork with onions, Singapore noodles, steamed rice, chicken-fried rice, seasoned potatoes and egg rolls. Soups, soup noodles, assorted cookies, Jell-O and sweet, sugared doughnuts also are available on the buffet. The dinner buffet replaces the bean curd with peel-and-eat shrimp and adds crispy chicken wings. The lunch buffet is $9.95, and the dinner buffet is $10.95.

Ming Dynasty is at 3105 E. 10th St. in the Rivergate Shopping Center. Hours are from 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. and 4-9 p.m. Mondays-Thursdays; 11 a.m.-2:30 p.m. and 4-10 p.m. Fridays; 4-10 p.m. Saturdays; and noon-3 p.m. and 4-9 p.m. Sundays. Takeout is available. Call 752-7111 or visit www.mingdynastygreenville.com.

Bone Appetit

The Humane Society of Eastern Carolina (HSEC) will host a Bone Appetit fundraising event from 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Tuesday at Basil’s, 1675 E. Fire Tower Road. Ten percent of all food and drink sales will be donated to HSEC. Write “for HSEC” on the receipt and alert the server.

Send information to hotdish@reflector.com.

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