Appreciating all that makes America special

P.F. Chang’s China Bistro

P.F. Chang's,

It's not authentic Chinese food, but that doesn't mean it's not delicious. Uploaded by

Okay, let’s get out of the way what P.F. Chang’s isn’t. It isn’t genuine Chinese food, to begin with. You know that, I know that, they know that. And it isn’t a great neighborhood restaurant, run by some local Chinese refugees. Now let’s talk about what it is:

P.F. Chang's,

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Darn good, that’s what it is. That it appeals to American sensibilities doesn’t disqualify it from our approval, and neither does the fact that it’s a chain. Snobs can disagree, but the main question isn’t “Is this a unique dining experience,” but rather “Am I enjoying the food, service, and ambiance?” At P.F. Chang’s, for me and millions of others, the answer is yes, yes, and yes.

The chain is based in Phoenix, and was founded in 1993. Its popularity has caused it to spread rapidly across the country, with new locations opening all the time. Speaking only of the location near me, it’s all but impossible to get a table on Friday or Saturday night without a reservation. And everything I’ve had there has been wonderful. This is the first time (I think) that a restaurant chain has been recognized on this list. P.F. Chang’s is worthy of that recognition. (Don’t miss the lettuce wraps.)

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