Me and a few of my fellow foodies have been eyeing this restaurant hidden deep south since it open, occasionally asking - "have you tried it yet?" or "is it any good?" mainly as its the only Chinese restaurant thus far that has ventured to put down roots deep deep south of Edmonton. There's a few East Indian, Korean places and one or two Vietnamese places, but we haven't seen too many Italian, Canadian, Japanese, fusion or Chinese cuisine yet. So after a few weeks of different variations of "know anyone that has tried it?", we went as a group to try it out. Decor is minimal, hearkening more of a cafeteria feel than the Chinese fine dining it was going for. Since we had a larger group, indecisive and hungry, we went with a set Chinese dinner that gave us a range of dishes and dessert.
First course was the Fish maw egg drop soup. It was savory and tasty, though it had more strips of fried pork skin than fish maw - a common and inexpensive substitution for fish maw.
Second course was the live crab cooked in ginger and green onions. Executed well, only comment was slightly sloppy presentation, and the crab was quite a bit smaller than the average sized crab we normally see served at other Chinese restaurants in the city. Or, we just happened to get the runt of the tank that night.
Next course was the Deep fried shrimp in peach sauce. Typically, this dish is presented as butterflied deep fried lightly battered shrimp and is either tossed or drizzled in a miracle-whip based dressing, garnished with canned peaches, +/- a bed of schredded lettuce. Tonight's presentation and execution, was a miss. The shrimp while whole and deshelled, still had its sandtrack within, and while some were crispy, others found theirs mushy. It was hard to get past that the shrimp was crowned in an unappetizing, thick, cloying, congealed cooked cornstarch gel, rather than a dressing. This dish needs a major revamp.
The following course was white fish on yu choy. The basa fillets tasted like they were ran through a baking soda rinse. Basa is a pretty forgiving fish, and we all felt it didn't need to have the baking soda treatment, which left us with a characteristic texture, rather than its original. The Yu Choy was stir fried and not overly greasy.
Next up was the Deep fried crispy chicken. This dish looked great, with crispy, golden skin, but unfortunately, was quite overcooked and dry.
For dessert, individual bowls of red bean and black glutinous rice dessert was brought out. Individual ingredients were barely discernible as the dessert was mainly sugary colored liquid.
After mulling over the fact that it was a slow night, and it was a relatively new restaurant, Golden taste still has a ways to go in the execution and presentation department before it will be elevated out of the forgettable family style and into the fine dining realm it aspires to. Harsh words, but since its currently the only Chinese restaurant deep south, changes will have to be quick and evident, as the patrons will simply just drive into town for better executed food.
Golden Taste Restaurant Address 2940-2944 Ellwood Dr SW, Edmonton, AB T6X0A9 Phone (780) 430-6380 Hours Open daily for lunch and dinner