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UWS rejoice! Grand Sichuan coming to Amsterdam

coasts Sep 18, 2010 10:57 AM

http://i.imgur.com/Jyr6F.jpg

Saw this outside of where Shark Bar was on Amsterdam and 75th. Could it be that the UWS will finally have good Chinese?

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  1. t
    tonmeister RE: coasts Sep 18, 2010 12:44 PM

    Def. REJOICE! I AM REJOICE-ING!

    The Grand Sich folks are pretty variable though, so it will be very interesting to see what chefs are working at the UWS location. Very promising, though! I can already taste the little pickled black beans...

    1. u
      uwsister RE: coasts Sep 18, 2010 02:08 PM

      Edible Chinese in UWS? You must be kidding! :)

      I am very happy to hear this! UWS just gets better and better :)

      1. bobjbkln RE: coasts Sep 18, 2010 08:30 PM

        Many (40-45?) years ago the only decent Chinese food outside of Chinatown were on the Upper West Side. They had the only Hunam and Szechuan Restaurants in Manhattan and two extraordinary Shanghai restaurants on Broadway near 125th St. I still miss those Shanghai restaurants.

        1. n
          nativeNYer RE: coasts Sep 18, 2010 10:14 PM

          DOING A JIG!!!! 4 blocks from my apartment. missed the sign b/c i was in san fran for the week. yay!!!! thanks for letting us know.

          4 Replies
          1. re: nativeNYer
            coasts RE: nativeNYer Sep 19, 2010 06:04 AM

            did you make it to the new UPN?

            1. re: coasts
              n
              nativeNYer RE: coasts Sep 19, 2010 12:31 PM

              UPN? uh-oh. please remind me what this. i know i will feel like an idiot when you do but i'm clueless at the moment. been traveling too much i guess. : /

              1. re: nativeNYer
                coasts RE: nativeNYer Sep 19, 2010 01:07 PM

                Una Pizza...Anthony Mangieri's place. It just opened in SF.

                1. re: coasts
                  n
                  nativeNYer RE: coasts Sep 19, 2010 07:14 PM

                  unfortunately not. uggh. i wound up traveling nonstop and focusing less on food. yes, that killed me but there were lots of places i wanted to see with very little time . scala is really the only place i'd recommend in the bay area. i may post something on the san fran board so we don't go off topic here. i also owe a review on the toronto page from last spring.

          2. a
            AubWah RE: coasts Sep 19, 2010 11:25 AM

            Cottage will run them out of business!!!!

            2 Replies
            1. re: AubWah
              coasts RE: AubWah Sep 19, 2010 01:55 PM

              i finally ate at Cottage the other night after having given up on China Fun and Ollie's. the pork dumplings were good, but the lo mein left a lot to be desired, as did the General Ching's Chicken. everything was greasy and nothing was worth returning for. all the free wine in the world can't fix bad food.

              -----
              China Fun
              246 Columbus Ave, New York, NY 10023

              1. re: coasts
                u
                uwsister RE: coasts Sep 19, 2010 03:31 PM

                I think he/she must be sarcastic. Has to be.

            2. s
              Simon RE: coasts Sep 19, 2010 01:23 PM

              Wow...that's great news...wonder what the delivery range will be...

              16 Replies
              1. re: Simon
                f
                FattyDumplin RE: Simon Sep 19, 2010 07:32 PM

                on the topic of chinese food in UWS, the A-Pou taiwanese food cart is now stationed next to the trader joe's. pretty limited menu of guo tie, some drinks, a noodle dish and hte classic taiwanese form of hot and sour, and corn soup. bought some of the guo tie but haven't tried them yet.

                1. re: FattyDumplin
                  n
                  nativeNYer RE: FattyDumplin Sep 19, 2010 07:34 PM

                  i saw this a few weeks ago. looking forward to hearing what you and simon think.

