By Kelley Musson
Asian food has always been a love of mine. My first time eating authentic Asian food was in college. A friend of mine from Laos had huge family gatherings every Sunday. The first time I saw the layout I was in awe at not only the amount of food that was on display, but the beautiful colors, quality, and overall flavor of the food. From the beautifully cooked spring rolls, to the greens that gave every dish a pop of color, to the way in which the rice noodles sat in their bowls of pho, which filled the room with an amazing aroma. It was authentic Asian food at its finest, and I was ready to dig in!
Upon going into Doc Chey’s Dragon Bowl, I’ll have to say that I was a bit skeptical. After all, how exciting is a bowl of food? As I walked inside the moderately busy restaurant, I had no clue where to start. I saw some other lunch goers walking towards a huge blackboard which had the menu written in chalk. Dragon Bowl does counter service for lunch hours. The menu was a step by step system: Pick your style (Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Thai, Vietnamese), pick your base (noodles, rice, or salad), protein, and veggies. I love that fact that you can tailor your bowl to your specific craving.
Since it was after 12, we decided to indulge a little. I chose the citrus punch (see left), which is a fruity beverage infused with sake. It’s a great choice if you’re opting for a lunchtime cocktail; very light, not too sweet, and very refreshing. I also tried a taste of the Fu Man Brew from Monday Night Brewing. Nice and a deal at only $3.50 a bottle.
We started off with the Shanghai dumplings which were AMAZING. It was a perfect combination of ground pork, garlic and ginger. I honestly could have eaten it as a meal by itself. For my main entree, I decided on the Japanese style which consisted of a teriyaki glaze, sesame miso sauce, Japanese pickles,and furikake. I went with the ramen for my base and grilled chicken for my meat. Since my lovely date ordered the grilled ribeye, I figured chicken to be the next best option. They do offer Tofu as well. For my veggie I chose their season picks of the day – broccoli and sesame slaw.
When my bowl arrived I was really pleased with the colorful dish; bright purple slaw, fresh broccoli, perfectly glazed grilled chicken, all sitting on a bed of ramen with furikake sprinkled generously. All of those flavors crammed into one bowl was a pleasant surprise. The combined flavors were awesome, taking me back to that same feeling from college.
Malika went with the Vietnamese style which consisted of nuoc cham, a honey lemongrass glaze, Vietnamese pickles, crushed peanuts and cilantro. She chose the vermicelli for her base, with the ribeye and cauliflower. Another great combination, but I think I preferred the combination of hot and cold in my bowl. The ribeye was cooked just how I like it; tender, but seared to a slight crisp. The cilantro was also a nice addition. The only thing I would have done without was the nuoc cham, which was luckily served on the side. It had a specific taste that didn’t do the bowl any justice.
Overall, I would say Doc Chey’s Dragon Bowl is a great lunch spot. The service was friendly and helpful, and fast. The food was fresh and generally delicious.
1556 N Decatur Rd, Atlanta, GA 30307
Disclosure: This as a complimentary meal but the opinions expressed are my own.
Kelley Musson was born and raised in one of the most beautiful islands in the world –Bermuda. She relocated to Atlanta summer 2014, and is excited about the variety of restaurants at her fingertips. With an appreciation not only for great food, but also the ambiance that a restaurant provide, Kelley loves to share when she’s had a memorable meal; especially one that includes a great cocktail or glass of wine to accompany it!