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Does dim sum just suck in San Fran?

pointybird May 11, 2009 12:20 PM

I think I'm giving up on dim sum unless someone here has any bright ideas for me. I've tried dim sum at some of the Chinatown carted places, in board-approved spots like Yank Sing, and I just had a very disappointing trip to Good Luck dim sum on Clement Street yesterday. I should have known the absence of chatter on Good Luck on the Chowhound boards was suspicious, but I went and took the advice of Yelpers and gave it a try. Eeesh. Deep-fried selections tasted stale, steamed chive buns were swampy and foul, har gow was bristly and fishy, even the don tats were substandard (I prefer the ones at Red...Egg is it? nearby on Clement Street). The dough on the baked pork buns was nice, but the mystery meat and mystery goo inside turned me off to the filing.

I just don't understand why every time I taste dim sum it's so nasty. I know it's cheap, and what should I expect, but somehow I expect more. I love the carefully made dumplings, particularly the XLB, at places like Shanghai Dumpling King and Kingdom of Dumplings, but I can't seem to find good dim sum counterparts. Any advice? Am I just ordering wrong? Any such thing as a high-quality pork bun in SF?

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  1. pointybird RE: pointybird May 11, 2009 12:39 PM

    I have now found the most recent dim sum thread

    http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/588927

    And it seems I'm not alone in thinking the best dim sum places in San Francisco just aren't very good.

    I like Trader Joe's frozen shiu mai better than the ones I tried yesterday at Good Luck!

    1. PeterL RE: pointybird May 11, 2009 12:51 PM

      Go south young man/woman, go south. Best dim sum is found along the Daly City/Milbrae/San Mateo/Foster City axis.

      1 Reply
      1. re: PeterL
        pointybird RE: PeterL May 11, 2009 01:48 PM

        Thanks, PeterL. Yes, that's what I hear, better stuff to be found on the Peninsula but I lack the time these days to make food pilgrimages. How I miss them. If there's not really great dim sum to be found in SF, I'll probably just stick to the other wonderful dumpling options in the city...I love the momos at Taste of the Himalayas, dumplings at Henry's House of Hunan, so many other dumplings in town. I just find it odd how much bad dim sum there seems to be in San Francisco; I have really tried a lot of places and a lot of items and I get so consistently disappointed. Whereas practically every banh mi I try in town is excellent.

      2. s
        sfbing RE: pointybird May 11, 2009 01:01 PM

        Maybe you just don't like dim sum. What did you have at Yank Sing that you didn't like? Because while I think Yank Sing is expensive, "nasty" and "cheap" doesn't come to mind. And with cheap dim sum, you get what you pay for.

        Within the city, I find South Sea, Mayflower, Hong Kong Lounge (recently) perfectly acceptable, although not as good as the ones outside the city.

        -----
        South Sea Seafood Village
        1420 Irving St, San Francisco, CA 94122

        Mayflower Seafood
        6255 Geary Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94121

        Hong Kong Lounge
        5322 Geary Boulevard, San Francisco, CA 94121

        30 Replies
        1. re: sfbing
          pointybird RE: sfbing May 11, 2009 01:41 PM

          Yank Sing wasn't nasty and cheap, just a little boring and expensive for my tastes. I know Yank Sing is controversial on the boards, for a reason, in my opinion. Maybe I don't like dim sum, I just want to! I really want to! It looks so good steaming in those big round vats and I start thinking about the perfect toothsome stretch of a good dumpling skin and salivating. And then I try the actual bun and meh. I want to try excellent dim sum before I rule it out altogether. sfbing, any particular dim sum you recommend from any of the places you mention? I see in the older dim sum thread you have some favorites in Milbrae but I don't get out there that often (we have a small child).

          1. re: pointybird
            Stephanie Wong RE: pointybird May 11, 2009 01:57 PM

            Are you getting the hot items while they're still hot? Temperature can make a huge difference (fried foods get greasy; the texture of steamed dumpling skin changes as it cools; some sauces congeal into grossness).

            1. re: Stephanie Wong
              pointybird RE: Stephanie Wong May 11, 2009 04:18 PM

              this could definitely be a problem -- do I have to order from the places with the check off menus and table service? Would that help? It seems hard to get the carts the second they leave the kitchen, and the places with steam tables I think I'm totally off unless I get the dumplings the second they hit the table.

              1. re: pointybird
                Melanie Wong RE: pointybird May 11, 2009 07:12 PM

                It's perfectly fine to ask to touch the bottom of the plate or steamer basket to check for temperature. That's what I do.

                1. re: Melanie Wong
                  pointybird RE: Melanie Wong May 11, 2009 07:21 PM

                  Wow, you're bold. I want to be like you!

                  1. re: pointybird
                    Melanie Wong RE: pointybird May 11, 2009 10:23 PM

                    My preferred method is to hover my palm just above the surface of the food. However, food safety protocols tend to frown on this and the cart ladies often don't allow it. But once you've tried that, getting to touch the bottom of the dish is considered tame.

                2. re: pointybird
                  s
                  ShopperGirl RE: pointybird Apr 1, 2010 10:11 PM

                  Don't be afraid to ask if the food is hot. I always do. The temperature of the dim sum could make all the difference in the world.

                  1. re: ShopperGirl
                    a
                    artemis RE: ShopperGirl Apr 30, 2010 04:13 PM

                    i sent back some egg puff donuts (sai yung) last time i was at koi palace a few weeks ago because they weren't hot. i ordered them from the menu instead of pulling them off a cart because i wanted them hot, but i got warm ones.

                    for the first time ever, i gathered up my courage, flagged a vested waiter and after a bit of banter with some language barriers (they are warm and all fine! "no, i want *hot.*" warm, just fine. "no, hot please." it will take a very long time. "that's ok, i'll wait" very slow! "no problem, i can wait."), i got my hot sai yung very quickly.

                    it was a moment of total, hot, eggy, sugary victory.

              2. re: pointybird
                Chandavkl RE: pointybird May 11, 2009 01:57 PM

                Well Bay Area dim sum is better than anything you''ll find in the U.S. except for the L.A. area. It's probably a couple steps behind Los Angeles, but two laps ahead of New York. Consequently, if you don't like the dim sum in the San Francisco area maybe you just don't like the genre. However since you haven't been down to Koi Palace in Daly City or the places in Millbrae, I suspect you really haven't had a proper experience to judge Bay Area dim sum.

                1. re: Chandavkl
                  pointybird RE: Chandavkl May 11, 2009 04:18 PM

                  Thanks, Chandavkl.

                  1. re: Chandavkl
                    PeterL RE: Chandavkl May 12, 2009 05:01 PM

                    I think OP specifically reference dim sum in the City, not Bay Area.

                  2. re: pointybird
                    s
                    sfbing RE: pointybird May 11, 2009 02:01 PM

                    I think Mayflower has the best food of the three, but I would totally go to the most convenient one.

                    I usually eat at South Sea because it is five blocks from my house. There is something very nice about rolling out of bed, taking a stroll on a sunny Sunday and reading the newspaper over tea and dim sum. The dim sum is made to order and it isn't hugely loud or crowded, which is nice if you're with a little one.

                    If I'm visiting relatives in the Richmond, then I would go to Mayflower. I find it a little crowded and chaotic, but my sister is obsessed with some sort of taro pancake thing they have there so that's where we go.

                    Hong Kong Lounge is kind of new and has the most variety right now. The food is a little rustic (to me anyway) but it appears to be quite popular with the locals and I think it is a little cheaper than the other two. They have a bunch of unusual items.

                    Make sure to go on a weekend. I find earlier--11ish is usually better as well.

                    Oh, if you like SDK, you should go to Shanghai House down the street. It totally kicks SDK ass.

                    1. re: sfbing
                      pointybird RE: sfbing May 11, 2009 04:20 PM

                      Maybe the made to order thing is the magic. The texture of the dumpling "skin" is so off when it sits for a minute in the round vat, it seems, and that's one of the main things that drives me nuts. Thanks for the advice about Shanghai House. Yum. And thank you for the very specific advice on when to go and where, I really appreciate it. I want to be able to appreciate dim sum, it looks so delicious.

                      1. re: pointybird
                        s
                        sfbing RE: pointybird May 11, 2009 04:59 PM

                        All 3 of these places are made to order.

                        1. re: sfbing
                          pointybird RE: sfbing May 11, 2009 07:25 PM

                          I'm so hoping this is the issue, made-to-order vs. steam table/carts. Some food, I know, is heinous if it sits. My very favorite sandwich, cucumber and cream cheese, is so wonderful the second right after you make it. If it sits for even 20 minutes it starts getting gummy. Thanks for your advice, sfbing.

                    2. re: pointybird
                      bbulkow RE: pointybird May 11, 2009 03:13 PM

                      pointybird, you said "every time I taste dim sum it's so nasty", so sfbing made a reasonable conclusion - you might not like dim sum. It's hard to believe that every day, every place is "nasty" for you.

                      For you, what is good dim sum? Where have you liked?

                      Reading between the lines, you hate grease, and you only like fresh, clean tastes and textures. Your yearning for the clean white dumpling. Everything else is "nasty". While dim sum has some of that (chive dumplings!), I'd say it's not the strength of dim sum, which has all manner of tastes mushed together, and can be interesting and enjoyable (to me at least) even when a bit on the greasy and impure side.

                      I might even go to the blanket statement: whether one likes a genre shouldn't be judged against the perfect sample, but against the representative sample. *of course* the perfect sample is good.

