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Asian Wok is a little gem of a Chinese restaurant

Asian Wok Chinese Restaurant is a little gem of a dining establishment in Westlake that is often overlooked.

The restaurant has been in its present location for years. Owners John and Jennie Hung do not put a lot of effort into promoting the eatery. A good deal of their business is in carryout. However, the restaurant has a comfortable dining room and lounge where patrons can enjoy a delicious meal at a good value.

The menu is so extensive that it is almost overwhelming. During a recent visit, I spent 15 minutes perusing the selection of Cantonese, Mandarin and Szechwan specialties before finally selecting a Thai dish. The restaurant now features pad Thai, which is a blend of Thai rice noodles with sauteed shrimp and chicken, bean sprouts, eggs, onions, tamarind, spices and crushed peanuts, served with a wedge of lime. Priced at $9.99 for dinner ($6.50 for lunch), the dish was easily enough for two meals. Vegetarian pad Thai prepared with broccoli, snow peas and tofu is also available.

All of the usual Chinese favorites are on the menu, including egg foo young, fried rice, chop suey, chow mein and lo mein selections. Combination platters include an egg roll and fried rice with your entree choice. Asian Wok’s house menu suggestions let the kitchen’s creativity shine. Rainbow shrimp are large shrimp cooked with minced pork, red peppers, mushrooms, water chestnuts and bamboo shoots in an egg sauce with crisp vermicelli noodles ($8.99). Asian Wok Empress Chicken is a whole chicken breast stuffed with ham, breaded and deep-fried and served over Chinese vegetables ($8.99). Dragon and Phoenix, a mix of chicken and lobster chunks with fresh vegetables ($16.99), can also be prepared spicy. Cantonese roast Long Island duck can be ordered whole or half, a day in advance, since it has to marinate (market price). Mongolian beef is sliced beef in a tangy hoisin sauce sprinkled with chopped scallions ($9.99).

Szechwan and Mandarin dishes are prepared medium spicy, unless ordered otherwise. Kung pao chicken, beef, pork or shrimp are stir-fried with bamboo shoots, green peppers, water chestnuts, mushrooms and peanuts in a hot Szechwan sauce. Moo shu pork is sauteed with shredded cabbage and Chinese vegetables in hoisin sauce and served with thin Oriental crepes ($8.99). Pearl of the Sea is shrimp, lobster and scallops with vegetables in a hot garlic sauce ($16.99).

The menu offers a wide selection of vegetarian specialties like Singapore noodles with vegetables in a light curry sauce ($11.50) and tofu sauteed with eggs and tomatoes ($9.99). Buddha’s Delight is tofu sauteed with assorted Chinese vegetables and vermicelli noodles ($7.59).

The luncheon menu, available from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Monday through Friday and from noon to 3 p.m. Saturday, offers dishes priced from $3.99 to $5.99.

Asian Wok has full-menu carryout, and catering is available. The restaurant, at 24389 Detroit Road, is open daily. Reservations are not accepted. All major credit cards are honored. Phone 440-871-0880.



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