Munchy Mary food fighter
Whether you want take-out or delivery, Chinese food is always a good option, unless you’re in Pittsburg on a Sunday in which case that is out of the running. However, if you want the best Chinese food in town on any other night, what is the best option? For this week’s food fight it is the battle of the Chinese food. Most people know that southeast Kansas Chinese food is typically chicken chunks smothered with your choice of sauce, but who does it best—Lotus Express or Bamboo?
First up to plate was Bamboo. Nestled in downtown Pittsburg, this restaurant is quite the hidden treasure. A longtime Pittsburg and Webb City favorite, this restaurant has found itself in several locations. The latest and likely prettiest is located just off ninth and Broadway. Although it is a lovely location, one of the best aspects of Bamboo is that eaters never actually have to step foot inside the restaurant. With the fastest delivery in town, Bamboo is quite the deal. Once it had arrived at my doorstep, the first course up to plate were their spring rolls. They were extremely light and airy—skipping the traditional greasy fried eggroll trend. Next up was the namesake bamboo chicken—by far one of the best chicken dishes on the menu. Not too salty and not too sweet, this was a great main course to test Bamboo on. However, the same cannot necessarily be said for the final dish of the night. Their lo mein was a bit of a hit and a miss. Bamboo stayed in the running because of their delivery and the additional availability of gluten free options, but their ranking slightly dropped after the lo mein.
Next up to fight was Lotus Express. From the outside, this restaurant is easily passable to the common eye, but the little spot is nothing to scoff at. As soon as you enter, you’re hit with a scent of lo mein that you never knew could be so delightful. I wish they had a similar delivery option, but the scent and the option of a drive-thru made it worth it. However, given the amount of people who frequent Lotus, if you are wanting to be able to grab and go, skip the drive-thru. First up to the taste test were the eggrolls. They were thick and crunchy as any good eggroll should be, but the hot mustard on top really took the cake. Next up was the meme chicken. Though this item is not technically on the menu, its general and orange chicken flavor combination was worth the walk on the wild side. Finally, as if the large portions of chicken, rice, and eggrolls weren’t enough, it was time to finish it all off with their lo mein. The fork was too much when piercing through the soft noodles. Simply put, amazing. If there was anything bad to say about Lotus, it was that I could not get enough.
The winner, winner Chinese chicken dinner of this battle is Lotus Express. Though their win would have been by a landslide if they had delivery available, they still finished strong. Between the giant portions, incredibly low prices, and the best smothered chicken chunks I have ever tasted, there is no contest. Their menu has changed throughout the years, once even including a buffet in their array, but this version of the small yet mighty restaurant has truly hit the nail on the head.