Golden Phoenix's owner brings a Thai background to the eatery's cuisine, but the cooking staff ably represents Thailand, China, and Japan with an eclectic menu of pan-Asian staples. Diners can clasp fresh sushi rolls or lap up spicy coconut curries, complemented by a broad selection of wines and sake.
The chefs at Jasmine Asian Cuisine select fresh organic vegetables, choice meats, and antioxidant-rich oils to prepare dishes with pan-Asian heritage. All options on the dinner menu are additive- and preservative-free, including vegetable egg rolls whose golden, deep-fried wrappers are crispier than the pages of a fire-licked love letter. Specialties such as the sauteed spicy thai basil beef ($10.95) or pan-seared scallops with a mild vietnamese sauce ($11.95) float to marbled tabletops beside fluffy pillows of fried or steamed white rice. In the soba chicken noodle soup, Japanese buckwheat noodles and seasonal vegetables backstroke alongside tofu and woodear mushrooms in a chicken and pork broth ($7.95). Patrons can sip a passionfruit iced tea ($2) as they admire the dining area's collection of live plants, or finish a homemade pastry ($5) while tuning in to the soft babbling of a companion or the fountain on the wall.
Carved straight-backed chairs and hanging crimson lanterns cultivate a traditional Chinese vibe inside Golden Shanghai's spacious dining room. Nearby, a wall with strings of firecrackers and golden Buddha statues creates an exotic backdrop for family dinners or faked vacation photos. In keeping with the traditional décor theme, chefs plate MSG-free Chinese classics such as crispy duck and spicy Hunan beef as well as more adventurous specialties from a separate authentic-Chinese menu.
Elsewhere, however, the kitchen defies standard categories, bringing together the disparate cuisines of Japan, Thailand, and Vietnam for eclectic feasts. Tender morsels of Thai satay chicken share table space with Japanese sushi and udon, and chefs also stir up bowls of Vietnamese noodle soup. As they chomp their way through the tastes of the East, visitors can toast another year of not renewing their passport with glasses of tropical cocktails or frosty, thirst-quenching beers.
China Star maintains a speedy team of delivery drivers to fill homes with the warm aromas and comforting flavors of classic Chinese cuisine, whether it's tangles of egg noodles wound around juicy shrimp or seared pieces of pork buried in grains of fried rice. Chunks of chicken, beef, or tofu acquire stylish glazes of General Tso’s sauce, sesame sauce, or curried lime sauce, and Thai influences shine through in plates of pad thai, bowls of green and pineapple red curry, and the chefs' secret love of kickboxing.