One night in Palo Alto
Trend Restaurant in Mountain View for excellent Sichuan food -- knife-cut (hand-made)noodles (called h&-made noodles on the menu,) chongqing chicken, a-choi with garlic, excellent free starter of vegetables marinated in chile oil.
Hunan Home's in Los Altos for excellent seafood and some Hunan and northern dishes -- Hunan smoked pork w/leeks and cabbage, delicious shrimp dishes -- they sometimes have live prawns, deep-fried tofu appetizer, seafood in iron pot -- very delicate, pork w/spiced tofu, large tank of live seafood and fish.
4880 El Camino Real, Los Altos, CA 94022
400 Moffett Blvd, Mountain View, CA
From the Crowne Plaza, head down El Camino Real (towards San Jose). Make a U-turn at San Antonio Road and duck into the parking lot next to the Longs Drug Store parking lot and you're at the Hong Kong Restaurant for Cantonese food. Should take about 5 minutes.
Alternatively, continue down El Camino a little further till you get to Castro St. Turn left, continue down Castro, go across the railroad tracks and the Central Expressway (Castro St. becomes Moffett Blvd through one traffic light and on your left is a small Moffett Plaza where and you're at the Trend Restaurant for Szechaun food. Should take less than 20 minutes from the Crowne Plaza.
You'll pass another Cantonese restaurant, Kirin Restaurant, comparable to the Hong Kong Restaurant, on your right shortly after making a left from El Camino. Should take about 15 minutes.
Chef Chu and Hunan Homes Restaurants are catty cornered from Hong Kong, but the Hong Kong, Kirin, and Trend should be more sufficient and appropriate choices.
BTW, the places mentioned above are in nearby Mountain View. I forgot to mention that the Fu Lam Mum Restaurant which is also on Castro between Kirin and Trend. You've got a lot of choices in Mountain View. To be more complete, if you head up El Camino, within Palo Alto, there's also Su Hong, Ming's, Jade Palace, and Taipen Restaurants. You needn't have to guess which direction I'd go for“well prepared Chinese food at reasonable prices.”
Well the others have covered only the 101 area. But within a half an hour is 280 area.
Joy Luck both simple and fancy since they have the main and wonton operation in the same building
As well as a lot of other Northern eats in the 99Ranch shopping center.
Accross the street is Tan Pao for more options.
Also Halu Ramen is only a couple of miles down the road.