Mother’s day, is probably not the best day to walk into a restaurant and expect to be able to get a table, yet this is what various family members and I battled to do on this special day. Walking up and down Addison Street, ducking into numerous restaurants, was no good for my Grandma’s heels. After reaching the crest of a seemingly never ending hill, we ducked into a yellow oriental structure, complete with koi, and asked someone if there was a table for five, we were told to wait. Five minutes and one relocation of a family to another table later, we were in. Praise Tang’s Chinese establishment at 31-33 Addison Street, Shellharbour for going out of their way to slot us in.
Being led through the restaurant to our table was an experience in itself. An irate dragon and radiant phoenix depicted in paint danced among crashing waves against a wall, the eyes of countless fish could be felt scrutinizing our backs, the rich scents of Chinese cooking assaulted our noses, and the loud sizzling of chicken and beef rang in our ears as it passed by on hotplates with clouds of steam billowing up to the ceiling. The atmosphere of this restaurant can intoxicate the senses of sight, sound, and smell, really opening you up for the experience of taste as aromatic and colour adorned dishes pass you by.
After being seated, a waitress promptly brought us a jug of water and the all-important menus before disappearing into the throng, only to return a few minutes later to inevitably take our order to the kitchens. We only had to wait 20 minutes before our entrées arrived. The crunchy pastry of the spring rolls complemented their steaming vegie filled insides beautifully, their flavour, accented by a drizzle of sweetness in the form of plum sauce.
Shortly after finishing the appetiser, the main dishes were unleashed upon us. I ordered the beef in black bean sauce, which I like to order whenever I go somewhere I’ve never had Chinese before. I think that each and every beef in black bean sauce tastes differently and I like to compare them. Tasting Tang’s version, I can safely say which my new favourite is, it’s Tang’s for sure. The generous amount of beef and green capsicum lay in an ocean of thick and glossy black bean sauce, waiting to be tasted and contemplated. The moment the beef touched my tongue, its tenderness was apparent as it practically melted, the rich taste of umami it provided flooded and overloaded my tastebuds. As if this weren’t enough, a pleasant salty flavour provided the finishing blow.
My time at this restaurant was unforgettable. No eatery I have ever been to has provided a better experience. Tang’s Chinese is a model establishment that deserves the highest of praise for its incredible service and Chinese cuisine.