I walked into Temptasian 15 minutes before closing, a dangerous time to review a restaurant. Generally, employees are tired, the chef is working half-heartedly and the food is less than fresh. Fortunately, the woman who greeted me was friendly and addressed me by name (I had called my order in a few minutes earlier). My order was ready almost immediately and the service was pleasant and quick.
Temptasian’s interior was surprising. It felt a little like the lobby of a new hotel. The walls are beautifully paneled with light colored wood and a few hanging art installations. When you walk through the doors you are confronted by three large digital ordering booths. Unfortunately, they were out of order when I visited.
Here’s a breakdown of what I tried…
Spring Rolls: These little guys (2 for $1.80) were fantastic. Honestly, they were probably the best spring rolls I’ve ever had. Their exteriors were delicate and crispy albeit a little greasy and the filling was fresh not mushy. Unlike many of the spring rolls I’ve had in my life, they were flavorful enough to negate the use of any sort of dipping sauce. They tasted fresh and substantially (wonderfully) garlicky.
I would absolutely order them again.
Pot Stickers: Unfortunately, I was disappointed with the pot stickers (6 for $4.20). They were okay, but I thought they were no better than the frozen variety that you’d buy in a 5 lbs. bag from Costco. They didn’t taste fresh or savory and they felt doughy. They needed a strong salty soy-sauce style dipping sauce to make them enjoyable.
I didn’t finish them and I would not order them again.
Temptasian Orange Chicken: The white meat chicken breast was lightly tempura breaded and cooked perfectly, not too dry. The sauce was very good, and surprisingly (shockingly, even) sweet. It tasted very much like the glaze you’d find on an orange sweet roll. Unlike many Chinese restaurants like Panda Express, their Orange Chicken actually tasted like oranges. The sauce was zesty (and I don’t use that word lightly) and unexpected. The Lemon Chicken tasted almost identical to the Orange chicken, but less powerful.
I would order the Orange Chicken again, but the Lemon Chicken tasted too similar for me to order it as its own dish.
Chow Mein: The chow mein was fine. It wasn’t bad, but it certainly wasn’t great. It lacked any substantial or unique flavor and the noodles themselves were too doughy for my taste. It included the traditional vegetable mix of celery and sprouts. This was the only dish in my meal that felt like a 15-minutes-before-closing kind of dish.
I would not order the chow mein again.
Singapore Rice Noodles: This dish ($8.99 for an enormous portion) was my “wild card” and I’m grateful that I ordered it because it was my favorite dish of the meal. The rice noodles were thin and delicate, a huge contrast to the heavy chow mein. The BBQ pork was pleasantly chewy and the shrimp was perfect. The most delightful surprise of the dish was the use of curry. It was a spicy delicious Chinese-Indian fusion.
I will definitely go back to order this again. I highly recommend it.
Overall, I plan to visit Temptasian again. It may not be the best choice for traditional late-night Chinese takeout, but it’s a fantastic option for those who want to try something new within the realm of Asian-influenced cuisine.