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Oct 7, 2009 04:05 PM

Fish Dumplings At Sun Chinese Restaurant in San Mateo

Wandering aimlessly through downtown San Mateo after being shut out of H. K. Causeway by a banquet, we stumbled across the newly opened Sun Chinese Restaurant at 251 S. B Street. I'm not going to say that Sun erased my disappointment, but it is definitely worth a mention. I guess Sun Chinese would best be described as a pan-non Cantonese Chinese restaurant (what we used to call in the old days a Northern Chinese restaurant). The highlights were the dumplings and noodles. The fish dumplings, a ubiquitous dish in the L.A. area, but which I had never seen in the Bay Area or New York, was a welcome find, though only average by L.A. standards. A second dumpling which I believe is filled with shrimp and cucumber, was good (as was the seasoned cucumber cold appetizer). Jia jiang noodles were very good, the noodles having a firm, krinkly chewiness that you usually don't see for this dish. Also, the tofu and fish hotpot was very good.

Out of curiosity, does anybody know of other Chinese restaurants in the Bay Area serving fish dumplings?

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  1. We came across Sun Chinese Restaurant on Monday when we were looking for a place to eat. The chow mein was okay but we loved the orange beef (there was lots of beef on the plate) and the pork with garlic sauce.

    1. Both Sun Tung and Everyday Beijing, both also in San Mateo and both also on B Street, have excellent fish dumplings. Sun Tung is off 2nd St and Everytday Beijing is further out; around 6th or 7th St.

      2 Replies
      1. re: JoyM

        Never tried Sun Tung's (since their pork and cabbage dumplings contained too much seasoning, particularly sesame oil in the contents and thus not very good) but Everyday Beijing's fish dumplings are made with what seems like rock cod (the waiter mentioned Shi Bahn but that's grouper and I really doubt it) and chives.

        1. re: K K

          I've never had Sun Tung's pork and cabbage dumplings, but their pork and dill dumplings are fantastic.

      2. Cafe Yulong in Mtn View has good fish dumplings

        Cafe Yulong
        743 W Dana St, Mountain View, CA 94041

        1 Reply
        1. re: hhc

          Forgot about Cafe Yulong. Thanks.

        2. How do you say fish dumplings in Cantonese? Are they a dim sum item as well?

          12 Replies
          1. re: Sarah

            Fish (or pork or lamb etc. etc.) dumplings are not dim sum and not Cantonese.

            1. re: Chandavkl

              Several regions have their own version of fish dumpling, including the Cantonese.
              The pronunciation in both Mandarin and Cantonese is quite close: Yu Dan.
              I'd say pork dumpling is très Cantonese!

              1. re: Parigi

                Yu Dan is fishball, made out of machine ground fish paste and traditionally rolled (and "beaten") by hand. Quite a few variations on the fishball of course (and spinoffs using cuttlefish, octopus, squid etc)

                Yu Rou Shui Jiao would be the Northern (or non Cantonese) style fish dumplings (boiled kind). Yu Yuk Sui Gow would be the Canto pronounciation.

                1. re: K K

                  Never had Yu Yuk Sai Gow before available locally? Made it before but not had it out.

                  1. re: yimster

                    What I wrote was both Mandarin and Cantonese pronounciations of the Northern style fish dumpling. I do not believe there is a Cantonese style sui gow that has fish meat in it, at least not that I am aware of.

           Hong Kong you can get fish siu mai (similar to fishball in texture but wrapped around siu mai skin) of those late night snack things. You can also get the Cheong Kee frozen version (made in Hong Kong) at CrC in Millbrae and Marina (and maybe 99 Ranch) supermarkets.

                    Dessert Republic in San Mateo has the fish siu mai dessert, but I don't think they make them in house. Served with soy sauce and some chili oil. I believe Eggettes in South SF and Millbrae has them too. Loosely speaking, I suppose you can call "fish siu mai" as "fish dumplings" too. But bottom line, totally unremarkable compared to the Northern style fish jiaozi (tastes better with chopped chives).

                    1. re: K K

                      OK, on one Chinese Christmas party we had a dumpling party, where we had six or more type of dumplings. A fish dumpling was served. I remember liking it a lot and made some at a later date. We did use sui gow skin from Hong Kong Noodle factory.

                      My normal dumpling is a stuffed mochi flour pork ball.

                      1. re: K K

                        There is a fish siu mai at the Hong Kong Snack Shop in the Pacific East Mall in Richmond, so I presume they've imported that idea from modern day Hong Kong.

                        1. re: Chandavkl

                          Yup, just like importing the idea of street food snack revival in dessert and specialist type shops (like eggettes, imitation sharks' fin soup, fish siu mai, plain cheung fun with various sauces)....and we're still quite far behind in the Bay Area, as apparently nobody over here so far is offering curry fish siu mai skewers....just yet (just found out from pictures on flickr that it exists!).

                        2. re: K K

                          There is a cantonese fish sui gow. Fish skin dupmpling.

                          1. re: commando

                            You're right...I stand corrected. But as far as with fish being on the inside, don't think I've encountered that yet.

                            1. re: commando

                              Fish skin dumpling not filled with fish paste. The skin made from yam and lard are so smooth that they are compared to the smooth fish skin.

                              But I now know of any place where I can get that again.

                              Would like to find some to make "fish skin" dumpling.

                              Another subject fo me to investigate.

                        3. re: K K

                          I've eaten fish balls forever but never had a fish dumpling until 6 or 7 years ago.

                  2. Noodle Shop in San Mateo has a solid version

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: vliang

                      China Stix in Santa Clara has a good version as does HC Dumpling at Cupertino village off of Wolfe Road.