Hidden Gems in Boulder: Tsing Tao
Boulder has a wide variety of hidden gems throughout the city sprinkled within corners which might be difficult to discover unless one has been living in Boulder for some time. As a Missouri native who only moved to Boulder a couple of years ago, it seems as though I am constantly discovering fabulous places in the city to enjoy. As a student, perhaps the most pressing issue on my mind is how to save money while still living my life as a Boulder citizen. I am always on the hunt for wonderful places in Boulder while staying within my budget. Another consideration I must make for myself when I go out to restaurants is my vegetarian diet. As a vegetarian, there is nothing more disappointing than going out to eat and then finding out that there is nothing on the menu for me. I believe that I may have found the best restaurant in Boulder for those on a student budget as well as vegetarians.
Tsing Tao is located in a cranny of Boulder disguised from much of the city. Because it is so hidden, it would be easy to drive right by it and never even know it was there. This is my only real concern with Tsing Tao–that people will pass it by because of its location. So, what makes Tsing Tao so excellent? As a vegetarian, perhaps it is their meatless options that so greatly entice me. The tofu that I have eaten at Tsing Tao has been the most delicious of my life. It is not only flavorful, but it mixes into the overall dish wonderfully. While eating there with my father, I had to work to convince him that the tofu was, in fact, bean-based and not meat. For a recommendation to any first-time customers out there, I would suggest the vegetarian Szechuan dish. It has the perfect mixture of spice and flavor which makes for a profoundly satisfying and tasty meal.
In terms of pricing, some might consider Tsing Tao slightly expensive. However, I do not find their pricing to be any higher than the other costly restaurants in Boulder. Tsing Tao bases their pricing off of the reality of Boulder expenses; they simply keep pace with the city. Having said that, their prices can undoubtedly be student-budget friendly. For someone who considers nearly everything in Boulder to be a rip-off, I can say that Tsing Tao is a fabulous deal for the money spent. Part of this also has to do with the sizing portions of the plates–they are massive. When I order from Tsing Tao once, I typically have enough food for three separate meals. Unlike many restaurants in Boulder which will only give the customer the bare minimum for what they paid for, Tsing Tao is generous and has no trouble giving out large helpings.
I cannot promise that everyone will love Tsing Tao as much as I do, but I hope some of the readers will. If one wishes to get out and try somewhere new on a Friday night, or perhaps go to dinner with friends, Tsing Tao is the perfect option. For the vegetarians, I would be hard-pressed to find a better restaurant opinion in Boulder. Tsing Tao is student-budget friendly with a massive menu and even larger portion sizes. I hope I have convinced even a small percentage of you to give the restaurant a try. In truth, I worry about small places like Tsing Tao which deal in fantastic quality but is concealed from the world. It would indeed be a shame if this hidden gem were to be buried beneath the treasure chest that is the city of Boulder, Colorado.