Portland >Food & Dining > Joy Wok
7331 SW Barnes Rd, Portland, OR | Directions 9722545.515847 -122.752513
Neighborhoods: Cedar Hills - Cedar Mill
I've been coming to Joy Wok for almost 10 years. The food has always been consistently great. I'm a foodie and very picky about chinese food. They are not Non-fat, but they are the lowest fat cinese food that I've ever had and the quality of the food is terrific. The prices are really good as well. The most recent one star reviews seem like nothing I've personally encountered with this place. They are friendly. They DO accept tips and I've tipped them every time I've gone there. I eat there a couple of times a month and never had a problem. I recommend the warm noodle salid with peanut sauce. Delicious. My personal favorites is their baby bok choy with chicken. I have them add tofu to it and it's addictively good. Just love it.
Hard to relax and enjoy a meal when you've heard that the workers are exploited: 10 hour days, less than minimum wage for people who do not even get tips, and no overtime pay. I've heard that they have high turnover and it's no wonder.
nothing like wishing you were a bulimic – I'm not sure why this place got the reviews it did... It's listed as "Healthy Chinese Food" yet from a block away (literally) you can smell the hot oil from this place.. Now given I did not pick the healthiest items on the menu.. (General Tso and Kung Pao).. there is no reason why there should be so much grease.. enough to separate the sauce from the chicken and the grease to soak through the paper plate they give you... The food wasn't too bad though, except the Egg Rolls tasted freezer burnt and the cabbage inside tasted rotten... At first I thought I won a prize when i found not one but two hairs in my food... if that wasn't disgusting enough... within seconds of that happening.. one of the cooks came back from the bathroom with his gloves still on... that was enough to throw away 3/4 of my meal away...
After coming home I decided to check out the county health department scores.. and this seems to be an issue with this place...
Two employees did not wash hands when required. Employees were found handling raw meat and then touching and contaminating other items that are handled by other employees such has handles of coolers and counter tops. One employee washed hands while still wearing gloves. This is not allowed.
Knives on the second magnetic knife were all dirty.
Observed one employee spraying off a butcher knife. The knife was contaminated with blood. The dishwasher then took the knife to the magnetic knife rack. This is not an acceptable way to clean and sanitize utensils.
So... Eat at your own risk :)
Fresh ingredients; not coming from a steam table – Joy Wok is a fresh alternative for people who like to eat healthy and love Chinese food. HUGE portions, freshly prepared, friendly staff, super fast.
Although they have some wonderful and unique dishes, they do a large take-out business, and therefore they also need to cater to a broad demographic with "safe old stand-bys" like chow mein and fried rice for less adventurous diners.
I usually have whatever fresh vegetables are in season - specials like asparagus, baby bok choy, asian eggplant, string beans - and then a choice of shrimp, chicken, tofu, beef, pork.
What's amazing about their food is that the vegetables are always fresh and cooked to order - never soggy from sitting in a steam stray. The chicken is all white meat; the shrimp are large and always taste fresh.
They will oblige with almost any sauce, and you can also request "extra light on the oil" and they do a nice job. They also have brown rice on request.
I am personally not a fan of deep fried Chinese food like General Tso's, so I can't vouch for those kinds of dishes.
Easily 80% of the business for Joy Wok has to be take-out, but there are plenty of tables. I'm only giving it 4 stars vs. 5 because if they only made the lighting a little less flourescent, and turned on some music, it would be nicer to eat there. But it's very clean and friendly. Just not high on "Chinois ambience."
If you are trying to eat healthy but want a lot of flavor, you can do very well at Joy Wok. If you love your Chinese food deep fried, nothing personal, but there are plenty of other places in town to get that.
Excellent Chinese Take out! – We love this little gem buried in a strip mall on the hill. The food is fabulous! Beef w/broc, Kung Pao anything, General Tsao's, Green Beans w/Tofu, it's all good! Cheap as hell too! Very nice people, seems to be family run. Atmosphere is bad, strip mall with super bright flourescent lights. A great place to grab a quick and healthy dinner on your way home. I am always surprised that it isn't busier. Love it!!
Great customer service, degrading food. – I have been going to joy wok for more than five years and recently I have noticed that their food quality has slacked. I used to love this place but the last couple times, I have had food that was either too salty or too bland, they cannot keep their food quality consistent. This is why I have not gone there in a while. I would also appreciate it if they would use real plate and silverware instead of the all foam and plastic silverware. It is a great waste to the environment.
In the long run a very good joint!!!! – I have been going to Joy Wok for over 4 years now and I honestly can't find any other chinese food locally that isn't expensive and as tasty. There was a negative comment above about the Kung Pao chicken having no flavor but it is much more flavor full than anything around here. Happy Panda taste like paste comparatively. Every one should try this, but have a second try if not happy the first time. They have only once made a dish I wasn't satisfied with and I believe it was a decently new cook. Don't go with out trying this place!!! Another fact that is pretty interesting is that no one is related their!
Our favorite place for takeout! – We just moved to SW Portland and felt so lucky to stumble on this place. Like others have said, the atmosphere is a bit odd and more like a deli, so unless it's lunchtime, we probably wouldn't dine there. But for quick takeout, it's perfect. We've ordered the Szechwan Beef and Kung Pao Chicken several times - big portions, consistently good. Plus, they're very nice and the service is fast. Most entrees are $8-9.
Tastes better than where it is located! – This place is honestly a great secret. The location makes it look cheap and one of those run of the mill strip mall chinese place. The food is lovely, and the food feels fresh! My favorties: Won ton soup, Chicken fried rice, green beans with chicken. All in all I would not be upset if this was brought home for dinner.
Just Blah – Read the reviews on here and decided to try it, it was after all at least close. Called for take out, figured cant go wrong with kung pao chicken or sweet and sour chicken. Was i WRONG, no flavor to either. Yes they say healthy chinese food but does that mean it has to be blah? No spice what so ever to the Kung pao and the sweet and sour, well, nothing sweet about it. Will not be going back.
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