Reviews (8)

One of the better places in town
Cathay House has a decent menu.
I have however been highly disppointed in the Orange X(meat), it is overly cooked to the point that it is highly bitter.

On the other hand, they have very authentic chinese soups that are very light, exactly the way a real chinese soup is flavored and made. Their Sunday buffet is a great value and the only buffet in town that I will partake. It generally is all one note in color and flavor, but at least it is edible.

It is also a very cheap sunday meal, and it is ALWAYS crowded. Service can be slow however.

Just like old times.
Cathay House seems like it could be any Chinese restaurant from the late 80s/early 90s. The decor, menu, and staff all remind me of the Chinese restaurant from my childhood in Indiana (although it lacks the drop ceiling panels with stars painted on them). The food is generic, and covered in brown sauce, but it is still tasty. The dumplings are pretty delicious, and they taste house made, as opposed to frozen.

Won't be back
I've lived here several years and after hearing great things we decided to give Cathay House a try. So disappointing! The food wasn't good - either over cooked, under cooked or bland. Service was sloooowww.

One thing is sure at this will be consistent. I tend to like Cathay House, because you always know what you will surprises here! The food is generally fresh and has a good flavor. The buffet on Sundays is best, but is on the small side compared to the mega buffets of other 'chinese' places around Waco. But even with the small size, I prefer it to the others for taste and freshness.
I am a fan of their soups and lo mein. I agree with others about the seating but it is, what it is. A small place with good food. Price for the buffet is pretty darn good as well.

American Chinese is tough...
American Chinese food is a pretty tough genre of cuisine. One needs to have the perfect mix of what the masses want with touches here and there of quality and identity. If your sweet red sauce is from a huge jug of "Sweet Red Sauce," then who cares to go to you versus Panda Express or some other local take-out place. I must admit that Cathay House provides a mix of positives and negatives.

The menu takes me right back to childhoods of special nights out at "Wing Wah". It has all the old favorites: generic hot tea, fried wontons, sweet and sour plates of thick, gooey sauce and deep fried whatever, egg drop soup (actually pretty fresh and light tasting), even a Puu Puu Platter (which I have not had the option to try yet).

Of the things that we tried, the best of the bunch were the appetizers and soups (dumplings and egg drop). Both tasted like they were recently made and had distinctive flavor apart from generic "Oriental". I wish that I could say the same of the entrees. My pork dish was not spicy in the least, and the roast pork was old and overcooked. My wife's beef dish was a significant improvement, as the meat was tenderized and seasoned well. In both dishes, the veggies were fresh and properly cooked to meld flavors and soften just a bit. Sadly, they were coated with LOTS of sauce that did not show the distinctive palate that the soup and wontons showed were potentials within their kitchen.

The ambiance is not much to talk about and can feel a bit awkward depending on the day and time that you arrive. If the dining room is near-empty, it feels like you're out of place at times, even if it IS dinner time. I'm told that attending when the buffet is up and rushing provides more variety and quality than dining as "normal". I have to say that we'll give it another shot.

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