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Feb 1, 2002 12:53 PM

"Chinatown Cheap Eats" update?

  • k


I found this awesome "Chinatown cheap eats" post from Melanie Wong in the archives and was wondering if anybody has any more recent info (ideally no more than 4-6 months) on any of these places.

have you been there lately? talked to someone who has? is the food still good? you haven't been there recently but the place has a reputation as being absolutely unwavering it its quality? the prices have now doubled and they grind fresh pepper over your food? that sort of thing.

I know I could do a search on each place and compile the info that way, but it's just so convenient to have one big post that you can keep as a reference...

tell you what--if you will be so kind as to reply to this post with updates to establishments in the post below, or your own spectacular finds, I will put together a compilation of your responses (convenient for printing out, bookmarking, etc. :) ).

thanks, and thanks especially to Melanie for the great initial post!


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  1. Hon's Wun tun:
    still and always and forever will be great. ate there for lunch yesterday and it was as perfect as ever.

    eat there at least once a week, definetely good for a quick greasy fix of salty wonderful chinese food like you are used to getting on the east coast. Pan Fried Noodles till you burst...good duck in soup, over rice, with pan fried noodle, you know the drill. Excessively large portions, there are always cops or fire men in there eating lunch.

    Gold mountain:
    ate there once for lunch and hated it. I wasn't sure if it had to do with the fact that we were a.)blatantly ignored, b.) sitting next to the kitchen doors where the waiters refused to stop and let us see what they had to offer, or c.)the food was just plain bad when we actually got to have some!

    Hing Lung:
    Have only been there for the half roast duck that they will chop up and let you take out with a quart of rice for under 5 dollars. I think it is the ultimate picnic food to take with you down to the parkin North Beach. I have never tried any of there other food.

    I have been to all of these places within the last month, except for Gold Mountian, which i just hated. If you want decent dim sum in china town that you sit down for, then i would recommended City View. But it is not necessarily "Cheap" but it is good. Otherwise there are tons of take out dim sum places that are ok. Mostly on Broadway and Stockton.

    And that is that....
    i could be way off base here, but then again, it is only my humble opinion I am spouting about :)

    1. Went to Hing Lung two weeks ago. I had their house special of fried dough wrapped in steamed noodles. We also ordered a seafood porridge and a wonton soup.

      I must say I'm not ususally a fan of the Chinese fried dough. I just can't afford the calories :P But I ordered it because it's a house special. I have to say it's pretty good. Overlooking the fried and therefore greasy factor, the fried dough was slightly chewy, giving a good bite, and it was off set by the steamed noodle which was slighly soft and gummy, a good combination I thought.

      The porridge was okay, needed more salt, but had plenty of seafood.

      The wonton soup was also okay, have had better, have had worse.

      1. I'd have to give a nod to New Asia. Been going there for years now and it's still great. The first time we went, we gorged ourselves and realized that we only had about $30 between the two of us. We discussed it and decided to put it on a credit card.

        The bill came - $22 including tip.

        1. m
          Melanie Wong

          (blush) You're welcome, km. A few updates to the places on the list -

          Junmae Guey was "closed for remodeling" as of Christmas and was still locked up when I was in Chinatown a couple weeks ago. I have not been able to find a roast duck that I like as well yet.

          Stopped by Mon Kiang for the oyster pancake last month. The oysters weren't the freshest, I will ask next time before ordering. But I still like this teochew style dish a lot with its green chili condiment.

          I pick up take-out noodles from Young's a couple times a month. Consistent as ever and still huge servings that are enough for me for dinner and leftovers for lunch.

          Tried to get to Washington St. this morning for jook but didn't make it. Haven't been for a few months. There have been some recent favorable posts from others.

          My Uncle Ben recommends Hong Kong Menu for dinner. He says its desserted at that time.

          My last visit to Hon's is reported in the link below. Do give the broth some breathing room before you doctor it with chili or soy sauce. It is subtle and complex and needs a chance to wash over you.

          A few more for consideration -

          DPD on Kearny and Jackson for Shanghai style noodles and dumplings.

          Garden Restaurant on Kearny - my parents go here for morning jook when they stay at the Holiday Inn next door.

          King Tin on Washington St. - not the best jook, I do like the roast suckling pig. Noodle plates look good, but I haven't tried them.

          Uncle's Cafe on Waverly Pl. @ Clay - old-time Chinese-American plates. Was there a couple months ago after an absence of at least 10 years thinking about beef short ribs or oxtail stew, but they were sold out by dinner time of the American dishes. Ended up with spicy beef noodle soup which wasn't very spicy but the beef brisket itself was very good even if the noodles were softer than I prefer.

          Capital on Clay between Stockton & Waverly Pl - good chicken jook for <$3 available in the morning only (ususally sells out by 9:30), also like the fried salt & pepper chicken wings and black bean clams, cash only. Recent chowdinner there had mixed results, pays to order carefully.


          3 Replies
          1. re: Melanie Wong

            I actually enjoy eating great tasting food at the lowest prices possible. I feel like I scored a victory of some kind. Just feels really good. If I go to a fancy expensive place and left feeling very satisfied, it just feels ordinary - nothing special because I expect it to be so.

            Those Vietnamese sandwiches are really good and for $1.50 will fill most people satisfied. I am not going to have it every single day but these places are just great and shows people that it does not take a lot of money to have great food. Now, atmosphere is another thing and will carry its own price tag.

            1. re: Melanie Wong

              What's everyone's opinion on Y.Ben House?

              1. re: edwardpark
                Melanie Wong

                Don't know it - what's your opinion, edward?

            2. Sam Lok's lunch prices are still great. I usually don't dig rice plates but they're good here.

              Washington St. Bakery, New Saigon, and Lucky Creation round out my current favorites. Tofu Land (Korean) is a nice addition.