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“Those were the days . . .”
Review of O'mei Restaurant - CLOSED

O'mei Restaurant
Price range: $0 - $20
Cuisines: Chinese
Dining options: Reservations
Restaurant details
Dining options: Reservations
Reviewed September 27, 2010

I agree with all the other posters who miss the old O'mei. It really has gone downhill the last few years. Actually there have been several step-changes for the worse over the last decade or so. When I first started going there 15 years ago the dishes were unique and bold, every thing you tried had its own personality. The sichuan sliced beef appetizer had all sorts of peppercorns and other spices that put your mouth through a journey. The red oil dumplings were sweet savory and delicious. Chili fried rice with tiny bay shrimp and tiny sliced red chilies was another favorite. Rosemary chicken and black pepper beef also. Those were the glory days. The first step change was when they dicontinued the sichuan sliced beef. I think the chef left and took the recipe with him or her. Still there were enough other good things on the menu to keep us coming back. Then some of the small appetizer begatable dishes started becoming more average. Then it was inconsistent, some days were good, others not so much. Finally, about 2 years ago, they got an wentirely new kitchen staff that clearly had no clue how the old staff made the dishes. Items still had the same name (spicy carrot appetizer) , but were completely different. Then there's the mean lady everyone here's talking about, that seems to manage the place now. I guess all good things must come to an end.
Now I go to Shun Feng on River Street in Santa Cruz. Nice lady there, decent prices for SC in this day& age, and a few authentic chinese dishes. Salt and Pepper spareribs are great and they have a decent dim sum menu.

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2  Thank hungryJoel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviews (66)
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37 - 41 of 66 reviews

Reviewed July 24, 2010

The chef must have spilled the salt and dropped a huge number of chili bombs in the dishes. We tried three and left unsatisfied.

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1  Thank Veetsala
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed April 18, 2010

This used to be a great restaurant.. The best Chinese in Santa Cruz, ..not so any longer. Under new management , things went downhill.
My last two visits to O'mei we noticed:

1) The place was complete empty on a Saturday night.

2) Only 2 waitress for the whole restaurant, including handling the cash register.

3) Their portion is getting smaller and the price is slightly higher.

4) Our waitress did not seem to know what was what.

5) We waited for 40 minutes to get our food.

6) Cold service - no smiles at all, thank you, or anything.

7) The quality of food has completely changed.

Bye, old O'mei ...we loved you.

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4  Thank miss-spider
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 14, 2009

My husband and I have been patrons for over 10 years and have unfortunately seen a very steady decline in the quality of food and the service the staff provides. We first avoided dinning in after a terrible experience with very lame service and unreasonable long wait. Yet we kept retuning for their good food - only to find they are not even consistent with their recipes anymore...all of a sudden we had to order Coconut Curry Chicken without garlic (it never used to have garlic in it) and Shacha Shrimp without peanuts or this salted preserved vegetable, again, these were surprise ingredients, god forbids if one of us is allergic to peanuts. Tonight, we were told our food to-go would be ready in 25 minutes, we gave them half and hour and waited 50 more minutes for our food. What made this experience so horrible that we would never return is that once we got home, we found the food barely warm. We live LESS than a 5-minute drive away! THUMBS DOWN!

3  Thank OMGWTF
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 13, 2009

Poor service without a smile and service charge to boot. Panda offers much more. Food had ok flavors though.

3  Thank LUVchinfood
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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