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Mar 22, 2007 12:34 PM

Favourite Chinese?

The only Chinese restaurant I eat at regularly is Maison Kam Fung for dim sum. Besides that I'm at a loss for where to go for good Chinese. Any suggestions?

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  1. Here are my faves -

    Mon Nan (upstairs) for 3-course Peking duck, it's their specialty so you don't need to order in advance. Also delectable snow pea pods & General Tao tofu (not on menu but they're happy to oblige if you ask) (1096 Clark)

    Beijing for General Tao chicken and sweet & sour fish, plus ridiculously cheap lunch specials on weekdays (maybe weekends too, not sure) (92 la Gauchetiere W.)

    Restaurant Hong Kong for Cantonese chow mein & chicken with ginger & shallots. Open pretty late. (1019 St-Laurent)

    Lotte Furama for excellent dim sum (1115 Clark)

    Restaurant Tao - closest thing to Chinatown for an NDG-er like me - plus, they have kick-ass candied walnuts (374 Victoria Ave in Westmount)


    7 Replies
    1. re: kpzoo

      Thanks -- I'll try the dim sum at Lotte Furama and compare to Kam Fung. Looks like I'll be able to hit some of these places for take out, as I live in the Plateau.

      1. re: kpzoo

        Everyone forgot to mention the restaraunt in the south shore ??Foo Wor
        8080 boulevard Taschereau (Brossard,) Jing Hua boulevard Taschereau

        1. re: Day o lay

          Is Foo Wor the large Cantonese place that serves dim sum, one strip mall west of another dim sum joint? Based on one visit (but only one visit, mind you), it was in no way worth the lengthy detour for a city dweller. I'm sure it's a different story if you live on the South Shore. I'm not familiar with Jing Hua at all. Any comments on it?

          1. re: Mr F

            Jing Hua very good too I'm back now !

        2. re: kpzoo

          having scanned these boards for months I was motivated enough by a bad experience at Tau yesterday to post my dismal experience. I had discarded Tau as yet another bland overpriced Westmount eatery however a family member in hospital made a special request for take out. My experience was appalling. I walked in at 4:30 placed my order for pick up for 5:30. In the middle of taking my order the person walked away and was replaced by a second person continuing the order. I asked if it could be ready for pick up one hour later and the person agreed. One hour later they had my order wrong. The new counter person took my money but assured me it would take 5 minutes to add what had been omitted. 10 minutes later they handed me yet again the wrong order. at this point I asked for my money to be returned the manager refused to return my order and said it would take 2 minutes to fix the problem. 10 minutes later I walked out with 50$ worth of bland over-priced chinese food and the feeling that customer service was the least of their priorities. Upon getting candied walnuts in the bag and a vow never to return .

          1. re: crispy1

            Tau can be hit and miss. The management seems to change on a fairly regular (almost annual) basis, and quality varies accordingly. I have had very good meals from there, and some pretty so-so meals as well. However, there are great deals to be had if you order from the rice and noodles menu, which are around $6.95 for a meal. And if you order dishes spicy, they are usually more than happy to make them that way. Their big bowl of tom yum soup is up there on my list of comfort foods, although it is far better in the restaurant than when they make it for takeout. And they do not normally include the candied walnuts in takeout orders - you even have to request fortune cookies and almond cookies, as they're no longer included automatically.

            1. re: crispy1

              I had a similar problem with Tau recently (though I have always found them good in the past.) My order was screwed up, which I didn't realize until I got home. When I called Tau to complain, the guy on the other end didn't apologize, didn't offer to correct the mistake, he said "Well what do you want me to do about it?" and then put me on hold while he took another call.

              It's so frustrating when a resto that used to be good goes downhill.

          2. Dim Sum - I like going to Furama. Reminds me of proper Chinese Dim Sum (Atmosphere). As for quality, either Kam Fung or Furama are good.

            In my opinion, best chinese in Montreal is Keung Kee in Chinatown on 70, rue de la Gauchetière. The most authentic Hong Kong Chinese food I have found in the area.

            Late Night - We always seem to end up at New Dynasty. Don't know if it's cuz the guy that serves us is funny, or the Salt and Pepper Crab soaks up the beer better at 3am.

