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Best Char Siu Bao - Chinese Steamed Pork Buns?

handlertaper Feb 21, 2009 06:01 PM

What is the best restaurant in the L.A. area for Char Siu Bao (steamed and/or baked)?

  1. sharkgirl88 Feb 22, 2009 09:19 AM

    Should you find yourself in North Hollywood, please try the bao at BBQ Unlimited on Sherman Way. I grew up eating bao in Asia and this is by far, one of the best I've eaten in LA. I do prefer the pork over the chicken but try both anyway. They're in the same strip mall as that of Sanam Luang. You can then get a couple of baos and stop for Hainanese Chicken in Sanam.

    Here's a link to their website:


    Have fun!

    3 Replies
    1. re: sharkgirl88
      handlertaper Feb 22, 2009 10:42 AM

      Yum. I am going to have to go on a Bao tasting adventure!

      1. re: sharkgirl88
        Das Ubergeek Feb 22, 2009 02:32 PM

        Good luck parking, but yes, good bao. I like the "lai wong bao" filled with sweet cream filling, and if you want a larger meal try beef with asparagus there.

        1. re: sharkgirl88
          granadafan Jan 16, 2013 09:54 PM

          Anyone been to BBQ Unlimited lately?

        2. Professor Salt Feb 22, 2009 09:14 AM

          Elite's baked bao are the gold standard for me

          Elite Restaurant
          700 S Atlantic Blvd, Monterey Park, CA 91754

          2 Replies
          1. re: Professor Salt
            raytamsgv Feb 22, 2009 01:11 PM

            Very true. Their steamed ones are good, too. Empress Harbor also has very good steamed buns.

            1. re: raytamsgv
              rogmah Jan 20, 2013 11:28 AM

              +1 on the steamed char siu bao at elite. bao is fresh and soft. char siu is high quality and not overly fatty

          2. A5 KOBE Feb 22, 2009 08:28 AM

            Sea Harbour has the best ones. They are little but very very good.

            1. c
              Chandavkl Feb 22, 2009 06:09 AM

              Obviously this is a matter of personal preference. I do not like Family Pastry's at all. It is meatier than average but I don't like the taste. I prefer the pineapple crust char siu bao across the street at the C B S Seafood takeout (not sitdown) area.

              2 Replies
              1. re: Chandavkl
                Foodandwine Feb 22, 2009 06:22 AM

                Chandavkl.. Thanks for the tip. I normally go to Family Pastry, I am a fan of the custard cups and sponge cake cones ( when they are fresh without any plastic wrap on them ). I did not know that CBS has a takeout counter. I will stop by some time and try it.. Anthing else you reccomend for take out..

                1. re: Foodandwine
                  monku Feb 22, 2009 06:37 AM

                  CBS hot food takeout counter isn't bad (not the dim sum counter). I get a large container of the spicy salt pork chops for $4.25 and a small container of the stir fried squid with black bean and peppers for $1.32 (they must include the sales tax in the prices). Almost everything on the hot table is priced by the size of the container and not by weight and they fill the containers to the brim, they arent those pint or quart containers but the styrofoam take out boxes.
                  You can also get a side order of fried rice, chow mein or chow fun....or they have those combination plates with rice.

                  Also if you get lucky they have a parking lot with free parking. Sometimes I'll tip the parking lot attendant a buck and tell him I'm running across the street to Family Pastry.

                  CBS Seafood
                  700 N Spring St, Los Angeles, CA 90012

              2. Servorg Feb 22, 2009 01:50 AM

                You might want to check out this great review that exilekiss did on a place in Monterey Park, in case you are ever in the neighborhood: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/536676

                1 Reply
                1. re: Servorg
                  omniv Feb 22, 2009 09:36 AM

                  Noodle House severs northern region Bao, not the Cantonese Char Siu Bao. It is a great recommendation nevertheless.

                2. monku Feb 21, 2009 06:07 PM

                  Family Pastry in Chinatown. Big, lots of meat and cheap (65 cents for baked).

                  Opens at 7am everyday

                  Longs Family Pastry
                  715 N Spring St, Los Angeles, CA

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: monku
                    handlertaper Feb 21, 2009 06:26 PM

                    Sounds perfect!!!!

                    1. re: handlertaper
                      monku Feb 22, 2009 09:51 AM

                      Different Japanese-American groups I know get the baked ones at Family Pastry to sell at fund raising events.

                      If you're down in Torrance at Vermont and Carson St., there's a place called Hong Kong Deli and they have a steamed bun called Peking duck, with duck and hoisin sauce also a Kalua pork bao.

                      Hong Kong Bakery & Deli
                      21720 S Vermont Ave, Torrance, CA

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