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Nov 17, 2004 09:02 PM

Gorumet Carousel on Pine and Franklin

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Tuesday night I wanted to take my cousin and her grandchildren out to dinner. I let my cousin chose the place and I had some input in the meal. I wanted to revisit this nice Chinese outside of Chinatown. Only one drawback is parking is hard until 7:00 PM.

She orderrf one the special dishes of Gourmet Carousel which is Sweet and Sour Mustard Green with fresh local squid. The mustard greens are house made and had wonderful favor and texture.

Mrs. Yimster ordered the salt and pepper crab and Chinese crispy chicken. The chicken was one of the better versions we have had recently. Fully cooked but not too dried. The also used a “Chinese” chicken instead of the Foster Farms type. This not the range free chicken which not as large and has less meat.

The crab has lovely coating but again I like more seasoning and stronger salt and pepper taste. But the first local crab of the season was very good.

I then asked the waiter if you can make a dish not no the menu. One of the little girls wanted steamed eggs with BBQ pork but her older sister said the eggs would be too well done. So I order a dish we have made at home. I asked the waiter to have the chef add fresh clams to the egg custard mixture prior to steaming. Even if they over cooked the eggs the natural juices of the clams would keep the dish from drying out. At home instead of adding water we normally add chicken stock for color and favor.

As part of the meal we got a free house soup. Fizzy melon slow cooked soup. Great to keep you warm on a cold night. Also cookies and fresh orange as dessert.

I can not tell you the cost of the meal because I got outsmarted my Cousin paid while I parked the car. Next time I will beat her to the punch. I am already working on it.

We have always had great meals at this place. The set dinners are really good and the price are very reasonable.

Gourmet Carousel
1559 Franklin St
San Francisco,

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  1. It's been years since I've been here, but thanks for the reminder. I remember being quite impressed back then at the quality of the basic Cantonese cooking.

    1. Hi Yimster!

      I can't believe we're talking about the same restaurant. I literally live two blocks south of Gourmet Carousel and I've been there many times, as its the closest Chinese Restaurant to my place.

      Anways, I haven't been there in 1 year as I've totally dismissed it. Perhaps this is a case where I'm ordering the wrong thing from the right restaurant? From what I remember:

      Tse-Tse Chicken Claypot: OK flavor, Chinese sausage was tasty, but TOO MUCH cornstarch and the chicken itself had too much skin and not enough meat

      Fo-Nam-Oyster Claypot: Instead of using pig belly, they used Char-siu, and I was disappointed with that. The oysters itself were big and fresh but again, way way too much cornstarch.

      Various fried rices, including salted fish and chicken fried rice: All good flavor, but only because they used WAY too much oil. A sign of a deft hand is the wok-breath flavor without the use of too much oil .... there was wok-breath, but there was also too much oil.

      Various noodles in soup for lunch : this is not wonton noodle.... its flour based noodle. Obviously fake crabmeat in Hung-To Yee Noodle also?

      The only thing I like there is chicken corn soup, but that is a simple staple..... tough to mess that up!

      To be completely fair, I have not had salt pepper crab there nor have I ever had mustard green with squid nor have i had crispy skin chicken there so it may be a simple case of I ordered poorly and you ordered wisely .... :-) I do not know.

      BTW, what is sweet and sour mustard green with squid? Is this Gai-Lan Hseen-Yo? Or is this Choi-Yuen Hseen-Yo? I'd go back and order that just to try it based on your experience....



      2 Replies
      1. re: Jason

        My friend de chow and I both live within walking distance too. Here's the thread for our lunch there.


        1. re: Jason

          Two block away, wish I could say there is someplace within two block of us. The closest is Ceasar Ceasat and I never go there. My younger son maybe, which make me think we must of found he under a rock.

          The Mustard Green in Cantonese is sour mustard greens, but this verison has a deep of flavor it not just sour.

          Gorumet Carousel is a basic old school Cantonese place which serves a lot of dishes Grandma would serve you on a cold winter's night. Also has some very good higher end Cantonese dishes. The menu has a lot of non Cantonese dishes which they msy not do as well.

          Give them another try.