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Rec's for Szechuan or Hunan in SF?

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Looking for best recommendations for spicy Szechuan or Hunan cuisine restaurants in San Francisco. Nothing fancy, just good food. Read a little about Hunan Homes and Szechuan Trenz... but what are your opinions?

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  1. Go to Hunan Homes and Szechuan Trenz (aka Spices I and II). I don't know enough about Hunan food to know if Hunan Homes is authentic--my friends who took me there are from Taiwan--but the food's good. (See today's NY Times magazine for an article on the origins of that classic "Hunan" dish, General Tso's chicken.) Try the hot pot with pork blood.

    And I love Spices--also Sichuanese food filtered through Taiwan. Lots of past posts here on what to order there.

    1. I enjoy Hunan Restaurant, on Sansome near Broadway. I particularly like the Smoked Ham - either by itself or with String Beans. The Diana's Special is good - a spiced ground pork mixture, with onions and lettuce between two light ad flaky onion pancakes.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Bob Copeland

        I like Hunan on Sansome as well.

        I also like Hunan Homes Restaurant on Jackson, love the hot and sour soup, peppered short ribs, moo shoo pork. Super inexpensive, a bit Americanized but good.

      2. I like Hunan on Sansome. Always order the hot & sour beef and smoked ham (which need lots of steamed rice). Also like the dumplings, eggplant salad, and chicken salad.

        There are three branches, the other two are called Henry's Hunan. But I like the Sansome location the best. I think they're the only one with beer on tap.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Robert Lauriston

          I know the one between Minna and Natoma has beer on tap.

          And the stewed beef with dumplings is my favorite dish.

        2. I enjoy Brandy Hos very much for Hunan.

          1. Another good Sichuan restaurant in a different part of SF is Zone 88. They serve really excellent spicy dishes. Here's a description of a hotpot lunch that 18 of us on Chowhound shared: http://www.chowhound.com/topics/355697

            Zone 88 is on San Bruno Ave. between Silver and Silliman in the Portola district of SF.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Nancy Berry

              With the caveat that my experience with Zone 88 is limited to our one chowdown lunch there, I can say that dish-for-dish of the specific items we ordered, Zone 88 is better than Szechuan Trenz (Spices! or Spices II).

              1. re: Nancy Berry

                Thanks for the Zone 88 mention. I've been interested when I've driven by there, but haven't had a chance to try it yet.

              2. Another vote for Brandy Ho's. We much prefer their smoked ham dish to Hunan's. Also, Hunan uses too much oil for our taste.