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Terrific Chinese? Help.

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Hi everyone---I need help. I'm looking for the best Chinese in town--eastside or seattle. I've heard Imperial Garden in Kent is worth the trek---please chime in. Love to have some options in the I-D and some outside. Like, for instance, is Black Pearl bad? Is Judy Fu's any good. Give me your top 3 at least. thanks

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  1. Two consistently great places in the ID are the Shanghai Garden and the Sea Garden. Be sure to order the Shanghai style chow mein which has thick noodles to sop up the juices and the shrimp with pea vine which is a nice contrast. Everything at the Sea Garden is yummy.

    2 Replies
    1. re: Garden Lady

      The Imperial Garden in Kent (in the Great Wall Shopping Mall) is absolutely worth the drive to Kent. Try the spicy eggplant (YUM!). If you order $20 worth of entrees, you can get a peking duck for about $10 (I am not making this up). It's crispy and delicious, just like it should be.
      I think dim sum is the best time to go...they serve it daily (10-2 I think). Do try the steamed pork bun ... the best I've had. And right now they have the cutest little lobster dumplings shaped like little chickens (an ode to Easter). Too cute!
      And after you eat at the Imperial Garden, you can wander around the mall. Check out the 99 Ranch Market. I love the pho restaurant..it's a little cafeteria like, but the soup is great. Happy eating in Kent :) I have many other suggestions for Auburn/Kent/Renton, let me know if you need any.

      1. re: Garden Lady
        Jonathan Veenker

        I had absolutely the worst meal of my life at shanghai garden, I just don't understand why so many people like it. The fried squid was like eating shoe leather, I also had the braised beef soup with hand-shaven noodles, consisted of nasty, nasty bits of scrap meat that had been boiled and thrown into some fake beef broth. The noodles were OK, not enough to save it. Service was utterly incompetent.

      2. Often overlooked, but good...Honey Court in the ID.
        Crispy shrimp with Honey Walnut rocks, AND if you are fortunate enough to get Cindy the waitress (she is the youngish looking one) she is by far the friendliest chinese waitress in seattle. Ask for her.

        Good Luck

        1 Reply
        1. re: Jason Cheung

          Oh, and I forgot...Black Pearl is horrible and Judy Fu's doesn't completely live up to the hype, but its ok...The green beans are delish...

        2. Mandarin Chef in the U-district of Seattle (on University just north of 50th) is the best Chinese food we've found north of the SF Bay Area. Delicate & well-tuned sauces, immaculate & simple setting, and bargain prices. My family goes on a regular basis - we often ask for Kung Pao chicken, and General Tso's chicken, both excellent (we like them 5-star hot). Fresh noodles are great, too, as are the glazed chicken wing appetizers. Don't know about seafood - my family's not big on seafood. Chef here used to work with the people at Black Pearl & has branched out on his own, is much better, friendlier, humbler, way less pretentious. His wife serves, they work hard to please you. Lunch prices can't be beat.

          1 Reply
          1. re: Julie

            I agree - the Kung Pao chicken at Mandarin Chef is the best I've had after 10 years in Seattle.

          2. Go to Wagimyas in seattle they got it all theres like 5 resturants in the food court and if you dont like what they have across the street is 2 more places to eat.Chinatown a great place to visit too.Good bakerys for desert too

            1. Sonja, I've hit a respectable number of Chinese Restaurants from Judy Fu's (North) throught the International District and as far South as Bonney Lake. My consesus: No one Chinese restaurant is exceptional across the board. Each is good at some specific items. Judy Fu's dumplings are incredible; Hing Loon's Salt & Pepper Ribs are worth a drive from anywhere. (ID District) Tai Tung's duck soup is great; Imperial Garden's seafood (off the menu, not off the carts) is very good. I believe Seven Stars runs the highest average overall because of their hand cut noodle dishes and crab.

              1. Go to Kau Kau in the ID. The roasted pork there is the best around. Don't really want to nay say the General Tso's or the Honey Walnut prawns, but sometimes when you've got the cravings for something simple, I always head down there to order up the Roasted Pork, Salty Fish Fried Rice, and some Chow Fun or something simple. If you've never had chinese style roasted pork, you need to go educate yourself and you can thank me later!

                1. Eastside, we are fans of Cafe Ori for HK Cafe style and Sea Garden for Dim Sum. Yea's Wok has also been a good place for some great dinners. Try the seabass and the orange peel beef.

                  Westside, Hing Loon is our favorite HK Style Cafe down there. Salt and Pepper chicken wings are scrumptious!

                  1. I'm a recent convert to dim sum at Noble Court in Bellevue. Was there last sunday and I think everything but the cheung fun was as good as my last visit to the Pink Pearl in Vancouver, making it superlative by Seattle standards. If only they got the cheung fun right... it's my wife's favorite, and Jade Garden in the ID does that dish better. But otherwise, superlative. Probably my favorite dim sum in the area.

                    Big fan of the Szechuan Chef in Bellevue as well. Everything I've had there has been excellent. Huge fan of the hot pot, salt + pepper crab, and scallion pancakes.

                    1. My flavorite Chinese is Sichuan cuisine. I have been eating weekly at Chendu Restaurant (Sichuan buffet) for many years (Bellevue, Sears area.) Despite the "steamtable effect" every visit there rocks. For comfort food, there is chow mein, fried rice, shrimp chips, pork spare ribs, hot and sour soup, etc, etc, plus a modest salad bar. Skip all that for a food adventure which takes multiple visits to comprehend. From the exotic and spicy 14-item cold buffet table (not including salad bar) make a mixed-appetizer plate. Then there are 4-5 hot soups and 3-4 types of dumplings. Finally, choose from their other 20+ hot dishes. Don't miss the dry-cooked chicken, the eggplant sichuan, the spicy tofu, or the spicy steamed bean sprouts. For the more adventurous, the Sichuan boiled beef has a spicy ground pepper (hua jiao) with an indescribable kick.

