Tuesday, August 29, 2006

1 Star Around the Moon, Not 7

Seven Seas in College Park this evening was an unsettling disappointment with fried food tasting more of oil than meat, vegetables in too-gloopy lukewarm starchpools, and unkind flavors dominating multi-ingredient dishes.

After reading some good reviews, we dropped in at dinner time expecting some delicious Chinese food. The menu was standard Chinese fare with a sushi menu on the side.

We kept trying to find a way to enjoy the wonton soup. It's thick wonton was bland pork in a leather jacket as thick as Danny Zuko's. It lacked both the pleasant, slippery mouthfeel I expect from wontons in my soup and the broth was as thin and flavorless as Ann Coulter's last good idea.

Egg rolls were large and packed with pork bits and cabbage but all parts tasted vaguely salty and of pepper and MSG. Clearly, the meat had not been cooked in any spice, broth or marinade.

We ordered a dish called Seven Stars Around The Moon. Fish, chicken and shrimp for two. I kept thinking how positive we like to be about food and dining, but we looked at the dish and, like waching a John Hughes movie's opening sequence, had a pretty good idea where this was going.

Chicken was fried tempura style and served with a traffic-cone orange bowl of sauce. The chicken was bland and dry.

Shrimp was overcooked with little differentiation in texture between its heavy batter and the shrimp itself. Each piece tasted more of grease than batter or seafood. I wanted to set the shrimp free to enjoy them on their own, but no.

Fish was decent with a light clear sauce. By the time we made it to the fish, we decided to cut our losses, pay the check, and go.

I thought of running down to Ikea for a lingonberry soda or driving across to the Taco Bell to squeeze sauce packets in my mouth. I wanted flavor so very much.

I've had average Chinese for years in DC and enjoyed it. It sounds odd, but we're pretty open to enjoying a meal as a casual social encounter where food is more sustenance than inspiration.

Sadly, our trip to Seven Seas offered neither.


ScottE. said...

I think we've been there. We stayed in one of those cheap ass hotels on Rt.1 last year when the AC wasn't working and the outside was hitting 100...we were so blech about the day that we didn't really care about the food, we just needed to eat. Did their menu have Weight Watcher options on it? That's the only way I'd remember it. And the old couple sitting behind us...the lady wanted to move to a retirement community that had buses to downtown DC for cultural things...and he didn't talk. Was a little funny and sweet.

Dancer in DC said...

Yes, we did eat there, and yes - it was not great. Barely average.

playfulinnc said...


Because I am gallbladder free, the fried food betta be DAMN good for me to eat it, as i will always suffer a bit at the end of the night.

Thanks for the warning.

Rockville gastronaut said...

Seven Seas is delicious, but ONLY the Rockville outpost. I really don't understand how there is such a huge difference between the two.

Stef said...

I love that you worked references to Danny Zuko and the hideous Ann Coulter in the same paragraph in a post about bland Chinese food! HA!

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