Easy Earthen Restaurant (Kitchener)
A small restaurant located near the Chinese Supermarket in downtown Kitchener, this place is truly a hidden gem based on its outer appearance. A warning - the waiters generally only speak Mandarin, but can understand Cantonese and hand pointing at the menu.
Speaking of the menu, you get a double-sided sheet of paper listing every menu item in Simplified Chinese and English, along with the price, as well as a booklet. The booklet only serves as sample images, but it also has hilariously written English comments about the food.
I went more than three times this year to this restaurant with my boyfriend and we tried something different each time.
Trip 1 consisted of a Yeung Chow fried rice, Cantonese fried noodles and the most glorious fried mantou (the size of a small pizza) I have ever tasted. The fried rice and noodle were the usual staples of a Chinese restaurant, while the mantou's size was a first for me. The mantou had sesame seeds sprinkled all over the top and fried to a golden brown (hence the named had the word "golden" in it). if you pressed the top of the bun and let go, it would just rise right up again like a foam mattress. Both of us could not stop complementing it.
Another trip was supposed to consist of a noodle soup and cold braised beef, however they ran out of the chicken needed for the noodle soup. I had still wanted noodle soup so I picked a menu item in the same category on the paper. It turned out to be Chinese jajangmein - aka cold noodles with no soup base and a salty tofu sauce. The noodles weren't bad, but the sauce was too salty for my taste even after mixing it in - I would have prefered the Korean counterpart of this dish. The braised beef came with a red garlic dip which was amazing, but the dish was fairly expensive $13.
The lunch specials are very reasonably priced at around $7 and the portion sizes allowed for two meals of leftovers (and a breakfast of mantou) the first time we ordered. Service was very good, as one time they accidentally made the "soft" noodles for my Beef fried noodles (which had an option of being either soft or crispy) and went back to create the fried version for me.
The interior decorations are surprisingly nice and they have a large table similar to the ones you see at Chinese banquet halls in the middle. One downside I would say to this restaurant is the drink selection. I've asked for ice water a few times and only received room temperature lemon water. In addition, they only have a few types of pop, so none of the HK iced lemon tea, milk tea or specialty drinks.
I would definitely recommend this restaurant to others.
Easy Earthen Restaurant
197 King St E
Written on 11th Sep, 2015