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Taste Buds: Panda

New mall eatery is tasty and convenient

January 16, 2014

Multi-tasking. It's what the Buds do ... pretty much constantly.

Last week was no exception, as a holiday-shortened week meant the Buds were busier than bees in a hive catching up on work. As it were, during one of their many conversations, the Buds learned they both had some errands to run around the mall area, which also happened to be in the same neck of the woods as the new Panda Chinese Restaurant. Errands and lunch? Now THAT'S multi-tasking we can set our watches to!

So off the Buds headed to Panda, located at 67800 Mall Rd. in St. Clairsville - the same building as Starbucks outside the mall. It was pretty busy, as the Buds arrived at the height of lunch hour. However, the busy time allowed the Buds to experience some speedy service, as we were soon to find out.

Article Photos

Sweet and sour chicken and shrimp with mixed vegetables.

There are several tables inside, as well as seating along the front window, so patrons have the option of eating in or getting their food to go. The Buds, of course, were on the go, so no eating in this time.

The large menu consisted of the standard Chinese cuisine, with a few notables. Panda offers 23 different "All Day Specials" for $7.50 served with chicken fried rice and an egg roll. The menu also features a selection of healthy foods, a variety of steamed dishes served with white rice and brown sauce on the side.

The Buds immediately gravitated toward the All Day Specials.

Bud Em picked up an order of sweet and sour chicken and an order of shrimp with vegetables to take home and share with her little Bud. Both dishes were great! The sweet and sour chicken had nice pieces of white meat dipped in batter and fried to perfection. With a side of sauce it really hit the spot. The shrimp dish was loaded with several shrimp and a variety of stir fry veggies and coated with their flavorful brown sauce. Bud Em and little Bud found both dishes delicious and would definitely eat at Panda again.

Also ordering off the All Day Specials menu, Bud Shaunna opted for one of her favorites, chicken with garlic sauce, and picked up a General Tso's chicken for Bud Hubby. Bud Shaunna's eaten her fair share of garlic chicken from many Chinese restaurants, and she found this one to be one of the best. The spices were just right, and there was an equal ratio of chicken to vegetables. The General Tso's chicken was crispy and sweet. Both portions with the rice were large enough to make two meals each for Bud S and Bud H.

And about that rice. Accented with corn and peas, the chicken fried rice was a nice surprise, as it seemed to have a bit more pizzazz than regular old white rice. In addition, it was flavorful by itself, and made a nice compliment to the chicken dishes. Overall, Bud Shaunna was very happy with her meal and would definitely visit again.

The next time you are out and about at the mall or just want to grab a quick meal, Panda Chinese Restaurant is surely worth a visit.

The Buds may be reached at tastebuds@



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