Steve's Gastronomic Home Page

Peking Garden

955 N. Resler Dr.
El Paso, TX
(915) 587-6161

Peking Garden on N. Resler Dr.

When I made my first visit to Peking Garden on Resler Drive this was certainly not my first experience with the restaurant. I had made frequent visits to the Peking Garden on Trawood Drive during lunch hours from my office, so I had a general idea about what to expect. Unfortunately, the best feature of the east side restaurant was a waitress who always tried to ask the cooks to prepare the food the way I requested it, but it seems that the kitchen always had a way to make it fall below my expectations. Even though I liked Peking Garden when it was one of the city's few Chinese restaurants, the food is too Americanized and too inconsistent to be very attractive to me nowadays.

The good news about the Resler location is that it seems to be improved from the Trawood restaurant. I understand both restaurants have the same owner, but I do not think they are exactly the same in terms of the food served. For one thing, I frequently received food with MSG after I requested it with "no MSG" at the Trawood location, but so far this has not a problem on Resler. An equally important factor, though, is that when I asked for traditional Chinese food on Resler (not American style) they were at least partially able to accommodate this request, while I did not feel that I ever got "real" Chinese food at the Trawood location.

I am sure most readers understand that despite the name, the food at Peking Garden really has nothing to do with Beijing cuisine. The menu is all Americanized, although I did find that I could order food not listed on the menu at the Resler restaurant. At the Trawood location most of the dishes with the best flavor were Hunan and Szechuan style dishes (anything that was spicy). I have not yet tried any of these same dishes on Resler, but it is probably a safe bet that these would also be some of the best choices.

Combination noodle soup
Combination noodle soup

The "traditional" food that was prepared for me at the Resler location was Combination Noodle Soup, with the "combination" meaning that it contained chicken, shrimp, and beef. The least authentic aspect to it was the broth, which tasted as if it was made from a chicken soup mix and was a yellow color instead of the brown to clear soup I usually find in traditional Chinese restaurants. The rest of it, though, was very good, with a good quantity of meat and vegatables that provided a Chinese flavor. The soup was not spicy, and this type of soup is usually associated with the Cantonese or Hong Kong style of Chinese food that does not use chiles for seasoning. It had a good ginger flavor, and I think the cook knew how to make good soup but lacked the ingredients for the broth to be made the traditional way.

The restaurant is very small, and seems to concentrate on take-out business. Located across the street from a high school, I would guess that it has a large lunch crowd. Although the food at Peking Garden was good, I would also have to point out that it is in the same shopping center as Oriental Cafe, which I consider to be one of the top three Chinese restaurants in El Paso (and thus the explanation of why I have made so few visits to Peking Garden).



Cuisine: Chinese
Cost: $$
Hours: Open Daily
Accessible: No
Tea: Jasmine (bags)
MSG: Yes
Additional Location:
1810 Trawood Dr.
Smoking: No Smoking
Buffet: No

Most Recent Visit
Jul. 27, 2010

Number of Visits: 1

Special Ratings
Noodle Soup: