Girls, model pretty and impossibly thin, are chatting with their boyfriends. Young gay men are conversing, voices so silvery I look up, expecting to see a girl. Young serious Asian males with razor thin eyeglasses are sipping tea, looking as if they should be in a revolutionary Parisian coffeehouse of a previous century. Asian families of fifteen or twenty are celebrating a birthday. These are typical clientele of Man Chun Hong, a well respected and popular Chinese eatery in Doraville. It is well known for good food, great noodles, and huge portions.
It’s also a difficult eatery to puzzle out. Those huge portions make it much harder to explore the large menu – or menus, as they have an American-Chinese/Korean-Chinese menu and then an authentic Chinese menu here. So recently I came here with my family, in part to show them Man Chun Hong and perhaps, to explore their foods a little deeper.
Mussels from Man Chun Hong (American menu)
Lots of coriander and cumin in this lamb (Chef's Special, Chinese menu)
It’s in the same strip mall as the celebrated Woo Nam Jeong, almost next door to it, and just south of the “L” shaped mall that houses Sushi House Hayakawa. The parking lot is small and narrow, a little tricky to navigate.
Ordering has been a little different each time. My first time it was the American menu without question. Second time, I was handed the American menu and senior staff then countermanded what my waitress did, and gave me the Chinese menu (both menus are in Chinese and English). When my family arrived, we received the Chinese menu without question (Soon after, the wait staff were trying to speak to my wife in Chinese).
Man Chun Hong starts meals with kimchi, as an appetizer. A spinach and tofu soup soon followed. My wife loved the soup.
We also ordered dry fried green beans. Those were a hit.
Entrees this time were a fish dish recommended by our waitress, a beef dish similar to the lamb, and my wife asked for something with “chicken and plenty of vegetables, but spicy”. There was some negotiating there.
“Do you want any specific kinds of vegetables?”
“No, just plenty of them.”
Having just finished the Fortune Cookie Chronicles I was silently wondering whether my wife would end up with broccoli in her dish. She did. But the richness of the spicing, and the variety did please my wife. She ended up with something she liked a lot.
My daughter chose a beef dish, after flirting with the lamb I had ordered. We all had mixed opinions of it. My wife vastly preferred her chicken. My daughter liked other dishes more. I thought there was nothing wrong with her beef, though I thought the coriander and cumin of the lamb dish I had previously had more ‘zing’.
I had a spicy fish soup, mixed with plenty of vegetables. I had picked and unpicked foods several times. We were walking through the possibilities, and this is where we stopped. When tasting, phrases that come to mind: spicy, fishy, oily, good, too much too eat. It made great leftovers.
We had plenty of leftovers.
Verdict: A blogger favorite, Man Chun Hong is a versatile restaurant with a big reputation for excellent noodles. Highly recommended.
Man Chun Hong
5953 Buford Highway
Doraville, GA 30340
Notes: Other reviews of Man Chun Hong are here, here, and here.