Wok Chi, Harborne

Wok Chi has been open in Harborne for a few years now and despite our best efforts we rarely find ourselves with the opportunity to visit. We had takeaway from there a long time ago (to put this into context, I was pregnant in fact and our daughter is now two and a half) and have wanted to pop in for a meal ever since.

We finally found the chance recently when both my husband and I were off work and our little one was at nursery. Obviously we love spending time with her, but going out for meals is not much fun – by the time your order arrives she has had enough of sitting still, so you end up inhaling your food and paying the bill within about five minutes flat.

So we took advantage of the situation and headed up to Wok Chi for lunch. The menu is relatively small but has a lot to offer, with a good range of sides and starters, and then everything you could want from a noodle, rice, stir fry or soup dish. I’ve heard amazing reviews of their salt and chilli chips but we didn’t order them on this occasion, something to try when we get to return!

We already knew we wanted spare ribs so that was taken care of pretty quickly – we ordered a portion of firecracker ribs and decided to try the honey and lemon ribs as well. For the main course, I fancied something a bit different so I opted for the Fruity Cantonese Style classic wok stir fry with chow mein noodles. This is a fruity sauce cooked with peppers, onions, pickled ginger, pineapple and peach. You can choose from different meats and I went for the fully loaded option of mixed combo of chicken, beef and king prawns.

My husband ordered the Beef Hor Fun, which is Cantonese rice pho noodle stir fry with beef, beansprouts, coriander and spring onions. He chose to have black bean sauce but you can leave it plain without any sauce.

The service was great even though the restaurant was very busy. Once we had ordered our food it arrived really quickly, and they remembered that we had asked for everything to come out all at the same time. It was all cooked beautifully and looked really fresh, and it smelt divine. The ribs were absolutely amazing; so tender and packed with flavour. The firecracker ones had the edge, although the honey lemon were a welcome change from the usual barbeque ribs. The sweetness of the honey worked so well with the rich meaty flavour of the pork. I would definitely recommend giving them a try.

My main course was fantastic too. The fruit in the stir fry was really refreshing and a great contrast to the meat. The noodles were firm and filling and the sauce was packed full of flavour. The only thing I would note is that this dish is as sweet as it sounds, so if you prefer something spicier or more savoury then this might not be right for you (but it was delicious, so it’s always good to try something different!).

I tried some of James’ dish too (of course!) and it was really impressive. The noodles were so thick and dense, and they tasted almost barbecued. I will definitely be trying this all to myself in the future.

Overall it was a really enjoyable meal with great food and I’m really pleased we finally got to go back. We are already planning to visit again later this year when we have another day off together.

Sarah

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