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Nov 15, 2009 03:09 PM

Xiao Long Bao and Cats' Ears Noodles In Reseda

Thanks to "hound Agent Woods for the tip on cats ears noodles and other non-Cantonese goodies in Reseda. The post referred to Tampa Garden in Reseda, but it's really a restaurant with three different names. The exterior signage says Chinese Delight, while the menus etc. say Tampa Garden Chinese Delight, possibly an ode to the previous tenant at that location, and the Chinese language business card carries a parenthetical name Happy Dumpling. (Wonder if that's the Chinese name.) The menu is relatively short, but it also has several varieties of dumplings (pork, chicken, lamb) as well as hand made noodles. Also chive cakes. The cats ears are different from some of the others I have, having the rough size and shape of a date. Chinese Delight/Tampa Garden/Happy Dumpling Chinese Restaurant is at 8241 Tampa Ave., SW corner of Roscoe.

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  1. Do they have any cat ear noodles in a soup?

    1 Reply
    1. re: Galen

      Cats ears are pan fried with vegetables and your choice of meat. But they seem very friendly there so perhaps they might make a soupy version for you.

    2. Thank you Chandavki. I've been dying to try XLB since I first read about it on Chowhound. I never get out to the SGV. I'm going to give this a try very soon.

      1. What did you order that was the best and what did you see on the menu that you want to go back and try? Thanks.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Hughlipton

          I only had the cats ears which were actually a little too thick for my taste. The durian and avocado boba looked interesting--maybe next time. Hand made noodle dishes also may have possibilities. Also would like to try the chicken dumplings, since most of the dumpling places in the SGV don't make a chicken version, and while the Americanized Chinese restaurants in West and South LA do make them, it's very hit and miss. (My favorite is George's House in Inglewood.)

        2. Thank you for trying it out first for the team. I have heard of this place, and passed by it so many times. After seeing your review last night, my wife and I went to give it a try. The family is from Honan (河南), China. The mom was originally operating a restaurant from Princeton, New Jersey, she moved here to help her daughter and gradually introduce this Chinese Northern Cuisine. You would think that this place is a fast food chinese place, but it is not, it is a sit down restaurant. I have to say, the service was excellent, very accomodating. The mom was wrapping Pork & Dill Dumpling (all hand made dumplings are 5.95) when we stepped in. We were the only customers from 7:00 PM to 8:30 PM. So that was the first order of the night, since I like lamb dumplings, she suggested to prepare them potsticker style instead of boiled, as we already have that for the Dill Dumplings. We then ordered the Cat's Ears Noodles, I have to agree with Chandavkl, that the Cat's Ears are too thick/dense for our taste as well. As to Galen's question, if they serve it in a soup, the answer is no. My wife who is from Taiwan and she was expecting it to be in a soup as well, but their version is different (see pic). We then ordered Sauteed Vege with Hot Peppers (辣椒小炒), the vege was cut green beans. The last dish was the green onion pancake (蔥油餅), a very different version. I think it is more like 'hand grab pancake' (抓餅). Lastly, we ordered frozen dumplings - 25 pieces of Pork & Dill Dumplings and 25 pieces of Pork & Chinese Spinach to go. The dishes we ordered were between 5.95 to 7.95. 50 Frozen Dumplings are 15 (some are 12). Do not expect delicate dishes, it is more like home made, a little on the rough side. I will go back and try other dishes, they ran out of Celery and Dried Bean Curd (芹菜豆干), when we wanted one to go. They are very nice people and will try to accomodate your preference. The mom sat down in the middle of our meal and had a nice chat with us.

          4 Replies
          1. re: jotfoodie

            Wow! Wow! Thanks a lot, Chandavki. Who would expect a really great Chinese restaurant on Roscoe and Tampa! The xlb's are made to order right in front of you. Bigger than golf balls, smaller than tennis balls, they're huge and soupy! Both ladies there are very nice. The mother does not speak English and keep trying to communicate with me in Mandarin (which I don't speak). Next visit I'm going to try the lamb with knife cut noodles. I went for the 1st time this afternoon and may go back again this evening!

            1. re: jotfoodie

              Thanks for the background info. It clears up a couple of things. When I went to the old Tampa Garden last year I didn't see any of the good stuff (except for the live crab in the tank), so when I saw the new exterior sign and the new menu a few days ago I had assumed it was a totally different operation. However, that turns out to be mom's new touch instead. Also, mom gave me a Chinese business card with something looking like a telephone number written on it, but which started off (646). Guess she's still using an east coast telephone number.

              Tampa Garden
              8241 Tampa Ave, Reseda, CA 91335

              1. re: Chandavkl

                I think what mom's business card is for is when you want to order xlb's to take home. It's just me guessing though because I don't know how to read Chinese. I can't get their beef chow fun out of my mind. Their beef is real tender and plentiful.

              2. re: jotfoodie

                Hmmm I used to frequent a place called "New China Restaurant" in Hamilton NJ (close to Princeton) run by a couple probably in their late 50s.

                It was located in a ramshackle wooden building and served predominantly northern Chinese food. I heard they closed a few years ago, wonder if it's any relation?

                "The mom was originally operating a restaurant from Princeton, New Jersey, she moved here to help her daughter and gradually introduce this Chinese Northern Cuisine."

              3. Do you know what their hours are? TIA

                6 Replies
                  1. re: jotfoodie

                    Hours are 11AM until 9PM and closed on Wednesday according to their business card. When I called they said they're open 'til 9:30 tonight.

                    1. re: Galen

                      I sent a friend there last night and he loved the place. I haven't been back yet but will probably go tomorrow afternoon. I put a review on Yelp. If there are any Yelpers here, please write a review and support the place. They deserve to stay open.


                      1. re: Galen

                        I had the lamb noodle soup tonight. The noodles were too thick for my liking. Thicker than chow fun noodles. The XLB and beef chow fun were tremendous though. I saw two people order the cat ears. They also looked too thick, almost like gnocchi.

                        1. re: Galen

                          Actually, the similarity to gnocchi did subsequently occur to me.

                          1. re: Chandavkl

                            That was exactly what I told my wife, after taking my first bite:)