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Another Asian restaurant?

May 14, 2012
Another Asian restaurant in Longmeadow? How is this Asian restaurant any different than the others that already exist?
I was extremely disappointed with the announcement of Ichiban opening in the old Friendly's location in Longmeadow, which advertises itself as an "upscale Asian Restaurant."
Contrary to all the information in the [Reminder] article [on May 7], this is a Chinese restaurant as well as Japanese of which there are two already in Longmeadow. If you go to their website or location in South Hadley you will see clearly, "Chinese and Japanese Restaurant."
Also, as you dive deeper into the research of their menu you will find that in fact that the number one special dinner entree is General Tso's Chicken which was flaunted in the article as not being the case in addition to not serving fried food. Where in fact half of their menu is fried food ... and their "really good reputation" from the four- and five-star reviews in South Hadley is primarily the young college crowd in that area which just happens to be the smallest age group in Longmeadow according to recent census information.
I am disappointed by the fact that there is not a single fine dining establishment in Longmeadow. Being such an expensive town for Western Massachusetts, you would think a decent restaurant would open up here. With establishments such as The Federal and Latitude doing so well and offering unique cuisine in neighboring towns, it's sad that Bertucci's is about as fine as it gets right now in Longmeadow.
Out of the pool of restaurants who were trying to get into this location, I cannot believe this was the best option with Li's Brothers and Iron Chef down the street and the recent opening of Tao's not too far away that have nearly identical menus as Ichiban.
What was the criteria?
There is such a saturation of Chinese and Japanese restaurants now in this area and surrounding areas that it has to make up a majority of the restaurant population. In fact there is already an Ichiban in East Longmeadow which has another very similar menu, big surprise!
I was thrilled at the announcement of Max Burger coming into Longmeadow hoping it would spark an influx of decent dining options into Longmeadow and now with the incoming Ichiban, it looks like the surrounding towns still have the upper hand over Longmeadow when it comes to restaurants. I guess Longmeadow wants residents to go elsewhere to eat.
Andrew Anderlonis
Longmeadow

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