Neopian Noms: Shenkuu
***Please note all prices come from the Exotic Foods store itself, NOT the shop wizard!
If you're like me (which, if you are, that's sad), then you must absolutely LOVE to eat out! No cooking, not having to ask all your Neopets what they are in the mood to eat, no sweating because you set the oven on fi – I mean, no sweating. And what's better than eating out when you have tons of options over three different menus being prepared right in front of your eyes by a quick little Nimmo chef? Nothing – which is why dining in Shenkuu is the best choice to take your Neopets for some exotic cuisine! And of course, seeing as the Neopoint doesn't go as far as it used to, saving some cash while dining out with your neo-family is a smart thing to do nowadays. I brought my notebook and pen with me as I went to Shenkuu's Exotic Foods restaurant and jotted down my entire delicious and relatively low-cost adventure of the tastebuds. Be warned, by the end of this article, you may have already booked tickets for you and your Neopets to head on over to Shenkuu to sample the mouth-watering delicacies!
MY DELICOUS, WALLET-FRIENDLY SHENKUUVIAN MEAL (served in six courses)
#1: Plain ol Rice Bowl
Cost: 700-800 NP
Right away as I headed into Exotic Foods, I was seated by the window (it was a lovely view, as Shenkuu is kind of up super high) on a soft, scarlet cushion by a low table. An angry-looking, small Kyrii waitress brought me a bowl of rice – and I must say I was disappointed with this beginning course until I sampled it. It was called "plain", but it was as though my palette was becoming cleansed for the upcoming meal – this small but tasty bowl of plain rice prepared my tongue for the foreign spices and scents coming my way! And at a price of averaging 750 NP, I was quite happy with it. I would have asked for another bowl had that sketchy Kyrii not already taken it away as soon as I finished.
#2: Harris Vegan Platter
Cost: 200-400 NP
As I finished my rice bowl, the kimono-clad waitress brought out my appetizer: the Harris Vegan Platter! The veggies (cauliflower, lettuce, broccoli, and a side of soy sauce) were light and quite airy, and just enough to leave me wondering at how the chefs could possibly grow such delicious and fresh vegetables in a rocky mountain in the sky. (The question still keeps me up at night.) As I realized I was going to pay around 415 NP, I was even more entranced with this delicious platter. Healthy, tasty, and economical? I must say, getting strange looks from the waitress was worth it – I literally licked the platter clean!
#3: Fried Calamari Salad
Cost: 900-1000 NP
I might be one of Neopia's biggest calamari fans – so when the waitress brought out my main course, I flipped out a bit. After persuading the waitress to not call the paramedics, I dug into this salad and I was blown away! The light breaded layer was crisp, and not soggy at all, and just underneath that was the most tender, juicy, succulent calamari I've ever tasted! And for the price of 950 NP, this main course deserves a round of applause. *claps* But, um, ahem, anyway, I was completely thrilled with this savory dish. Should you ever be in Shenkuu, make sure you sample their calamari!
#4: Bamboo Tea
Cost: 2000 NP
No meal is complete without something to sip, so here it is - tada! And, okay, when I saw my bill, I was mildly surprised at the price of this drink. But how could I complain?! The Bamboo Tea was like an explosion of flavor in my mouth – but the explosion was that of a delightful sparkler. The Bamboo Tea was a delicate, smooth flavor not unlike green tea. And it made my tummy feel quite better after gorging myself on all this other delectable food! I thought it totally worth the slight splurge. I wanted to take the entire stock of it home with me, but sadly the snarky waitress informed me (with a bit too much sass to go without complaint) I could only have one at a time. Guess it's super popular!
#5: Chokato Dumplings
Cost: 1400 NP
Ah, another slightly-too-expensive-to-be-economical dish. But wait! See, if you cut those huge delicious dumplings up in halves, you really have SIX! And then there's veggies below the dumplings and a fashionable matching set of chopsticks and a bowl... anyway!
What's better than a tender, steaming, mouth-watering dumpling? Why, only a tender, steaming, mouth-watering CHOKATO dumpling! Neopia's favorite flavor seemed to put a kick into the already tasty taste of a dumpling. The Chokato Dumpling dish also went surprisingly well with the few sips of Bamboo Tea I had left. It was so fabulous I had a huge, silly grin on my face by the time I was done with my meal. And as it turned out, you didn't get to keep the pretty bowl so the waitress snatched it up and ran away before I could even ask if I could keep it. Hmph.
#6: Almond Pudding
Cost: 1000 NP
We've reached the final course, and we're finally at the best economical food in Shenkuu: The Almond Pudding! Beauty, flavor, and a whole lot of class were crammed into this petite treat. When this dessert was brought out to me, the first thing I noticed was the lovely arrangement of it all. The fresh sprig of parsley was a nice touch, along with the ripe strawberry and blueberries and bananas along the side. Dipping in a small spoon, I discovered the absolute heaven of eating this treat: it's rich, but like all things Shenkuu, elegantly understated. I tried to personally give my compliments to the chef, but that waitress blocked my path to the kitchen. Anyway, at the price of 1000 neopoints, I was incredibly pleased with this dessert. Yum, yum!
Well, dear readers and Shenkuuvians alike, there we have it! A full six-course meal, straight from the best (albeit only) restaurant in Shenkuu. It can feed your entire Neo-family and keep them full for merely 6,600 neopoints! And, by the way, that's NOT including tips for certain Kyrii waitresses who are too temperamental for their own good. Anyway. Was this amazing feast too expensive for your current Chef Bonju-printed pocketbook, perhaps? Check out other foods in Shenkuu, you may just find the perfect piece of priceless perfection for your tastes. Until next time, keep munching!