REVIEW: Panda Express Golden Treasure Shrimp

Panda Express Golden Treasure Shrimp

When I think of treasure, naturally, I think of pirates. There is such a strong, fundamental connection between massive hidden hauls of loot and buccaneering that it can be difficult to envision anything else. So you can understand my hesitation to associate pirates with panda bears when I first heard about Panda Express’s newest entry, Golden Treasure Shrimp.

As adorable as pandas in pirate costumes may be, I am tired of pirates. Like so many other North Americans who have been assailed by three (soon to be four) Pirates of the Caribbean films of gradually decreasing quality, numerous high-profile news stories of Somali pirate attacks, several thousand Captain Morgan commercials, and countless Captain Jack Sparrow Halloween costumes, I am so deep in the throes of Pirate Exhaustion that I didn’t want to experience anything pirate-y again for a while. But, by the Beard of Barbarossa, the Golden Treasure Shrimp demands a pirate-speak review. CURSES! Here goes nothing:

Avast ye mateys! Golden Treasure Shrimp ’tis representin’ an improv’ment upon th’ texture and flavor o’ Panda Express’s other tempura shrimp dish, Honey Walnut Shrimp. Accordin’ to th’ proud pronouncements on their site, Golden Treasure Shrimp be a “succulent tempura shrimp, wok tossed with fresh bell peppers in a zesty citrus sauce.”

Arrrr… ‘Tis true, th’ sauce be zesty, but that’s due in no small part t’ its spiciness, which be an unexpected and pleasant surprise. Since th’ coatin’ be so similar t’ PE’s SweetFire Chicken’s sweet chili sauce, I wonder why th’ scalawags dinnae just call th’ new dish SweetFire Shrimp. While only a wee bit citrus-y, th’ sauce has a bold flavor ‘n a nice “lip spiciness” that provides enough heat t’ make it interestin’ without becomin’ too overpowerin’ or painful. A smart sip of grog should cure what’ever lingerin’ heat ails ya.

Panda Express Golden Treasure Shrimp Closeup

Bein’ a lubber o’ tempura-style anythin’, I was pleased t’ find th’ Golden Treasure Shrimp’s batter was crispy despite o’ th’ fact that it be drenched in tangy sauce. However, if let sit for a while, I imagine th’ batter would smartly become soggy. Good thin’ I dinnae wait. Th’ tempura coatin’ be a wee bit heavy ‘n leaves a touch o’ residue on th’ tongue, since it be a tad oily, but th’ shrimp itself be tender ‘n tasty, ‘n weren’t overpower’d by th’ coatin’.

Th’ only downside be th’ sparse addition o’ chopped bell peppers. There were not that many peppers in me servin’ o’ Golden Treasure Shrimp, and they be tiny pieces t’ begin with, so they hardly added t’ th’ overall presentation. But if you enjoy flecks o’ color in your food, these peppers accomplish that job. Compared t’ th’ Honey Walnut Shrimp, th’ Golden Treasure Shrimp be a nice kick in th’ britches, says I. Yeeeaaaarrr!

(Nutrition Facts – 5 ounces – 390 calories, 170 calories from fat, 19 grams of fat, 3 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 115 milligrams of cholesterol, 500 milligrams of sodium, 39 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of fiber, 15 grams of sugar, 16 grams of protein.)

Item: Panda Express Golden Treasure Shrimp
Price: Free sample during promotion (normally $6.57 incl. tax for a Panda Bowl)
Size: 5 ounces
Purchased at: Panda Express
Rating: 8 out of 10
Pros: Pandas in Pirate costumes. Shrimp is tender and tasty. Hidden hauls of loot. Spicy sauce is a tasty surprise and isn’t overpowering. Tempura-style anything.
Cons: Pirate Exhaustion. Bell peppers are rather sparse. Captain Jack Sparrow. Sauce isn’t all that citrus-y. Tempura coating is heavy and a little oily. Pirate-speak.

3 thoughts on “REVIEW: Panda Express Golden Treasure Shrimp

  1. I used to know a guy who always spoke (typed) some mix-up of pirate talk and British English slang (he was American). I had to leave every time he showed up before I killed him with my mind through the Internet. I did not want to be charged with CYBER MURDER.

  2. Appearance is eminently edible but the lack of a local outlet prevents me from hustling out the shanty door and embarking on a trek to taste the written-about concoction.

    Sadly, every local Chinese-type food joint I have eaten at has been sub-par; even putrid at times.

    Wander across the hills and through a few hollers until the Ozark Plateau has been attained; the home turf of the Beverley Hillbilly clan who attained the epitome of their breed by becoming the possessors of a genuine concrete pond, and note Granny’s (in)famous ‘possum stew and you, dear reader, may perchance understand the culinary impediments confronting a shanty-bound calorie consumer seeking imbibement enlightenment.

    The burgh I am ensconced within proudly proclaims itself as the “home of cashew chicken.”

    Whoopie.

    Admittedly I have not eaten at EVERY one of the multitude of Chinese-type-food restaurants, buffets, dives, holes-in-the-wall, in-grocery-store outlet, etc. but a broad sampling of a decent number of the outlets leaves me saddened; missing of the far superior fare found out Californy way.

    Sniff.

    Sigh………….

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