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HELP! Chinese restaurant for rehearsal dinner near Sonoma/Calistoga/Santa Rosa???

ecmp0807 Jun 4, 2010 12:55 PM

Hi! I've been reading the boards for a while but this is my first post - I am so desperate for a good Chinese restaurant to have a banquet style rehearsal dinner! San Francisco is too far so we are thinking Santa Rosa might be our best bet. If anyone has any recommendations I would be sooo grateful.


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  1. PeterL RE: ecmp0807 Jun 4, 2010 01:29 PM

    There are a couple of pretty good places in Santa Rosa, but I am not sure if they are capable of serving a Chinese banquet.

    1 Reply
    1. re: PeterL
      ecmp0807 RE: PeterL Jun 4, 2010 01:37 PM

      Would love to hear your recommendations... Doesn't have to be banquet, just capable of serving good authentic (no egg foo young - i don't even know what that is!) Chinese food!!

      I grew up in Millbrae so I'm a little spoiled by all the good Chinese food there.

    2. j
      Jeni Bean RE: ecmp0807 Jun 4, 2010 02:22 PM

      I've been here almost 3 years and am continually underwhelmed by all of the Chinese offerings up here. People like Gary Chu's, but I find it pretty gross (ie. lemon chicken that looks like it has yello colored jello sauce on it.) Some co-workers rave about the Martini Prawns. I honestly don't think you can find what you are looking for in Santa Rosa or the surrounding areas. Now Thai, Nepalese, Mexican, we can do.

      Gary Chu's
      611 5th St, Santa Rosa, CA 95404

      1. t
        tom246 RE: ecmp0807 Jun 4, 2010 04:31 PM

        We visit Santa Rosa 3-4 times a year for the past 10 years. Finally found some good Chinese on our last visit. Here is a link to our visit and meal
        Can easily handle a banquet style rehearsal dinner. Enjoy if you go!


        5 Replies
        1. re: tom246
          Jeni Bean RE: tom246 Jun 4, 2010 04:36 PM

          I have to disagree.

          I've eaten here, and it is the closest you are going to get. Though, compared to Fuk Yuen, and other Millbrae/SF places it pales in comparison.


          1. re: Jeni Bean
            calalilly RE: Jeni Bean Jun 4, 2010 09:03 PM

            I highly recommend Fresh China in Coddington Mall. Ask for the owner, I forget his name, but tell him what you are looking for and he can create a customized menu. I went there recently for my aunt's birthday and it was delicious, especially for Sonoma County.

            Fresh China
            284 Coddingtown Ctr, Santa Rosa, CA 95401

            1. re: Jeni Bean
              tom246 RE: Jeni Bean Jun 5, 2010 09:45 AM

              And the Chinese food is even better in Shanghai, believe me, I've been there. The OP asked for a place in Santa Rosa, Millbrae is 67 miles away according to Mapquest.
              If a person asks me for a good restaurant in Philadelphia, I don't recommend one in NYC (about the same distance).

              Not trying to be a wise guy, just sayin....

              1. re: tom246
                ecmp0807 RE: tom246 Jun 5, 2010 03:31 PM

                Thanks everyone for their comments. Like I said, I grew up in Millbrae, so I have no problems finding a place there. I need a place somewhere near Calistoga where I am getting married.

                thanks everyone!

                1. re: ecmp0807
                  SteveG RE: ecmp0807 Jun 7, 2010 03:07 PM

                  What about a catered meal? Tru Gourmet (google them) puts out some really delicious dim sum as catering and at farmer's markets. They could probably plan a banquet with you and prepare it for you at whatever Calistoga location you are using.

                  Tru Gourmet
                  San Francisco, CA, San Francisco, CA

          2. Melanie Wong RE: ecmp0807 Jun 5, 2010 04:07 PM

            Will you be out here before the wedding to do some in-person taste testing? I think the top two candidates, Gary Chu's and Fresh China, have been identified for you to sample.

            It's been years since i've been to Gary Chu's myself so can't offer a personal rec. Gary is Shandong-ren. I'm told that if you order a special banquet menu of non-Americanized dishes directly with him and he cooks it himself, it can be very good but not the Milbrae Hong Kong-style you grew up with. Also, Gary Chu's has more attention on decor and service for a little more special experience (reflected in the prices).

            A year ago I gave Fresh China a try for dim sum. Oddly, try as I might, i could not get the Chinese waitress to point me to the best dishes until after we were done. She recommended the organic chicken rolls as the most popular dish, and these turned out to be dry, white meat (albeit Rosie organic) breast meat in deep-fried eggroll wrappers. Best dish was the shrimp filled rice crepe and the xiao long bao were decent, not great. Afterwards, the waitress warmed up to me more and told me what to order next time, but I've not been back yet. I think she said that the owner is Shanghainese and there are cooks from Hong Kong, so they can prepare a range of regional styles.

            Gary Chu's
            611 5th St, Santa Rosa, CA 95404

            Fresh China
            284 Coddingtown Ctr, Santa Rosa, CA 95401

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