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Twin Dragon Chinese

d
DeLobster Jan 6, 2008 11:43 AM

Well, i finally made it to Twin Dragon (8597 W Pico Blvd Los Angeles) in my search for Westside Chinese food, and it was HORRIBLE! The atmosphere was frantic, the waiter was indifferent and curt, and the food was disgusting. Canned mushrooms and bamboo shoots in Mongolian beef with a mysterious brown sauce. Over-fried and dry General Tsaos chicken in another unremarkable sauce. Steamed dumplings were flavorless. I will never go back.

Where should i try next? I want to either go to Hu's Szechwan on National or Hop Li (or Hop Wu?).

  1. e
    EliAnnKat Jan 6, 2008 12:01 PM

    You poor thing! Did someone send you there because it is absolutely the worst Chinese food. I like Mandarette on Beverly Blvd. a little East of La Cienega. It's a bit expensive, but their scallops alone are worth it - to me, anyway.

    1 Reply
    1. re: EliAnnKat
      d
      Densible Jan 6, 2008 03:29 PM

      Oh me too! Mandarette IMO is great and has been consistently so for years. We live in Hermosa now and go there once a month or so for our fix. It's good clean food and a bit pricey compared to others and portions are smaller. However, we find the quality to be such that the last bite tastes as good as the first and we never hit the "everything tastes the same" wall.

      We start with the vegetable soup (makes one feel healthy and virtuous)
      Followed by the vegetable dumplings-make our own vinegar/ginger/soy/chile sauce from the condiments on the table
      Then the crispy calamari with chilies (like squid fries) AND
      The scallops or one of the seasonal specials.

      We've been for dinners and lunches and it it never busy. I always worry that our latest visit will be our last-so I hope others will give it a try.

    2. n
      nosh Jan 6, 2008 12:33 PM

      I like Hu's much better than Hop Li or Hop Woo. I usually go for lunch, and I really appreciate the small simple Chinese chicken salad that they serve with some of the combos between the soup and entree. Their hot'n'sour soup needs spicing up with a bit of soy and a splash of hot chili oil for my taste, but their kung pao chicken is very tender (nicely velveted) and the sauce is tasty. I also like the twice-cooked pork (w/o tofu). If I went for dinner I'd definitely order their spicy dumplings, the kung pao shrimp, and maybe the string beans or eggplant in garlic sauce.

      7 Replies
      1. re: nosh
        s
        slacker Jan 7, 2008 02:53 PM

        I also like Hu's much better than Hop Woo (on Olympic) and Hop Li (on Pico, but now closed). But they are different, Hu's is northern Chinese, Hop Woo and Hop Li are Cantonese. For what they each are, Hu's does it better. Hop Woo's dishes are way too heavy and oily for Cantonese, and Hop Li's were way too Americanized.

        1. re: slacker
          h
          Hackenbush Jan 7, 2008 04:36 PM

          The last time I drove by a few days ago, Hop Li had reopened and had a big banner up to yell that.

          1. re: Hackenbush
            n
            nosh Jan 7, 2008 08:26 PM

            Hop Li also took over the former J&R Seafood on Santa Monica Blvd. east of Barrington in W.L.A.

            1. re: nosh
              w
              WORX4FUDE Jan 8, 2008 07:37 AM

              J&R (yes, now part of the Hop Li army of crap restaurants) Seafood was quite simply lousy. You'd be LUCKY to get good service (well, I guess that goes for ANY authentic chinese place) but the food was not even nearly worth the abusive staff. I hope all those lousy places go out of business soon. Blech!

            2. re: Hackenbush
              s
              slacker Jan 8, 2008 12:00 AM

              Wonder if they remodeled, seeing as they opened another location, per nosh.

              1. re: slacker
                n
                New Trial Jan 8, 2008 09:57 AM

                Not sure if they remodeled during the time as well but I seem to recall that the initial reason for the closure of the Pico location was an order by the Health Dept.

            3. re: slacker
              f
              fdb Jan 8, 2008 01:07 AM

              Hu's is also the only place on the westside to get an authentic bowl of Hong Shao Nui Ro Mien (spicy beef noodle soup). And Hop Woo is probably the only place that cooks up a decent La Wei Fan or Bo Zai Fan (BBQ pork/sausage steamed over rice in a hot pot).

          2. r
            RicRios Jan 6, 2008 01:40 PM

            It's amazing how consistently bad Twin Dragon has been all these years!
            If I were you I'd start looking east of the 710, that's where all the great stuff is.

            1. o
              omakase Jan 6, 2008 10:16 PM

              I've always enjoyed Chang's in Brentwood. Love the Sweet & Pungent Crispy Shrimp and Szechwan Rainbow Chicken.

              CHANG'S
              11726 San Vicente Blvd.
              Brentwood

              3 Replies
              1. re: omakase
                w
                WORX4FUDE Jan 8, 2008 07:38 AM

                Rock on! I'm going to have to try that. Rich folks in Brentwood get ALL the nice places. I'm moving, that's all there is to it.

                1. re: carter
                  f
                  fdb Jan 8, 2008 08:45 PM

                  ???? Are they moving?

                  1. re: fdb
                    n
                    nosh Jan 8, 2008 09:55 PM

                    C'mon carter, what's the scoop? Is Chang's losing their lease or???

                2. t
                  tward Jan 7, 2008 03:05 PM

                  Try Fu's Palace a couple blocks down on Pico. Large portions and solid Chinese - probably "Americanized" per most folks' tastes, but I like it. Try the moo shu chicken and the green beans (with or without pork).

                  5 Replies
                  1. re: tward
                    h
                    handlertaper Jan 7, 2008 04:23 PM

                    Also at Fu's, the vegitable dumplings with garlic sauce...

                    1. re: tward
                      h
                      Hackenbush Jan 7, 2008 04:37 PM

                      Very good at Fu's Palace is the steamed fish with ginger and onions. Also, the beef and onions.

                      1. re: tward
                        r
                        RicRios Jan 7, 2008 05:33 PM

                        I, plus assorted family units, used to patronize Fu's many moons ago.
                        Pretty solid, until at some point they started serving regularly what could only be reheated leftovers from previous day(s). That did it.

                        1. re: RicRios
                          h
                          Hackenbush Jan 7, 2008 09:33 PM

                          I've been to Fu's Palace at least 40 times and have never had that happen.

                          1. re: Hackenbush
                            h
                            handlertaper Jan 8, 2008 05:51 AM

                            We frequent Fu's and have only had freshly prepared food as well.

                      2. b
                        blazedog Jan 8, 2008 05:27 PM

                        Sadly I have eaten there too many times since it is a favorite of my 89 year old father -- a taste of the old country for him -- aka Brooklyn neighborhood Chinese restaurant circa 1955.

                        Sometimes the guilt gets to me and I wind up there with him for lunch -- there are some abominations for sure but I have managed to eke out an edible meal -- the spareribs are okay, the shrimp in ginger sauce has a good number of fairly good quality shrimp in a sauce that is not cornstarch and grease and the lo mein are fine in a trashy junk food kind of way. I grew up on this kind of food the way other people grew up on fast food burgers or Tex Mex so it's edible to me in a way that those kinds of foods aren't.

                        Hunan Taste is better for this kind of Americanized (or really New Yorkized) type of Chinese food -- Of course Fu's is even closer to the paradigm since they put out the duck sauce and fried noodles.

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