We found China Garden over 35 years ago (yikes!) when like us, it was still relatively young. We made our annual pilgrimage to it last night for a party to find it still there, still great, and still OPEN. Best Egg Rolls in the known world…and when you can get great Egg Rolls with Jasmine Tea what else do you need…? Well, a lot apparently as the ancient waiters began resolutely filling the table with amazing dishes.
Downtown Houston on Leeland St. The 2nd generation runs the place while the elderly first generation still does all the work. The 3rd generation is running away as fast as they can to pursue art, photography…yoga…anything to escape the fate of their forebears. There’s something magical about cooking food and serving people but you better love it ’cause it takes fanatical commitment to excellence and deep reservoirs of ready energy. It’s easy to understand why people do it…and easy to understand why they won’t.
There’s a giant Orange tree growing out of the sidewalk that shades the front of China Garden. And there are dire warnings posted against picking from it. The tree is magnificent and laden with fruit that glows in the dark of the neon night. The owner says she lets them tree-ripen before picking. Houston is an ideal climate for citrus so I’m sure these oranges will be amazing.
Dancing in the dark with Crime Scene last night taking the long way home after the party, I couldn’t help thinking about all the gatherings we’ve held there over the years: dinner with friends, dinner with family, birthday dinner parties, and dinner parties for no reason. Recalling the loud-shout of certainty in those ancient days euphemistically referred to as dinner conversation by some and running the gauntlet by others, I began to see that in some ways we were a lot older then…
Charlie’s Birthday Party at China Garden 10//02/15 10:30PM. It was stellar.