                  1. re: nativeNYer
                    u
                    uwsister RE: nativeNYer Sep 19, 2010 07:49 PM

                    Think Simon lives in London now, no? :)

                    1. re: uwsister
                      n
                      nativeNYer RE: uwsister Sep 19, 2010 08:37 PM

                      i recall his farewell post (and request for final meal recommendations) but i believe he has moved back. i could be wrong.

                      1. re: nativeNYer
                        s
                        Simon RE: nativeNYer Sep 20, 2010 12:58 AM

                        :) i was back (for a while, then back to China, then France, then was back in NYC this past August...

                        but it's true, i recently moved to London, where i'll be for quite a while...

                        i still check the Manhattan board though...the best meal i had in Manhattan in August was the Xian foods branch on St.Marks...

                        1. re: Simon
                          n
                          nativeNYer RE: Simon Sep 20, 2010 09:55 AM

                          oops. sorry. can't keep track of you, simon. still glad you are here on this board, though.

                  2. re: FattyDumplin
                    p
                    Pan RE: FattyDumplin Sep 20, 2010 08:26 PM

                    I didn't know there was a Trader Joe's on the Upper West Side. Where is it? Also, you described the offerings of the cart, but I'd love to know whether they're good or merely OK.

                    1. re: Pan
                      n
                      nativeNYer RE: Pan Sep 20, 2010 09:05 PM

                      Pan, the TJ just opened yesterday. It is brand spankin' new and is located in the new 200 West 72nd St. luxury building on Brdwy. You'll see a big Bank of Republic sign on the corner and the TJ's entrance is on Brdwy just off W72nd in the same building.
                      Ya can't miss it. The A-Pou cart was not there today when I stopped by at 11am.

                      -----
                      Trader Joe's
                      2075 Broadway, New York, NY 10023

                      1. re: nativeNYer
                        u
                        uwsgrazer RE: nativeNYer Sep 21, 2010 05:58 AM

                        Huh? I don't follow. Is the A-Pou cart located on 72nd Street? I thought it was supposed to be somewhere in the village

                        1. re: nativeNYer
                          f
                          FattyDumplin RE: nativeNYer Sep 21, 2010 06:00 AM

                          Spoke to the guy at the cart over teh weekend. There are apparently 2 carts now. We were walking around Sunday evening and happened to find the A-Pou cart right outside the TJ's.

                          Guo tie were decent. Nice and crispy, filling was not the best i've had, but pretty good. My wife had the majority of them and said she'd definitely get them again. My wife also had their hot and sour - she was a bit disappointed, because it looked and smelled like the Taiwanese style H&S soup, but ended up being ok.

                          1. re: FattyDumplin
                            buttertart RE: FattyDumplin Sep 21, 2010 05:09 PM

                            The nice Taiwanese-style guotie with the thin skins barely pinched together at the tops?

                            1. re: buttertart
                              f
                              FattyDumplin RE: buttertart Sep 22, 2010 09:42 AM

                              exactly! the skins were good. the filling was ok. overall, preetty decent though.

                              1. re: FattyDumplin
                                buttertart RE: FattyDumplin Sep 22, 2010 11:51 AM

                                Great! Will tell my man to be on the lookout, he works in that area.

                            2. re: FattyDumplin
                              k
                              kathryn RE: FattyDumplin Oct 8, 2010 09:14 PM

                              Were they made to order on the UWS cart? The EV cart served me ones that were just in a steamer and therefore a bit soggy (and also a bit tough).

                              I thought the filling was quite good and it would have been worth a detour had the skins been crispy and thinner! I tried all three kinds and liked the beef most.

                              http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/720526

                              Their Twitter account says they have 3 locations now.
                              http://twitter.com/apouspotsticker

                              1. East Village: Astor Pl & Lafayette St
                              2. Financial Center: Broadway and Liberty St
                              3. UWS: 72nd & Broadway.

