ISO: chinese restaurant that serves spicy wontons, pressed tofu strips with cilantro
recently came back from NYC where i had the most delicious szechuan wontons, small, with a lot of thin skin, boiled and served in a bowl of delicious spicy and sweet chili oil. also, a cold dish with thin strips of pressed tofu with cilantro in (?) sesame oil (very simply dressed). it was so good - i couldnt stop eating it.
the wontons were similar to ones i used to get at A&J in virginia - (i think they were called "spicy tangy wontons" or something). so freaking delicious.
in searching the board, i see some suggestions in SGV and HH - yunnan garden, for one - and it seems like there are other places that serve this -
whats the best place, and whats closest to the west side? im willing to drive (from west LA) but id like to know before i set out that its gonna be good!!
No 1 Noodle House in Rowland Heights for the chili won tons. Not sure about the cilantro with pressed tofu. Maybe the Food Court in Presidents Square in Arcadia. The corner of Duarte and Golden West. I've seen similar dishes at the stalls there.
No 1 Noodle House
18180 Colima Rd, Rowland Heights, CA 91748
Hongyou chaoshou (红油抄手; the chili oil wontons you're talking about) are available at plenty of places, including #1 Noodle House (mentioned below), Chuan Yu in Alhambra, etc. While I haven't had them at either of those places (I'm vegetarian), I think you will be pleased with the rendition at either of those.
Besides Yunnan and Sichuan places, a lot of places have a dry tofu strip appetizer -- I've seen it a lot at Shanxi style noodle places (like JTYH, Kam Hong Garden), though sometimes you have to add the red oil yourself. In both kinds of place, it will usually be an appetizer type thing, either served in combination with other dishes that are in dishes near the counter, or on plastic-wrapped plates in the refrigerator.
Kam Hong Garden
848 E Garvey Ave, Monterey Park, CA
If you're ever down in OC, Chong Qing Mei Wei on Jeffrey and Walnut in Irvine has both those dishes; the tofu strips are available from the cold appetizer bar. The wontons are an extremely common Sichuan snack and will47 has already given you the name in Chinese.