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: essman

                        Correction (misspelling): Chengdu, (425) 451-8389.

                      2. Szechuan Chef is the best Szechuan in the Seattle area, IMO.

                        1. A new restaurant has just opened in Chinatown called 'Golden City Seafood' that has really good Chinese... the address is 520 S. Jackson. They serv Salt & Pepper Prawns... yum!!

                          1. Chiang's Gourmet on Lake City has pretty stellar food. Our current fave in Seattle hands down. Rivals some of our faves from southern cal. They also serve Taiwanese Breakfast items on weekends.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: 3little bears

                              I have heard that Chiang's Gourmet serves Chinese breakfast. Any knowledge of that? When I tried to find the place on Lake City, I couldn't find it. Didn't they open up another place in Kirkland, or nearby?

                              1. re: Jane917

                                The Lake City location is right off I-5 on the LEFT-hand side if you take the Lake City exit from northbound I-5.

                                The other branch is in Renton. I cannot remember the exact location, but it is several miles east of the Ikea area.

                            2. On the recommendation of another 'hound on this board, I tried 663 Bistro at 663 S. Weller. Newly opened, this restaurant features barbecue, hot pots, and noodle and rice dishes. Sadly, I was unable to try the roasted duck because it sold out, however the soy sauce chicken and roasted pork were excellent, as were the string bean dry cooked with pork and pickled vegetable, shrimp and pork dumpling on egg noodle, and beef with rice noodle and egg swirl. This is definitely simple fare, but I'm prepared to say the barbecue *may* be equal to Kau Kau. (I definitely need a second visit to try the duck.)

                              1. 7 stars pepper. outstanding. dandan noodles, green beans, cumin lamb, eggplant, any chicken dish. it's all good!

                                1. Wah Kue in Burien,wa is great they have been there 50 years.

                                  1. Seven Stars Pepper is great.

                                    If you're in the mood for dumplings, the Szechuan Noodle Bowl has fantastic dumplings and is a terrific deal.

                                    Details on the restaurant are at: http://www.seattlechinatown.org/commu...

                                    1. I'm sending out a question to the Pacific Northwesterners from New York City. We're planning a 50th wedding anniversary for my parents who live in Bellevue and we'd like to plan a Chinese banquet for September. Normally, my Dad would be the go-to guy for this question because the man knows his Chinese food. But this is a surprise and I haven't lived there in a while so I'm in the dark.

                                      I believe this is the knowledgeable and passionate group to ask. If you were planning a special occasion Chinese banquet with good food AND a nice ambience (not often an easy combination to find) what restaurant would you recommend? Many, many thanks!

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: amyleechen

                                        Depends on how big the banquet's gonna be. But Sea Garden and Top Gun are good choices. There's also Noble Court and Jeems too.

                                        1. re: amyleechen

                                          i have been fortunate enough to have been a guest at several
                                          banquets-type meals at yea's wok on coal creek parkway and would
                                          be thrilled if invited again. peter (the owner) is most sensitive
                                          to the needs of vegans and other anomalous diners and i have
                                          never had a single bite of his food that was less than stellar.
                                          the atmosphere is a clean and well-kept storefront (which has
                                          expanded several times) which seems to be the ambiance of most
                                          places i like.

                                        2. In Bellevue I'd go with Sea Garden. It's pleasant bright place with great seafood and I often see large parties in there. Top Gun also has a large banquet room - I've only been there for dim sum which is very good. If you are willing to go downtown, check out O'Asian. It's brand new, hip and big. It got a nice review this week in the Seattle Times.

                                          1. Thanks so much for the suggestions! They are all contenders. I did read the "Seattle Times" review of O'Asian and paid a visit to the restaurant's website. I'd be interested in the Chow Hounds responses to this restaurant. Seems too swanky to be true! Anyone been there yet? Do tell!

                                            3 Replies
                                            1. re: amyleechen

                                              Visited O'Asian once. comfortable upscale settings as described, not as noisy and chaotic as your typical dimsum palace. dimsum we had was ok, about on a par with other Seattle places, a few items that we did not get to try looked tantalizing. would probably go back to check those out, and the dinner menu. by the way, the "little dragon buns" (xiao long bao) were soupless, alas.

                                              1. re: amyleechen

                                                We went for a prix fixe dinner at O'Asian. Several options per course (5 in all), so we shared: hot/sour soup (more thai than chinese but rich with seafood); tender calamari; succulent roast lamb; addictive honey walnut prawns. We could barely move and then they brought dessert (fruit, tart). $30-40 per person.

                                                Flavors were more rich than delicate or complex, but I'd happily eat there again.

                                                1. re: tbilisi

                                                  Sounds awsome,now all I need is money.lol Guess im stuck with the King buffet hah

                                              2. Thank you for the feedback barleywino! Soupless xiao long bao? That's the best part! Oh, now I have a craving...

                                                1. for dim sum - i love house of hong in the ID...but my favorite chinese place in seattle is uptown china in queen anne. about a block from the key arena, they have great food in a refreshingly bright and clean establishment...their lunch specials are great too and though a bit greasy, i LOVE their shrimp toast. yum.

                                                  1. Judy Fu is definitely not all its hyped up to be. I found it to be super Americanized -- and the dumplings and homemade noodles they're known for were both gummy and sticky and disappointing.

                                                    1 Reply
                                                    1. re: burritobelle

                                                      I eat at both Judy Fu's and Shanghai Garden regularly. I find their hand shaved noodles to be nearly identical. (Not the barley noodles - the regular noodles).