I stopped by the Philadelphia outpost of New York’s venerable Nom Wah Tea House for a light snack and it was not a good experience. The salt and pepper shrimp I was served had a thick batter coating, were greasy and some of the shrimp were cold. It was clear that the shrimp had been cooked earlier in the day, refrigerated and then thrown in a deep fryer to reheat them (and not for long enough) before they were served. This dish is usually served with slivered scallions, slices of jalapeno and fried garlic pieces scattered on the shrimp, and menu described the dish as having onion, scallion and black pepper, but the plate I was served did not come with these extras.
The vegetarian siu mai were also a fail. The siu mai were wedged into a seamer basket that was too small for the four siu mai and then the siu mai were over cooked. Because the siu mai were wedged together, the wrappers sort of steam welded together into a single siu mai unit and were really hard to get out of the steamer. I was able to pry out some chunks of siu mai, which tasted fine, but this was no way to eat siu mai.
Sounds like a bad day at the food market – can happen to anybody!!