Review: Uncle Yip’s

It is so hard to find Chinese food in Cincinnati. Well,that’s not true. Americanized Chinese food is everywhere, but it’s hard to find anything that isn’t made for American palates.  King Wok in Clifton does a good job of this, but I wanted to try something a little closer to my office.  Brian, who introduced me to my now-favorite Wildflower, suggested Uncle Yip’s in Sharonville.

We went there for lunch a couple of weeks ago.  The place is unassuming– I think I drove past it twice– and the interior is unassuming as well.  Don’t let this fool you– the food is fantastic.  As we were there for lunch, I didn’t want to order too much, but they do offer dim sum daily at lunch.  I absolutely had to have some char siu bao.  If you’re not familiar, char siu bao is a puffy dumpling filled with barbecued pork and steamed.  They’re something that you can often find on the cheap chinese buffet bars, but they’re often awful.  These were great– with a rich, tangy, tamarind sauce coating tender pork, inside a soft dumpling.  They weren’t the prettiest dumplings (I’m used to the folded end being down), but don’t judge on looks– they were perfect.  Brian liked his too, and was kind enough to let me have two (since I was oohing and aahing so much over them).

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I had a hard time deciding on a lunch entree, but I did choose something off of the more “Americanized” menu: Mongolian beef. It came with a spring roll, which was average, and fried rice, which was also average. The entree itself, however, was very nice: a balanced brown sauce, lots of sauteed onions and peppers, and tender, slightly spicy beef. The portion was a lunch portion– huge!– I could have easily taken some home.

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Brian ordered his usual, Thai noodles. As I tend towards the not-so-spicy spectrum, I had a bite, and was pleasantly surprised that the sweet, dry noodles just have a pleasant kick. I think I would try these again as an entree of my own.

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I am definitely heading back to Uncle Yip’s– I really want to do the full dim sum experience, which I think would need to occur on a leisurely weekend, and not at lunch. Has anyone done dim sum there? How was your experience?

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