“ Address: 15-19 Queens Square / Poulton-le-Fylde / FY6 7BW / Lancashire / England „
15-19 Queens Square
TEL: 01253 893701
The restaurant has no car park. Poulton is a small historical market town and is a bit tight for space. However, there is a municipal car park a few minutes' walk away. Entrance to the car park can be found on Blackpool Old Road and Hardhorn Road (A588), depending on which direction you approach from. This is a pay and display car park but it is FREE after 6pm.
The restaurant is on the ground floor so is disabled-friendly.
Mon to Sat 5pm - midnight.
Sunday 2pm - 9pm
OUR CHINA RED EXPERIENCE
We went to China Red for my sister's 40th birthday party. I love Chinese food but had never been to this particular restaurant before. Our party consisted of about 14 people, two of them children under 6.
We met in the bar area, where there is plenty of seating, unlike some restaurants where the bar/waiting area is tiny. The staff were happy for us to wait there as long as we needed for the entire party to arrive. It wasn't particularly busy the night we went, as it was a Tuesday, so the attention we got was very good.
I had never been there before, nor had my parents so my sister ordered the eat-all-you -can banquet for everyone. This is a FOUR course banquet - and it really is an absolute feast!
The starter alone consisted of huge platters of crispy seaweed, sweet and sour wontons, salt and peppery chicken wings, filo parcel wraps and sesame prawn toasts. We could all have stuffed ourselves silly on the starter alone - there was so much of it! The beauty of having a selection like this is that everyone can find something they like. We found that the people at our end of the table weren't as keen on the chicken wings, and the other end of the table loved the chicken but didn't rate the wontons, so once we had eaten what we wanted from our platter, we simply swapped, so the food didn't go to waste. Even my three-year old daughter, whose only experience with Chinese food has been lemon chicken and rice, loved the prawn toasts and the filo parcel wraps.
The next course was soup. There was a selection of four: chicken and sweetcorn, wonton soup, hot and sour soup and vegetable soup. I chose the wonton soup, for the simple reason that I had never had it before. To be honest, I didn't like it all that much, although it was probably more to do with my taste than any poor quality on the part of the soup! But at least now I know I don't like it. If you like wonton soup, it is probably delicious.
The third course was crispy duck pancakes. My mum was all chuffed that she knew how to make crispy duck pancakes as she had had them once before at my hen night, so she enjoyed teaching my father how to make them, as he had never had them before. I love crispy duck pancakes and these were excellent.
For the fourth course, they brought a selection of eight different dishes: chicken in blackbean sauce, beef in blackbean sauce, stir-fried chicken szechuan-style, sizzling lamb with black pepper sauce, sweet and sour chicken, sliced beef with plum sauce, beef curry, chicken in Cantonese sauce, all served with soft noodles with bean sprouts, vermicelli Singapore noodles, and egg fried rice.
The only thing I didn't try was the curry, as I know I don't like curry. But I tried everything else and it was all absolutely delicious! There was something for everyone! My husband only likes chicken so he didn't have to have any of the beef or lamb, and there was still plenty for him to eat. My small daughter wasn't keen on the spicy stuff, although she loved the sweet and sour chicken and noodles, so she had lots of that. And when one thing ran out, they just kept on bringing more and more. It really was "eat all you can!"
There was no dessert included, but with a four-course Chinese banquet, you really didn't need dessert.
And the cost of this sumptuous banquet? A mere £13.95 per person, or £9.50 for children under 8.
There is also a vegetarian banquet, which is £12.95 per person and £8.50 per child.
I would recommend China Red wholeheartedly. The staff are friendly and eager to please and the food is divine! It is far and away the best Chinese restaurant I have ever eaten in, bar none! If I could give it a million stars, I would!
(previously published on ciao.co.uk)
China Red, as the name would suggest, is a Chinese restaurant in Poulton-Le-Fylde (near Blackpool). It's not actually that near to where I live, but I recently won vouchers after an incentive at work and with the global economic climate as it is, I thought that only a fool would pass on a freebie meal (and I'm no fool, let me tell you). So it was I found myself perusing the restaurant's website (www.chinared-restaurant.co.uk) for directions and perhaps a sneak preview of the food on offer. I'm a massive fan of Chinese food so my mouth was watering pretty much as soon as the page loaded and so I went ahead and made a reservation.
