Just Call Egg Rolls Mini Burritos and You’ll Be Fine
The same week I tried P.F. Chang’s for the first time, the chain opened its first non-US location in Mexico City. It's true, I don't recall a large Chinese food presence during my week there but there’s not any particular reason why Americanized Chinese food wouldn’t succeed south of the border. They have Subway, T.G.I. Friday's and even Taco Bell (though the latter only recently returned after an unsuccessful attempt in the early '90s).
This Time magazine article's conceit that we’re so much more sophisticated about Chinese food here doesn’t ring true. According to the author, "…the bar for Chinese food is set low. In the handful of eateries that dot Mexico City's two-block Chinatown, it's common to start a meal with deep-fried wonton sticks and a hefty bowl of neon-red sweet-and-sour-sauce."
Uh, just like most US cities with small numbers of Chinese citizens, as well as much of NYC despite a good-sized Chinese population.
Mexico City’s P.F. Chang's branch manager, Iván Alvarado adds, "We have to explain a lot of things to customers at our tables because here in Mexico, we drink soda with Chinese food."
Sounds familiar. Every corner takeout joint in the city tosses in a free can of soda with a minimum order. Big city Mexicans=just like us.
Photo from TexasEscapes.com