Thursday, March 17, 2011

Guyana’s Top Oriental Restaurant.

What an amazing concept in the heart of Georgetown! The GT lunch crowd was buzzing. The entrance is like a grand Chinese palace.Off to the left is a pastry section that is a far cry from the mundane black eye, cheese roll, pine tart found in every Guyanese snackette’s glass case. This restaurant featured glazed donuts and a wide array of specialized Chinese pastry like egg custard tart. Nice selection. There was even a Chinese attendant who spoke very little English, but told me she was from Beijing.

Continuing on the left there was a large display of various Chinese specialty items like shark fins, sea cucumbers, sea weed, dried scallops and a few others I could not make out.  Shocked? So was I. Shark fin soup in Guyana? Welcome to the band of shark killers, go New Thriving Restaurant!

Farther along on the left is a long Quick Service counter with pictured overhead menu displays. Yes, just like your corner Chinese take out restaurant, even the menu is the same. Swing around to the right is a buffet section.

Buffet items were displayed in large serving containers with no heat nor cold. All food was served at room temperature. Items were similar to American Chinese $9.99 lunch buffet with an off taste and texture and a lot of MSG and corn starch. There were even little dim sum treats like shumai, egg rolls, sweet peas in buns, and custard tarts. Although the garden salad was not at temperature it was fresh and delightful. The tiny slivers of pork were heavily spiced with ginger and pepper. A huge delight was fish wrapped in eggplant. Delicious. Overall, great presentation, highly concentrated flavors, mushy textures, hard mystery crunched meats and no temperature control. Friendly service.

The upstairs a la carte level featured a full 10 or so pages of the regular American Chinese corner restaurant’s menu. But the Rum selection was oh so full of all the goodies. They carry El Dorado 25 yo, US$70/shot (my birthday is coming up hint, hint) There was also a small selection of Chilean and Argentine wines. Also featured here was 2 different US$100 Chinese rice wine. Impressive selections. I was told about the 3 floor catering capabilities and the outside open-air deck. Service staff was very friendly and willing to answer questions sincerely. The manager, Richard, even took pictures of us and was a positive ambassador for New Thriving Restaurant and Guyana.

Although there were little quirks that every restaurant has and personal opinions differ from each other, New Thriving Restaurant does bend and break the mold that is inherently Chinese. In as much as they do take away, it definitely does not have a take out feel. As a matter of fact it is quite stylish with very bright gold fittings. All in all this is a great step up for Guyana and it goes to show that stepping out into uncharted territory is deffinitely worth the risk. Kudos.