Food Porn Friday | Twenty Eight Modern Chinese Cuisine | Irvine

Friday, January 09, 2015


Happy Friday luvahs!!! 
The first Food Porn Friday of the New Year, are y’all just as excited as I am to dig right in?!!

  Today’s FPF is brought to you by a former Top Chef contestant who opened her very first restaurant right in my hood! Are y’all familiar with Shirley Chung from New Orleans Season 11? That was actually the ONLY season I didn’t watch but she came in 4th place and has even worked under the tutelage of notable greats José Andrés, Thomas Keller, Guy Savoy, and Mario Batali to name a few.


Twenty Eight Modern Chinese Cuisine took over the old Kimera in Irvine and features an extensive menu that reflects her Beijing-born heritage elevated to incorporate traditional and current Chinese elements.

Here’s what’s on the menu today:
Tongue and Cheek: House cured pork head cheese and beef tongue, pickled baby carrot, California red mustard. Def needs the mustard, bland without it and overall just meh.

Spicy Sticky Wings: Fried jidori chicken wings, sweet and spicy chili sauce. Full of robust flavor and I love that the skin was crispy enough to last through the last bite.

Beijing Street Style Grilled Lamb Skewers: Spicy cumin rubbed Colorado lamb belly, charred red onion. Surprisingly super moist and juicy. Not the prettiest dish on the menu, but palatable just the same. 


Fried Calamari: Lightly rice flour battered, crispy shallots, house pickled vegetables.

Seared Hamachi with garden lettuce, glass yam noodle, pickled vegetables, plum dressing. Another ok dish, nothing too spectacular.

XO Sauce Noodles with Chung-Lee xo sauce, garlic chive, egg noodles. VERY salty. Too salty. Pass! 

Roasted White Trout with braised celery and wood ear mushroom, brown butter black bean sauce. This is probably one of the more "Chinese" tasting dishes on the menu. Reminds me of something my mama would make for Sunday supper. Ahhhh, I give it an A-rating for sense memory. 

Caramel Lace Prawns with gulf white prawns, sweet plum aioli, grapefruit, walnut caramel lace. Tastes like ‘suped up Walnut Shrimp, brilliant execution! 

Squid Ink Hand Cut Noodles with fresh southern California Uni, jalapeno, ginger and scallion pesto. Heaven in a bowl! I could eat this every.dang.day, the noodles were soft and chewy, the uni so buttery and fresh! DIVINE. 

Wok Fired Winter Squash with warm spices, garden herbs, puff wild rice.

Beijing ZhaJiang Mian hand cut noodles, minced pork with fermented bean sauce, watermelon radish, cucumber Shirley's Beijing God mother's recipe. I love that it was a recipe passed down from generations before. Tastes very homey, made with love. Solid. 

Shao Mai with spicy fish mousse, kefir lime and fresh uni: Heaven in a bite!

Word to the wise: Stay AWAY from the veggies! 
Every leafy green tasted like it was brined in a vat of seawater and while my palate can seriously take a whole jar of soy sauce, these dishes were wayyyyy too salty for my taste.

Twenty Eight
19530 Jamboree Rd
Irvine, CA 92612
(949) 852-2828

*Insider’s tip: I live right in the heart of Little Saigon, while we boast the BEST Vietnamese cuisine in the world (that’s right! BETTER than the muthaland), you’d be hard pressed to find true authentic Chinese cuisine unless you traverse to San Gabriel Valley. Which is why I love Twenty Eight’s Modern Chinese concept. The flavors are there, the execution on point, and the presentation just sooo pretty.


What I’m SERIOUSLY griping about is the décor
My girls and I came for dinner and the overhead lighting was HORRENDOUS. I felt like I was trapped in a mental institution with no way to escape the glass walls! The fluorescent dome lighting made me feel nauseous, queasy, and just tired from the minute we stepped into the main dining area. Like bad office lighting gone awry. So while the cuisine is on par, the space was unappetizing. A for food, D- for design. Sorry Shirley! Feel free to call me to consult, lol! ;D Try dining during lunch guys, the natural light streaming through the floor to ceiling windows will surely be a sight!*

TGIF my loves!
Hope you're eating well wherever you are!
Bon Appétit mes amis!

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3 comments

  1. This looks like it was such a great night out! I absolutely love the pants you wore. What a stunning colour!
    the-creationofbeauty.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  2. YUMMY! That's too bad the pork slices were bland! Without sauce they should be tasty and juicy! I would have loved to have those crispy wings, the ink noodles and those fried shao mai!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Just popping by to wish you the best of 2015! Love your outfit & you look absolutely stunning, dear! xoxo
    Luxury Haven

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Give it to me...gimme that funk, that sweet, that gushy stuff

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