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ALBANY’s BEST Restaurants

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China Village
  1335 Solano Ave./Ramona Ave.  Recently recovered from a devastating fire, this formerly simple Chinese restaurant with a bargain menu is now a lot more sleek and a tad more expensive.  The main dining room has some comfy banquette seating, and a smaller back room features a striking yellow mural wall with 3-D dragons.  Large windows bring in plenty of light, and you can order a cocktail to sip while you wait.  The menu specialty is hot Sichuan, but milder Mandarin and even milder Cantonese dishes are also available.  House specialties include delicious dry-fried cumin lamb spiced with plenty of hot red and green peppers, a saucy Szechuan hot bean paste fish fillet, and XO-sauce beef.  More winners include tea-smoked duck with half-moon steamed buns and plum sauce; chow mien made with housemade hand-cut noodles (they are flat and a little curly) with barbecue pork and veggies; spicy cold noodles with chicken in a sweet sesame paste sauce; Mandarin fish (a whole, deep-fried fish covered with sweet bean paste sauce, garlic, and ginger).  Dishes are prepared with MSG.  In 2016, Bernie Sanders stopped in here for a late night meal during his presidential candidate campaign. 

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Carole Terwilliger Meyers

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