comScore

Best of

the Twin Cities

BEST CHINESE RESTAURANT

Evergreen

You've driven past it a thousand times; you'd be forgiven if you thought it was a flower shop. This unadorned restaurant, in a basement on Nicollet below the flower shop, is simply the best Chinese in the Twin Cities. The owners are a Taiwanese Buddhist couple (she cooks, he serves) who dish up Taiwanese specialties alongside Chinese standards. The 3-cup tofu is a heap of silken, garlicky bites in tangy, toasty jackets, and the Vietnamese lemongrass mock beef is a platter of chewy strips suffused with bright lemony flavors—the best mock anything we've ever tasted. Also excellent: potstickers (vegetarian and non), the fresh, sprightly soybean paste noodles with bok choy, and the spicy, pork-laden Mapo tofu. For an authentic Taiwanese experience, ask for "hollow vegetable"—it's a leafy green vegetable served on the streets of Taipei whose Chinese name translates literally as "open heart." (They don't always have it, but it's worth a try—a more delicious green is not to be found). The restaurant is usually filled with Chinese expats, families, and grad students, and as most entrees are under $10, you could eat here every night. (Some do.) The restaurant has developed an especially loyal following in the vegetarian and vegan communities (vegetarian items are cooked in a separate wok), and on busy nights, customers have been known to leap from their seats to help take orders. Delicious. Affordable. May Evergreen prosper!

Best Chinese Restaurant (2012) Evergreen

Best Vegetarian-Friendly Restaurant (2009) Evergreen

BEST CHINESE RESTAURANT (2008) Evergreen

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