MOBILE USERS: m.isthmus.com
Connect with Isthmus on Twitter · Facebook · Flickr · Newsletters 
Wednesday, April 16, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 51.0° F  Overcast and Windy
Collapse Photo Bar

Ichiban on Park St.

Where are you eating and what do you think? What's opening, closing, succeeding, failing?

Ichiban on Park St.

Postby Henry Vilas » Sat Sep 03, 2011 1:49 pm

A new Chinese restaurant (specializing in Sichuan) on South Park St., with a Japanese name. Owned by the local Edo Garden chain. Just read this review. I like spice; sounds interesting.

Anyone tried it out yet?
Henry Vilas
Forum God/Goddess
 
Posts: 19131
Joined: Wed Sep 04, 2002 8:57 pm
Location: Name sez it all

Re: Ichiban on Park St.

Postby Prof. Wagstaff » Sat Sep 03, 2011 1:54 pm

I had the lamb with cumin just last night and it was fantastic.
Prof. Wagstaff
Forum God/Goddess
 
Posts: 8616
Joined: Tue Feb 19, 2002 6:35 pm

Re: Ichiban on Park St.

Postby TheBookPolice » Tue Sep 06, 2011 4:20 pm

TheBookPolice
Forum God/Goddess
 
Posts: 8317
Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2006 1:09 pm
Location: The mystical Far East

Re: Ichiban on Park St.

Postby Henry Vilas » Tue Sep 06, 2011 4:31 pm

Huh? Your article carries a dateline two days after my post. But go ahead and toot your own horn. You're good at that.
Henry Vilas
Forum God/Goddess
 
Posts: 19131
Joined: Wed Sep 04, 2002 8:57 pm
Location: Name sez it all

Re: Ichiban on Park St.

Postby TheBookPolice » Tue Sep 06, 2011 5:28 pm

I must be missing something. My review was from May, and from what I'm seeing, your first post in this thread appeared on September 3. To say nothing of leaving off the Master Thespian tag so you'd take my post with the humorous intent with which it was written.

Anyway, dine in good health.
TheBookPolice
Forum God/Goddess
 
Posts: 8317
Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2006 1:09 pm
Location: The mystical Far East

Re: Ichiban on Park St.

Postby Henry Vilas » Wed Sep 07, 2011 1:34 pm

I apologize. I misread the dateline on your article.

I hope your wound heals and doesn't leave a scar.
Henry Vilas
Forum God/Goddess
 
Posts: 19131
Joined: Wed Sep 04, 2002 8:57 pm
Location: Name sez it all

Re: Ichiban on Park St.

Postby LindsayNicole » Thu Sep 08, 2011 3:47 pm

Hee. TBP's wounded. BY THE SPICE.

Go, HV, it's good -- and I'm from Ohio and kind of a spice wuss. It's super messy, which I think Mr. Nabilcy mentioned as well. I am already a spiller but this place was a new level of hazardous.

The spicy meat dumplings still make my mouth water. And potstickers! Yum. I must learn to make them.
LindsayNicole
Senior Member
 
Posts: 25
Joined: Tue Sep 16, 2008 5:19 pm
Location: Madison, WI

Re: Ichiban on Park St.

Postby TheBookPolice » Thu Sep 08, 2011 4:12 pm

LindsayNicole wrote:Hee. TBP's wounded. BY THE SPICE.

Go, HV, it's good -- and I'm from Ohio and kind of a spice wuss. It's super messy, which I think Mr. Nabilcy mentioned as well. I am already a spiller but this place was a new level of hazardous.

The spicy meat dumplings still make my mouth water. And potstickers! Yum. I must learn to make them.

"The spice is life..."

I'm just glad I never tried to dab my eyes with my napkin during that meal. That would have been a painful lesson in cross-contamination.
TheBookPolice
Forum God/Goddess
 
Posts: 8317
Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2006 1:09 pm
Location: The mystical Far East

Re: Ichiban on Park St.

Postby Prof. Wagstaff » Wed Sep 14, 2011 11:21 am

OK, I need some serious schooling on Chinese cuisine.

Last night I ordered the lamb with three peppers (a reasonable choice, considering my love of lamb and peppers.) Sadly (for me), it was loaded with cilantro, and I am one of those unfortunate souls who cannot eat cilantro.

Since I'm not in the habit of flushing $16 down the drain* but would very much like to experiment with more that Ichiban has to offer, I was hoping maybe someone could enlighten me: How common is cilantro (or "Chinese parsley") in Chinese cuisine and what other menu choices should I avoid? I read through BP's review and found no mention of cilantro or parsley (or even coriander) so what I'm wondering is, was I just unlucky or do I need to be extra-vigilant?

*Fear not, those who get upset when others waste food -- the dish found a home in the belly of my roommate, who declared it delicious.
Prof. Wagstaff
Forum God/Goddess
 
Posts: 8616
Joined: Tue Feb 19, 2002 6:35 pm

Re: Ichiban on Park St.

Postby LindsayNicole » Wed Sep 14, 2011 11:45 am

There was cilantro -- big piles of it -- on a LOT of things we ordered, including the beef noodle, the cold mushrooms with hot chili sauce and the poached dish (lamb and pork intestine in our case).

I don't know if this much cilantro is standard in most Chinese cooking, but it is standard for Ichiban. If you go back, you could either ask for dishes without or order the meat dumplings and the kung pao chicken -- both good, both sans cilantro.

PS http://ihatecilantro.com/
LindsayNicole
Senior Member
 
Posts: 25
Joined: Tue Sep 16, 2008 5:19 pm
Location: Madison, WI

Re: Ichiban on Park St.