-Making A Reservation-
Although the restaurant seats up to 170 people, the website does recommend that you make a reservation to avoid disappointment and, I have to say, I would agree. We went on a Friday night in May, nowhere near the end of the month, and the place was packed with extra people in the waiting area sporting the same look I must have had when I was looking at the menu online.
Booking couldn't have been easier; I simply called (01253 893701) one afternoon and a very pleasant lady answered and took down my details with no fuss and the job was done.
The website has a map of the area along with directions on getting there, although if you know the area it's pretty easy, as it's right in the town centre. There are a few parking spaces around the back of the restaurant as well as a public car park just around the corner. If you don't feel like driving, there's a taxi rank right outside the restaurant as well.
-The Restaurant Itself-
The restaurant isn't anything like you'd expect from a Chinese restaurant. It's absolutely huge, yet very modern. You won't find any of the traditional Chinese lanterns, waving gold cats and pictures of waterfalls with moving water here. In fact, there's very little on the walls at all, it's very much more understated and contemporary with black leather sofas in the waiting area and lots of chrome and glass. The star of the show though, is the huge Koi Carp pool which dominates the dining area. They are understandably proud of this feature, which fits in very well with the style of the place.
Like I said before, the restaurant can seat up to 170 people and there are a lot of tables to accommodate them, but they are so well laid out that you have plenty of space and are never sitting too close to another table. Even with massive groups of people (as there often are here) they don't stop you from enjoying your own romantic evening as the place is more than big enough.
The food was excellent. This time we had the Mixed Hors D'Oeuvres, which included barbeque spare ribs, spring rolls, curry samosas, crispy seaweed, deep fried wontons and salt and pepper chicken wings. At £6.00 per person (with a minimum of 2 people having to order) it isn't cheap, but it is definitely worth it if, like me, you like to try little bits of everything. You get four of each item so there is plenty to go at, although they are miniatures, so it isn't overpowering. I felt that the batter to actual substance ratio on the samosas and the wontons was a little too much, making it just a bit too greasy for me. However, chicken wings are deliciously salty, with just the right amount of kick to them. If I went again, I'd give the platter a miss and just order some of these and the spring rolls, which were also delicious.
For main course I had sweet and sour chicken with fried rice and the other half had the beef and Chinese mushrooms with soft noodles. I'd be hard pushed to pick between the two, as they were both divine but in completely different ways. The beef was tender and the sauce lovely and garlicky (no good if you're planning on getting lucky though!). The main courses weren't the largest portions, but were enough to make you feel satisfied without being painfully full, which can often be the case. Also, you get plenty of meat, rather than the dishes being padded out with mountains of vegetables - which fiancé enjoyed!
Desserts are the standard Chinese fare - deep fried fruits, ice cream or lychees being pretty much the only options, although they do have a menu with the frozen desserts on. These tend to look very appetising, with chocolate bombes, mini Vienettas and oranges filled with sorbet; however the reality is that they are so frozen that you can't actually taste anything. I opted for the lychees, which were tinned, but were very refreshing after such a rich meal.
China Red isn't cheap by any stretch of the imagination, although it's the extras that push your bill up. For example, main dishes are between £6 and £7 (and between £10 and £12 for sizzling dishes), but a side dish of noodles is £4.50 and rice is £2.50.
They also do a banquet menu on Mondays to Thursdays, which is a very reasonable £13.95 per person (or £12.95 for the vegetarian menu) for all you can eat.
Our bill came to £58, including wine, for two people. Considering we had starters, mains and coffees, this isn't too bad, but it isn't the cheapest meal you can get in these parts.
*The opening times are: 5pm to midnight, Monday to Saturday and 2pm - 9pm, Sundays
*Takeaway is available, for pick up only.
*Gift vouchers are available.
I would definitely recommend China Red as it offers a great, modern atmosphere and well-equipped to handle big groups, as well as offering a suitable setting for a romantic meal. The staff are very knowledgeable and can't do enough for you. The food is very good and worth the money you pay.