            And what's the deal with General Tao? I'm Chinese (from Vancouver) and have never heard of it until I moved here.I don't see the attraction either. Deepfried meat bits tossed with WAY too much overly salty and sweet sauce.
            Don't base the quality of a chinese restaurant on the General Tao.
            Try the Seafood, Roast Pork and Duck, different Chinese Vegetables.
            Away with the General Tao, Lemon Chicken, and Sweet and Sour whatever!

            6 Replies
            1. re: Bon Appetit

              agreed! general tao = not in my books for standard chinese food per sey, (says a toronto born+raised kid of parents from HK!)

              1. re: btrsweet

                Speaking of General Tao, the history, according to french tv show (L'épicerie)(featuring a british interviewee) seems to be that it was invented in Hunan then the chef exiled to Taiwan and finally landed in New York where the current version was done.


              2. re: Bon Appetit

                > And what's the deal with General Tao?

                Ha. Here's the whole scoop - it's not just a Montreal thing.

                You're right - there's a lot of horrendous General Tao chicken out there, which is why the places that do it well are worth mentioning. And I can certainly understand the lack of appeal to someone who grew up without it.

                I personally love many different kinds of Chinese - both authentic & some of the more culturally & culinarily dubious - and I think that's OK. It's all about variety. :-


                Oh yeah - I forgot to mention that Restaurant Hong Kong does great BBQ Pork & BBQ Duck too.

                1. re: Bon Appetit

                  Keung Kee was a pleasant surprise. All of the dishes we tried had complex spices that were fresh, flavourful, and the ginger was a zinger. Nice vegetables, too.

                  1. re: Bon Appetit

                    General Tso's chicken is there for the New York visitors.

                    1. re: Bon Appetit

                      I'm with you on this one. It's way to rich for my taste. The closest dish i tasted to this in China is sweet and sour pork, which didn't have as much batter and sauce was not as thick.

                      I think the same can be said for won ton, which doesn't seem to exist in China. But at least i like won ton!

                    2. Kam Fung and Lotte Furama for dim sum, with Ruby Rouge and Tong Por coming in a not too distant second place.

                      Niu Kee (in theory; have been afraid to return since the owners changed) and Keung Kee. Beijing and Hong Kong in second place.

                      Kam Shing in Plaza Côte-des-Neiges, especially for the noodle dishes. Lao Beijing on Côte-des-Neiges between Édouard-Montpetit and Côte Ste-Catherine, especially for the hotpots and that "many flavours" cucumber salad.

                      6 Replies
                      1. re: carswell

                        I did not have a great meal the last time I went to Niu Kee. The recipes have changed with fried tofu replacing fresh, details like that which didn't taste anywhere near as delicious as under the previous owners.

                        Keung Kee is great though for excellent Cantonese dishes, very good chili and salt shrimp, interesting tofu/mushroom rolls. Mon Nan is good and I haven't even tried the famous Peking duck there. We've had rather fabulous lobster at Maison VIP although it can be hard to find good items on the menu that aren't deep-fried.

                        If you are on the Plateau the food at Wok and Roll is quite authentic (despite the rather un-Chinese name) and staight-forward. I nurse many of my colds with their chicken soup which comes with lots of Thai basil, fresh beanspouts and lime. And their grilled beef in their Vietnamese specials is very tasty. You can also get home delivery from Deer Garden in Chinatown through A La Carte Express and just try to order things that travel well in containers.

                        1. re: Plateaumaman

                          How is it possible to use the words authentic and "Thai basil, fresh beanspouts and lime" in the same posting? This sounds like Vietnamese food, not Chinese at all. It's like saying the wienerschnitzel at L'Express is authentic French!?!

                          1. re: edhazer

                            Well, Wok 'n' Roll is not Chinese. It's pan-asian. Mostly Chinese, Vietnamese and Thai. I believe the owners are Vietnamese.

