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Sichuan Village, Sichuan on Route 50 in Chantilly


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I understand that some of you may not be familiar with Sichuan Village, so here's some info for you.

Sichuan Village is owned by the same people who used to own Formosa Cafe in Crystal City, but for reasons known only to them (and their geomancer) they are now operating in Chantilly, on Route 50 just east of Route 28, in the same shopping center as Il Mee Korean bbq. Most of their business seems to go for the buffet, which is very large, reportedly not bad, and popular with the scads of newly-arrived Chinese tourists en route from Dulles to their hotels.

This is another of those Chinese restaurants that has a separate menu for Chinese and another for "foreigners". However, I don't believe there is a huge difference between the two. The Chinese-language menu is a laminated sheet, printed on both sides, with about 100 dishes or so on it (btw, they also have a website, http://www.sichuanvillage.com/, where you can see the menus for yourself). When you arrive, they seem to ask everyone if you're there for the buffet or "the menu". By all means, go for the menu.

We have been there about 7 times or so, and only once did we feel that we had a lousy meal. That time the place was really hopping with Chinese attendees of a jewelry convention at the nearby Dulles Expo Center, and the staff could not cope. All our other meals have been exemplary. Among their stand-out dishes are the "crispy skin whole fish", "ma po bean curd", "boiled fish with silky bean curd" and "cumin chicken" (these are my translations, not theirs). They generally tone down the spice for anyone (including Chinese) who do not explicitly ask for it Sichuan-style.

Prices are reasonable, service is very friendly, though sometime slow, and the range of dishes is commendable. Only fault is that they don't make their specials menu available in English.

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Due to an unrequited craving for China Gourmet's hot and numbing dried beef, we figured it couldn't hurt to try Sichuan Village. I'm glad we did - not only is it quite a bit closer to home, it's good.

We tried the Sichuan street dumplings, cumin chicken, and "onion bread," their version of scallion pancake. The person we talked to said they tried for a more rustic style than China Gourmet, and I think that's a fair assessment; the preparations seemed simpler, but I don't think they lost anything for it. And they didn't skimp on the spice, either (although they did ask a couple of times, in that "are you sure you know what you're getting into?" way.) They also do a cumin lamb, which we're looking forward to trying next visit.

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My son's birthday dinner request last week was spicy Asian. So after a search of Don's dining guide we decided to give Sichuan Village a try. I am glad we did.

If anyone misses Peter Chang's food, they should give this place a try. They have the exact same cld spicy beef salad and it is every bit as delicious. We also had the Street wontons which were filled with a gingered chicken and draped with a spicy Sichuan Sauce. The salt and pepper shrimp was also delicious, but you must be a fan of eating shrimp with their shells on. Beef with Cumin and HOt Sauce was also very well done, appropriately spicy, but not enough to make you cough. Chengdu Beef was also very good, this is a spicy stew like dish. Their online menu is smaller than their menu at the restaurant. Anyone craving a good Sichuan fix should give this place a try.

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No updates in a while so I figured I would chime in. This place is my goto local chinese restaraunt. As long as you don't order anything that is on the American Chinese Menu. Order from the Sichuan sounding dishes and you will be ok.

Some of my favorites:

Dan Dan Noodles

Street Wontons

Fish w/ Pickled Vegatables

House Chicken

Sliced Beef w/ Black Pepper

Hunan Tofu

I work nearby and the Dan Dan Noodles make for a good cheap lunch.

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Question for those of you more familiar with Sichuan food than I. I will be going to Sichuan village with a group of people who can't handle spicy food. Can anyone recommend some good and authentic dishes here that aren't spicy?

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I looked at their online Chinese menu.

Under their specials - chives and shredded meat (usually pork, maybe beef)

Under the appetizers - they have a clear soup wonton (same wonton as the spicy version presumably, just not spicy)

Under the cold appetizers - (i) garlic with seaweed, (ii) marinated jellyfish

Under seafood - steamed whole fish (with soy, scallion), salt and pepper squid

Lots of non-spicy veggie dishes

Under pork - salt & pepper ribs, wood ear with pork, pork with sizzling rice, and there are lots of offal dishes if you're interested in those

Under beef - scallion beef aka mongolian beef, also available as a lamb dish

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Catching up on some of my restaurant reviews. This place is.... interesting..... It seems that a family bought the malibu grill and partitioned the place in half. Half the restaurant is the malibu grill, the other half is Cheong Wong, a cantonese restaurant.

I've gotten carry out from them twice. Both times were hit and miss. The First time the HK Wonton soup and pork fried rice were excellent but the beef chow foon was only ok. The second time around the spicy pork chop dish and house fried rice were good, but the wanton soup was bland.

I'll probably give them another try in a few minutes but that is more of a result of the lack of good chinese food near me (Aside from Sichuan Village of course).

NB regarding Sichuan Village, after several good meals there, we had one really bad one. We got I think four dishes and they ranged from mediocre to bad. The cumin lamb was quite gross, in fact. It might have been an off-night, but none of us is any rush to go back.

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