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Mr. Chow

I know this place gets a lot of hate from the board but I thought I'd post a topic about it since I haven't seen anything posted lately.
I've never eaten @ Mr Chow but I have a client taking me and a friend to dinner here and paying the tab.

If you didn't have to pay for your meal here, what would your thoughts on eating at Mr Chow be?

Any entrees you would recommend?
There is no menu listed online and of course they won't fax me one...

Any imput would be appreciated ;)

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  1. If I didn't have to pay, my thoughts would be that at least I wouldn't be out the $5.95 I would pay Panda Express for a comparable meal.
    It's adequate Chinese food, it won't kill you -- just order whatever you normally like at Chinese restaurants, and let us know after if they were remotely capable of executing it.

    1. Your client must have good taste or doesn't know any better.
      I'd love to try it but got a feeling I'd be disappointed unless someone else was paying and I didn't see the check.
      I don't think I've met anyone who's ever gone there.

      Nothing on his website even remotely talks about the food.


      3 Replies
      1. re: monku

        You're absolutely right! It's amazing how they entirely ignored the food issue in their web site. This considerably diminishes my chances of ever getting to know Mr.Chow...

        1. re: RicRios

          Getting to know Mr. Chow the Renaissance Man or Mr. Chow's food?

          1. re: monku

            Now that you mention, there is such a thing as Mr. Michael Chow.
            Very funny, in a pathetic kind of way.

      2. i've only ever eaten there when someone else was paying the tab . . . basically pf chang's + a scene at 4 times the price. that said, you don't have to go hungry - the mr. chow's noodles, scallion pancakes, lobster 2 ways, stir-fried broccoli and duck are all decent.

        1. Wow! I've heard nothing but bad things about this place. We actually had a very good experience for Lunch and had been hoping to go back soon. Although it may be expensive to order from the regular menu, they also have a lunch special for $30 or so per person which we though was worth every dollar. You can pick several choices from the menu and it includes fride rice and vegetables. We ordered the crispy duck, the special noodles and a sea bass dish with a garlic, wine and black mushroom sauce. The vegetables were delicious, i've only had them like that in SF. we loved the duck and the sea bass. The noodles were certainly creative, like a liver based bolognese. Overall we liked the place, maybe we were lucky, but I don't care if is "authentic" or not. If I want authentic i'll drive to MP or ALhambra, but this place in the middle of the westside is delicious regardless of price.

          1 Reply
          1. re: nexxsound

            My problem is that I can go to any Chinese place and get similar food for 20% of the price and 3% of the attitude. I can go to P.F. Chang's and get a "nicer" dining atmosphere and still pay way less.

          2. Mr. Chow has it's good and bad points. Some things on the menu can be good, and they do make noodles by hand nightly (in a Vegas sort of show) They have an old world service attitude and meals end with thanks and a handshake generally. Chris Denton runs the show and is excellent at what he does, ask for him and you will usually be treated well.
            In addition, Mr. Chow himself is an art collector and friend to many artists. The portraits that hang in the front of the restaurant are original Warhols. And of course, celebrities love it. You are guaranteed to see celebrities every time you go. Ask the waiters or captains and they will be glad to tell you who is there.
            It can be a great experience there, especially for out of town guests.

            1. Is it owned by the same people who run the steamtable fast food chain up in NorCal? Just curious.

              - Chubbypanda


              3 Replies
                1. re: monku

                  Mr. Chow's Chinese Fast Food.

                  Good lord. After seven years away, I can still remember the jingle.

                  - Chubbypanda


                  1. re: Chubbypanda

                    Funny, didn't even know he had a fast food chain. Sounds like the same dismal excuse for Chinese fast food PF Changs is pushing....Pei Wei.

              1. If it's your first time and someone else is paying, just let the waiter/kitchen serve you as they please, sort of a pseudo-omakase. It's what the restaurant recommends anyway.

                That being said, this place and Crustacean run neck-and-neck for worst restaurants this side of the Orion Belt ...

                3 Replies
                1. re: ipsedixit

                  I've never been to either, but I remember hearing lots of press about both restaurants several years back. Were they always this bad and overrated, or did they go downhill since opening?

                  1. re: amandine

                    Both of these places are your typical Hollywood establishments -- it's where industry players (studio and talent) go to hob-nob.

                    I'd imagine it's what Musso&Frank was probably thought of and held out to be back in its heyday.

                    As much as I bash the food/service at Mr. Chow and Crustacean, both serve their (albeit limited) niche in the culinary ecosystem ...

                    Oh, and if you've never been, you're not missing much. BUT, if you ever get to go on SOMEONE else's dime, do indeed partake ... you'll have stories to tell for months thereafter.

                    1. re: ipsedixit

                      haha give me 10 years and i'll get back to you

                2. mr chow is not really about the food; it is all about the ambiance, attitude. there are a few tasty and unusual dishes on the menu.

                  if you're not into being part of the scene then definitely there are millions of other places to visit instead

                  1. careful though - some of the dishes which people love and go there for are hideous (I remember some pink chicken satay like sticks) and greasy "fried seaweed"

                    1. i disagree with the above though-- i've had decent food there and enjoyed myself. i'd rather go there than Hungry Cat or Beacon, which other hounds tout.

                      one time i didn't enjoy it so much. i don't usually like scenes but i do have fun at mr chow, occasionally, especially on another's tab

                      1. i don't think Mr. Chow's is bad. I had delicious baked cod there...noodles...and other random dishes that the waiter brought out. I wasn't paying, but I wasn't complaining either.

                        P.F. Chang's makes me want to barf just thinking about it. Talk about Americanized oversauced, over salted, soy-sauced food!

                        1. The food is terrible, to be frank. The waiters will immediately push the chef's menu, which usually consists of several thoughtless and bland dishes. I would recommend you order your own, not that it will be that much better. They use the same sauce on every other dish, they are careless in their prep (I've practically lost a tooth on two occasions where there were crab shells in my crab dish) and the service is mediocre at best. Not to mention the tacky, '80s decor...

                          My advice? Go someplace else.

                          Clare K.