Friday night and we decided to try the Green Dragon for dinner, a Chinese restaurant located in a strip mall on Colorado Blvd in the Eagle Rock neighborhood/area of Los Angeles. There is a small parking lot in front, which was full at 7:00-ish when we arrived, but we found close parking on a side street. The Green Dragon dining room is basically a mid-size room with tables along each wall and a row of tables down the middle. The decoration is simple, almost spartan, the color scheme is quite beigy – off-white wallpaper, beige tablecloths. On the walls next to each table is a long mirror with a house plant above each mirror, the floors industrial cement, and room lighting on the bright side.
We ordered the plate of “Assorted Appetizers” plus two entrees, Kung Pao Chicken and Beef Pan-Fried Noodles, all to share for the two of us. The appetizer platter arrived sizzlin’ hot, complete with two dipping sauces (red and yellow) and lots of yummies to devour. It included two each (perfect for two people to share) of the Veggie Spring Rolls, Fried Shrimp, and Paper-Wrapped Chicken, plus 4-piece BBQ Pork Spare Ribs and some Fried Wontons. Everything on this plate was good, I especially liked the Spring Rolls. My only complaint is the Paper-Wrapped Chicken was wrapped in tin foil not paper and it was very difficult getting the foil off, making it hard to enjoy the chicken (though it had a nice flavor) while struggling with that darn foil! Our entrees were both tasty (especially the Kung Pao Chicken) – and huge! The Pan-Fried Noodles were very crisp (a bit hard to cut through and serve, actually) but pretty good. At the end of our meal we were served a few bonus treats – a plate of fresh orange slices, an almond cookie, and fortune cookie for each of us. Nice!
Now maybe it’s just me ’cause I prefer more clutter (and I do agree some people like more simple decor) but I would love to see this place with more decoration, perhaps some Chinese lanterns and a few knick-knacks etc. to decorate the walls, maybe some low room dividers to add interest to the space. I also think this restaurant could improve the ambiance with lower lighting – the room just has a bit too much of a hospital cafeteria feel to it. There was some very soft music playing that was quite low (I wasn’t totally sure if I was hearing it or not!), could be a touch louder. Aside from this, I thought this restaurant had really good food and very efficient service, the people who work here are very nice and polite. I will be back to try some more of their dishes.
Update to this: We returned to this restaurant several months later to try some different dishes. This was a Sunday evening and we found easy parking in the lot in front of the restaurant. The decor seemed unchanged. To eat, we ordered the Chicken Wonton Soup, Vegetable Fried Rice, and Curry Chicken. The soup arrived first and it had a simple, homestyle flavor of the comfort food variety. A savory chicken broth with pieces of chicken, some Wontons, and lots of spinach (a small complaint is that some of the spinach leaves were rather large and difficult to break up and bite through). The two entrees/main course dishes we ordered this time were even better than the first time we ate at this restaurant. We both LOVED the Veggie Fried Rice – yum, yum, yum!! The Curry Chicken was very good too, with lots of small chicken cubes, flavorful potatoes cut in french fry style pieces, all topped with loads of curry sauce (I like!). The food here is plentiful, so we had lots of leftovers to bring home for another meal (or two). I really like this place.
Website for Eagle Rock Green Dragon Restaurant – Mandarin and Szechwan Cuisine