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Dec 12, 2006 04:32 PM

Goin' Solo: Chinese

i figure Christmas day is the best time to try one of the chinese places outside of LA thats everyone raves about. To all of those in the know...which is a good one to go to alone??

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  1. How do you figure that Xmas day is a good day to try "one of the chinese places outside of LA that everyone raves about"?

    1 Reply
    1. re: ipsedixit

      Yeah, bad news for ya NYC -- the restaurants in the SGV will be packed. Us Chinese don't want to cook on Christmas Day! Go early though and you'll beat the crowds trying to drag their kids away from all the new toys...

      As for going alone: ANY good restaurant is fine alone. But why would you bother? How much can you order alone? The whole point of eating Chinese is to go with a crowd and order 10 dishes! I'd start recruiting everyone you know now. You ought to be able to scare up 5 more diners in the next two weeks.

    2. Second Reeter1--Chinese restaurants cater generally to families, with dishes to be shared family-style. It may feel a little awkward to dine alone in a large authentic Chinese restaurant, as there are no real dinner plates with a set meat, carb, veggie(as in Chinese American restaurants)--other than a topping on top of rice, which is really a quick fix, not a "real" dinner. Anyways, most will be open on Christmas Day--Triumphal Palace, Sea Harbour, Capital, etc., but you will miss the point of Chinese dining as you sit alone with one dish.

      1 Reply
      1. re: cfylong

        I think this presumes the OP is talking about banquet type places to try, which may or may not be the case.

        There are Chinese places that can be very suitable for solo diners, such as Taiwanese street-food type joints (e.g., SinBaLa, QQ, My Way Deli) or noodle and dumpling shops (e.g. Dumpling House, Mei Long Village, Dumpling 10053), to name a few.

      2. For a solo diner, HK-style cafes are probably your best bet for a Christmas dinner that doesn't involve dutching (or dogging bagging) a lot family-sized dishes. But be forewarned that many dishes are probably not authentically Chinese, and do anticipate crowds there too.


        1. If you're looking for one of the cafe-type places, I'd suggest Mandarin Deli. Yummy dumplings, tofu salad, cucumber salad, homemade noodles. I adore the stewed pig's feet, but I realize those might not be to everyone's taste.

          1. Chinese restaurants are going to be crowded on Christmas Day, and they may not be well-equipped to handle a single diner. It may be the one day where they'll get hammered with large groups more than any other day, owing to the fact that Chinese (at least in America) seem to have developed the tradition of taking the whole family out on Christmas. I don't know why, I don't understand it, I just make sure I'm ready when Mom calls and says, "let's go!"

            1 Reply
            1. re: ricepad

              This may be a New York thing, but Jews also go out for Chinese food on Christmas! A longstanding Jewish-American tradition. :)