Mission/ not very easy
In the late afternoon, Oct.21, Sunday, four sailboats will make their way into a yachtclub on the tip of Alameda Island. The twenty plus souls aboard, hungry and tired, after sailing the bay all day, will anticipate a complete Chinese Banquet served to them. I obviously have a few questions. Like who thought this one up? I would appreciate help from the hounds. A great banquet restaurant? Do they deliver? Or do we pickup? We will be 5 miles from chinatown Oakland. We will have the table service. We have budgeted 10 or 15 dollars per person. That,s as far as I've come, except to fantasize crispy fish, ducks, shrimp, great sauces and the unaware, asking,watzat?
I think Jennifer is on the right track...Alameda has some pretty good chinese restaurants. Ruth has been mentioning East Ocean. I've had dim sum there a few years ago and it was pretty good. I'm more familiar with another family style place called Kapok Seafood Restaurant (1511 Webster St - 510.865-5405) Good value and pretty good food - and your budget is definitely doable here. Their family/chinese menus are translated into English - they are the best values. If you are going to have your food taken back to the yacht club, you might think a bit about what items will hold up best to travel. Their menu mentions that they do catering also-maybe they'll deliver.
I attended a Chinese banquet at Happy Families on the corner of Harrison and 10th in Oakland's Chinatown. It doesn't look like much from the outside but the banquet food was some of the best I've had recently. The stuffed chicken was really good, as were the giant steamed prawns which were taken from the live tank. They have a small banquet room below the street level entrance. Give it a shot.
Here I am (g).
I've become fond of East Ocean on Webster: they have a small banquet room (if that's what you want), and although I don't have the menu in front of me, I think they do cater.
They aren't cheap, though (although the portions are large), and I don't know if they will meet your budget.
What I can say is that the people who work there are some of the nicest, most helpful Chinese restaurant staff I've ever encountered.
Latest example: I called in a take-out order just a few minutes before closing Sunday and arrived as the owner was locking the front door. I was tired and dizzy with hunger and post-sugar-high-let-down after substituting an afternoon "chocolate party" for lunch.
The hostess checked my order and noticed that I hadn't ordered any rice. I usually put a pot of my own on while I'm doing the pick-up, but I told her I was so tired and hungry I had forgotten, and would she add it to my order. No problem, she said, "that's what we're here for."
At that moment, I felt truly fed and nurtured.