Tucked away in a quiet corner of Jumeirah Beach Road is Beach Park Plaza, perhaps the least frequented of malls on this strip. A chance tasting invitation saw us there last week, and I now come to you with the perfect excuse to visit Beach Park Plaza for yourself: Chop Suey!
Named after the ever-popular American Chinese stir-fried noodle dish, Chop Suey is the brainchild of husband and wife duo Bassam and Diana. The restaurant has been in operation for over 2 years, and has a regular steam of visitors from the vicinity, as well as a long list of frequent delivery orders that covers the Business Bay, Sheikh Zayed Road, Al Barsha, Media City and Meydan Heights areas.
Chop Suey is thought to have originated not in China but in California during the 1800s. Food historians speculate that Chinese cooks in the United States, seeking to sell Chinese food to Westerners, but lacking many of the ingedients requiered for traditional Chinese dishes, created Chop Suey out of necessity rather than culinary creativity. The name Chop Suey means “Mixed pieces”. – Chop Suey menu (Dubai, UAE).
The restaurant itself has a very welcoming, casual vibe. On one dominating wall is an artistic rendition of Chinese modern art, which adds color and vibrancy to the ambiance. A few Asian memorabilia dot the interiors, a subtle nod to the influence of the cuisine being served without being overbearingly stereotypical Chinese.
But Chop Suey is definitely not your average Chinese restaurant and takeaway. For starters, they have teamed up with UAE’s most popular chain of fitness centers, Fitness First. A trained nutritionist has been assigned by Fitness First to assess and endorse a selection of dishes here, so you can really get those chopsticks clicking, guilt free!
Chop Suey ensures they use the freshest of ingredients, and they also stay clear of MSG. You won’t find it in any of their dishes. And if you want your chicken and beef organic, just ask the staff; the dishes can be modified to include modified produce.
We started off with a selection of Chop Suey’s most popular Dim Sums. The Dim Sums come in sets of four here, and we tried their Crystal Prawn Dumplings, Crabmeat Dumplings, and Crispy Tiger Prawn Wontons. My favorite was the Crabmeat Dumplings; the translucent skin was soft and moist, the filling generous and flavorful, and it was especially delicious when dipped in Chop Suey’s selection of spicy sauces.
At Chop Suey, they have created a number of innovative new takes on Chinese dining as we know it. One of our favorites from the night was their Crispy Mixed Mushrooms, Manchurian Style. This is a decadent assortment of mushrooms, including shitake, straw, oyster and button, all battered and deep-fried a crisp golden brown and coated with Chef’s special Manchurian sauce.
Although Chop Suey’s menu is predominantly Chinese, they also have a few Thai dishes on the menu. I highly recommend their Tom Yum Goong soup. With its very fragrant base of lime and lemongrass, this soup can easily compete with some of the best Thai restaurants we have had the pleasure of dining at.
For our mains, we ordered the Black Pepper Beef Tenderloin with Zucchini & Mushrooms, the Sizzling Chicken with Chop Suey Sauce and the Kung Pao Prawns.
The beef came in soft, succulent cubes but overall this dish was a little too saucy and sweet for my liking.
I preferred the chicken. True to its name, it came with all the drama of sizzles on the table, and was tossed in a very flavorful Manchurian sauce. What I liked best about this dish was the very generous amount of cashew nuts that were thrown in for added texture and crunch. Absolutely delicious.
However, my favorite main-course from the night was Chop Suey’s Kung Pao Prawns. The hot and sweet sauce clings on beautifully to the succulently soft bites of indulgent prawn. Quite a mouthful, but a very flavorful one at that!
At Chop Suey, how can we not order Chop Suey?! We went for the Chicken variation, and when it hit the table, we were blown away by the order quantity. It’s huge! It can easily feed a group of four, so as usual we had over-ordered!
The Chop Suey here does full justice to the restaurant’s name. The noodles are crisp yet soft, and the sauce is well-portioned; saucy, yet not a gravy-like and laced with the characteristic hint of burnt garlic.
Ending on a sweet note, we treated ourselves to Chop Suey’s Sesame Toffee Banana with Ice-Cream. I have a major sweet-tooth, but there are only a few Asian desserts I actually like. The toffee-coated banana was a tad too sweet, but turned out to be an absolute treat when paired with the decadent layers of whipped cream, ice-cream and fruit that were served with it. And how pretty does it look?!
Overall, Chop Suey has turned out to be a delightful discovery. The ambiance, the service and the amazingly delicious, value for money dishes make it worth the drive up to Beach Park Plaza. If you live near the vicinity, lucky you! You have the option of ordering in by giving them a call on 04 344 2212. For more information (and drool-worthy photography), visit the website chopsuey.ae Bon appetit!