The love affair with Frank Ma South has come and gone in this city. Late in 2008 when Frank Ma moved in with the gang at Chopsticks in the Emory area, all hell broke loose. Most everyone got all giddy at the idea of a seemingly authentic Chinese restaurant located somewhere other than BuHi. I was never all up in that … shocking I know. At the time, I recapped my thoughts on “THAT SITE” during my pre-blog days.
Suddenly, like a fart in the wind, Frank up and vanished. In his wake, chef’s have come and gone and the crowds have thinned. However, the menu remains basically the same. I’ve been diving in and out of there intermittently since Frank’s departure with the latest visit being yesterday for the Chinese New Year. While the restaurant still satisfies my urging for non-nationalized Chinese grub, it’s still unable to compete with our cities top dogs.
For our meal, Ms. Vennerable and I took down some scallion pancakes, cold noodles in a peanut sauce, fried dumplings, and the pork with fried tofu. The food itself was fine, but it was much closer to passable than it was to invigorating. The dumpling mixture was overpowered by the lack of truly beautiful ingredients. The wrappings were crisped and everything was cooked, but the rest was flat. The scallion pancakes were far too thin on the scallions to really stand up to the name. The dough was also not cooked thoroughly. While one side was deliciously brown and worthy of a food porn shot (which I didn’t take), the obverse was just flat. The cold noodles were passable as well and the peanut sauce was well portioned … but how hard is it to screw that up?
Last up was the pork and fried tofu (not pictured). The use of the scallions against the braised meat provided a soft yet crunchy mouth injection, the braised sauce help hold in the aroma, but the tofu was completely absent of any seasoning. It seems that the bowl was rested and the tofu dropped in moments before.
This is just a quick drop in, so I don’t have the time to go into the detailed descriptions of the food that I’m known for. The food was fine, and at $30, not unreasonable. However, the service, as always, was frustratingly off. We actually sat there for 15 minutes before the delivery driver we beckoned finally acknowledged me. Believe me … I tried several times over.
There is something comforting about dining on Chinese food that doesn’t have one of those big giant pandas on a box in your local freezer section. It’s also nice to be able to get away from the mu shu’s and Mongolian beefs as well. In that respect, for those in the area, Frank Ma’s works. However, it’s time as a destination spot have long gone … assuming it was ever there in the first place.
Atlanta Foodies on Frank Ma South
Frank Ma South Restaurant Address & Information
2088 Briarcliff Rd NE, Atlanta, GA 30324 // 404.417.9990