Rice Bowl: South Side Gem
Posted by cmh gourmand on November 3, 2013
I have driven by Rice Bowl a few times in my day. It is located at the intersection of South High Street and SR 104. The sign looks like it is from the 1960’s but it turns out it is circa 1991. The Rice Bowl has a long history on the south side. It has existed with three owners and two locations since 1962. Rice Bowl 3.0 is a family affair that has operated the restaurant for a few decades. Judging from the outside and the location, I did not have great expectations for the Rice Bowl. However immediately on entering I had a good feeling. Looking at the menu, I had a very good feeling and starting with the egg rolls, I knew that I had stumbled in something very special indeed. You can not judge a book by its cover nor a restaurant by its mailing address.
So let us begin with the egg rolls. The lowly egg roll rarely gets much respect mainly because they are typically reheated frozen fare. The eggs rolls are made from scratch at the Rice Bowl and are hand rolled each week. They are filed to capacity with to the point of being stuffed. The exterior is soft and crunchy and do not disintegrate with a light bite. The sauces are also made from scratch. The mustard sauce is hot and thick. The other sauce is made with fresh citrus and spices. It is much better than any egg roll sauce I have encountered.
A staple of Midwestern Chinese restaurants is General Tso’s Chicken. The Rice Bowl executes this dish better than any restaurant I have visited. Each gigantic piece of white chicken meat is drowned in a spicy rich sauce. The portion size can easily feed two people. Looking around the restaurant I saw several other mainstay dishes that looked like they were award winners as well including Wor Sue Gai, Chow Mein and Frogs Legs.
What else did I like? The service was great. Rice Bowl has what looks to be a pretty well stocked bar. If you have kids, they serve burgers, Fried Fish Sandwiches and Grilled Cheese with Bacon.
I look forward to exploring the menu much more and will gladly be adding an egg roll to each meal.
Rice Bowl Restaurant
2300 South High Street
Rice Bowl Web site