6812 Northwest Expressway
Oklahoma City, OK
Hunan Wok is now one of the city’s longest running Chinese buffet restaurants, a concept which was popular in the 1980’s and 1990’s, but which is now mostly being replaced by restaurants where you order from the menu (and which many times offer lunch specials). Hunan Wok has a menu, and menu prices are very reasonable, but few customers seem to order this way.
Hunan Wok underwent a transformation when it reopened in February 2011 after an extensive remodeling of the building. The buffet now has many more choices (and offers a good assortment of American food to go along with the Chinese dishes). I have not eaten from the buffet since before the remodeling, but my favorite feature of it was the Mongolian barbecue (and this is still available on the new buffet). The new buffet has higher prices, but the larger selection is a good feature if you are really hungry.
The biggest change from the “old” (pre-remodeled) restaurant that affects me is that the special order Chinese dishes I used to get are no longer available. These were either from the menu or were modifications of menu items, and can still be ordered, but I do not think they taste the same. My assessment is simply that they are Americanized, and therefore not of much interest to me. I believe that they no longer have anyone in the kitchen who can cook items in a more traditional Chinese style, so this is not the place to go for that type of food.
Noodle Soup was one of my favorite “Chinese style” items before the remodeling, but now it is just a big bowl of soup without much flavor (or at least it did not have much flavor when I tried it). It is cheap, though, and contains a large amount of chicken, noodles, and vegetables. There are quite a few Chinese restaurants that have better noodle soup in my opinion, but at least the one here is a good price and has all the basics I need.
I have tried two versions of Mei Fun (rice noodles), so this will probably turn into one of my “go to” dish at Hunan Wok. It is not totally authentic, but they honored my request to use Chinese vegetables, and this is the closest thing to “Chinese style” food I have found at the restaurant. The mei fun could also use more flavor, and I think they could do some things to spice it up such as adding some egg to the ingredients. Still, it is a good choice for suburban Chinese food.
Hunan Wok gets points with me for offering Kung Pao Tofu, something that previously I had only been able to order at Dot Wo in Edmond. The one here was not as flavorful as Dot Wo’s, but I thought it was pretty good (except that it had too much celery). If I were rating the different parts of it I would probably give a 5 to the tofu, a 4 to the sauce and the peanuts (because there were not enough of them), and a 3 to everything else (the squash was good but is probably not something I normally associate with kung pao). For me this was better than average “Americanized” Chinese food.
The several times I ate from the buffet at the “old” Hunan Wok I was happy that it was MSG-free (and I believe it still is). Since this is one of the few Chinese buffets in northwest OKC, I believe the lack of MSG is a good selling point for it (also the roast beef I see on the buffet looks very good).
A review of the old restaurant is available as an Archived version.
Hours: Open Daily
Smoking: No smoking
Most Recent Visit: Dec. 25, 2013
Number of Visits: 5
Best Items: Mei Fun, Kung Pao Tofu