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Sep 23, 2009 09:09 PM

New Kam Fong, University & Elkins in Wheaton

Wea have been lamenting the state of late night eating in Wheaton of late. Irene's is great but loud music often makes dining there painful. We don't do Sergio's any more ofter horrendous service. Paul Kee has gotten dingy and the service dingier and the food boring. Full Key can be hit or miss. HEOTB is gone for now. And Wong Gee is all over the palce but basically good at best but it just hasn't made it to our hit parade.

So a couple of nights ago we saw New Kam Fong open and tonight we went by after a drive back from seeing friends in Baltimore.

They had a special of 2 lobster for $23.95 and our server was super friendly. But we were not very hungry and needed soup so we asked about pork and pickled vegetable soup and she came back with the suggestion of duck with pickled cabbage. We took her up on it and then added a plate of BBQ rib, pointing to their BBQ case across the room. She explained that that was different then the rib on the menu and she would have them chop 2 ribs for us and we would pay by the pound.

The rib hit the table first. It was rich, moist, well flavored with a tasty spice ruba nd a good sweet/soy based sauce. The order was nice sized but somehow did not last long. Very good and far superior to any BBQ meats we have had recently.

Then came the soup. It really was overfilled with white round noodles, lots of BBQ duck chopped into slivers, black mushrooms, pickled veggie and slivers of snow pea and fresh greens. The only quibble was that there was so much stuff in the bowl that there was barely enough room for the broth which was outstanding. Star anise and ginger were apparent. We added a splash of soy and red vinegar to balance the soup perfectly. As hard as we tried, we just could not finish the serving. 2 Tsing Tao, the meat and the soup were $26 and included two bowls of tapioca and chestnut soup in a reddish/grey broth. This dessert was one of the best version of a common dish we have ever had.

They have been open 6 days so far, the service is heartfelt and very friendly. They are still testing their hours but they are staying open till 1am for the first 30 days. I was checking out the fish tank and they had eel which they can deep fry, stir fry with black bean sauce or do "any way you want". The lobster looked good sized and there were a few crab as well as very plump looking Tilapia. The water was pristine unlike some places I could name.

If they are still shaking things out this is going to be a serious joint! We will be back to try some cooked foods and report more. We may even force ourselves to sacrifice and eat the two lobsters for $23.95!!!

But now our list for late night eats has two places far out in front on it: New Kam Fong and Kabab 'n Karahi on New Hampshire in Cloverly. These are two places where a couple can eat well, with great service and not drop more than $30.

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  1. Nice! Thanks for the tip.

    1. I ate at Dusit on Tuesday night, but picked up a carry-out menu from New Kam Fong. The menu is huge, and the dining room very nice and inviting. I will be eating there soon.

      3 Replies
      1. re: Mister Big

        Apparently they used to own Kam Fong in Chinatown on 7th which I never even knew existed. Unlike their current late night competition in Wheaton proper, they are really excited to have you in their restaurant and seem to be really helpful. I hope they make it because that was the best late night stop we have made for Chinese in Wheaton for a long time.

        1. re: deangold

          I had seen the signs for 'New Kam Fong' for some time, but did not know that they had opened already. I had been wondering if they were reviving the old Kam Fong in Chinatown. So it seems they are. I remember liking their beef chow foon. I will have to check them out.

          1. re: comestibles

            I had lunch there the first day they were open. I not sure what they called what I had - it was a waitress suggestion. It was narrow noodles stir fried with beef and very tasty. They were very, VERY hospitable and and I will be back to munch my way through their menu. They are a welcome addition to Wheaton and just might get Paul Key to shape up. Now Wheaton needs a good Szechuan place to balance the Hong Kong influence.

      2. So is this the place directly across from Wong Gee on University, on the corner I saw under construction? And what's the deal with late night at Wong Gee-- I had a great dinner there at 8 with the DR packed and noisy, in a happy way, and at 9 we were the only ones there. Is it deserted later, is it worth going back to later?

        7 Replies
        1. re: chowsearch

          Yes, New Kam Fong is right across the street from Wong Gee. Give it at try. My lunch experience was great and I will be back for dinner torrow night. As to Wheaton late dining traffic I am clueless

          1. re: chowsearch

            New Kam Fong is at the south west corner of Elkins and University in the former Schwinn shop.

            We have tended to go there at 10:30 or later and it usually has a large table and a couple of small ones filled. But I have never had what I wold call a great meal there, just a few nice dishes. What did you have at WG?

            1. re: deangold

              To clarify the above post, the second paragraph refers to Wong Gee.

