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Amblergirl - what's good for Chinese?

Amblergirl - I've seen a number of your posts and like most the restaurants you recommend. We've been looking for a good Chinese restaurant in the Bux-Mont area. We like Lai-Lai Garden in Blue Bell, we've been unable to find anything approaching decent in Central Bucks, we tried Yangzte on some recommendations on this board and didn't really like it. Just wondering if you have any suggestions?

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  1. Oh fun! I got a message adressed just to me :)

    We do not eat Chinese that often, there really is not that much in the area except for the greasy take out places (though they do hit the spot sometimes). I think the best place in the area would be CinCin in Chestnut Hill (might be a bit of a drive from Bucks). They have the traditional chinese dishes but the atmosphere is a few steps above the standard corner take out place and they have a full bar.

    I have had a few good dinners at the Chinese/Japanese place at the intersection of Butler Ave and Skippack Pike in Blue Bell, I think it is called Golden Sea. I've also had a few good lunches at Janni on Route 611. Like Golden Sea, they also serve a mixed menu of chinese and japanese food.

    A bit further out is YangMing, that might be a bit of a drive for you since it is in the Main Line area, but I have eaten there once and I recall the dinner was absolutely delicous.

    I have also seen rave reviews about the China Garden Inn in Willow Grove and it looks great, but I have not tried it myself.

    9 Replies
    1. re: AmblerGirl

      If I may...

      I've been several times to China Garden in Willow Grove. They do typical Chinese fare quite well, and their sushi bar is usually pretty good as well (although I had a couple of bad experiences with ice-cold sashimi!)

      In Elkins Park, Szechuan Mandarin is very good, as is Jasmine on Easton Rd. in Glenside.

      1. re: AmblerGirl

        Golden Sea is at the intersection of 202 and 73. East Cuisine is at 73 and Butler. I like East's food, we go there quite a bit.

        1. re: jujuthomas

          Whoops! I meant East Cuisine! It must be Friday because I am not thinking straight :)

          1. re: AmblerGirl

            I figured. ;-) TGIF!

            We also recently like Fuji, up on 309 2 doors down from the Whole Foods - is that Welsh road? I think so. But that's pretty much straight Japanese, so never mind.

            1. re: AmblerGirl

              Thanks for the tip on East Cuisine! We stopped there last night and got take-out (on the way back from my wife's dentist appointment because she couldn't eat solids for an hour). It passed my test for my 3 key items - hot & sour soup, fried dumplings (although I thought they were a little too doughy), and roast pork with veggies (which most restaurants take to mean with broccoli). My wife tried their spring rolls and 1/2 Peking Duck. We'll definitely be going back for an eat-in experience.

          2. re: AmblerGirl

            AmblerGirl,

            We tried Lai Lai Brothers on Welsh Road in North Wales first for lunch and then for takeout and were happy with both. We're going to be moving to Upper Gwynedd around Apr/May of next year. Using 202 & Morris Road as a starting point, what's good for you in that area?

            1. re: bucksguy14

              I've really been wanting to try Lai Lai, I think I have to try it now! I'm not sure if you are asking about just chinese or all restaurants surrounding Lower Gwynned, so I'll just give you my brain dump of everything.

              There is really some pretty good food in the Upper Gywnedd area. In nearby Blue Bell, there is Alison for upscale (I heard they just got a liquor license), Tamarindos is my favorite for mexican with fun atmosphere and free margaritas, Phils is good for your standard burgers and bar food. I heard that they are opening a new Belgian beer bar/restaurant in Blue Bell called Bennelux.... that should (hopefully) be up and running by the time you move and it sounds like its going to be fantastic! You can even get some decent Thai and Vietnamese food in Blue Bell (Thai Orchid and Pho Thai Nam).

              For great upscale italian, try Ristorante Castello in North Wales. Tex Mex Connection in North Wales is also fun (great margaritas, ok food). Also heard good things about Cravings Cafe in North Wales, but have not tried it.

              For old school iotalian food (delicous food but no armosphere to speak of), you can try La Campagnola in Lansdale which is not too far.

              Plymouth meeting is also not too far, and BlueFin has great sushi. Speaking of sushi, I heard mixed reviews about Sushikazu in Blue Bell which would be really close to you. That is anopther one on my list to try. Craig LaBan raved about it a few years back but I heard it might now be under new management.

              Also, Miraku in Springhouse is great for sushi and Japanese. Arpeggio in Springhouse is another favorite (amazing weiood fired pizzas). Drafting Room in Springhouse is another popular choice, though I think their beer selection is far better than their food. Benvivo's in Springhouse is great for take out.

              Amd, of course, I have to direct you up Butler Ave in Ambler, Trax is a great BYO, Bridgets for steak, La Cava for mexican, Toto's for gelato and sandwiches.

              OK, that is my brain dump, though I'm sure I'll think of more. Actually, we are pretty lucky because we have quite a few really good restaurants in the area. I'm sure you'll have fun eating your way through the area!

              1. re: AmblerGirl

                we've been to SushiKazu a few times, it isn't my favorite, but the food is good.

                1. re: AmblerGirl

                  AmblerGirl - great brain dump!! Since we currently live in Central Bucks, we've hit a few of those you mentioned - to name some - Phils, Tex Mex Connection, Arpeggio (love their pizzas) and the Drafting Room. We also tried Cravings Cafe about a month ago and thought it was OK. We're sure to try a few on your list before we move next year. We keep saying "We have to try that one of these days" about the places on Butler Ave everytime be drive in that area. Two other things - 1. What's a really good takeout pizza joint near UG and 2. I have a friend who works at PF Chang's in Glen Mills who tipped me off about the one opening in Valley Square in Warrington in the next month or so and about another in the old IKEA space in Plymouth Meeting. I checked out the Plymouth Meeting idea on the web and found that there will be a huge Whole Foods Market, a CPK (California Pizza Kitchen), Redstone American Grill and Benihana's opening in that space also. Thanks again for the info. Can't wait to try a few of them.

            2. May be a little too far south for you, but Wild Rice in KOP has good sushi and chinese/japanese. (We are huge fans of Lai Lai, and find this is a nice alternative when we're in KOP for a movie, etc).
              Link: http://www.wildricekofp.com

              2 Replies
              1. re: becky315

                becky315 - KOP is not too out of the way for us. In fact, one of our favorite places for lunch is the Zodiac in Neiman Marcus in the Plaza. Great food!!!

                1. re: bucksguy14

                  Ooh - I had no idea there was a restaurant in Neiman Marcus! We always struggle w/ lunch-time options while in KOP - we'll have to give this place a try - Thanks for the rec!

              2. For great shrimp and veggie dishes far and away the best for miles around Lansdale is Abacus Chinese Restaurant, 1551 Valley Forge Rd. at Summneytown Pike.

                1 Reply
                1. re: alanalan

                  I concur. Abacus is good, solid Chinese food. Best in the Lansdale area.