Postby Prof. Wagstaff » Wed Sep 14, 2011 12:21 pm

Thanks! That is very helpful.

LindsayNicole wrote:PS http://ihatecilantro.com/

Heh.

But let's be clear here: I don't "hate" cilantro -- I cannot eat it.
Broccoli I hate. Almonds I'm not a big fan of. Ham I could really do without. But I can put all of those in my mouth, chew them up, and swallow them without much effort and their presence in a cooked dish does not automatically mean I won't enjoy it. No, cilantro is different. If it ends up in my mouth, my immediate reaction is to spit it out. (Although it's pretty rare that it gets that far, as the overpowering stench generally prevents me from making such a mistake.) Cilantro, to my taste buds, is not food. I react to its use in cooking the same way I would if someone "seasoned" their dish with WD-40 or toner ink.

Those on opposite sides of the Cilantro Debate describe the flavors so completely differently that there is little doubt more is going on than just personal preference. "Citrusy" and "soapy" are worlds apart, after all. Compare that to, say, coffee, which some folks like and some folks don't, but everyone agrees is bitter. And, worst of all, it is pretty much the only thing I can taste if it's present. To me, there's no such thing as a "hint" of cilantro -- it either has no cilantro or it's inedible. The fact that its popularity has soared in recent years has caused me quite a bit of distress, from ruining expensive meals to embarrassing me at dinner parties. And considering how many others share my suffering, I am surprised at how few restaurants bother to mention its presence.
Prof. Wagstaff
Forum God/Goddess
 
Posts: 8616
Joined: Tue Feb 19, 2002 6:35 pm

Re: Ichiban on Park St.

Postby TheBookPolice » Wed Sep 14, 2011 12:31 pm

Prof. Wagstaff wrote:I read through BP's review and found no mention of cilantro or parsley

Well, there was the heap of cilantro in the photo...

But you're right, its ubiquity did not appear in my review. There is indeed a lot of it all over the place, but as many dishes at Ichiban are assembled as raw components to be cooked at the table, I think asking for no-cilantro wouldn't be too steep a request.
TheBookPolice
Forum God/Goddess
 
Posts: 8317
Joined: Fri Aug 04, 2006 1:09 pm
Location: The mystical Far East

Re: Ichiban on Park St.

Postby Prof. Wagstaff » Wed Sep 14, 2011 12:41 pm

TheBookPolice wrote:
Prof. Wagstaff wrote:I read through BP's review and found no mention of cilantro or parsley

Well, there was the heap of cilantro in the photo...

I'm not sure I even looked at the photo, but even if I had, I wouldn't necessarily have assumed it was cilantro. I readily admit ignorance of Chinese cuisine, so I would have had no reason to suspect its presence (I obviously know better now) and probably would have simply assumed the garnish was parsley (which I quite enjoy.)

TheBookPolice wrote:...as many dishes at Ichiban are assembled as raw components to be cooked at the table, I think asking for no-cilantro wouldn't be too steep a request.

Good to know, but not as helpful when ordering online for delivery. I suppose I could actually call the restaurant to place my order, but that seems so last decade...

Thanks for the advice. I will definitely try them again!
Prof. Wagstaff
Forum God/Goddess
 
Posts: 8616
Joined: Tue Feb 19, 2002 6:35 pm

Re: Ichiban on Park St.

Postby lolagirl » Wed Sep 14, 2011 12:54 pm

Prof, understand exactly what you mean about cilantro. Personally I love the stuff, but I have a similar issue with goat cheese. To me it tastes like what I imagine really ripe gym socks soaked in lemon juice would taste like. Not pleasant, not even remotely palatable. I've had goat cheese in pizzas and a few items where it was not mentioned or visually noticable and had the same reaction. Eww.
lolagirl
Forum Addict
 
Posts: 203
Joined: Sat Aug 23, 2008 9:59 am

Re: Ichiban on Park St.

Postby NullDevice » Wed Oct 26, 2011 8:37 am

I FINALLY went there - I'd been distracted by the name for a while, as had another friend of mine who has connections into the local chinese restaurant world, simply becasue every tiem we saw it our braisn clicked over to "must be a sushi joint" - although the sign helpfully has "Sze Chuan" printed on it.

I was a fool to wait so long.

A FOOL, I TELL YOU.

We had the cumin beef.

We had tofu and mushrooms in clear sauce.

We had poached fish in spicy sauce.

OH MY GOD.

Poached [x] in spicy sauce is one of those dishes I use to gauge a sichuan joint. It can go wrong in so many ways - too oily, too garlicky, too spicy, too peppery - but this fired on all cylinders. It was hot without being voerpoweringly so, you could taste the garlic and flower pepper without feeling like it was attacking your brain or sedating your face, and it was nicely unctious without being greasy. A real win there.

The cumin beef, well...I needen't say much more beyond "my god, it's ful of stars."

The tofu was a little bit of a miss - it was tasty enough, and the sauce was excellent, but there were a sum total of three mushroom slices in a dish billed as "tofu and black mushrooms."

I have many things I need to try yet. The seared beef stomach that a friend was having at a nearby table looked fantastic. I watched two ridiculously small people at a nearby table demolish an enormous hotpot, and it looked fabulous.

I hope this place lasts. It had a pretty decent crowd for a tuesday night, so I'm hoping it sticks around.
NullDevice
Forum God/Goddess
 
Posts: 728
Joined: Fri May 02, 2003 2:53 pm
Location: Madison, WI

Next

Return to Restaurant News & Reviews

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest

moviesmusiceats
Select a Movie
Select a Theater


FacebookcommentsViewedForum
  ISTHMUS FLICKR

Promotions Contact us Privacy Policy Jobs Newsletters RSS
Collapse Photo Bar