Panda Express
Kawasaki: American
Panda Express (Kawasaki: American)
Panda Express
Open 10am-10pm daily.
Sun: Open Sundays
no smoking: No smoking

If you're nostalgic for - or simply curious about - the exotic flavors of classic American Chinese food, Panda Express has you covered. With 1900 branches across the US and around the world, it's certainly the most successful purveyor of this uniquely American cuisine, and this first Japanese branch in Kawasaki serves a very similar menu to what you'd find in a typical US shopping mall, including Panda's most famous dish, Orange Chicken.

With its assertive sweet and sour flavors and pleasantly crunchy texture, Orange Chicken is the big crowd pleaser here, and the side-dish Egg Rolls also strike a nice balance between their crisply fried skins and squishy fillings. Other dishes tend to be on the bland side though, perhaps due to the chain's no-MSG policy - the Fried Rice, Mandarin Chicken, Mongolian Pork and so on would all be improved with a healthy sprinkling of Ajinomoto. The Kung Pao Chicken at least comes with a few peppers, and some of the items have optional sauces which help add a bit of flavor.

Portions sizes are relatively large (although smaller than in America), and prices are fairly reasonable - Y1144 gets you a "big plate" with substantial helpings of three main dishes along with a "base" such as fried rice with chow mein, or brown rice with stir-fried vegetables. The shop is located in the food court area of the Kawasaki Lazona mall so you can get drinks from other shops if you want something stronger than Mountain Dew. The entire menu is also ready for take-out.

Saiwai-ku, Kawasaki, Horikawacho 72-1, Lazona Kawasaki Plaza 1F.
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Tokyo Beyond Sushi - the guidebook
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Venue listing from Bento.com4 Star Rating: recommended