                      1. re: bbulkow
                        pointybird RE: bbulkow May 11, 2009 04:16 PM

                        I don't mind grease (I do mind stale grease that is old and has been used too much and has an off taste). I don't mind tastes mushed together. The few dim sum items I have enjoyed were at Yank Sing: sesame balls, peking duck rolls, and pea shoot dumplings were wonderful; other things were middling to good (I liked the vegetable curry rolls), but priced more expensively than better tasting (to me) non dim-sum Chinese food. So far, IME in San Francisco, I can have a much better Chinese meal for what it costs to get dim sum.

                        One thing I do mind is very poor-quality meat, and that's an issue for me in a lot of dim sum items. I do appreciate that Yank Sing has a lot of vegetable items, and I liked most of them more than the meat items.

                        I'm very picky about the shell (I know that's not the right word) of the dumpling as well, and I know dumplings suffer from sitting. Perhaps the reason why I tend to like XLB at places like Kingdom of Dumpling is that they're piping hot when I eat them, whereas unless I get really lucky at the dim sum places things have been sitting for a few minutes.

                        1. re: pointybird
                          Chandavkl RE: pointybird May 11, 2009 04:29 PM

                          Aha! That means you need menu driven dim sum rather than carts.

                          1. re: Chandavkl
                            pointybird RE: Chandavkl May 11, 2009 07:27 PM

                            I was excited to try Good Luck because they have such high traffic on the weekends I thought things would be fresh...there were also huge lines which always make me think things are going to be good. Alas, no.

                            1. re: pointybird
                              Chandavkl RE: pointybird May 11, 2009 08:56 PM

                              Long lines at a Chinese eatery usually do mean good food. But there could be a couple of other reasons for long lines. It could mean especially low prices (for which many of us will sacrifice quality). Also in the case of take out dim sum, it could mean one, or a small number of items done well. For whatever reason, take out dim sum places just aren't consistent across the board in the same manner of sit down restaurants.

                          2. re: pointybird
                            r
                            realspear RE: pointybird May 11, 2009 04:53 PM

                            I eat regularly at Yank Sing (on Stevenson, I haven't really liked the one in Rincon Center on four visits) and don't find any problem with the meat. I also eat occasionally at Ton Kiang, which I find has quality dim sum. Today, I had dim sum at the Hong Kong Flower Lounge in Millbrae, it was good but greasier than in the city. However, the tripe was just fantastic, very tender, and the durian things (I have no idea what they are, flaky crust) were excellent. The lotus cakes (pan-fried, not steamed) had terrific texture. I still would prefer the less greasy stuff I get in the city.

                            1. re: realspear
                              pointybird RE: realspear May 11, 2009 07:28 PM

                              pan fried lotus cakes. that sounds delicious. The best thing we had from Good Luck was a turnip cake but again, it seemed like it had sat too long. It was cut in big rectangles, it looked baked maybe? Baked and steamed?

                            2. re: pointybird
                              twocents RE: pointybird May 11, 2009 05:46 PM

                              I understand and acknowledge that you have real issues with the places you've tried, but am curious to ask if perhaps you don't like the rice flour dumpling skins that are on many steamed dumpling items, as compared to the wheat flour skin of a XLB? The skin of a perfect (or indeed any) har gow will never be like the skin of a good XLB. The former will always have (compared to the XLB) a distinct gumminess/toothsomeness. Though of course a good example will not actually be gummy.

                              1. re: twocents
                                pointybird RE: twocents May 11, 2009 07:24 PM

                                How fascinating. I did not realize that, maybe that is an issue! I absolutely adore the rice paper wrappers that are around Vietnamese summer rolls and other delicious rolled up Vietnamese things; I like mochi, I like sticky rice of all kinds, including that thing I always see by the counter at Saigon Sandwiches that's a cone of sticky rice with banana inside. I can't imagine I wouldn't like a good rice wrapper that was fresh.

                                1. re: pointybird
                                  twocents RE: pointybird May 12, 2009 10:30 PM

                                  Melanie Wong's reply led me to look up recipes for the dough, and I find tha t I was mistaken... most recipes use a combination of wheat STARCH and tapioca starch, not rice flour as I had thought. So, I learned something interesting today.

                                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/582298

                                  1. re: twocents
                                    choctastic RE: twocents Apr 1, 2010 01:39 PM

                                    Yeah, I use wheat starch and tapioca. I don't think rice starch would have the tensile strength for this purpose.

                                    --sorry about posting to an old post. didn't see the date until too late.

                                2. re: twocents
                                  Melanie Wong RE: twocents May 11, 2009 07:29 PM

                                  rice flour and tapioca starch

                              2. re: bbulkow
                                peppermonkey RE: bbulkow May 11, 2009 04:32 PM

                                all dim sum places are not heavy on the grease...in LA there's a handful of made to order places where the skins/wrappers/buns are very fluffy and light with very fresh fillings...I've been curious if there are any made to order, non cart places in the bay area??...I've only been to cow palace and a couple of other places in the city, but non were comparable to the places in LA

                                1. re: peppermonkey
                                  wolfe RE: peppermonkey May 11, 2009 04:37 PM

                                  Enough time to change it to Koi Palace. The Cow Palace is a real place but no dim sum.

                                  1. re: peppermonkey
                                    pointybird RE: peppermonkey May 11, 2009 07:30 PM

                                    Yes, I want that! Fresh and light!

                            3. K K RE: pointybird May 11, 2009 09:43 PM

                              When my family and I were living in SF in the early to mid 90s, Yuet Wah on Clement was our go to place. I don't recall any innovative or unusual items, but they really did the classics great, like cheung fun and fried taro puff. I wonder how it measures up these days.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: K K
                                Melanie Wong RE: K K May 11, 2009 10:20 PM

                                Yet Wah on Clement makes my favorite version of suen jook guen (braised tofu skin roll) though I should add that I've not been there for almost 2 years.

                              2. s
                                SteveG RE: pointybird May 12, 2009 12:06 PM

                                I'm going to go out on a limb and generally agree with you. I think it's a full-time job to know where to get good dim sum in this city, and I often find myself going somewhere I used to like only to be disappointed.

                                There are many caveats to keep on top of:
                                1) When is the best team of chefs in the kitchen?
                                2) When is the kitchen making dim sum fresh vs. reheating frozen? (week nights might be frozen if they do offer dim sum on a menu)
                                3) When is the kitchen making the widest variety? (not necessarily when they open for service...and not necessarily after 2 PM)
                                4) Did they just lose their good chef?
                                5) Did they change ownership and the new owners have different priorities vis a vis the bottom line?
                                6) What are their specialties? Is someone really good with deep fried stuff but awful with dumpling wrappers? The opposite?
                                7) Where will the crowds suddenly descend, overwhelm the restaurant, and cause the 1.5 hour wait to raise expectations beyond the point where they could be met?

                                In general, I find the dumpling skins to be inexcusably bad on average in San Francisco, and I'm not just going to random places but trying to go to good places. I know what a pea shoot dumpling skin should feel like in the mouth, and most of the time they're too thick, too gummy from sitting in steamers for too long, and unevenly textured. I'm also annoyed with the proliferation of places serving abominable XLB.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: SteveG
                                  w
                                  whatsforlunch RE: SteveG May 12, 2009 04:47 PM

                                  I'm reading through the thread and my anger was just building up inside of me. And you, SteveG, totally posted the same thoughts I was thinking!

                                  My only other thought, kind of like your point #5, is that a lot of Cantonese places don't seem to care about what they put out on a day-to-day basis. If it's good today, and bad tomorrow, it totally doesn't bother them.

                                  Seriously, I don't feel the love when I eat dim sum or Cantonese food in general. I know the ingredients they use are the same ingredients I can buy at an Asian supermarket. Their chefs are just more skillful than I can ever be at wrapping up dim sum. There's no premium in the experience merely the convenience of being able to eat out.

                                  And my dear mom would say the chefs here don't innovate enough on their own. If one place puts out a new dim sum, all the other places will follow within weeks. So in the end, it all taste kind of the same.

                                  If I have to eat dim sum tomorrow, agreed, it would be outside of the city at Asian Pearl in Millbrae.

                                2. s
                                  Soup RE: pointybird May 12, 2009 05:07 PM

                                  Its been a couple of years but the best dim sum I've had in the US (canada included) has been in SF. It is hard to imagine that you cannot find decent dimsum in SF (chinatown or richmond district). Second best dimsum is flushings.

                                  1. s
                                    sugartoof RE: pointybird May 12, 2009 06:36 PM

                                    I love how people are questioning your personal taste preferences or if you like dim sum.
                                    The reality is the quality of Dim Sum has gone down hill within SF city limits, and the fact that Yank Sing is considered high end speaks volumes. It's not bad, and the ingredients are fine, but it's not stellar either. That level of dim sum used to be what decent, just okay places tasted like on Clemente. The other reality is, as the quality of ingredients has decreased, a tolerance for say, tough tendons has gone up in the city. In a way, it does come down to preference, but tasty dim sum, is tasty dim sum. I'm sure you're ordering what you would be liking if the stuff just was made fresh, with good ingredients, and tasted good. The problem isn't your taste buds or preferences, you just sound discriminating.

                                    Good Luck Dim Sum was pretty darn good, but no longer. If you're looking for something specific, like dumplings Ton Kiang might have appealed more at one point, though what they served was always on the greasy side. Today, I wouldn't know what to suggest. I've followed most of the suggestions people have given for dim sum in the past and been roundly disappointed. I did really liked the BBQ Pork Bun at Golden Gate Bakery recently, so if you just want one of those, it's worth a try. I still want to believe there's good dim sum to be had, but I too remain skeptical.

                                    11 Replies
                                    1. re: sugartoof
                                      m
                                      melisky RE: sugartoof May 12, 2009 07:15 PM

                                      I agree with sugartoof's assessment. I, too, went over to Good Luck on the recommendation of this board a few months ago and was not happy.

                                      I went to Yank Sing on Stevenson with family about a year ago or so and was really shocked at how disappointing the food was compared with my last visit there a few years prior.

                                      The only good dim sum that I've had in recent memory have been at Ton Kiang and Hong Kong Lounge. Just walking aimlessly down Clement Street has not been very fruitful.

                                      Point taken on the decrease in quality ingredients and I would add that's true across the board. I think the restaurants are really hurting and it shows up as poor ingredients on your plate.

                                      I will have to get to Golden Gate Bakery for that pork bun.

                                      1. re: melisky
                                        g
                                        gordon wing RE: melisky May 12, 2009 08:18 PM

                                        Cafe Bakery also does a very good pork bun.
                                        http://www.chow.com/places/49430

                                        1. re: gordon wing
                                          m
                                          margret RE: gordon wing Mar 31, 2010 05:57 PM

                                          I am sorry to report that the outstanding pork bun at Cafe Bakery is no more. I thought it was me so I bought it a couple of time. The skin used to be thin with ample amount of lean bbq pork. Now, the skin is rather thick and the filling is about 2/3 of what it used to be and not as tasty. They also charge over $1 for each, when any average pork bun in Chinatown taste similar to this. Cost of avg Chinatown bbq pork bun is 65 cents. I was a huge fan of Cafe Bakery's pork bun and am sad about this. Recently, I bought bbq pork buns from TC bakery on Irving. $1.60 for three mini ones and the bread is wonderful and the filling, albeit very little, was tasty. Try their Gai Mei bow too...same price and the filling is not that greasy and has a little coconut. Give it a try.

                                          -----
                                          Cafe Bakery
                                          1365 Noriega St, San Francisco, CA 94122

                                          1. re: margret
                                            Melanie Wong RE: margret Apr 1, 2010 01:52 PM

                                            LTNS, margret, I miss your voice here. Sadly, I agree with you about Cafe Bakery's bao. Have been a fan of the small ones from TC Pastry for a while now, the bread has better texture and their size makes them better for snacking.

                                            -----
                                            Cafe Bakery
                                            1365 Noriega St, San Francisco, CA 94122

                                            TC Pastry
                                            2222 Irving St, San Francisco, CA

                                            1. re: Melanie Wong
                                              m
                                              margret RE: Melanie Wong Apr 5, 2010 04:57 PM

                                              Glad to see you you are still actively posting. I've been away for awhile and am trying to catchup. BTW, the TC in Daly City does NOT have the same quality of dim sum as Irving, as I found out this last weekend. Friends were disappointed after my raving about the mini baos. Oh well.

                                              1. re: margret
                                                Melanie Wong RE: margret Apr 5, 2010 06:42 PM

                                                It's been a bit since i've been to the Daly City branch. The pork bao there are the full size, no mini ones, but they tasted the same to me as Irving just a bigger format.

                                            2. re: margret
                                              daveena RE: margret Apr 2, 2010 12:34 PM

                                              Oh... this makes me sad, so sad... I wonder what happened?

                                        2. re: sugartoof
                                          s
                                          SteveG RE: sugartoof May 13, 2009 11:00 AM

                                          Since my first salvo wasn't totally shot down...you may be open-minded to the idea of pricier dim sum not in a restaurant setting. Tru Gourmet is a catering business focused on dim sum, and we stumbled across them at the Hunter's Point Artists' Open House a few weekends back. Particularly good fried scallion pockets, specialty crab dumpling, siu mai, pea shoot dumpling, and plenty of other good standards as well. Not cheap, at $45 for two, but the quality was so much higher than we get at places that would typically run $30 for two with our appetite. They said they set up their stand at the San Rafael farmer's market, but their web site is still under construction so I can't give much more detail. For those that care, they're 100% organic. I was thinking about ordering from them for a weekend brunch at home, and inviting friends over. We'd be able to serve much better tea, beer, or even quality wine, and steam items individually.

                                          1. re: SteveG
                                            s
                                            sugartoof RE: SteveG May 13, 2009 11:29 AM

                                            Is it traditional Dim Sum made "clean" or in an updated style, or is it just really good dim sum made fresh in a manner we all wish more dim sum parlors were serving?

                                            $45 for two is about what you would have to spend at Yank Sing, and I think part of the problem there is it's good, but not so good that most reviews aren't preoccupied by pricing. Let's hope dim sum improves without having to embrace the price point of sushi or tapas.

                                            1. re: sugartoof
                                              s
                                              SteveG RE: sugartoof May 13, 2009 12:24 PM

                                              Well-made standards with a few of their own specialties. As for made fresh, they fill your order directly from the steamers, and a few things we wanted hadn't been in the steamers long enough yet to serve so we had to wait until they were ready. That definitely helped. I suppose later in the day, the unsteamed items might have been less fresh going into the steamers, but I imagine that as long as they're less than a few hours old and kept cold, it doesn't make much difference.

                                              I'm not sure if I fully understand the distinction in the question you're asking, but the quality and depth of the flavor was excellent, perhaps owing to things like Marin Sun pastured pork, and the execution was also excellent because we were being served things straight from the steamer, that had not been sitting in the steamer for ages.

                                              1. re: SteveG
                                                s
                                                sugartoof RE: SteveG May 13, 2009 01:51 PM

                                                I guess the comparison I'm trying to make is, are they trying to one up Yank Sing and Koi Palace doing the same thing with a organic ingredients approach or are we talking about upscaling the dishes in a Chinatown Brasserie sort of way (if that NY reference point means anything to you).

                                        3. cosmogrrl RE: pointybird Feb 6, 2010 02:40 PM

                                          I like the Hang Ah Tea Room myself. Tiny place with no carts and some very loud decor, think lime green with pics of Miss Chinatown from 40 years ago. Not very crowded and delicious ha gow in the shape of bunnies. Yes, bunnies! Delicious. Good prices too, and good service.

                                          Once when I was in there they had the family meal going; where the whole family that owned the restaurant sat around the table and ate some VERY delicious looking and smelling items.

                                          1. b
                                            bananadan RE: pointybird Mar 31, 2010 05:12 PM

                                            City View in an alley off Kearney is surprisingly good and quite reasonably priced. It has been consistent over many visits. Its name is humorous because the only view is of the wall of a building across the alley. But the place is clean, comfortable, efficient and delicious. They even validate parking at the Portsmouth Square Garage (two hours) which is basically right across the street. (Valuable hint: the line to get in the garage comes down Clay Street, not Kearney.)

                                            Tong Kiang can be good but is overpriced, and maybe not quite what it was at its peak. The Mayflower, in my experience, has varied from excellent the first time I visited to complete amateur hour on the second go-round. It must depend who is cooking, because there was no resemblance between the first and second visits; if the second trip had been the first there would not have been another meal there.

                                            -----
                                            City View Restaurant
                                            662 Commercial St, San Francisco, CA 94111

                                            39 Replies
                                            1. re: bananadan
                                              pointybird RE: bananadan Apr 2, 2010 10:15 AM

                                              Thanks for the review, I've seen that place, I'll give it a try!

                                              1. re: pointybird
                                                f
                                                FullPalate RE: pointybird Apr 5, 2010 06:33 PM

                                                I skimmed the topic to see how your trip to the Hong Kong Lounge went, but could not find what you thought of it. Maybe I missed your review of the restaurant, but I would like to know what time you went and what you ordered if it disappointed you.

                                                My weekend morning visits to this restaurant have yielded unmistakably fresh dishes. The fried and shrimp-stuffed eggplant has been crispy and hot, the flavorful meatballs steamed rare and absolutely tender when served, and the skins of the dumplings always had an excellent consistency - never gummy or mushy.

                                                -----
                                                Hong Kong Lounge
                                                5322 Geary Boulevard, San Francisco, CA 94121

                                                1. re: FullPalate
                                                  t
                                                  Tony Calgary RE: FullPalate Apr 28, 2010 10:17 PM

                                                  Hi guys,

                                                  We had planned on doing some dim sum / Chinese food during our honeymoon trip in SF, but having read through several of the threads, it seems like there might be better options for us.

                                                  We're coming from Toronto (which has pretty decent Chinese food) and have lived in Vancouver (probably the best Chinese food we've had outside of Hong Kong / China). With this as a baseline -- is there somewhere that isn't travel intensive that you might recommend? (we're planning on staying near Union Square/Chinatown as well as a side trip out to Napa).

                                                  Thanks for your help Chowhounders!

                                                  Tony :D

                                                  1. re: Tony Calgary
                                                    cosmogrrl RE: Tony Calgary Apr 29, 2010 12:07 AM

                                                    Try Hang Ah Tearoom, City View or Yank Sing. Hang Ah is the cheapest IMHO and right there in Chinatown. Hang Ah went downhill a while back but has new owners and some yummy stuff. Not the best, but very good. The others are pretty good, although I think Yank Sing is a bit better than City View.

                                                    Keep in mind that I'm also a heretic who thinks Coi doesn't live up to it's reputation.

                                                    -----
                                                    City View Restaurant
                                                    662 Commercial St, San Francisco, CA 94111

                                                    Yank Sing
                                                    49 Stevenson St Ste Stlv, San Francisco, CA 94105

                                                    Hang Ah Restaurant
                                                    2130 Armory Dr, Santa Rosa, CA 95401

                                                    1. re: cosmogrrl
                                                      b
                                                      benv RE: cosmogrrl May 1, 2010 03:31 AM

                                                      Koi does not do it for me either. I was rather very disappointed when I left the front doors.

                                                      1. I felt like it was a waste of money + BART ticket after I left eating a very large amount of its offerings and the only dish I somewhat enjoyed was the pan fried pork dumpling (and maybe the durian puff)
                                                      2. I consume a good amount of dim sum and Chinese so I should have no problem stomaching it, but I had the worst stomach pains after the meal for the rest of the day.
                                                      3. I was already expecting this but we got even worse service due to the fact that neither I or my friends were Chinese.
                                                      4. Some of the items we ordered off the menu took forever, and most of the ones that took even longer were the non-specialty items that I would then lose interest in.

                                                      I still have not been to Yank Sing but recently I have given up on dim sum in the Bay Area. Anyone suggest a place to turn me back on to dim sum?

                                                      -----
                                                      Yank Sing
                                                      49 Stevenson St Ste Stlv, San Francisco, CA 94105

                                                      1. re: benv
                                                        wolfe RE: benv May 1, 2010 08:07 AM

                                                        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/7048...

                                                    2. re: Tony Calgary
                                                      Chandavkl RE: Tony Calgary Apr 29, 2010 09:17 AM

                                                      After my last trip to Vancouver, I was unable to eat any Chinese food back home for a month. The gap is that great, and that's between Vancouver (the same goes for the better places in Markham et al) and the best Chinese places in the suburbs where the best Bay Area Chinese food is found. SF Chinatown is another rung below that.

                                                      1. re: Chandavkl
                                                        t
                                                        Tony Calgary RE: Chandavkl Apr 29, 2010 11:11 AM

                                                        I know EXACTLY how you feel! After our trip to Japan, we basically didn't have any sushi in Toronto for over 3 months! It was like we didn't want to ruin our taste memory of how amazing sushi/sashimi could be!!

                                                      2. re: Tony Calgary
                                                        f
                                                        Foodnut8 RE: Tony Calgary Apr 29, 2010 10:37 AM

                                                        Might want to just forget about dimsum
                                                        I recently returned from Vancouver, BC. Gotta say Kirin and Sea Harbour in Richmond, BC are far superior to our local SF Bay Area stuff and just a step below Hong Kong. Even the restaurant decor is a major cut above us.

                                                        Sea Harbour had every dish freshly made and steaming hot for you. The menu depth was much broader too.

                                                        If you really need a quality dim sum fix, drive to Koi Palace in Daly City. If you don't want to drive, hit Yank Sing, just lower your expectations.
                                                        You can look at my foodnut.com blog for a bunch of pictures.

                                                        -----
                                                        Koi Palace Restaurant
                                                        365 Gellert Blvd, Daly City, CA 94015

                                                        Yank Sing
                                                        49 Stevenson St Ste Stlv, San Francisco, CA 94105

                                                        1. re: Foodnut8
                                                          t
                                                          Tony Calgary RE: Foodnut8 Apr 29, 2010 11:48 AM

                                                          Thanks!

                                                          Hmmm. I guess we'll plan to pass on having Chinese in San Fran unless we get a really big craving and/or it's convenient when we get hungry. We'll keep Yank Sing, Hang Ah Tearoom and City View in mind if we are wandering and get hungry.

                                                          Oh, I've heard conflicting reports on here that one Yank Sing location is better than the other? Thoughts?

                                                          I guess Asian desserts or bubble tea type places probably don't meet the mustard either?

                                                          -----
                                                          City View Restaurant
                                                          662 Commercial St, San Francisco, CA 94111

                                                          Yank Sing
                                                          49 Stevenson St Ste Stlv, San Francisco, CA 94105

                                                          1. re: Tony Calgary
                                                            s
                                                            sugartoof RE: Tony Calgary Apr 29, 2010 12:46 PM

                                                            Golden Gate Bakery is perfectly good for egg tarts.

                                                            I have to agree that Chinese, including Dim Sum, isn't at it's best right now, in the Bay Area. There are a few standouts, but they're only standouts for the region.

                                                            -----
                                                            Golden Gate Bakery
                                                            1029 Grant Ave, San Francisco, CA 94133

                                                            1. re: Tony Calgary
                                                              Robert Lauriston RE: Tony Calgary Apr 29, 2010 02:27 PM

                                                              I've never noticed any difference in quality between the two Yank Sing locations.

                                                          2. re: Tony Calgary
                                                            cosmogrrl RE: Tony Calgary Apr 30, 2010 03:56 PM

                                                            FYI when I used to spend a lot of time in Vancouver (Mum was from there) there wasn't a lot of chinese food, like there is now. Think pre 86. So I can't really compare the two. I don't think the Chinese food in SF is not as bad as people are saying it is. But yes, Chinatown has some really bad places.

                                                            You may want to try the R & G lounge for their crab though.

                                                            FWIW my Vancouverite cousins always visit Chinatown, and say it's better than Vancouver's. They enjoy it. Best deals are off of Grant street, the main drag.

                                                            1. re: cosmogrrl
                                                              Ruth Lafler RE: cosmogrrl Apr 30, 2010 04:08 PM

                                                              Vancouver's Chinatown is kind of sad, as I remember. As in the Bay Area, most of the more recent immigrants -- especially the wealthier immigrants leaving Hong Kong in the early '90s -- settled in more suburban areas and not in the old Chinatowns.

                                                              1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                cosmogrrl RE: Ruth Lafler May 1, 2010 01:39 AM

                                                                IIRC it was much bigger. And there were some very wealthy people there. But that was many years ago, when my Mum was young. 86 changed it a lot, not unlike what happened here in SF.

                                                                A funny aside, my Mum's friend Pansy, who was Chinese, explained to my Mum that soy sauce was pigeon's blood when they were 9 or 10. Chinese food was quite exotic then. So my Mum explained to me when i was about 6 that soy sauce was Dragon's blood, just to keep the story alive and growing.

                                                                1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                  grayelf RE: Ruth Lafler May 2, 2010 10:24 AM

                                                                  What Ruth said, and bearing in mind we're on the SF board, there is not one place in Vancouver's Chinatown that I've seen recommended on the BC Board for dim sum. The only place down there that gets routinely recommended is a Cambodian resto (!). The SF Chinatown is much more fun to walk around in, and has many more dimsum takeout places for a quick bite. Though as a local I spend a fair amount of time here, I would not suggest that visitors go out of their way to spend any time in our C'town, sadly, if they had access to SF or TO Chinatowns. There are bars and more upscale restos there that get recco'd but no dim sum to speak of...

                                                                  1. re: grayelf
                                                                    Ruth Lafler RE: grayelf May 2, 2010 11:06 AM

                                                                    One exception to this pattern, BTW, is Oakland Chinatown, which actually had quite a resurgence in the '80s and '90s, first from Vietnamese immigrants and then from investors looking to move their capital out of Hong Kong. It's lot more vibrant than it was 30 years ago, although it will never have the kind of picturesque charm that makes SF Chinatown such an attraction.

                                                                    1. re: grayelf
                                                                      Cynsa RE: grayelf May 2, 2010 07:35 PM

                                                                      When we were in Vancouver, we enjoyed the historical walk through Chinatown. It is significant and of interest - although it appears to be a diminishing community.

                                                                      1. re: Cynsa
                                                                        grayelf RE: Cynsa May 3, 2010 11:23 AM

                                                                        As long as you didn't eat anything, Cyn :-(. Agree that there are some local guides who do a good job, but it's not like SF where you can just wander on your own and it feels worthwhile.

                                                                        1. re: grayelf
                                                                          yimster RE: grayelf May 11, 2010 08:19 AM

                                                                          grayelf, dim sum in Vancouver Chinatown is lacking. But there are couple of things at the Chinese Deli that are worth eating. I have walked that Chinatown many times and there is somethings worth buying and eating. However Richmond Chinese offerings that are better and there are more of them. As soon as my Doctor releases me for travel I will be there. Do I rate as a local guide?

                                                                          1. re: yimster
                                                                            grayelf RE: yimster May 11, 2010 08:59 AM

                                                                            Hey yimster, your post confused me. The link is to a place in Mill Valley...

                                                                            1. re: grayelf
                                                                              yimster RE: grayelf May 11, 2010 10:50 AM

                                                                              Did not know why the deli appear on the post. I was talking about Deli's on Keefer Ave in Vancouver. A Chinese "Smoked" BBQ sausage and Tripe stew at this deli call to me now. Do not remember the name of the two deli's but will post when I get there again.

                                                                              Can not wait for my next visit.

                                                                  2. re: cosmogrrl
                                                                    Robert Lauriston RE: cosmogrrl Apr 30, 2010 09:03 PM

                                                                    Compared with most places in the world outside of China, there's great Chinese food in SF. It's just the most of the best Chinese food in the Bay Area is arguably in shopping centers in the suburbs. There are probably at two or three remote suburbs of major cities in North America where you can get better dim sum.

                                                                    Personally I think Yank Sing is better than Koi Palace and not much more expensive.

                                                                    -----
                                                                    Koi Palace Restaurant
                                                                    365 Gellert Blvd, Daly City, CA 94015

                                                                    Yank Sing
                                                                    49 Stevenson St Ste Stlv, San Francisco, CA 94105

                                                                    1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                                      cosmogrrl RE: Robert Lauriston May 1, 2010 01:27 AM

                                                                      OMG! (yeah I said it) someone else thinks that Koi isn't the be all end all!! Thank You!!! I really felt like i was missing something at Koi.

                                                                    2. re: cosmogrrl
                                                                      c
                                                                      chilihead2006 RE: cosmogrrl May 6, 2010 11:14 AM

                                                                      Our last Chinese meal in the Bay Area was at R&G Lounge...and it was appalling...both the food and service.

                                                                      We've given up on Chinese cuisine in SF.

                                                              2. re: bananadan
                                                                y
                                                                yehfromthebay RE: bananadan Apr 29, 2010 05:52 PM

                                                                City View's not bad. It's a bit more Western than the places on the Peninsula (lots of FiDi lunchers), but I actually prefer it to the more authentic dim sum places in Oakland and the Peninsula because I don't feel like I swallowed a grease trap whenever I eat there.

                                                                -----
                                                                City View Restaurant
                                                                662 Commercial St, San Francisco, CA 94111

                                                                1. re: yehfromthebay
                                                                  t
                                                                  Tony Calgary RE: yehfromthebay Apr 30, 2010 10:29 AM

                                                                  Are the prices similar at City View? Or is there a considerable premium there over traditional dim sum places?

                                                                  -----
                                                                  City View Restaurant
                                                                  662 Commercial St, San Francisco, CA 94111

                                                                  1. re: Tony Calgary
                                                                    Ruth Lafler RE: Tony Calgary Apr 30, 2010 10:31 AM

                                                                    Don't go to City View. Really. You'll be disappointed.

                                                                    -----
                                                                    City View Restaurant
                                                                    662 Commercial St, San Francisco, CA 94111

                                                                    1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                      Mari RE: Ruth Lafler Apr 30, 2010 10:43 AM

                                                                      Really? I like City View. Why don't you like it?
                                                                      I admit that I prefer gringo-style dim sum and I don't know if City View is for Western palates. I have gone on Sunday mornings and the place is packed with Chinese/Chinese-American families. It's definitely not cheap but it's no where near as expensive as Yank Sing.

                                                                      -----
                                                                      City View Restaurant
                                                                      662 Commercial St, San Francisco, CA 94111

                                                                      1. re: Mari
                                                                        Ruth Lafler RE: Mari Apr 30, 2010 10:53 AM

                                                                        First, the "packed with Chinese families" argument is kind of silly. Almost all dim sum restaurants are "packed with Chinese families" on Sunday mornings -- that doesn't mean they're all good (or all equally good).

                                                                        In my experience, City View is gringo-ized, and furthermore, they treat their non-Chinese customers differently than their Chinese customers. In my experience. But more important, Tony has noted that he used to live in Vancouver and eat dim sum there. City View will be a grave disappointment to him.

                                                                        -----
                                                                        City View Restaurant
                                                                        662 Commercial St, San Francisco, CA 94111

                                                                        1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                          psb RE: Ruth Lafler May 2, 2010 08:21 PM

                                                                          >they treat their non-Chinese customers differently than their
                                                                          >Chinese customers
                                                                          >
                                                                          like what do they do?

                                                                          1. re: psb
                                                                            Ruth Lafler RE: psb May 2, 2010 10:08 PM

                                                                            Well for one, they took the chopsticks off the table and brought us forks without us asking for them. The carts that had anything that could be considered remotely "exotic" bypassed us and had to be chased down. Etc.

                                                                            1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                              choctastic RE: Ruth Lafler Jun 8, 2010 03:49 PM

                                                                              Hmm, I've brought white folk to City View and never had that happen to us. Actually, we got all the "exotic" stuff too.

                                                                              I actually like the food at City View. It's a nice looking restaurant too.

                                                                              -----
                                                                              City View Restaurant
                                                                              662 Commercial St, San Francisco, CA 94111

                                                                        2. re: Mari
                                                                          Chandavkl RE: Mari Apr 30, 2010 03:50 PM

                                                                          It's not that there's anything wrong with City View. But once you had dim sum in Richmond B.C. or Markham, Ont., you'd never want to go to City View again.

                                                                          -----
                                                                          City View Restaurant
                                                                          662 Commercial St, San Francisco, CA 94111

                                                                          1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                            choctastic RE: Chandavkl Jun 9, 2010 09:42 AM

                                                                            Yeah, but nobody in their right mind would compare it to a Richmond dim sum joint. It's just that there's so much hate against City View, which in my experience is unwarranted. For San Francisco dim sum, you can do much worse. They have decent--if not spectacular--food, a nice space, relatively decent prices. I would rather go there than one of the nearby places, like Gold Mountain, for instance. I actually think the food is better than Gold Mountain. Frankly, for someone who is used to Vancouver dim sum, I would suggest not doing dim sum at all. In fact, I would suggest one of the fabulous pizza places or Italian/French. Yank Sing is very pricey, esp compared to Vancouver places and Canadian prices, but it's probably the only place in the city I can think of that is remotely good enough.

                                                                            -----
                                                                            City View Restaurant
                                                                            662 Commercial St, San Francisco, CA 94111

                                                                            Gold Mountain Restaurant
                                                                            644 Broadway, San Francisco, CA 94133

                                                                            1. re: choctastic
                                                                              Chandavkl RE: choctastic Jun 9, 2010 09:46 AM

                                                                              Agree with you on City View; my initial comment is geared towards the original post on Bay Area dim sum in general. There are some people who have a single standard for food quality regardless of location (e.g., my wife). She cuts no slack to California Chinese food compared to Richmond. Most of us are more realistic, though.

                                                                              -----
                                                                              City View Restaurant
                                                                              662 Commercial St, San Francisco, CA 94111

                                                                              1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                Ruth Lafler RE: Chandavkl Jun 9, 2010 10:11 AM

                                                                                Wow. If anything that isn't the best in its class "sucks" she must be a very unhappy diner!

                                                                                1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                  Chandavkl RE: Ruth Lafler Jun 9, 2010 10:21 AM

                                                                                  Tell me about it. Only places in the Bay Area that she likes are Koi Palace and Moonstar (???!!!). She went to an Italian place that had been proclaimed "best" on a Food Channel show and scolded us for taking her there.

                                                                                  -----
                                                                                  Koi Palace Restaurant
                                                                                  365 Gellert Blvd, Daly City, CA 94015

                                                                                  Moonstar Restaurant
                                                                                  383 Gellert Blvd, Daly City, CA 94015

                                                                                  1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                    grayelf RE: Ruth Lafler Jun 9, 2010 10:21 AM

                                                                                    We've been warned off dim sum in SF as we come from Vancouver and have easy access to Richmond. As I've mentioned elsewhere, we've had tasty ds at Great Eastern and Dol Ho, and still think about the most outstanding such meal we've had yet way back in 2003 at what I think was Ton Kiang (didn't keep notes on food back then, more's the pity). We both like "old school" dim sum and are less focused on what's new so that may make a difference but we certainly haven't had a beef with the quality of dim sum that we've tried so far in SF. Now I'm curious about City View. Maybe we'll have to try it next visit, though I think the plan is to hit Tai Wu in Daly City as we've yet to venture outside SF proper for dim sum.

                                                                                    -----
                                                                                    Dol Ho
                                                                                    808 Pacific Ave, San Francisco, CA 94133

                                                                                    Great Eastern Restaurant
                                                                                    649 Jackson St, San Francisco, CA 94133

                                                                                    City View Restaurant
                                                                                    662 Commercial St, San Francisco, CA 94111

                                                                                    Ton Kiang
                                                                                    5821 Geary Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94121

                                                                                    Tai Wu Restaurant
                                                                                    1080 Foster City Blvd, Foster City, CA 94404

                                                                  2. steve h. RE: pointybird May 2, 2010 06:42 PM

                                                                    Yank Sing is a decent destination, both for Sunday brunch with the wife and weekday lunch when I pop over.

                                                                    What places do you like?

                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                    1. re: steve h.
                                                                      Ruth Lafler RE: steve h. May 2, 2010 07:28 PM

                                                                      Steve, did you read the other 78 responses in this thread about what places people like?

                                                                      1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                        steve h. RE: Ruth Lafler May 3, 2010 05:35 PM

                                                                        yes.
                                                                        well, maybe not. yogi talked about deja vu all over again.

                                                                    2. bbulkow RE: pointybird May 2, 2010 10:46 PM

                                                                      FYI, Zen Peninsula had no line at peak hours today. The scoop was the weekend before mother's day, people stay away, expecting to go mother's day. Don't go next weekend if you value your sanity. The same effect might occur weekend after mother's day, too.

                                                                      The place was very pleasant, excellent dishes. I had expected a step up given the raves here on CH - even wore nice clothes. Instead it was simply very, very solid. Likely the best I've had here in the states, but only very solid. Favorites were the clam black bean, garlic chive dumpling, pastry bbq pork, spicy tripe. Prices are good too: we gorged on about $20/pp. Apparently the owner just breaks even on the dim sum, and makes profit on the banquets.

                                                                      According to the owner, this is the very end of the king crab season. They've got a few left in the tank, then they're done. Next year I think I need to get a posse together and have a crab feast.

                                                                      Not that I talked to the owner. My table mates knew him, and talked a blue streak. Jokes about how our pleasant 6-top will squeeze in 10 next weekend.

                                                                      -----
                                                                      Zen Peninsula
                                                                      1180 El Camino Real, Millbrae, CA 94030

                                                                      1. f
                                                                        farmertommy RE: pointybird May 3, 2010 04:13 AM

                                                                        The answer to your question is, quite simply, YES!

                                                                        24 Replies
                                                                        1. re: farmertommy
                                                                          Ruth Lafler RE: farmertommy May 3, 2010 09:06 AM

                                                                          No, it's not. It's a ridiculous question. There's a huge difference between saying something is not as good as the best in the world, and saying it sucks.

                                                                          1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                            c oliver RE: Ruth Lafler May 6, 2010 08:43 AM

                                                                            I agree. I'm not going to mention places that we like because all that info is out there. I just really suspect that, at the heart of it, OP doesn't like dim sum. And there's nothing wrong with that. But not liking something doesn't make it suck.

                                                                            1. re: c oliver
                                                                              peppermonkey RE: c oliver May 8, 2010 10:11 AM

                                                                              disagree...dim sum does not have to be heavy and greasy...in the best places in LA and especially Vancouver the dim sum is light and fresh

                                                                              1. re: peppermonkey
                                                                                Robert Lauriston RE: peppermonkey May 8, 2010 10:17 AM

                                                                                Same here. Depends on where you go and what you order.

                                                                                1. re: peppermonkey
                                                                                  c oliver RE: peppermonkey May 8, 2010 01:59 PM

                                                                                  Were you replying to me? I don't think dim sum should be either of those things either.

                                                                              2. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                pilinut RE: Ruth Lafler May 8, 2010 11:16 AM

                                                                                It's exactly as Ruth says! It is absurd to make such a violent and hasty generalization about dimsum in San Francisco. There is doubtless some terrible dimsum--as I'm sure there is some disgraceful stuff in Vancouver and Hong Kong, places which do have better dimsum than SF. In any city there will be people of every ethnicity for whom food is fodder, and there will always be places that cater to them. One must avoid these places like the plague or come to the conclusion that an entire category of food is rubbish.

                                                                                1. re: pilinut
                                                                                  s
                                                                                  sugartoof RE: pilinut May 8, 2010 12:02 PM

                                                                                  It is important to get honest and admit a once heralded cuisine isn't thriving in SF as it used to. The quality of the ingredients and freshness of the preparation just doesn't cut it, and the techniques we have come to expect from top dim sum (or even regional Chinese for that matter) just doesn't exist here. There's nothing wrong with Yank Sing, but it's just not as good as even the mediocre dim sum which was available 20 years ago. There's still good chinese good to be had, but are they really destinations with notable food for tourists? I cringe at some of the places getting recommended.

                                                                                  1. re: sugartoof
                                                                                    Robert Lauriston RE: sugartoof May 8, 2010 12:13 PM

                                                                                    Twenty years ago, Yank Sing was second only to Harbor Village as regards quality, execution, and price. Yank Sing's quality has in my observation not declined. (I'm talking about the restaurants and not the stuff from the takeout window.)

                                                                                    1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                                                      s
                                                                                      sugartoof RE: Robert Lauriston May 8, 2010 03:52 PM

                                                                                      Robert - If you think Yank Sing is tops, and hasn't lost any luster than more power to you, but it doesn't taste any different than how the greasy spoons on Clement used to taste during most of the 80's. When I think of the best dim sum I've had in my lifetime, none of it was at Yank Sing.

                                                                                      I enjoy their food for what it is, but the bar has lowered. Gushing over mediocre food and holding it up as par excellence doesn't help matters.

                                                                                      -----
                                                                                      Yank Sing
                                                                                      49 Stevenson St Ste Stlv, San Francisco, CA 94105

                                                                                      1. re: sugartoof
                                                                                        Robert Lauriston RE: sugartoof May 8, 2010 05:37 PM

                                                                                        To hell with mediocre food. For me, Yank Sing sets the standard for taro dumplings, turnip cake, chicken mushroom dumplings, stuffed mushrooms, and custard tarts. Those dishes were all as good or better in the past year as they were when I first had them. They also make some of the best XLB I've had.

                                                                                        -----
                                                                                        Yank Sing
                                                                                        49 Stevenson St Ste Stlv, San Francisco, CA 94105

                                                                                        1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                                                          s
                                                                                          sugartoof RE: Robert Lauriston May 8, 2010 06:43 PM

                                                                                          Their custard tarts are far from the gold standard, which is probably Golden Gate Bakery.

                                                                                    2. re: sugartoof
                                                                                      Chandavkl RE: sugartoof May 8, 2010 12:16 PM

                                                                                      Actually, the best Chinese cuisine in North America (not to mention Hong Kong) continues to evolve and improve. Chinese food that was considered excellent 20 years ago is pedestrian today as new purveyors bring new ideas. (That's why I generally avoid Chinese restaurants that have been open for 20 or more years.) This is especially the case with dim sum, if you've eaten at Koi Palace in Daly City or the menu dim sum restaurants in the Los Angeles area, you can see the contrast with the old dim sum is night and day. The one exception is Manhattan, where Chinese food is stuck somewhere in the 20th Century.

                                                                                      Now your point is valid if you're comparing to how things were 30 years ago. S.F. lost its crown as the best Chinese food in the New World to New York, sometime in the 1980s. L.A. supplanted New York probably in the 1990s as far as the U.S. is concerned. However Vancouver, and to a lesser extent Toronto, are now way better than stuff in the U.S.A.

                                                                                      -----
                                                                                      Koi Palace Restaurant
                                                                                      365 Gellert Blvd, Daly City, CA 94015

                                                                                      1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                        Robert Lauriston RE: Chandavkl May 8, 2010 12:26 PM

                                                                                        To me, the joys of dim sum have little to do with new ideas. The sweet "coffee ribs" I had at Koi Palace were just a bad idea. The two best dishes I had there were roast pork and gai lan in oyster sauce, who cares if those are clich├ęs?

                                                                                        If a new dish is worth making at all, it soon becomes classic, like Yank Sing's mushrooms stuffed with pork and tarragon.

                                                                                        -----
                                                                                        Koi Palace Restaurant
                                                                                        365 Gellert Blvd, Daly City, CA 94015

                                                                                        Yank Sing
                                                                                        49 Stevenson St Ste Stlv, San Francisco, CA 94105

                                                                                        1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                          Ruth Lafler RE: Chandavkl May 8, 2010 12:30 PM

                                                                                          It sounds to me like you're comparing apples and oranges, though. You want "new ideas" and "evolved" dim sum, but that doesn't mean that classic dim sum is bad, only that you're not interested in it anymore.

                                                                                          1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                            Chandavkl RE: Ruth Lafler May 8, 2010 12:40 PM

                                                                                            It's more like 'new and improved" products compared to the "old and unimproved" which nobody admits to having made in the past.

                                                                                            1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                              Ruth Lafler RE: Chandavkl May 8, 2010 03:39 PM

                                                                                              How "new and improved" can a har gao be?

                                                                                              1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                                Chandavkl RE: Ruth Lafler May 8, 2010 03:52 PM

                                                                                                I've seen some places serve this with added ingredients, like little green vegetable bits. Also, there are new styles of shrimp dumplings, with alternative coverings in lieu of wrappers, such as glutinous rice or corn.

                                                                                                1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                                  Ruth Lafler RE: Chandavkl May 8, 2010 03:55 PM

                                                                                                  But then they're not har gao anymore -- they're something else. Which is my point. It's kind of like saying that a good quality but basic hamburger sucks because all the upscale trendy places are offering versions with foie gras -- that's fine, but it's a completely different animal.

                                                                                                  1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                                    Chandavkl RE: Ruth Lafler May 8, 2010 04:07 PM

                                                                                                    Well the har gao with the bits of asparagus or whatever they put in it is still called har gao, which means you can't be 100 percent sure of what you're going to get. But it is a matter of terminology. For example, I remember when the only char siu bao were large, steamed and with a fairly dry filling. Then came the baked ones, with the more savory and goopy fillings. Was this a different animal or just a variety of the old one?

                                                                                                    1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                                      c oliver RE: Chandavkl May 8, 2010 04:28 PM

                                                                                                      Have you had those har gao in SF and, if so, where? I think it's nonsense for a resto to call that "just plain" HG.

                                                                                                      1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                                        K K RE: Chandavkl May 8, 2010 05:52 PM

                                                                                                        Cha Xiu Bao evolved basically to multiple variants of meat inside dough

                                                                                                        -cha xiu soh (puff pastry)
                                                                                                        -cha xiu chaan bao (baked bun)
                                                                                                        -cha xiu bor lor bao (bbq pork inside flakey HK style pineapple bun, when in reality it's a spinoff of the Japanese melon bun, again in shape only)

                                                                                                        The third one is more of a newer innovation that came out of Hong Kong maybe within the last 5 years or more, but only recently started showing up in the Peninsula dim sum places.

                                                                                                        Koi Palace having the best dim sum in all of SF Bay Area (in addition to votes by Yank Sing)? I dunno...purely subjective. But Koi Palace being the only place that trumps all of the ones in SGV? Even harder to believe, especially when LA health department has outlawed bamboo steamers, and dim sum was meant to be served in bamboo steamers, not the metal/tin whatevers that are now used. I'm sure this is also a small factor as to why Din Tai Fung Arcadia is no longer tasting remotely as good as as Taipei's.

                                                                                                        1. re: K K
                                                                                                          Cynsa RE: K K May 10, 2010 03:26 PM

                                                                                                          here's my fave for cha xiu chaan bao: Lung Fung at 1823 Clement Street at 19th Avenue. The filling is tasty, not too sweet, tender chopped char siu, not-gloppy sauce and the baked dough is just right - light with just a mere whisper of sweetness.

                                                                                                          -----
                                                                                                          Lung Fung Bakery
                                                                                                          1823 Clement St, San Francisco, CA 94121

                                                                                                           
                                                                                                          1. re: Cynsa
                                                                                                            j
                                                                                                            Jay H RE: Cynsa Aug 9, 2010 10:56 PM

                                                                                                            Lung Fung is also my family's fave! We used to live around the corner and any time one of us is in the neighborhood, we pick some up.

                                                                                            2. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                              s
                                                                                              sugartoof RE: Chandavkl May 8, 2010 03:42 PM

                                                                                              Chandavki - our memories timelines may not align but I think we essentially agree....that said, it doesn't take new techniques to make a quality Shu Mai. it's true we've evolved, but they're not executing the classics the way they used to.

                                                                                    3. s
                                                                                      Samurai RE: pointybird May 12, 2010 12:20 PM

                                                                                      I have found City View on Commercial Street in San Francisco Chintown to be reasonably priced and ususally pretty good.

                                                                                      -----
                                                                                      City View Restaurant
                                                                                      662 Commercial St, San Francisco, CA 94111

                                                                                      1. c
                                                                                        chowmouse RE: pointybird May 13, 2010 04:20 PM

                                                                                        I've been reading the recent posts with much interest... about the Vancouver comparisons and about Yank Sing. I'll make these points:

                                                                                        - I have not found dim sum in the Bay Area that compares to Hong Kong's. I guess that's an obvious.

                                                                                        - Vancouver (Richmond)'s Sun Sui Wah is the best dim sum I've had outside of HK, but I don't feel it's significantly better than Zen Peninsula. It is better, but not by too much.

                                                                                        - I've been to one dim sum in Toronto... that was Grand Chinese Cuisine inside Airport Doubletree. It was pretty much on par with Sun Sui Wah, in terms of quality. What they lacked was the variety. That place alone is proof that better dim sum can be had in Toronto than in SF.

                                                                                        - SF still has lots of great dim sum options. Shortly after returning from a HK trip, I went to Koi Palace and still enjoyed it immensely. I too was down on Koi Palace for whatever reason for a period of time, but I have now again reconciled with the fact that their dim sum is still about the best there is in the area. My personal favorite is Zen Peninsula, though. I know people like to rip Yank Sing, but I personally feel it is definitely the best in the city and is pretty much on par with Koi Palace. Of course, it's hard to justify paying double the price as Koi Palace.

                                                                                        26 Replies
                                                                                        1. re: chowmouse
                                                                                          lapizzamaven RE: chowmouse Jun 2, 2010 10:17 PM

                                                                                          Ive only been "hip" to dim sum for a couple of years but ive been introduced to it by a friend who has dimmed in Shanghai &Hong Kong and so i feel comfortable in trusting his experience and my taste buds. My first dim was in SF 2 years ago. e were eating salt and pepper squid at Yuet Lee when we asked a waitress to recommend a Dim Sum spot for us. She pointed right down the street/Broadway, to Gold Mountain. We ate there early the next day and, im sure you SF Hounders will jump down my throat but...the shrimp dishes, 3 of them, were great...fresh, nutty&sweet in very thin wrappers...the vegetables fresh and crisp..a delicious sticky rice... I live in LA and since breaking my dim sum cherry, have been to a longtime large restaurant in the heart of Chinatown,Empress Pavillion, a place that regularly gets smacked down by LA CHers...who praise the new, suburban Chinese enclaves in the SG Valley as the only purveyors of Chinese food worth eating...We eventually also went to the most praised joint, Elite, in Monterey Park. I would have to say that all 3 wee excellent. We focused on the shrimps, Chinese broccolis and stick rice, with an occasional taro root or other item and i must say, i couldnt easily separate the three...All of them served fresh,nutty shrimps, shu mais, har gows etc...go ahead and slam me but as far as im concerned there is very good dim sum in Sf's Chinatown and for sure down here too.

                                                                                          -----
                                                                                          Gold Mountain Restaurant
                                                                                          644 Broadway, San Francisco, CA 94133

                                                                                          1. re: lapizzamaven
                                                                                            grayelf RE: lapizzamaven Jun 2, 2010 10:49 PM

                                                                                            lapm, give 'er nails! If it tastes good, it is good. I often find myself a bit baffled by the saveur de jour dimsum places in Vancouver/Richmond because I like old school dimsum, and damnit, I like carts (though that's not a deal breaker). I'm not saying the new style places don't have something going for them, but I like the classics done well. We have found these at at least a couple of dimsum joints in SF Chinatown on our visits there. Maybe we were just lucky...

                                                                                            1. re: grayelf
                                                                                              Ruth Lafler RE: grayelf Jun 3, 2010 09:13 AM

                                                                                              I agree -- that was basically my point in the part of the thread starting with this post: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/6190...

                                                                                              1. re: grayelf
                                                                                                yimster RE: grayelf Jun 3, 2010 09:10 PM

                                                                                                There are many types of dim sum. In San Francisco Chinatown there is old time comfort food dim sum, things I had as a kid and many times I will go to old places and have a bowl of rice top with chicken and shitake mushroom or black bean spare ribs and some har gow or sai mai and nice pot of tea and think about the good days.

                                                                                                Then there are time I go to the cutting edge of dim sum in Millbare, Richmond in BC or China itself for what the chef have come up with that is new or old that we no longer remember. So let not compare apples with oranges. There is a place for both when my diet permits it.

                                                                                                I soon hope to be up in your area and I hope to have some dim sum with Northern Houjnds. Until then.

                                                                                                There is no luck in finding great food, I think one has to have a nose for good food.

                                                                                            2. re: chowmouse
                                                                                              Robert Lauriston RE: chowmouse Jun 3, 2010 02:03 PM

                                                                                              "... it's hard to justify paying double the price as Koi Palace."

                                                                                              I didn't find Koi Palace much cheaper than Yank Sing:

                                                                                              http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/5843...

                                                                                              -----
                                                                                              Koi Palace Restaurant
                                                                                              365 Gellert Blvd, Daly City, CA 94015

                                                                                              Yank Sing
                                                                                              49 Stevenson St Ste Stlv, San Francisco, CA 94105

                                                                                              1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                                                                c
                                                                                                chowmouse RE: Robert Lauriston Jun 3, 2010 08:57 PM

                                                                                                I'm talking about dim sum now. Yank Sing is, for the most part, like $8-$10 per dim sum order. Koi Palace is more like $3-$5 for most items, which is pretty much in line with most places in Millbrae.

                                                                                                Yank Sing is the most expensive dim sum place I've been to in the US.

                                                                                                1. re: chowmouse
                                                                                                  Robert Lauriston RE: chowmouse Jun 4, 2010 09:08 AM

                                                                                                  When I last ate at Yank Sing in January, one dish was $4.35, two dishes were $4.65, and one was $5.45.

                                                                                                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/3160...

                                                                                                  When I ate at Koi Palace in March, one dish was $3.60, three dishes were $4.50, and three were $6.90.

                                                                                                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/5843...

                                                                                                  -----
                                                                                                  Koi Palace Restaurant
                                                                                                  365 Gellert Blvd, Daly City, CA 94015

                                                                                                  Yank Sing
                                                                                                  49 Stevenson St Ste Stlv, San Francisco, CA 94105

                                                                                                  1. re: chowmouse
                                                                                                    wolfe RE: chowmouse Jun 4, 2010 09:18 AM

                                                                                                    If you only order crab cakes, baked sea bass, xlb or honey walnut prawns you can claim that is the cost. However the rest of the menu is nowhere near that.
                                                                                                    http://sanfrancisco.menupages.com/res...

                                                                                                    1. re: wolfe
                                                                                                      K K RE: wolfe Jun 4, 2010 09:23 AM

                                                                                                      As a data point, the Shanghai pork dumplings come to about $1.63 a piece, which makes them the most expensive non crab interior XLB I've seen so far anywhere. Although to be fair, Koi Palace does crab roe XLB at $2.20 a piece on average, and crab meat XLB that looks like $3.20 a piece.

                                                                                                      Din Tai Fung in Arcadia (SoCal) runs $0.73 per and their pork and crab XLB come to $0.90 per (and DTF is considered expensive by SoCal standards and even in Taiwan).

                                                                                                      1. re: K K
                                                                                                        wolfe RE: K K Jun 4, 2010 09:41 AM

                                                                                                        A meal without XLB is not like a day without sunshine, skip them.

                                                                                                        1. re: wolfe
                                                                                                          K K RE: wolfe Jun 4, 2010 09:46 AM

                                                                                                          Very true, but it just so happens that KP and YS are the only dim sum restaurant exceptions where XLB are executed very nicely, despite the price tag. Definitely skipworthy in any other dim sum joint.

                                                                                                        2. re: K K
                                                                                                          Robert Lauriston RE: K K Jun 4, 2010 09:52 AM

                                                                                                          Yank Sing's XLB are made with Kurobuta pork, which might cost more than crab, and they get the wrappers right.

                                                                                                          I found Koi Palace's XLB sloppy and the wrappers were too thick.

                                                                                                          1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                                                                            lapizzamaven RE: Robert Lauriston Jun 4, 2010 09:58 AM

                                                                                                            Im embarrassed but can one of you CHers tell me what XLB is? i know im missing something great.

                                                                                                            1. re: lapizzamaven
                                                                                                              Chandavkl RE: lapizzamaven Jun 4, 2010 10:09 AM

                                                                                                              XLB=xiao long bao, also known in Manhattan as soup dumplings. Widely available throughout the San Gabriel Valley.

                                                                                                              1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                                                Ruth Lafler RE: Chandavkl Jun 4, 2010 10:19 AM

                                                                                                                They may be widely available, but at least in the Bay Area, very few places do a good job. Dim sum places in particular seem to have a very low success rate compared to Shanghainese restaurants. Koi Palace and Yank Sing are the only two dim sum specialists in the Bay Area that I know of that have consistently good XLB, and that's probably because they've made them a specialty and charge a premium price.

                                                                                                                -----
                                                                                                                Koi Palace Restaurant
                                                                                                                365 Gellert Blvd, Daly City, CA 94015

                                                                                                                Yank Sing
                                                                                                                49 Stevenson St Ste Stlv, San Francisco, CA 94105

                                                                                                                1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                                                  Robert Lauriston RE: Ruth Lafler Jun 4, 2010 10:48 AM

                                                                                                                  XLB are a Shanghai dish, so there's no good reason that Cantonese dim sum places should make them at all, let alone well.

                                                                                                                  Maybe Koi Palace was having an off day when I had their XLB, but they seemed clumsy.

                                                                                                                  1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                                                                                    c oliver RE: Robert Lauriston Jun 4, 2010 04:48 PM

                                                                                                                    Thank you. I was reading the above posts and wondering why people were discussing XLB at dim sum.

                                                                                                                  2. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                                                    Chandavkl RE: Ruth Lafler Jun 4, 2010 01:17 PM

                                                                                                                    Plenty of good XLB in the LA area, but as in SF, not a good idea to get them at a Cantonese dim sum restaurant.

                                                                                                                    1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                                                      Ruth Lafler RE: Chandavkl Jun 4, 2010 01:27 PM

                                                                                                                      In my experience almost all full-service Cantonese/HK dim sum places do make XLB, but for some reason I've never ascertained, unlike Shanghai restaurants they don't seem to be able to make them so they don't stick to the steamer (or each other) and thus rip, spilling the soup (if any), when you try to get them out of the basket.

                                                                                                                      1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                                                                                        Chandavkl RE: Ruth Lafler Jun 4, 2010 01:50 PM

                                                                                                                        Actually, I just attribute it to the encompassing maxim of not ordering non-Cantonese food from a Cantonese restaurant.

                                                                                                                        1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                                                          Ruth Lafler RE: Chandavkl Jun 4, 2010 02:07 PM

                                                                                                                          That, too. :-)

                                                                                                                  3. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                                                    bbulkow RE: Chandavkl Jun 4, 2010 01:03 PM

                                                                                                                    Further:

                                                                                                                    Arguably, manhattan soup dumplings vary from Shanghai XLB. The manhattan form as popularized by Joe's Shanghai are bigger and soupier than anything I've had around here or shanghai. In shanghai there are a number of similar soup dumplings (like the pan-fried version), and city-by-city variations (I miss Wuxi soup dumplings). XLB that we have here (and probably in SGV) are close to what I've seen in Shanghai.

                                                                                                                    Also: XLB have been widely commented on here at chowhound, and have been raised to a near-cult status.

                                                                                                                    1. re: bbulkow
                                                                                                                      Melanie Wong RE: bbulkow Jun 4, 2010 01:22 PM

                                                                                                                      The acronym and use of the Chinese (Mandarin) name may be particular to this regional board.

                                                                                                                    2. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                                                      lapizzamaven RE: Chandavkl Jun 5, 2010 08:43 AM

                                                                                                                      Thanks Chandavki for letting me know what this mysterious XLB is...i'll look for it in LA area.

                                                                                                                      1. re: lapizzamaven
                                                                                                                        Chandavkl RE: lapizzamaven Jun 5, 2010 10:28 AM

                                                                                                                        Any LA post on XLB will mention Din Tai Fung in Arcadia, outpost of a famous Taiwanese restaurant. A couple of years ago there were unfounded rumors that Din Tai Fung was going to open up in the Bay Area, which caused a furor of anticipation in the Chinese community, followed by disappointment when proven untrue.

                                                                                                                        1. re: Chandavkl
                                                                                                                          choctastic RE: Chandavkl Jun 8, 2010 03:52 PM

                                                                                                                          Those posts will also bring out the Din Tai Fung haters, who apparently hate the place mostly for the fact that it's popular and (relative to other soup dumpling purveyors) expensive.

                                                                                                      2. pointybird RE: pointybird Jun 4, 2010 01:26 PM

                                                                                                        Yeah, I finally had the experience of going to a decent dim sum place where things were served HOT. Ton Kiang on a weekday. NOW I get why people like dim sum. Yum. yum yum yum yum.

                                                                                                        -----
                                                                                                        Ton Kiang
                                                                                                        5821 Geary Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94121

                                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                                        1. re: pointybird
                                                                                                          grayelf RE: pointybird Jun 4, 2010 06:35 PM

                                                                                                          Congrats to the OP pointybird for sticking it out and finding dimsum that makes her happy!

                                                                                                          1. re: pointybird
                                                                                                            peppermonkey RE: pointybird Jun 8, 2010 04:09 PM

                                                                                                            Glad you didn't give up on dim sum...now if ya wanna be blown away go up to Richmond BC and go to Kirin

                                                                                                          2. v
                                                                                                            vulber RE: pointybird Jun 4, 2010 02:19 PM

                                                                                                            I indeed paid double what I did at Yank Sing than I did at Koi Palace.

                                                                                                            But if you compare their menus, you will find that on a per-item basis, Yank Sing is not double Koi Palace.

                                                                                                            I feel the difference is that when you go to Koi Palace, while you can order from the carts, it's a lot easier to just look at the menu, fill it out, and give it to them and get your food. When doing this, one makes price-conscious selections.

                                                                                                            But at Yank Sing, you only can order off the carts, where you don't know the prices without asking, and they constantly try to push the most expensive items on you.

                                                                                                            Therefore, it's easy to see why one often ends up with a bill double as much at Yank Sing than Koi Palace.

                                                                                                            That being said, while Yank Sing is significantly better than Koi Palace, and perhaps my favorite dim sum in the Bay Area it is not twice as good, and I find both to be overpriced

                                                                                                            -----
                                                                                                            Koi Palace Restaurant
                                                                                                            365 Gellert Blvd, Daly City, CA 94015

                                                                                                            Yank Sing
                                                                                                            49 Stevenson St Ste Stlv, San Francisco, CA 94105

                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                            1. re: vulber
                                                                                                              Robert Lauriston RE: vulber Jun 4, 2010 04:55 PM

                                                                                                              Yank Sing has menus with prices now, too. That's how I knew which items cost what and was able to compare it with Koi Palace.

                                                                                                              I've never felt like anyone pushed any particular items on me. They push all the items equally. No, for the tenth time, no thanks on the char siu bao / fried crab claw glob / neon Jell-O desserts / sweet bean lumps.

                                                                                                            2. r
                                                                                                              rhj97 RE: pointybird Aug 6, 2010 03:18 PM

                                                                                                              There is some acceptable one in San Francisco, South Sea Village, Riverside, House of banquet (Cheap), MayFlower, New Asia, Hongkong Lounge, Yeh Wah, Gold Mountain(will add to the list if I have time).
                                                                                                              I will not go to Yank SIng(too pricey!) not that special. and Koi Palace(bad attitude!, too long of a wait).
                                                                                                              Besides those Milbrae restaurants(by the way, South sea had one in Milbrae too), there are other in San Mateo, Mountain VIew, Sunnyvale, Palo Alto, Cupertino, Miliptias and San Jose too..it will be a big long list of dim sum places before you have time and spaces(stomach wise) to try them all out.

                                                                                                              -----
                                                                                                              New Asia
                                                                                                              772 Pacific Ave, San Francisco, CA 94133

                                                                                                              3 Replies
                                                                                                              1. re: rhj97
                                                                                                                wolfe RE: rhj97 Aug 6, 2010 03:24 PM

                                                                                                                Sorry you had a bad experience at Koi Palace. Mine was must better.
                                                                                                                http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/5700...

                                                                                                                -----
                                                                                                                Koi Palace Restaurant
                                                                                                                365 Gellert Blvd, Daly City, CA 94015

                                                                                                                1. re: rhj97
                                                                                                                  s
                                                                                                                  SteveG RE: rhj97 Aug 6, 2010 05:48 PM

                                                                                                                  Welcome to Chowhound! I'm intrigued to ask you follow-up questions, because you include some of my favorites and won't go to the Yank Sing & Koi Palace for the same reasons I won't.

                                                                                                                  Which of the first group you listed have you been to most recently that was your favorite? I have been meaning to try Hong Kong Lounge and MayFlower again. Your mention of Riverside prompted me find Melanie Wong's review, which is very complimentary for dinner:
                                                                                                                  http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/5504...

                                                                                                                  -----
                                                                                                                  Koi Palace Restaurant
                                                                                                                  365 Gellert Blvd, Daly City, CA 94015

                                                                                                                  Yank Sing
                                                                                                                  49 Stevenson St Ste Stlv, San Francisco, CA 94105

                                                                                                                  Hong Kong Lounge
                                                                                                                  5322 Geary Boulevard, San Francisco, CA 94121

                                                                                                                  1. re: SteveG
                                                                                                                    Melanie Wong RE: SteveG Aug 6, 2010 06:55 PM

                                                                                                                    I've tried the dim sum at River Side and can't really recommend it. Dinner cooks are better.

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