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It’s 6 o’clock on a weekday evening and Westborough’s after-work crowd is at Cheng Du’s bar. Two smartly dressed women, drinking vodka Mai Tais, remark to the bartender how much they like the new decor and the hot and sour soup. Kuo-Rung Tang, who owns the place with his wife, Sundi Fong, is happy that customers like the sleek new bar (named 157 Bin), the revamped main dining area and adjoining wing (called Akamon) featuring Japanese grill fare and sushi.
Before last year’s renovations, they considered doing a less ambitious update to this location, in operation since the 1980s and at its current address since 1992. But a mere coat of paint would only have signaled business as usual, or as Tang says, “new bowl, old soup.” The voluminous menu of American Chinese and Sichuan favorites — created by executive chef Paul Mustacchio — also reflects ambitious thinking.