As a qualifying statement, this was a take-out meal. The meal was hot and it only takes 8 minutes from the restaurant to the house and in the plate. Two main staples when eating generalized Chinese food out, Mongolian Beef and Spicy Eggplant. The theme was Boring and Oily, but all fresh and high quality beef and produce. Based upon the results, it wouldn't have mattered whether it was in restaurant or out, the food was still going to be oily and underseasoned. This is the second time I've ordered take-out from China Bistro and have had similar results with the same meal.
All the elements of Mongolian Beef are there, fresh, thinly sliced beef, lots of green onions, dry hot chili, a hint of sauce. But the dish falls horribly flat, void of real flavor or heat. I even chewed on a couple of the chili pods just to see if it would brighten the dish. Nothing. The pods weren’t even spicy. The spicy eggplant was anything but. Again, the elements were fresh but the same issues arose, lack of flavor, no spice, tons of oil.
Maybe the clientle dictates the level of spice and seasoning. As a benchmark, my mother and several aunts like this place. None of them care for spicy food and most of them like noodle dishes with chicken.
I did have to pull out a coveted remedy, special black bean chili sauce, like the one used at Henry's in San Francisco. Thank God I bought a 6 pack of the jars for emergency situations like this one.