By Cassandra VanKeuren Special to the Herald
When you enter Tasters Wok, you can see immediately the classic Chinese restaurant look: extremely large red double doors. Red paper lanterns hanging from the ceiling. Lots of green bamboo plants, large red booths and a giant golden ingot behind the counter.
The daily specials were handwritten on a white board next to the counter.
Tasters wok is a large and busy restaurant with lots of young waiters rushing around. We went on a Sunday night and even though the place was super busy we were seated right away in a nice big booth.
We were given menus and our drink orders were taken right away. Surprisingly, we were not given tea right away. Instead, we were asked and my husband and I decided we didn’t want tea.
Looking over the menu, we didn’t see anything that set this place apart from other Chinese restaurants. The only exception was the number of Thai dishes offered; in fact, one of the daily specials was green curry mussels.
Our waitress came quickly to take our order. With so many menu items it was hard to decide. I made a quick decision and chose the crab Rangoon ($5.50) for an appetizer then instantly regretted it because I am trying to avoid dairy, meat and anything deep fried.
My son chose sweet and sour pork ($8.50).
My husband decided to go with one of the Thai menu items and have the red curry with chicken ($8.25) and I chose the Szechuan tofu ($6.25).
We didn’t have to wait long for our appetizer to arrive. There were six crab Rangoon to the plate on top of a bed of cabbage. The fry was done well, light and crisp and not greasy. It was as delicious as crab and cream cheese should be. Everyone enjoyed it.
Our dinner was delivered quickly with fresh hot plates and a tub of white rice. Wow, I could not believe how much food we ordered. This place is truly meant for family-style eating.
My Szechuan tofu could have fed all of us. I think there were two boxes of tofu in it. The tofu was swimming in a spicy red gravy, with a helping of peas and carrots too.
The gravy had just enough spice for my liking. The tofu was cooked gently and had a velvety texture. Tasty, however I kinda wished for more veggies. The peas and carrots were obviously from the freezer. Nonetheless, everyone enjoyed my meal and I still had more than half of my order to take home.
My husband’s red curry was a nice surprise. It had lots of bell peppers and bean sprouts in it with a nice portion of chicken breast, all swimming in a flavorful coconut curry broth.
Please note, they do not ask you how spicy you want your curry. But I found the broth to be just perfect in terms of spiciness.
My son’s meal was the only real disappointment. The deep fried pork was tough and hard to chew. The sauce was your average sweet and sour sauce. He ate only a quarter of his plate and announced he was full.
I thought it was neither good nor bad. We did take it home though and had it for a late night snack.
Looking around at our neighbor’s meals, I noticed a theme. Large portions with lots of meat in the stir fries and a noticeable lack of veggies. If you are looking for lots of veggies, you will have to order a vegetable stir fry.
I can tell that Tasters Wok is catering to the American palate. Which is a wonderful thing for them. It brings people back time after time for a wonderful value and great food.
Tasters Wok would be a great place to feed a crowd. Just call ahead. I will definitely be coming back to try more dishes, maybe one of their lunch specials or maybe even some karaoke in their lounge.
15128 Highway 99, Lynnwood; 425-787-6789; www.tasterswokrestaurant.com
Hours: 11:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday; 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday; 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Sunday.
Vegetarian options: Yes.