2739 Nicollet Ave, Minneapolis, MN | Directions 5540844.954051 -93.277914
Monday-Thurs 11-2, 4:30 -9:30
Friday 11-2, 4:30-11
Neighborhoods: Powderhorn, Whittier
Worst Chinese Food I have Ever Eaten – I very much enjoy authentic Chinese food, having lived and traveled in China for a few years. Luckily, there are a number of good choices in the Twin Cities. But, wow, Rainbow is NOT one of them. Perhaps they used to be good, but in my only trip there, the food was utterly horrible.
My wife and I received incredibly bland dumplings as an appetizer to three main dishes that were atrociously bad. I'd swear that the person cooking the food must have had no experience cooking Chinese food. (a) It had absolutely no flavor. (b) The meat and vegetable pieces were so coarsely chopped that they failed to resemble any wok-cooked dish you'd actually receive from a genuine Chinese restaurant.
I'll admit that my taste for Chinese food is rather sophisticated, and that I don't like Americanized Chinese food, but I just cannot fathom that even those people who do like Americanized Chinese food could think that the food we received at Rainbow was at all good.
This place is certainly not worth going to.
Wish it was as good as in the old days. – I used to go here with my family and loved it. I haven't been back for four years, because my kids said it wasn't good anymore. I decided to try it anyhow. The egg rolls were Southeast Asian, not Chinese and just so so. The hot and sour soup was good. The fried rice and moo shu pork were bland and uninviting. The fried rice had large chunks of tendony meat. The moo shu pancakes were small tortillas -- and not even purchased from a good tortilleria. I found it overpriced and disappointing.
Without question the best Chinese food in town – I have been a regular for many years. Tammy (the chef) has a well designed menu that is executed with unyielding consistancy day and night. I went at 1pm recently, hoping to have the seasonal Chinese new year menu, only to hear that it was for dinner only. Tammy was kind enough to send us her special menu anyway and WOW!! I always knew the food was great but the refinment in the special menu truly showed Tammy's aptitude and prowess in the kitchen; her skill ranks her among the finest of minneapolis' chefs. I can't reccomend Rainbow enough.
LOVE THIS PLACE! – You get what you pay for. Really. This is a reasonably priced restaurant with GREAT, authentic Chinese food with so-so atmosphere and so-so service. If you want pricey service, go to a pricey restaurant.
Love the Chow mai fun. Have been ordering it for years. the owners are always friendly and its almost always busy - all those people can't be wrong!
Love it - am a regular and always will be!!!!
Not so good these days – I've loved this place since it's original location, and have made the trip from a northern suburb to satisfy my cravings at least once a month for several years...but something is missing- the food is only ok, and often greasy and overspiced. The service is lackluster, and the place just seems to need an overhaul. Too bad, because it was a strong restaurant with a nice ambience for so long. No longer worth the trip, or the price of the entrees.
Authentic Chinese does not include Sesame Chicken and Lo Mein – Wow, I'm surprised by some of the people saying it's not "authentic" Chinese cuisine...The Wong family that owns Rainbow came to America about 30 years ago and has been in Minneapolis for the past 20 years. Trust me, it's as authentic as you can get. As some people have said before, it may not seem as authentic to other people because they are used to sesame chicken, lo mein, and chop suey. You will be disappointed if you get these dishes because they are typical Americanized Chinese dishes. The Wong's beat all of the bland dishes with their Fried Walleye and Black Bean sauce, appetizers, Seafood fare and Hong Kong noodles. Leave old habits of ordering American Chinese food at the door and go out of your way to get real dishes. Ask the waiters, they are very helpful.
It is more expensive than other Chinese restaurants because the owner goes out to the farmer's market every day for fresh vegetables and fruits. So stop complaining, you're getting the best quality foods you can get here. She will tell you this when you go in, just ask, she loves conversing with the customers. Ask any Asian American (like myself) they know Rainbow is one of the best, most authentic Chinese restaurant in the Twin Cities!
Best Chinese in the Twin Cities.. if not, EVER! – This place is by far my favorite restaurant ever. Why you ask? Rainbows has the best black bean sauce style dishes you can't find anywhere. They've built their reputation around this which as given them nothing but success. Mixed with a little Vietnamese flavor, it gives their food a unique Chinese taste. Because of this, I do NOT recommend buying common dishes you can at any other Chinese restaurant (Example: Lo-mein, Sesame Chicken). If you're brave and would like to try something different, look under the seafood section. I recommend getting the Seafood and Gai Lan. You have an option on what type of noodles you want for the dish; I recommend Fun noodles. It comes with a thicken seafood sauce with scallops, squid, shrimp, Chinese broccoli.. absolutely to die for. If you have a party of four, I recommend getting the Fried Walleye with Black Bean Sauce. Although they have this dish at other Chinese restaurants, nothing comes close to the taste of Rainbows. For appetizers, I absolutely love the Spicy Tachien Chicken Wings. Wrapped in special Asian-bread, they come deep fried with awesome Vietnamese-Taichien brown sauce. I also recommend the Wontons with Black Bean sauce. Another great black bean sauce dish. On top of all the great food, the place is a comfortable atmosphere with a chic Asian theme. The bar looks like its built with bamboo shoots and a beautifully painted mural on their wall. They offer great cocktails and closes at 11:30pm on the weekends. And if you can't find parking, don't worry! They have their own, but small parking lot with weekend Valet service. Both my girlfriend and I are Asian Americans that love to try new restaurants. We've eating at places that look like shacks but somehow come out with great food, then eating at places like Wolfgang Puck's Postrio in Las Vegas and going home not very satisfied. We've eaten at many places over the world and still.. nothing comes close to this place.
Don't just order lo-mein! – The first time I was at Rainbow, I thought the food was ok, nothing so special...no big craze as few of my friends have raved about. The atmosphere was good, not a typical tacky chinese decorations, bright colors or the ugly whole-nine yard fake flowers. Honestly, I thought Raibow was unique with the gorgeous wall-mural, the old-time jazz music background, and the fact all the servers were actually good-looking twenty-something hipsters (even the asian ones!) However, my recent trip to Rainbow has changed my view about Rainbow's food. This time, I decided to ask our server what to order--she actually patted my shoulder sympathetically for having ordered ginger chicken at my first visit. Obviously, it was not her favorite. She recommended wontons in black bean sauce as appetizer, Singpore noodle (something mei-fun), sautee green beans, and scallop with basil and cashew. We let her order for us and everything was extremely tasty and delicious. No disappointment as the first visit. I was, forever, hooked on the wontons in black bean!! I can't wait to expand more of my horizon on Chinese food next time I visit Rainbow.
Chinese and Vietnamese eatery in the Asian Commercial Center known for authentic dishes at a good value. – In Short
This bistro-like space offers seafoam and pale yellow walls, stone floors, a large aquarium, and an inkbrush-like mural of a pagoda. The menu offers all the old standbys, but also showcases enough unusual dishes to keep epicures interested. Favorites include pan-fried noodle dishes in a choice of three types of noodle, Singapore chow mai fun, and the generous noodle soups, including roasted duck and fish-cake.
Agree with recent reviews – I agree with the recent reviews. The service and setting were adequate (not great), but the spicy dishes we ordered were bland and uninspiring. The only positive experience I can point to were the happy hour beer prices ($3 for a pint of Guiness).
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