Sunday, January 17, 2016

FGFB New Years Chinese Food Spotlight: Highland China House. Rochester, NH

What witty play on words or what hilarious gif can I insert here to knock the final Chinese food spotlight out of the goddamn park? You're not sure? I am. And you'll see both in my absolutely riveting review of Highland China House, located in East Rochester, NH.

Let's get started.

You'll be shocked to know, that as a freelance artist, I'm not a man of means. So, when choosing my selection for this review, price was definitely ringing around inside my brain like the loose change in my pockets. The Highland China House is like any other hole in the wall Chinese food strip mall establishment, with one glaring difference, which I'll fill you in on momentarily. I've been coming here for years. Watched the small children grow from babies taking their first wiggly steps in the corner, to preteens watching cartoons on ipads, in the corner. The HCH is small, and on NYE, crowded as hell. So me and the lady grabbed a bag moderately filled with food, and popped on the television for some GODDAMN AMERICAN Holiday festivities.

If science could replace my blood with Lo Mein noodles, I'd be jamming my arm in between two boulders and would be feasting on it for the next 127 hours.

It's odd that Chinese food has developed this symbiotic relationship with itself where noodles or rice has to be present despite the vast amount of award winning cast members throughout the menu.
HCH Lo Mein is stellar, not that greasy, and doesn't have that weird half plastic aftertaste that I've found some cheap Chinese places have. It provides an excellent appetizer vehicle, in which exotic meats can safely be delivered into my mouth.

The chicken fingers here were oddly thin. The batter, crispy, but within a small wedge of meat, although tasty, leaves you wanting MUCH more. I'm sad I only got a smaller order of these, but if you'll remember the whole change jingling bit I did above....but yeah! Don't shortchange yourself and get a large. Odd at first, but that may in fact be the beauty of them.

Crab Rangoons often times make of break whether or not I'll visit a Chinese place again. Highland China House has probably the best recipe for Crab Rangoons within a 50 mile radius of Rochester, NH. Crispy and sweet, the cream cheese that is encased within this fried wonton is not as thick as you'd imagine. Perfect in it's simplicity.

Another tried and true staple of Chinese cuisine, Beef Teriyaki. Now, these guys, these....are a little odd. Presented well, the meat tastes slightly over processed and segments off the stick really easily. It tastes decent, but not great, not horrid, and just leaves you with a slight uneasiness. The teriyaki sweetness is a like someone dipped their finger in a bowl of really good teriyaki sauce, then took that finger, and then rubbed it all around the outside of your lips.

it's there, you want to taste it, but it's nowhere near strong enough.

I obviously went with the most basic of meals for Highland China House, and if an extablishment can't get what is the absolute basics down, how would they fair if you decided to get a little more adventurous? I think, in HCH's case, they do farely damn well. The food, slightly greasy but doesn't leave your stomach in knots, they excel in some areas, lack in others, but one thing about HCH that we have to keep in mind: They aren't gross. 99% of the small hole in the wall chinese eateries are downright awful, and with that knowledge, it is refreshing to see a place take pride, taking the high road, NAY, the HIGH LAND, and reflect that pride in their product. I'm glad they're around.

I give the Highland China House a

-Review by Josh

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