Talk about right place at the right time! I was walking with purpose through Festival City to hit Shake Shack, but on my way noticed a bit of a crowd gathered at the entrance of the restaurant, P. F. Chang’s. Curiosity hooked me, so off I went to check it out…..
The restaurant was packed. It was mid day. No other restaurant in this dining section of the mall had that many people. The sign at the entrance posted on the maitre’d station said the restaurant was closed. What was the deal? Why were people sitting and eating if the restaurant was closed?
With eagle ears I overheard from the crowd, ‘free lunch’. I asked a few questions to find out this was a practice run for staff. I was invited in! I was told to be patient….this afternoon’s purpose was to work out any kinks. I was seated at the back of the restaurant. I requested to sit there as I wanted to sit in a quiet area of the restaurant.
I’d never eaten as this franchise as it is not in Halifax (there are only two P.F. Chang’s in Canada) but it’s not new to Doha – there seems to be a P.F. Chang’s in every mall here. I’ve never felt the draw to try it. But today I did. The word FREE pulled me in!! LOL!!
I was given the regular menu with a mock menu. The regular menu was to become familiar with it. The mock menu was to order from. Each table automatically received their popular Dynamite Shrimp, one bottle of water and unlimited soda and iced tea. From the mock menu, I could choose one item from each category: Appetizer, Sushi, Entree, Noodle/Rice/Side, and Beverage.
This was good. But I found myself surprised that this is their signature dish. In my opinion, the wontons and the sushi blew this out of the water!
House Made Ginger Beer:
This beverage was recommended by the server, so I tried it. It was too sweet for my liking.
Crab Wontons served with Spicy Plum Sauce:
This was heaven in my mouth! I would return just for these!
Jasmine Iced Tea:
This was refreshing, light. I enjoyed it.
Spicy Salmon Roll:
This was my favorite. The salmon melted in my mouth….
Shrimp Lo Mein:
This was good. Not my favorite, but good. Not as much flavor as I’d hoped for.
Another signature dish. I was so full when this arrived that I forgot to take a picture, tried a few bites then had them pack it to take away with me. This wasn’t as good as I thought it would be. The flavor was yummy, but I found the meat a bit too fatty for me.
I was there for an hour and a half. Service was wonderful. The food arrived out of order with long gaps between dishes. No big deal because the kitchen was overrun with orders and this was the purpose of the day – to practice! They did allow me to take away what I wasn’t able to finish! And there was a lot to take away because there was a lot of food!!
So, overall, not a bad way to spend an hour and a half! I left with a full belly and lots of leftovers to share with Michael (except the wontons and the sushi – I ate all of those!!).