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Panda Express Review

Tamara Crump, Staff Writer

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Panda Express is an American Chinese restaurant chain that operates mainly in the United States. The chain currently has 1,746 locations, including the newly built Tupelo location.

The company was founded in 1983 where it soon began gaining popularity in shopping malls. Not too long later, stand-alone locations were being built all across the United States.

I had never actually eaten at a Panda Express, so it was a nice surprise to hear that Tupelo was getting one. The hype about the food was another reason that I was excited about the news.

However, once I finally got the chance to try out the new restaurant, I was a little disappointed.

The building itself is nice to look at with the panda mural placed at the top of the mostly while building. The large, open windows are a nice and inviting touch also. The inflatable panda at the top was cute, too.

The inside is small but causal. It’s got a pleasant vibe to it. Don’t let the seats fool you though. They are hard and not at all as comfortable as they seem. I actually plopped down a little too hard and was expecting to sink into the cushion. There is no comfortable sinking. It’s just an unexpected hardness.

Besides the look of the restaurant, the workers didn’t seem to have too much training. I was there a week after the opening, but everyone behind the bar could be seen in a slight disarray. Everything and everyone looked to be disoriented. It was taking a while to get the food together, which caused there to be a line all the way to the door.

A customer chose fried rice as one of their entrees and the worker asked the customer if the only rice on the bar was fried rice. The worker wasn’t quite sure if the rice was fried or if it was white. I feel like that is something that is supposed to be taught in training.

At least she was nice about it, though. Despite the flustered state of the workers, they were all moderately nice.

I ordered a plate that included two entrees and a side. As my entrees I got chow mein and shanghai angus steak. My side was orange chicken. With the plate and a bottle of green tea, my purchase totaled out to be $11.10.

The entrees were fine, but nothing that would keep me coming back. There was nothing spectacular about them. The orange chicken was another story, however. It was the best orange chicken I’ve had in awhile. I was more concerned with the chicken than I was on anything else on the plate.

Despite the chicken and the green tea being pretty amazing, I don’t think the meal was really worth $11.

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The online collaborative home of The Hi-Times, WTHS and The Album
Panda Express Review