Chinese New Year in 2011 started on February 3rd and officially ends this Friday morning at 9:35 am (the beginning of this month’s full moon).
Even though Ping Pang Pong is no longer doing its nightly banquets at the Gold Coast (they ended yesterday), we at ELV thought you’d like to get a visual taste of the Cantonese/Taiwanese specialties this extraordinary kitchen puts out during this celebration.
Chinese food at this level is as much about texture as taste, and some items, like deer tendon, abalone, sharks fin, etc., are as much prized for their viscosity, gelatinous-ness, or downright sliminess (e.g. sea cucumber) as for any actual sweet, sour, salty or bitter flavors they might possess.
Thankfully, owners Kevin and Karrie Wu understand American taste sensibilities as well as those of Chinese fellow travelers, so the meal brings forth an abundance of tasty seafood — shrimp, pepper lobster, gorgeous, fried, lacquered squab — to compliment the traditional offerings (all of which are steeped in symbolism as well as succulence).
As for that deer tendon, it tasted slightly of game and had the consistency of sticky jerky. If we had to put it up against the weirdest Chinese stuff Kevin has ever fed us, we’d say the tendon out-slugged the cucumber by an antler.
HAPPY NEW YEAR!
PING PANG PONG
In the Gold Coast Hotel and Casino
4000 Flamingo Road
Las Vegas, NV 89103