San Tung - Inner Sunset - Report
I ate at San Tung for the 2nd time tonight....we were a party of 6, arrived at 6:30 PM or so, got the table in the small, back private room. One of our party arrived late, so we ordered appetizers as we waited for her: vegetable potstickers and meat potstickers, both fried. Service was great up until this point, then started going downhill a bit.
The potstickers were good. The veggie were a bit boring in terms of filling, but the meat potstickers were great. It took quite a while to attract the attention of a waiter who would take our order....a waiter even came to ask us if we were ready...we said yes and then he left and another waiter came back about 7 minutes later.
We shared (mostly based on recs from chowhound posts):
Small hot and sour soup. I really like this soup, pretty simple, homemade tasting. A small bowl was perfect for 4 of us to each have a small cup.
Spinach with bean thread: Very nice dish, good spinach, lots of garlic. I saw this on another table on my first visit, glad I got to order it this time.
Noodles with black bean sauce: I wished this dish was a bit more flavorful....the sauce didn't taste like much at all. I enjoyed the homemade noodles, nice chewy texture. I liked the little chunks of beef and what I think was taro.
Dried Bean Curd cold appetizer: Generous serving of thinly sliced pieces of marinated bean curd, nice light soy based sauce.
Dry Fried Chicken Wings: Very good, sweet and sticky and delicious.
Braised Bean Curd: Nice pieces of tofu and some good veggies in a far too gloopy sauce. Definitely my least favorite, which is too bad, cause I think it would be easy for them to make this dish much better.
Service continued to be bad for the rest of the evening, though it didn't matter much. We asked for water, and a waiter specifically asked us how many waters we wanted....we told him 6. He noted this and it seemed like he was about to get the water, but he never came back. Oh well. As someone in a previous post mentioned, this is a place to come for eating (and not much else). Next time I'd probably just stick to dumplings, chicken and green vegetables with garlic.
P.S. Also tried the gelato at the place on 9th Av between Irving and Judah, I tasted a banana-rum-brownie gelato which was okay, but ordered chocolate and hazelnut. I tasted a friend's pumpkin which was very good. Pretty nice gelato but nothing out of this world. I forget what this place is called though.
Whenever I have to sit in that back room I have an inner groan, as they often just forget about you. Usually in the main room you can get service very quickly.
I was there last nite too. Believe it or not, it was fairly slow last nite. I think they tend to forget the people in the room in the back. Imagine if it had been busier last nite. I have been here quite a few times. Lately, they have been inconsistent with their hot and sour soup. Sometimes, too sour or not hot enough. Their signature dish Dried Fried Chicken wings are always good enough to bring me back.
I tried the black bean sauced dry noodles on recommendation of our waiter. It was bland & way too saucy. Almost made it into a soup. Their food is overall good but their popularity over the years have caused the service & dish consistency to suffer
yeah, other than the chicken this place seems to serve more misses than hits. i've written in some detail on the mediocre potstickers before, and don't feel the need to say more. the beef noodle soup has some good elements, but is NOT the real deal. i've had some good and ok dishes from the rest of the menu, but doughy standards like dumplings and noodles should be reliable pillars of strength at any place called 'san tung', assuming they refer to the region in northern china.
Oh my, that must be Holy Gelato! I'd heard it would be opening this summer and then promptly forgot about it until you mentioned it. The owner worked for Naia but felt that other folks were making better gelato and chose to buy rather than produce his own. Soy and coconut milk based products too.
Yes, that's it. The sorbets actually looked pretty good, I think I'd try them next time...fruit flavors might be the way to go here.