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Berkeley Sun Hong Kong alternative?

PegS Aug 25, 2004 07:47 PM

Every week we have to make a quick trek to downtown Berkeley, and invariably we end up at Sun Hong Kong. It's partly because it's cheap, but also because they have a good selection for when I need some roast duck or a plate of ong choy or some catfish in clay pot, while my husband gets a fried rice or something of the sort. Is there an alternative to Sun Hong Kong within walking distance, where the food and roast meats are better?

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  1. r
    Robert Lauriston RE: PegS Aug 25, 2004 08:12 PM

    Taiwan? Great China? I'm not sure there's any Chinese food in downtown Berkeley that's better than OK.

    9 Replies
    1. re: Robert Lauriston
      Han Lukito RE: Robert Lauriston Aug 26, 2004 03:13 AM

      Certain dishes in Taiwan Restaurant are downright outstanding. Especially the weekend special menu Taiwanese (not the chinese american dishes!) items that is offered only during lunch is excellent.

      The other regular items are allright, nothing spectacular but just ok.

      I wonder why many Berkeley diners do not take advantage of this. I think it's probably because of the menu being somewhat obscure in view. It is in plain English so language is not a problem.

      1. re: Han Lukito
        Robert Lauriston RE: Han Lukito Aug 26, 2004 12:12 PM

        Tell us more about these special lunch items!

        1. re: Robert Lauriston
          Han Lukito RE: Robert Lauriston Aug 26, 2004 02:14 PM

          I can't find the link but I wrote about this more than 3 times I believe. They are also quite inexpensive I might add.

          Here is something you can start exploring and you can judge whether you like this style of cooking-these are all very authentic dishes from what I know:
          -South Taiwan style noodle soup
          -Sticky rice with pork in crockpot, forgot the exact name

          There are a few more items that I don't quite remember. You might want to jot them down for more inputs from me and other hounds who like Taiwanese specialties.

          Remember that they are only available at lunch on weekends. Call them to find out the exact day and times and ask for the Taiwanese breakfast specialties.

          And please report back !

        2. re: Han Lukito
          Kenji RE: Han Lukito Dec 31, 2007 12:46 PM

          I agree. The real Taiwanese dishes there are fantastic -- and so reasonably priced. People who complain about this restaurant order the wrong things (or else are put off by the service, which can be brusque, and sparse decor).

        3. re: Robert Lauriston
          PeterL RE: Robert Lauriston Jun 1, 2007 10:13 PM

          Great China is certainly better than OK. While it's not Cantonese, they do serve the best Peking duck in the bay area.

          1. re: PeterL
            Civil Bear RE: PeterL Dec 21, 2007 09:34 AM

            It's also not walking distance from downtown Berkeley.

            1. re: Civil Bear
              wally RE: Civil Bear Dec 21, 2007 11:56 AM

              It's not? I think of it as being in downtown Berkeley. It is north of Bancroft.

              1. re: wally
                Civil Bear RE: wally Dec 21, 2007 03:58 PM

                Is there another one other than the one on Solano?

                1. re: Civil Bear
                  Joel RE: Civil Bear Dec 21, 2007 04:23 PM

                  Perhaps you are confusing two places:

                  China Village
                  1335 Solano Ave, Albany, CA 94706

                  Great China Restaurant
                  2115 Kittredge St, Berkeley, CA 94704

        4. c
          CMM RE: PegS Aug 25, 2004 11:33 PM

          Great China is usually good, sometimes outstanding. Ask for the vegetable specials of the day. The light shrimp dumpling appetizers are very good; crab in season is superb.

          3 Replies
          1. re: CMM
            JoyceW RE: CMM Jun 1, 2007 05:48 PM

            Great China's "double skin" is as good as you will find in China. I consider it one of their signature dishes. In the Fall, lots of people go for char-wokked crab. The pea shoots with garlic is great. I also like the Beijing sauce noodles.

            The owner is a KBC (Korean born Chinese), and the dishes are, he says, cooked to Korean tastes. I am a Shanghainese, and I rate Great China as the best Berkeley has to offer.

            1. re: JoyceW
              alixschwartz RE: JoyceW Jun 1, 2007 09:17 PM

              Great China used to be my favorite Chinese place in Berkeley, but I've had too many bad meals there lately. The worst (which may have permanently turned me off the place) was a few weeks ago when I was tired and just wanted to get some take-out. After circling the block forever to find parking, I ordered their fish ravioli (usually quite good), one tofu dish and steamed rice. All of them were inedible--even the rice smelled of chemicals.

              I agree with you about the pea shoots, though--they are usually dependably tender and delicious. Still, I am in the market for a new favorite Chinese place in Berkeley.

              1. re: alixschwartz
                JoyceW RE: alixschwartz Dec 20, 2007 03:12 PM

                I've heard that the parking situation (that is, the lack of parking since the nearby lot disappeared) has really hurt business.

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