17181 Redmond Way #700
Redmond WA 98052
Not Your Typical "Dragon" Restaurant
By: Steve G
From the outside, Jade Dragon looks like one of those generic Chinese joints with the all of the stereotypical dragon decor and large Buddha statues. Surprisingly, the high level of ambiance in the place took us aback. The cascading water feature, full service bar, lavish tables, these are the styling elements that we never expected to see and it made both of us do a double take to make sure we walked into the right restaurant.
In contrast to the impressive decor, the menu is pretty standard. The appetizers looked like a mix of other Asian foods disguised in different names. The Crab Rangoon sounded strikingly similar to the crab wonton you'll find at Thai restaurants, while the Dragon Salad Roll is really just a Vietnamese Spring Roll in disguise. On the other hand, the entrees aren't as deceptive as some of the appetizers and they are all Chinese dishes. There's even a liquor infused boba (bubble tea) drink that had both of us scratching our heads.
I ordered the Ginger Beef ($7.50) made with stir-fried beef, green onion and celery in a ginger sauce. Grant opted for the Bac Choy Delight ($7.50) made with Chinese greens, chicken, and barbeque pork in secret white sauce.
The ginger beef was cut into small strips and soaked in the ginger sauce. The sauce itself had a strong taste of ginger that worked well the chili to give it that strong pungent flavor that fans of spicy fans love. You can order what level of spice on a range zero to five stars. I ordered a two star, but Jade Dragon wasn't stingy on the spice as it seemed more like three star. The veggies piled on the plate, so don't expect this dish to be just all about the meat. The ginger beef is a decent meal, but those who aren't big fans of spice might want to tone down the spice for this dish.
The bac choy delight was more of a "pleasant experience" than a true "delight". The bac choy was decently cooked, but the most nutritious part of the bac choy, the leafy greens, was absent making Grant feel like they only made the dish out of leftovers. The sauce used for the dish has a semi sweet taste but it looked more brown than white. The dish also used some white chicken meat cut into small tender chunks.
Overall, the food at Jade Dragon is decent though the variety isn't too impressive. If you're expecting a diverse menu you're sure to be disappointed. We were really impressed by the amount of effort put into the decor, but aside from that you're not going to be too impressed by what's offered.