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Jan 12, 2002 06:53 PM

Chinese New Year

  • l

Chinese New Year is approaching and I was reminded of the banquets my grandmother used to host to open the new year. The menus included all the foods whose names were homonyms for words related to fortune: e.g. round foods like scallops or abalone to symbolize money, oysters for goodness, seaweed for fortune, whole fish for abundance, etc. Any recommendation for a restaurant in SF that has good menus--excellent food with the appropriate symbolism-- for a new year banquet? Thanks, and an early GongXiFaCai/Gung Hay Faat Choy to all!

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  1. lise,

    we're off to san wong/wang tonight-again. the food just shines there. i have no idea if they're into the symbolism of the new year, but they're sure into the goodness. maybe you could call and arrange a banquet with all the appropriate dishes ahead of time. it's a delicious place to go.

    san wang/wong
    1682 post st

    1655 s. de anza blvd. at prospect

    happy new year to you no matter where you are!


    6 Replies
    1. re: Rochelle

      We went to Sam Wang the other night after seeing the posting here about the hand-pulled noodles. We were disappointed. There were only a few, uninteresting noodle dishes on the menu and they weren't very good. Is there a secret menu? They didn't say anything about hand-pulled noodles on the menu, but we did see an old article on the wall about them. Maybe they've changed ownership? Incidently, I think they're Korean owned -- the waitress was wearing an OB Lager apron and they served kimchee as an amuse-bouche. Service was poor. What am I missing?

      1. re: edwardpark

        I thought I was the only one! I always found the food there to be so-so, but everyone raves about it, so I figured it was just my own taste. I'm relieved to hear that someone feels the same way!

        1. re: HKL

          Remember, Shandong is on the ocean, stick to seafood. I love clams with black bean sauce and lots of garlic and order it everywhere. The version we had at San Wang is one of the best I've had.

        2. re: edwardpark

          I haven't been to the restaurant since the Chowhound dinner there. However, at that time, the menu did not indicate which dishes used handpulled noodles. You need to ask the server.

          The owners are Chinese from Korea. The best dishes there are the ones that draw from Shandong style (near Korea) and the unique type of Korean-influenced chinese food that has evolved.

          Again, as is the case in any Chinese restaurant with a massive menu, you need to know which dishes to order as there are many that are not going to be very special.

          1. re: Melanie Wong

            Melanie, thanks for the response. I'll have to give it another try. Anything else on the menu? This time I'll request the hand-pulled noodles.

            1. re: edwardpark

              Here's a link to the report from our Chowhound dinner there. We ordered off the family dinner menu, then added a few dishes. It was a huge quantity and not very expensive that way.

              Other times that I've been there, I'll see a few tables of those who seem to be in the know enjoying a plate of noodles (presumably handpulled), kung pao king prawns (I gotta try this dish), some veggies, and rice. That's probably the most reliable formula for success.


      2. Well, it sounds like San Wong might be the place for some seafood but perhaps not the CNY dinner. But it seems like I may have started people thinking about CNY,now that I see the posting for the Chowhound New Year Celebration and celebration of Chowhound!

        1 Reply
        1. re: Lise

          Lise, R&G Lounge has printed up special new year's menus in the past but not this time. I sat down Thursday afternoon with the manager, Angel Liu, to plan our dinner menu within our stated budget. If one went all out, the price could be about 50% to 100% more.

          I have had a new year's dinner at Harbor Village which was very good, but that was several years ago. The one at Koi Palace about three years ago was a service disaster. Likewise, HK Flower Lounge in Millbrae was crowded and not that great on CNY eve.

          It can be difficult to get a reservation for the eve of CNY. You may already be out of luck for that date if you haven't alread reserved a table somewhere. Also, prices are inflated for that night.