              FOr lunch today I had a bowl of won tom noodle soup. Same reaction as my first meal. the broth was a little undersalted which I corrected with a little soy & hot chile paste, and the noodles were boiled in a meduim lacking in salt which made them a touch bland. But that is a quibble when compared to the incredible shrimp & prok wontons. Not since my last bowl at Kim Chuy's Chiu Chow Dumpling and Noodle Restaurant in LA's Downtown Chinatown has I had wonton this good. Again great service and they had 11 tables of which 8 were speaking Chinese at lunch.

              Not only will Full Key and Paul Kee have to take notice, but I thik that the soups & roast meats at HECOTB did not match up to what Kang Fong is offering up.

              The table next to me ordered the roast pig appetizer and it came out with incredibly crispy looking skin, a thick, succulent looking fat layer and big meaty chunks that looked moist. I restrained myself from hitting the couple over the head with a chair and stealing their plate of pig. Barely. As the waitress saw me drooling over the roast piggie, she smiled and pointed and said very good!!

              1. re: deangold

                Thanks, deangold, for posting. There are so many changes going on in Wheaton restaurants--I feel like all my old favorites have gone or gone downhill. Anybody know what's up with the old Hollywood East space? There's a sign up that says "Pashionfish" (sic) and they have taken the HE space as well as a couple of additional store fronts.

                1. re: shellymck

                  I was there today and it is ll black tinted windows and a faintly seedy look to it from the logo and sign. Not run down seedy, but some sort of club where everyone will be wearing dark sunglasses at 3pm.

                  I agree on Wheaton... I have never been a big EPR fan to begin with, Pollo Sabroso and Sergios are not my favs. Irene's has become so loud with music it hurts my ears to go in when they have it cranked up. If my car shakes out int he parking lot, I just pull out. Paul Key and Full Key are not in my rotatiom. Thai remains good with Ruan in front of Nava for me. Havent been to Dusit in ages but it was mentioned up thread. The New HEOTB is still up for lease. Wong Gee hasn't hooked me. Vit Goel has not been fun of late. So expect to see a lot of me at New Kam Fong if it remains this good and the rest of the menu is as good as the soups. I also love the steam table food at Asian Foods and I lvoe the felafel and Schwarma at Max's. Both are in the same plaza. And Pho Hwa Hiep seems to be on a rise. I had a great bowl of grilld pork & shrimp on noodles and a great spring roll.

                  But if you have not been to Kebab n Kahari in the Cloverly center on New Hampshire, you are missing the best food in the area right now.

                  1. re: deangold

                    After my dallaince at El Plugarcito (which left me satisified and feeling only slightly churlish for cheating on my new found love) I went back for more today. Within a minute or two of my sitting down, all the staff, most of whom know me by sight now} came by and said hi!

                    Roast Pig was better than it looked and it looked great. One waitress, who I never saw before, came by obviously to tell me that the skin and fat was the best part. But one look at the plate told her that I already knew so she just smiled at me. Next up was pork & 1000 year egg congee which, again, was in need of salt. But I usually like to add salt and red vinegar to my congee so this resulted in a perfect balance of flavor/salinity. The pork was richly flavored, chewy and well spiced. It was the star of the bowl, not the after thought.

                    My usual waitress answered a few questions about the menu. One dish I was mystified was beef motsu chow foon and she answered my inquiry with a very high complement: "It beef inside {pointing to her belly}. You order. You like real Chinese food!"

                2. re: deangold

                  >> I think that the soups & roast meats at HECOTB did not match up to what Kang Fong is offering up

                  To be fair, the soups and roast meats at HECOTB were never their strong point. From purely a dim sum perspective, roast meats (especially the crispy pig) at New Fortune have always been far better.

            2. My sister and I had lunch there today. Not as good as Hong Kong but definitely the best in this area!

              The roast meats were great. We ordered the trio of roast meats--roast pig, bbq pork and roast duck. I like that there are 2 sizes. We got the small and it was perfect.

              We each got a bowl of beef brisket noodles. I agree with Dean that the noodles were undersalted but afterward, I did not feel super thirsty like I used to at Hollywood East. My guess is that they don't use MSG. We also had stir-fried pea shoots. Tasty but pricey at $13. Overall, I enjoyed it and plan to go back soon.

              1. Another lunch, another find.... Green Leap in egg broth is pea tendrils or something similar in a borth with egg and 1000 year old egg. The egg is just floated into the soup and the white stirred a little into "rags" with the yolk being allowed to form a rather well done nugget. The 1000 year eggs were superb. In all, a spectacular dish. Kay was less enamoured than I was of the Pan Fried Noodle with Seafood. I thougth it clean and tasty, but still a little low on salt as amost everything here is. I should ahve asked for the chili paste and spiced it up a touch. Very filling and very good.