The folks who own Red Corner have dubbed it a "China diner," and I like that designation.
The environment is clean, basic, spacious and, well, diner-like — not ornately "Chinese." There's a counter where people can order lunch, numbered tables with wooden chairs, booths along one wall.
It's also the kind of restaurant where, walking in on any evening, a customer is likely to see kids sitting at a booth, maybe doing homework, with their parents emerging from the kitchen once in a while to check on how things are going. In other words, a friendly family eatery, this one serving Chinese food.
I have been searching for a good, reliable Chinese restaurant in my neighborhood since one of my favorites, May Keen, closed a few years ago. Red Corner is a bit farther away than May Keen was, but it's still conveniently close and tasty, with reasonable prices.
The sweet girl who waited on us probably thought my husband and I had some kind of eating disorder when we ordered an appetizer platter and four other dishes.
But after we explained that we were going to take leftovers home to our kids, she not only laughed (either with understanding or relief), but also brought enough fortune cookies at the end of the meal for all of our kids to have one.
We had a hard time saving anything for the kids on the Red Corner platter, a selection of three nearly perfect potstickers; a couple of fresh, light-tasting vegetarian spring rolls; a big, savory egg roll; three cream cheese wontons full of grassy green onion; and three delicately crisped, tender and sweet shrimp.
I should mention that there are several nice-sounding vegetarian options at Red Corner, including veggie "moo-shu" and the excellently named Three Treasures From Earth, with sauteed potato, bell pepper and eggplant.
We stuck mostly with our favorites, though, starting with beef with broccoli, nice and garlicky with tender-crisp broccoli and sliced beef. We also had the honey walnut shrimp, done simply here with tail-free shrimp in a crisp coating with sweet-tangy sauce and lots of crunchy baked walnuts.
My husband loves ham-fried rice, not on the menu at Red Corner, but accepted as a nice substitute the chicken fried rice, dark and flavorful with cubed chicken, peas and carrots.
We did try one new dish at dinner: the gently flavored and wonderfully textured beef chow fun, wide chewy noodles tossed in brown sauce with beef, celery, onions and cabbage.
As we were leaving, the chef approached our table to tell us they were including in our bulging to-go bags a sampler portion of another of Red Corner's veggie dishes, strongly flavored and satisfying eggplant and tofu in garlic sauce. I liked it so much it might become a new favorite — just like Red Corner.
Lunch combos (main dish and one side) $5.99, lunch sides $1.99, appetizers $2.49-$8.99, soup $1.99, entrees $6.99-$12.99, family dinner for four $39, kids' meals $4.99.
email: [email protected]
Where: 46 W. 7200 South, Midvale
Hours: 11:30 a.m.-9:30 p.m. Monday-Saturday
Payment: Major credit cards accepted
Wheelchair access: Easy
Also: Takeout and catering available