— Josh Page (@ILikeFoodJP) November 8, 2012
I happened upon this Frog Town gem a couple of years ago (now there’s a newer, fancier one in St. Louis Park), and can happily report that it’s hands down the best Chinese joint in town. It’s authentic Szechuan: bold flavors, intense spice, tongue-numbing peppercorns, pickled this and that, garlicky goodness, and oh-so-much chili oil. The menu is chock-full of interesting dishes such as Bamboo Tips in Chili Sauce, Fresh Pickled Baby Cabbage, Pork Shreds with Dried Tofu, Szechuan Potato Fries, Pickled Vegetable and Fish Soup, and the ultimate crowd-pleaser, Dan Dan Noodles. The tofu dishes are hits with vegetarians and carnivores alike: Szechuan Spicy Tofu, Kung Pao Tofu, and General Tsao’s Tofu feature the fried version—crisp on the outside and custardy on the inside. Little Szechuan has become my restaurant of choice for dining with large groups—go family style and put the Lazy Susan to work.
Road Trip: I’m off to Chicago next week for conferencing and eating. Look for several “On the Road” posts. Would love recommendations for lesser-known, off-the-beaten-path joints in Chi-town. Thanks.
From the Eater Crew
Letta, Tofu Temptress: Clearly, thinking up new monikers for me is going to keep Josh busy! And, since he’s already extolled the many virtues of Little Szechuan’s fried tofu dishes (preferring fried, I haven’t gone in for the Ma Pao Tofu, though it’s often recommended to me), I’ll take this moment to point out a few personal favorites he didn’t cover: the Dan Dan Noodles without pork (there’s usually a sprinkling of it on top), Sweet Potato Cakes, and Szechuan Green Beans. And while a number of high-profile media outlets have picked up on the restaurant (I see it’s been named one of the 50 best Chinese places in the entire U.S.!), rest assured that it’s a big, bright space with tables to fit any party—CNN may be sending teeming hordes their way, but Little Szechuan is, at heart, a neighborhood spot that’ll always have room for the locals.