                        2. re: carswell

                          Your list is spot on. Although, I have not been back to Kam Fung for DS in a while, and am due for a return. Lottes dumplings and Chau Yao Yew (deep fried squid) are definitely better than Tong Por,

                          Niu Kee is definitely not the same. However, it is better than just after the transition. The eggplant seems to be missing something, but is still good. The Cumin beef is the same, and the Kung Pao chicken is not up to snuff. They definitely are not using as many Szechuan Peppercorns.

                          On the topic of General Tao. You will not find this in China other than in tourist restaurants catering to western palates. Most of the General Tao served here is nothing more than heavily battered chicken fragments covered in an overly sweet glop. You rarely find even a trace of a chili pepper.

                          If you want to try a really decent GT, made the way it is supposed to be made, with chicken chunks that are more meat then coating, and has a properly seasoned sauce, try Szechuan on Notre Dame in Old Montreal.... Mr. Ma in PVM is also a good contender, as is Piment Rouge.

                          I still have respect for Peking Garden on Queen Mary for putting out a solid Mu Shu, good steamed dumplings, and a good shrimp and Lobster sauce. Not fine cuisine, but if you know what to order, they can serve some decent dishes.

                          1. re: fedelst1

                            Lotte Furama's dumplings have gone WAY downhill compared to when I first went there. I think they lost their dumpling-master. The last few times I've gone, the dumplings have been sticky, thick wrappers, that stick to the paper. Not nice and very disappointing as I liked the variety there. Kam Fung is an OK alternative, but not nearly as many choices.

                          2. re: carswell

                            Lotte Furama is my favourite for dim sum, Ruby Rouge was okay, but things like shrimp shell in dumplings annoys me. I've done Lotte Furama for dinner a couple times, everything was always well prepared. Meaning to try their Peking duck though.
                            Kam Shing is my go-to for dinners. Both on Cote-des-Neiges and on Van Horne. I've literally grown up eating their food and I live close to both locations which makes it handy. The hubby can walk there on a nice day if need be. And their Peking Hot Soup (aka hot and sour) is really good when it's good. Like with all restos, there are times when things get borked and eating their food so often, I tend to notice.
                            Jardin Asean on Sherbrooke W. does all sorts of Asian cuisine, but I usually only get the sushi because they have the soy sauce I love best.
                            Jardin Jade Poon Kai (I think that's the full name) has a very blah buffet, but their take-out buns, rolls and sweets are quite good.
                            I've gone to some other places in Chinatown but since I was brought by friends I can't remember the name, but had some amazing stuffed bean curd. It's on a corner...that's as much as I can remember having hurried inside mid-winter.

                          3. Beijing for sam see chow mein (shredded three kinds of meat chow mein, forgive sp), eggplant hotpot (under the szechuan listings), sizzling shrimps with ginger and garlic, snowpea leaves with garlic, periwinkles with blackbean sauce, "Big Guy" Special Tofu (it's not on the menu but this is how we order it: it's Japanese soft tofu rounds, lightly fried, with diced peppers, onions, ground pork and blackbeans; ask for it, and other spicy dishes, EXTRA spicy)

                            Mon Nan upstairs for the Peking Duck and steamed dumplings

                            Furama and Le President (in Ville St. Laurent) for dim sum

                            Hong Kong for BBQ duck and noodle soups

                            The old Manchuria on St. Mathieu, now with new owners, new decor and a new name that escapes me, but the tofu dishes, eggplant dishes and manchuria pork and lamb dishes are still good, as are the dumplings (the spicy dishes are tastier if you ask for EXTRA spicy)

                            Kam Shing for hot pots and noodles

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: chilipepper

                              Chilipepper - thanks for giving me some ideas for new dishes at some of my favourite places! I tend to order the same things at the same places over and over cause I *know* they're gonna be good. Now I've got some new stuff to try. :-)

                              1. re: chilipepper

                                I've wondered about Le President for dim sum - how would you compare it to Furama or Kam Fung?

                              2. I like Beijing and Keung Kee for supper and Lotte Furama for dim sum. The food I had at Hong Kong was disgustingly greasy (think dripping and pooling on the plate). I tried Kam Fung for dim sum, but didn't like it as much as Furama.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: eoj

                                  The few times I've eaten at Hong Kong it's been way too greasy to the point that it's given me bad heartburn.