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By Steven Li on 2006-12-01

December 01, 2006

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Dining options past the hour of midnight don’t run abound in Rowland Heights, but there’s always one place you can depend on Life Plaza to be open. The food is not good nor is it bad, but it’s cheap. It’s not a dining destination but an ideal place to “hang out” when your tummy running low late at night. The menu is a straightforward option of three dishes for $12. I told you it was cheap! Choices run amuck from the Americanized salt and pepper chicken to stir fried rice noodles. It’s a Cheesecake Factory of options – nothing is spectaular, but everyone will be at least remotely satisfied.

One of our selections was the stewed fish with cabbage. This “stew” was tomato and pepper based, kind of thick and goopy as if it could not decided whether it would be a broth or some congealed mass. No, I did not like it one bit. I fished out a piece of pollack, which was fine, if not tasteless on it’s own. But the stew part, gesh, tasted like makeup remover!

The mapo tofu faired better, though it’s hard to mess up a dish that can be easily made right out of prepackaged box. Soft tofu, bits of ground beef, this was also much more spicy than I had anticipated.

The garlic eggplant was the best of the three. A simple stir fry dish that you’ve probably encountered a bagazillion times in your life, sliced eggplant, onions, bamboo shoots and green bell peppers all in tangy “brown sauce” found in may of the dishes here. It’s oily, a but greasy, but over a hot bed of rice, everything melds together nicely. Besides, the human body seems to palate take on fat well late in the night.

Life Plaza
1370 Fullerton Rd
Rowland Heights, CA 91748
(626) 839-8811



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