China Star - Fairfax
9600-G Main St.
Fairfax, VA 22031
Open Sunday through Thursday 11 AM to 10 PM, and Friday and Saturday 11 AM to 11 PM.
Wheelchair Accessible: Yes
Nearby Metro Stops: Vienna/Fairfax-GMU, Dunn Loring-Merrifield
Price Range: Inexpensive
Reservations: Not Needed
Special Features: Wheelchair Accessible, Kid Friendly
Many of the dishes on this bustling strip-mall restaurant’s Szechuan menu make liberal use of chilies and peppercorns, but the preparations and flavors are surprisingly varied. Addictive chili chicken, popcorn-size nubbins of fried dark meat on or off the bone, gets a dry rub of hot red pepper, complete with fiery seeds. Dried fried string beans have a slick of oil, the bite of ginger, and the numbing heat of black peppercorns. Tamer is a stew of sautéed flounder and silken tofu in a chili-stoked sauce; try some solo with a spoon—it’s that good. Some dishes don’t have any fire at all. Crystal shrimp sautéed with cornstarch looks like an amorphous jellied mass, but it’s a wonderful counterpoint to all the heat.
Also good: Pork with sour mustard and rice noodles; lamb in sizzling pot; mapo tofu; eggplant with garlic sauce in hot pot.