I met a friend for lunch at Naisa for the first time in ages and ages---they had been closed down for many months and honestly because of that, it had sort of left my mind as an option. But we remembered it and went back to see how they were doing.
The meals (all around $8) come with a soup and a crab Rangoon. We both chose the hot and sour soup. It had a nice flavor and a sufficient amount of heat, as well as nice chunks of tofu and mushrooms. But it had a lot of oil floating on top, which kind of stuck to your lips. It tasted good, but I just would have preferred something a bit lighter and would try one of the other options next time. I do love the little crunchy wontons they serve along with the soup. They are nice in the soup.
I also ordered some of the pork dumplings ($5.95) and asked for them pan fried (you can get them steamed as well). Ok, they were basically pot stickers and honestly, they weren’t my favorite. The dumpling filling just sort of fell out in a ball—they weren’t overly integrated and the skins a little chewy.
The entrees were decent. I had the chicken with garden veggies because the veggie options with it sounded the best. It had broccoli, zucchini, baby corn, carrots and mushrooms. I am not a fan of bell peppers, so I skipped the dishes with them in it and went for this one. The chicken was tender and the sauce was nice—not spicy but had a decent depth of flavor. The veggies were nice and crisp tender—not just crisp. I hate it when Chinese dishes taste like they just threw the veggies in raw. I also liked the little crab Rangoon they serve with your entrée, just to give you a little treat. They never blow my mind anywhere, but this one was good and crunchy.
Overall, it’s good to see Naisa back and in business. They have a nice interior and the service was very good. It’s a good to have at least one option for Chinese food in Fountain Square—heck, it’s good to have an option for Chinese food downtown—there are so few. It’s solid, even if it’s not spectacular.
1025 Virginia Avenue