Menifee Foodie: Chinese Bistro Gets Mixed Reviews

By Malissa Meeks

I have a grandson who loves trains. We have had many train experiences together and they have been so much fun. We have taken the Metrolink to Union Station at Christmas and looked at the beautiful decorations at the train station. That little field trip took us across the street to Olivera Street for some fun shopping and a great lunch.

We have taken the Surfliner up to Paso Robles. For that trip, we got our own private train car and ate lunch in the dining car. That was so much fun for both of us. We have ridden the train at the park in Poway, and had many other train adventures.

When we moved out to this area, I saw a train that was a Chinese Restaurant. It's the Chinese Bistro, located at 28490 Highway 74 in the Romoland community of Menifee. I was so excited as I saw another possible train adventure for myself and R.J.

Recently, I decided to give this restaurant a try.

Eating at a restaurant is about the food, but also the surroundings. The outside of the train is well kept and really cute. The inside needs updating. I am sure it was really pretty when it opened 20 years ago, but they really need to update the inside.

The menu is quite large. They offer just about anything you would want to see at an Americanized Chinese restaurant.

We ordered a chicken, shrimp, vegetable dinner with fried rice.

The food was very eye appealing. The broccoli, squash and other vegetables were cooked to perfection. The color was brilliant and they had just the right amount of crunch.

The fried rice was very disappointing, in fact, I felt it was a little on the stale side. The fried rice did not have any vegetables mixed in with the rice. The flavor was not good at all.

The chicken and shrimp were very bland. I did not enjoy this part of the meal.

I feel like this restaurant has so much potential with the train car theme, but I was really not impressed with much once I walked through the front door.

Bottom line, I will not be going "chew chew" on this choo choo again.

I give this restaurant 2 spoons.

Malissa Meeks is a mother of seven who knows her way around the kitchen. By her estimate, she has prepared more than 42,000 meals over the years. She also knows what she likes in a good restaurant. Her column appears here every Tuesday. Leave comments here or email them to


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