Trey Popp reviews Xi’An Sizzling Woks (formerly Xi’An Famous Food) in Chinatown. There he discovers a side of pickled garlic cloves that set the tone for his glowing review.
I’d dropped it into the rich, bready broth myself. But by the time it slipped onto my spoon amid a tangle of glass vermicelli, the ensuing sensation was an electrifying shock. Because really, since when does roasted garlic crunch like a Granny Smith apple?
I had the garlic part right, but the roasted flavor was pure culinary sleight-of-hand. The crunchy cloves were, in fact, six-month pickles: sweet and sour, slightly gingery, and so uncannily reminiscent of roasted garlic that I ate the rest like candy, straight from their little bowl, in rapt fascination.
Two-and-a-half stars – Good to Excellent
Philadelphia Restaurant Review: Xi’an Sizzling Woks [Philadelphia Magazine]
Xi'An Sizzling Woks [Philadelphia Magazine]