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Authentic Chinese restaurant in Baltimore

  • w
  • W Seo Jul 11, 2003 11:36 AM

Any recommendations for an authentic Chinese restaurant in Baltimore?

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  1. I think others will echo this. . .but Baltimore is no place to look for even decent Chinese. It is a wasteland waiting for someone to come in and save us from the sweet sauced, food court inspired gristle that we are currently offered.

    1. NO

      1. Depends how you define Baltimore. For, at least to me, very authentic northern cuisine, head over the Szechaun Best on Liberty Road. It's about 10 minutes outside the Beltway. Golden Gate in Towson has Hong Kong style wonton; also their steamed fish is very good. Chinatown Cafe has decent dim sum. Finally, probably the "most authentic" restaurant in the City proper is Ding How--the food is pretty good and I particularly like their chow fun. But it's not like Toronto chinese.

        1. Your best option is to go down to Columbia, both Hunan Manor and China Chefs do a great job with authentic Chinese.

          1. Your best option is to go down to Columbia, both Hunan Manor and China Chefs do a great job with authentic Chinese.

            1. Your best option is to go down to Columbia, both Hunan Manor and China Chefs do a great job with authentic Chinese.

              3 Replies
              1. re: Jason

                I don't find China Chefs all that authentic.

                1. re: jeanki

                  Well, that was 4 years ago, prior to the opening of several more authentic restaurants in the area, such as Oriental Manor and Jesse Wong's Hong Kong. But at the time...not bad compared with everything else.

                  1. re: Jason1

                    Sorry I didn't notice the date!

              2. If you're looking for good Chinese (by which I mean chicken you can actually identify under the batter and fried rice that is light and fluffy rather than heavy and greasy), check out Jumbo Seafood on Sudbrook Lane in Pikesville.

                4 Replies
                1. re: Vicki

                  This is an old thread...but just for reference...go to Chinatown Cafe on Park Ave and ask for the Hong Kong menu. It is different from the normal American Chinese food menu.

                  1. re: thedanny

                    I concur. The only thing close to authentic in town.

                    1. re: ko1

                      Szechuan House in Lutherville is very good, they have things like "Hong Shau Dah Chang" (intestines), "Aromatic Snail" and "Beef Tendon with Yuba".

                      1. re: hon

                        I love the items on the 'countryside taste' part of their menu. They always have great Chinese veggies, just ask what's fresh.

                        I also think Oriental Manor in Ellicott City is good...but the 'best' in the City is definitely Chinatown Cafe...(although I think it's gone a bit downhill in the past year or so...)

                2. I agree with all of these posts. I grew up in Columbia and they do have the best in the area with Hunan Manor. I'm jewish and we used to go there evenry Christmas, if that tells you anything. If you aren't able to leave the downtown Baltimore area try Ding How in Fells Point. 631 S Broadway, Baltimore, 21231 - (410) 327-8888

                  5 Replies
                  1. re: jrl2929

                    I swear by Cafe Zen on Belvedere ave.

                    1. re: MegMD

                      Not commenting on quality, but I wouldn't necessarily pick the word "authentic" for Cafe Zen, unless perhaps out of a hat.

                    2. re: jrl2929

                      I've heard that Hunan Manor has gone downhill in recent years, but I wouldn't know personally (I've moved away). Even so, I don't think Hunan Manor is that good or authentic compared to authentic joints even in the DC area (which in turn aren't that impressive compared to the NYC/NJ area). I haven't been to Oriental Manor yet which has garnered some positive buzz on these boards for their dim sum. My favorite in Howard County is Hunan Legend in the Dorsey Hall Village Center. Their main menu is more Americanized, but you can ask for authentic stuff off the menu which is excellent.

                      1. re: jeanki

                        Can you suggest some good "off the menu" dishes to try at Hunan Legend? We order from them pretty frequently - their normal menu is better than any other Chinese place I've tried in Howard Co. Thanks!

                        1. re: little audrey

                          I like their sauteed snow pea leaves or Chinese greens, there's a pork and pickle soup that is really good 'ja choy soup' or something like that, there was once a sliced pig knuckle/jellyfish combo, and sea cucumbers in brown sauce. I totally agree with you that their regular menu stuff is also the best too, I like their ma po tofu and chicken with string beans and Peking duck.

                    3. Hunan Rose in Odenton on Annapolis Rd. is pretty good. Don't know how authentic it is, but the cooking is above average. Plus, they have a full bar.

                      3 Replies
                      1. re: flavrmeistr

                        The menu at Hunan L'Rose is pretty typical American Chinese food, but good quality and well made. Their Hunan Wontons are very good, however.

                        1. re: Jason1

                          The daily specials are usually the way to go. My favorite is a stir-fry of fresh snowpeas, asparagus and green beans with beef and jumbo shrimp in a smoky Hunan chili sauce (which I order extra-hot). Tasty and a good deal w/soup and non-greasy fried rice for about $9.00. I tried the General Tso's once and was under-whelmed.

                          1. re: flavrmeistr

                            My co-workers order from Hunan Manor at least once a week. I've ordered with them several different times and each time I was VERY disapointed. One time I got the sweet and sour chicken which I felt like they made wrong. Americanized sweet and sour chicken is usuall nugget like and I like that. They bread a whole chicken breast and then cut it into strips?! WTH?! The next time I tried the beef and broccoli which I didn't like because they didn't use the cut of meat that I'm used to having. Their General Tso's is okay but really nothing to write home about. I heard rave reviews about their Paradise Chicken and tried that but was not very impressed. I just don't get what everyone sees in that place!

                      2. Can anyone provide an update on authentic Chinese restaurants in and around Baltimore? Please specify the cuisine and location of each restaurant. Thanks!

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: Worldwide Diner

                          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/520156
                          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/668736

                          1. re: Worldwide Diner

                            gregb is dead on with the blogs he gave you
                            #1 Grace Garden, is fantastic in a crummy but good setting
                            #2 Hunan Taste is also excellent, not quite as fantastic as GG but the ambience is better
                            if you go to GG, first read the 242 replies to the original post so you can know how to order then go to the website at Gracegardenchinese.com and pull up the menus available. the underlined menu items are links to pictures that accurately portray the dishes which are unique and fantastic. some (tea smoked duck, special purse) requires 72 hour notice.

                            1. re: dining with doc

                              I've had fabulous meals at both Hunan Taste and Grace Garden, and I think that if you order their best dishes, they're both equivalently fantastic.

                              (HT has a much broader menu, so it's somewhat easier to go wrong. GG has a much smaller menu cooked by a single chef-owner, so it's easier to run out of new dishes so sample, but correspondingly harder to go wrong. Given all of that, I can eat at GG a couple of times a week and HT at least five times a week without boredom setting in.)

                              I think it's way past time I drive down again from Boston. These two places are *that* good.