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Lookin' for a good high end Chinese restaurant in NYC

I could go old school (e.g.Shun Lee Palace) or new school (Chinatown Brasserie). Any thoughts on where to go?

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  1. Wu Liang Ye or Peking Duck House.

    lots of previous posts on each.

    1. I'd definitely recommend both Our Place on 3rd Ave. at 81st or 82nd (http://ourplaceuptown.com/) or their midtown branch Our Place Shanghai Tea Garden (http://ourplace-teagarden.com/).

      1 Reply
      1. re: jennsch

        I've never heard of this place. Why do you recommend it? I gather it's Shanghainese. Could you compare it to Shanghainese restaurants in Chinatown?

      2. I actually can't do an Our Place v. Chinatown analysis of it as I don't have enough knowledge of Shanghai cuisine but...I can say that the restaurants are beautiful, always crowded (you should make reservations--drop-ins can often be accomodated but there might be a wait), and the food is truly wonderful. I used to live near the uptown branch and, over 11 years, never had a single meal (both in-house and take-out) that left me wanting. (Oh, if you have a cold or feel one coming on, order the hot and sour soup--it's pure medicine.) And I've been to the midtown branch several times (it has a different menu--check the websites to see which one is more suited to what you're looking for) and it's always a rewarding experience. The one thing I can say in comparison to most Chinatown restaurants and that gets to the heart of your original request for a "high end Chinese restaurant" is that there's an elegance about the two Our Place spots and the service is impeccable. They are truly upscale neighborhood restaurants.

        2 Replies
        1. re: jennsch

          I hear you on the relatively luxe atmosphere, but I don't care about that - only the food. So I hope someone who's been to Our Place and also to some of the Chinatown Shanghainese places will pipe up.

          1. re: Pan

            our place is good for certain things.

            1. 10 ingredients shanghai noodles...really good.
            2. steamed soup dumpling. definitely not as good as chinatown haunts but if you are in the nabe they are perfectly fine.

          1. re: Yaxpac

            What type of Chinese food, what neighborhood, and what are some good dishes there?

            1. re: Pan

              it is on 49th b/w 1st and 2nd. i love their peking duck and their har gow are fantastic

            2. re: Yaxpac

              I always enjoy Chin Chin - I'd suggest making sure you get a table in the front room rather than the back room.

            3. What about Shun Lee? Do people not like this place? I've only gone to the cafe, next door, once for dim sum. Enjoyed it and also enjoyed peeking over into the restaurant next door to see all the people fancied up and eating fancy chinese food. Is it not worth it?

              1 Reply
              1. re: Tal

                My last experience at Shun Lee West was totally underwhelming from a food pov. Decor is nice, food is elaborately presented, service is fine - but the variety of dishes our party of four shared were overly sweet when not totally bland. Good atmosphere, mediocre food.

              2. I am a huge fan of Shanghai cuisine (partial to Goody's), and much prefer the Chinatown experience to that of high-end places. That said, my trip to "Our Place" about two weeks ago was no exception. The decor is nothing special, and although it might appear a bit cleaner than some of the Chinatown establishments (i.e. the dumplings don't arrive via dumbwaiter from somewhere below canal street), I'd rather have a little grime and better food.

                All of the dishes were ok, but none of them were great, or even interesting. I also don't like it when the waiters parce out each of the dishes onto everyones’ plate, and
                think the family style aspect of chinese food is part of what makes it fun.

                The soup dumplings were much more doughy and than their downtown counterparts, and the soup inside was not as flavorful. Perhaps if I hadn't been exposed to the chinatown version I would have enjoyed them. In fact, perhaps if I hadn't been exposed to chinatown in general, I would have enjoyed "Our Place".

                  1. I third the chin chin rec

                    1. Shun Lee Palace IMHO is an expense account trap for the unsophisticated palate. Looks great, tastes so-so. My food was oversalted, the tables were squeezed in like sardines without the oil, and the service was atrocious. On the other hand, my wife (I'm ABC, my wife is CBC) that Chinese waiters aren't attentive to Chinese people because they think that their bad tippers. Talk about reverse discrimination!

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: Heavy Ed

                        Don't feel discriminated against. The last (and I mean LAST) time I was at Shun Lee Palace, we were served lobster that was old enough that one bite apiece upset our stomachs, and the service was rather hostile from the beginning and unapologetic later. And none of us are Asians, though we know plenty about what good Chinese food does and does not taste like. I should add that the last time we went to Shun Lee Palace was a few years ago by now.

                      2. Shun Lee is Chinese Food for old rich white folks. It's expensive, and it safe. Every dish is safe, there are no spices or unusual tastes to scare the old folks. I’ve never had such bland XO sauce in my life.