Red Lotus Asian Kitchen and Bar
239 South Elliott Road
Chapel Hill, NC 27514
Review Date: October 21, 2006
Reviewers: John Davis, Jody Hamilton-Davis, Lucy M., Michael P., Judy M., Christine S., Colleen L., Amanda N., David E.
Nine of us dined at Red Lotus Asian Kitchen and Bar on a Saturday evening. At Red Lotus, all of their entrees may be prepared with tofu or 'soy chicken'. Some of the dishes have fish sauce, and our waiter was able to tell us which ones included it. Many of the dishes were vegan with the substitution of tofu or 'soy chicken' for meat. One complaint we had was that the menu listed prices for the various meat choices, but not for the two vegetarian choices.
The restaurant is large and airy, with modern black and white d'cor, including black and white photos on the wall. There was no background music, and several of us thought soft music would have improved the atmosphere. The restaurant temperature did get colder towards the end of our meal, and a sweater might be in order. A nice touch was the warm towels provided to us at the beginning of our meal, for wiping our fingers.
Several people ordered the 'soy chicken' soup and described it as very tasty, with crisp vegetables, and wonderful soy chicken. The verdict on the vegetarian spring rolls was mixed with one reviewer rating them highly, while another reviewer said they were 'egg-roll like' and did not like them very well. One reviewer described the tofu as deep fried and watery, but the other reviewers who ordered tofu had no complaints about it. One reviewer said she was very impressed with her meal which included Kung Pao with tofu. The dishes are served with your choice of white or brown rice, and several of us noted the brown rice was tasty, and we were glad it was a choice. A couple of us had spicy mangoes with tofu, and were surprised that the mangoes were not very sweet. One reviewer noted, however, 'Perhaps because it was less sweet, it blended well with the spiciness of the sauce.'
Red Lotus Asian Kitchen has a pleasant atmosphere, and a good variety of vegan dishes. We would particularly recommend substituting the 'soy chicken' in the dishes. A couple of people noted that the portions are large with enough to take home for another meal. Their food offers a good value for the price.