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Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Atlanta's Best Chinese Restaurant - Gu's Bistro

Warning:  The following may be inappropriate for children under the age of 13 or those adverse to the multicultural trappings of Buford Highway

I know, it looks like a total shit show on the outside
Gu's Bistro on Buford Highway has picked up quite a cult following.  And with good cause, because it is absolutely, hands down and whatever poor cliche I can come up with THE BEST CHINESE FOOD IN ATLANTA.  It maintains total street cred by it's Buford Highway Location in a totally sketchy strip mall.  And that's being generous to sketchy strip malls.

But Shockingly Nice on the Inside
We have been looking long and hard for a new favorite Chinese place since Chopstix in Buckhead closed on Leap Day, February 29th, 2012.  This journey is part of the reason I started this blog.  We are doing gods work here at The Dry Rub!

Those who know me and my inner culinary circle went through a difficult time on that leap day.  My friend Jeff actually pushed back the closing of his house to dine at Chopstix on their last day.  We don't take these things lightly.  Some people may call that pathetic, I call it dedication.

Then we had the dumplings at Gu's and this happened.

AND THE LORD SAID TO MOSES, "Taketh I-285 to Buford Highway North and go about 1/2 mile and you'll find this slice of heaven on your left"

Chinese food has so much tradition, The Shroud of Turin was found to have remnants of soy sauce near its mouth
The appetizers are in(f*cking)credible.  The Zong Style Dumplings are hands down the best I've ever had.  The sauce is unique and the dumplings melt in your mouth.  I challenge you to find some better dumplings.  I could eat these 5x a week (and I may try).

The Chengdu Cold Noodles are both sweet and spicy and may be even better than the dumplings.  Jeff from the DR4 is in agreement.  Fair warning, both of these dishes do pack a punch.

The 2nd best export from Chengdu
The Dan Dan Noodles are both hot and spicy.  The meat on top is a great touch and, more importantly, a tasteful touch.

Dan thought these were so nice, we had to name it twice
On my initial trip, I ordered the Shrimp with Garlic Sauce.  The garlic sauce was full of taste.  (Though the Chicken w/ Garlic Sauce didn't taste as good). That's when I knew I had to come back and try to order as many items as I could.  So the next time I ordered Shredded Pork with Black Fungus. And the mushrooms were very tasty.

Today we had the infamous Tea Smoked Duck (Bone In).  And shockingly it's a duck smoked in tea. The meat is extremely tender and the smokey taste unique for duck.  Now if you are a marginal fan of duck, I still implore you to order this.  It is such a unique dish where the duck falls right off of the bone.

Smoked to Perfection
It was the best smoked thing since this:

This little gem has become such a cult classic, they are opening up a dumpling shop at the new Krog Market in Inman Park.  Not a bad transformation from Buford Highway shopping mall to the hipster Krog Market.

Young Bill Gates "lost" his lunch money many times I bet
It's much like Bill Gates going from High School Tool to the countries top Philanthropist hangin' with Bono.

Only in America does this happen
I will tell you that the "Americanized" menu is mediocre.  The Kung Pao Chicken and Lo Mein is fairly pedestrian, but you don't come here to play it safe.  Order off the Authentic Menu and let them make some of the decisions for you.

And if you go, go deep. At least 4 people and get the dumplings and Chendgu Cold Noodles.  Then split a few "authentic" main courses.  I also like the fact they acknowledge that the Chinese are horrendous at dessert so they threw in the towel and offer Ben and Jerry's.

Today's Footnote:  If you like rock music from any era, I implore you to give the new-ish Queens of the Stone Age's album ....Like Clockwork a listen.  It is true art.  Josh Homme continues to be on of our most underrated musicians and I'm not sure why.  I've always been a fan of QOTSA, but this album is the perfect culmination of all of their previous offerings.  You're welcome.

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