Last weekend, we were lucky enough to experience a meal at the Oriental Village in Bispham. We had our reservations as we’d visited previously before it changed hands and was revamped, but we’re so glad that we gave the place a try.
The first thing we noticed is how amazing it looks. A floor to ceiling glass window at the front of the building gives it an open and roomy feel, whilst the furniture has been carefully and elegantly chosen to provide comfort as well as making the restaurant look aesthetically pleasing.
We were greeted by the friendly bar tender who seemed genuinely happy to accommodate us and as we sat at our table, he asked us if we’d like to drink anything. We were also greeted by a member of the restaurant team who took our food order.
We opted for the Village Banquet from the restaurant menu. This offers 3 courses for £16.95 per person.
The starters for this menu consists of sesame prawn toast, salt and chilli wings, crispy seaweed, meaty spring rolls and satay chicken skewers. We were impressed with the presentation of the platter and it smelled absolutely delicious! We were starving and couldn’t wait to get stuck in.
Now we’ve had prawn toast before. Plenty of times, but never like this. As you can see from the photos, there are plenty of prawns on this bread and it tasted amazing. It tasted like it was fresh, just been cooked and not simply warmed up. Our only complaint is that there wasn’t a whole loaf of this stuff for us to eat. Beautiful!
Next up, we tried the meaty spring rolls. We weren’t disappointed. They were certainly meaty, with some chopped veggies inside. The main ingredient of the filling was certainly meat though. The rolls themselves were cooked really nicely and were crispy on the outside without being overcooked.
The satay chicken skewers had plenty of satay sauce, which gave the chicken a lovely kick of spice with plenty of taste from the peanuts in the sauce. The chicken itself was definitely real chicken breast instead of being processed and was juicy and tender.
The chicken wings were perfect. We’re not normally fans of chicken wings, but these were so juicy and tender that we demolished them in quick time. The chilli and garlic seasoning really made them full of flavour.
The seaweed really completed the starters and was a great tasting, crispy accompaniment.
Like many people, we think that the duck course is always the highlight of going to a Chinese restaurant. We were really looking forward to this.
The duck came out as a half duck and the waiter who brought it to our table shredded it in front of us. You can tell when the waiter has no problem shredding the duck that it’s going to be tasty and cooked properly.
It came with finely slicked spring leeks and cucumber batons, pancakes and a rich hoisin sauce.
Like the starters, this course was well presented and tasted absolutely amazing. By this point, we were starting to get full, but still looking forward to the main course!
We were surprised and pleased to find that this restaurants not only serves cocktails but that they’re made professionally and from scratch right in front of you. It was fun to watch them being made and we were impressed with the choice of drinks on the menu.
We went with two of the seasonal specials. These were the Mistletoe Martini and the Sleigh Bell Sling.
The Sleigh Bell Sling was fruity and slightly spicy, not overpowering with alcohol but just in the right proportion. The taste of the ground cinnamon immediately conjured feelings of christmas. The Mistletoe Martini was a dry drink, similar to a cosmopolitan but with added Christmas “spirit”. This had a stronger taste of alcohol but the spices seemed to also increase the perception of strength in the drink. Both drinks were indeed very pleasant and warming, perfect for the cooler weather.
We had ordered egg fried rice and salt and chilli chips along with a chicken curry and asked for a recommendation from the chef. We ended up with a sizzling Szechuan special dish with a mixture of all the meats available.
We took plenty of photos of this course. Not only did it smell and taste amazing, but it was photo worthy food. So good that we had to remind ourselves that we were in Bispham! We don’t remember a time when we’ve had Chinese food that looked as good as this course did.
The chef’s recommendation was the Szechuan special. It came out sizzling on a skillet and was a sensory treat. As you can see on the photos, there were some lovely pieces of meat along with vegetables. The sauce with this dish was a little on the spicy side. If you’re not a fan of spicy food, you may find this dish a little strong, but if you do like spicy food, you’ll find that this sauce packs just a little kick.
The chicken curry was the second dish in our mains. What we noticed straight away was that it tasted far healthier than we’d usually expect from a Chinese restaurant. It seemed to be free of the usual MSG and other unwanted additives. Instead, it was full of flavour and the chicken was actually real chicken breast unlike the standard processed meat that we would usually expect. The absence of mushrooms in this dish was a welcome change for one of us who hates mushrooms. This curry wasn’t spicy but had all the flavour that you could want from a Chinese curry.
We opted to try the salt and chilli chips and the egg fried rice to accompany the main sauces. This was a great choice. You can see on this photograph just how chunky and home made the chips are. Really tasty and the garlic, chilli and other spices that are cooked with the chips really topped them off. The egg fried rice was fluffy and again extremely flavoursome. Neither side made us feel too full or seemed heavy. Instead they were just the perfect accompaniment for each of the dishes that we had chosen.
You have to leave room for dessert, right?! Well we’re glad that we just about had room left for our dessert on this occasion! We both chose the cheesecake and one came with cream and the other with ice cream. You can see on this photo that the presentation was absolutely superb and even though we were flagging a bit after all the food we’d eaten by this point, we soldiered on.
What a surprise! The biscuit base was firm and tasty. Then there was a layer of light lemon. Followed by a rich and creamy cheesecake centre topped with lemon drizzle cake and whipped cream. It was definitely the most surprising part of the meal as we’re not used to having such luxurious dessert options on the menu at Chinese restaurants. It was the perfect way to finish the meal.
We’re so impressed with this restaurant. We think it’s about time that there was a great Chinese in the Blackpool area. It’s in a great location if you live in the more northern parts of Blackpool and would rather not have to venture into the middle of town. It’s right outside a bus stop too so there are great transport links. We’d recommend this place for a romantic date or even a party. They also offer a takeaway service, so if you want to stay home to eat in your PJs, we fully recommend this Chinese for your chilled night in too.
You can expect great service with friendly and professional staff as well as amazing presentation and most importantly, top notch food!
The Oriental Village is currently offering a Festive Menu which is perfect for a Christmas party or a meal out with family throughout December. Make sure that you check out their Facebook Page for more information.