A Panda Buffet
South Euclid, OH 44121 216.381.6788 location
A Panda Buffet is a neighborhood dining spot serving east Cleveland, and sort of a discount place to get Chinese food. The buffet has a heavy emphasis on seafood and chicken dishes but you’ll find a lot of different things there, some of which are Chinese food favorites and a few others seem to be pretty unique to this buffet. All told, the place seems to be supported by the surrounding neighborhoods but I can’t find anything here that makes it worth a special visit.
The chicken dishes are doable, at least. Popular General Tso’s Chicken is crisp, but the sauce is very runny. The honey chicken is an improvement, with thicker sauce, but other than that, it tastes identical. The pepper chicken has a good spice to it, but the sauce is also runny. The grilled chicken is an improvement, as are the wings, though wings are definitely frozen. Spare ribs are good but packed with gristle. I wasn’t impressed by the dumplings. I will say, there was an interesting idea for “tempura” which saw a mix of different things fried, including sushi and green beans and more. It’s an interesting thought, at least.
The seafood falls flat on its face. Some of it is tasteless and bland, others are ruined by being left out too long and drying out. The clams are baked with a great mix of other things, but get them fresh or they will be ruined. The shell-in mussels stay in water which makes them taste like shell, not meat. I do like the fried scallops, but there is no flavor in the crab Rangoon. Sushi was decent, but nothing to write home about. The crawfish are cooked well, at least, so there’s that.
Restaurant staff are nice enough, and though the place does seem like it could use a cleaning, especially the bathrooms, the restaurant is otherwise not a bad place. It’s just the food that doesn’t impress me, which is a real shame, because it can’t be avoided.
- A Panda Buffet isn’t just a dine-in all-you-can-eat spot, they also deliver. There’s a sizable menu, including many of the buffet items, which can be ordered for delivery.
- I don’t suggest the seafood dishes, but the chicken dishes are pretty good.
- At about $7.50, the buffet is pretty economical, too.