Lotus Pond makes both vegetarian and meat-lovers’ tummies happy. I have visited this little gem on Johnson on many an occasion, and found that it rarely disappoints.
The decor at Lotus Pond is plain, and the setting is definitely not that of fine dining. Water is served in plastic cups, the lighting isn’t great… the setting is not unpleasant, it is just simple and plain. They have nice tinkling music playing, and I find that I usually feel quite serene after I leave the restaurant.
I swear, I am served by the same girl every time I visit Lotus Pond. She is a little shy, but attentive – and does a great job despite her English not being the greatest. I have had a little bit of difficulty getting recommendations/explanations of the menu from her, but other than that service has been spot on.
Of course, there is the lunch buffet. I will mention that briefly, only to say that it is delicious but A. be careful of how much you load on your plate and B. as with any buffet, it can be a little lukewarm at times. I do eat and enjoy the buffet, but the true quality of Lotus Pond food is found on their menu. Specifically, the back page which has very reasonably priced dinner combos. (Apologies for crappy yellow pictures).
We started with spring rolls (which are yumtastic), hot and sour soup for Matthew and Wonton for me. Both are decently good – though the wonton is fairly plain, and the hot and sour is a little crazy for my liking (though the more I eat it, the more I get used to the taste).
To the left is the lemon mock chicken combo, and to the right is the pineapple mock chicken balls. Matthew and I shared these, and thoroughly enjoyed both! These two items are apparently the most popular on the dinner combo menu. The veggies that are served with them are delicious, not overcooked, and pleasantly sauced without being heavy. I think one of my favourite things about Lotus Pond is that the food has the appeal of a greasy Chinese meal without the heavy, gross feeling you get afterwards.
The dinner combo is amazing value. Everything else on the menu is below regular Victoria pricing for a typical Asian dish (think 10-15$ at Lotus Pond where it might be 13-17$ elsewhere). Good value.
Eat at Lotus Pond. It is not fine dining, but it redeems itself in all other ways!