                              1. re: kathryn
                                u
                                uwsgrazer RE: kathryn Oct 10, 2010 10:26 AM

                                We bought some pot-stickers from the UWS cart last Saturday (I think). It was mid-afternoon and the cart-operator spent a lot of time placing and cooking the dumplings. Initially, there were only about four of us in line but by the time he actually started serving the line had grown to about a dozen people. So, while I guess that doesn't exactly count as "made to order", he pretty much had ready buyers for his food and so you got served hot pot-stickers.

                                We also tried all three kinds and I liked the chicken best. They were a bit too greasy, but tasty enough. I might buy them again, if there's not much of a line. I wouldn't spend the time to wait, though.

                        2. re: FattyDumplin
                          j
                          jzungre RE: FattyDumplin Apr 22, 2011 03:09 PM

                          The dumpling stand has become a staple for my family.

                      2. h
                        harrison RE: coasts Sep 20, 2010 11:28 AM

                        I am jigging in absentia - I no longer live in the nabe but have long lamented the mediocre crap that passes for Chinese.

                        Enjoy everyone!

                        I'm happy that I have a decent Sichuan place in NJ where I live now (and Grand Sichuan St. Marks right by my office!).

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: harrison
                          n
                          nativeNYer RE: harrison Sep 20, 2010 09:06 PM

                          "I am jigging in absentia."

                          I like that a lot.

                        2. p
                          Pan RE: coasts Oct 8, 2010 04:28 PM

                          I was hoping this branch was already open. When is it scheduled to open?

                          1. a
                            AubWah RE: coasts Nov 29, 2010 01:32 PM

                            Updates? Is it open?

                            1 Reply
                            1. re: AubWah
                              n
                              nativeNYer RE: AubWah Nov 29, 2010 09:55 PM

                              not open yet as of last saturday night. i'll post an update here once i see it is open for business.

                            2. Kashei RE: coasts Nov 29, 2010 07:03 PM

                              I find that Chinese food is the one cuisine the UWS has in abundance. Shun Lee and Szechuan Gourmet (not exactly UWS but they deliver fairly high up) for the fancier stuff and Wok City for the corner Chinese spot.

                              -----
                              Shun Lee West
                              43 W 65th St, New York, NY 10023

                              Wok City
                              153 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10023

                              Szechuan Gourmet
                              244 W 56th St, New York, NY 10019

                              15 Replies
                              1. re: Kashei
                                p
                                Pan RE: Kashei Nov 29, 2010 08:53 PM

                                It may be abundant, but it sucks. OK, I've never been to Wok City, but I gave up on all the Shun Lee places years and years ago, and Szechuan Gourmet is on 39 St. between 5th and 6th I guess you live in the low 60s near Central Park West or something? The 90s are part of the Upper West Side, too. What Chinese food is there to eat there? Not a whole hell of a lot of even tolerable stuff.

                                1. re: Pan
                                  n
                                  nativeNYer RE: Pan Nov 29, 2010 09:56 PM

                                  pan, i couldn't agree with you more. it's the painful truth.

                                  1. re: Pan
                                    s
                                    Simon RE: Pan Nov 30, 2010 01:34 AM

                                    agreed...i housesit for friends on 97th/CPW once or twice a year, and the only Chinese food i've ever found near there is like something from a 1970's Gloppy Cornstarch Timewarp...

                                    1. re: Simon
                                      c oliver RE: Simon Dec 2, 2010 01:06 PM

                                      I know that place. On 100th, isn't it? It's where I first discovered :( that not all chow mein has noodles in it. Blech.

                                      1. re: c oliver
                                        p
                                        Pan RE: c oliver Dec 2, 2010 02:22 PM

                                        WTF? How do you have chow mein without the mein?

                                        1. re: Pan
                                          c oliver RE: Pan Dec 2, 2010 02:29 PM

                                          Here's my old thread on the subject:

                                          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/629916

                                          1. re: Pan
                                            Chandavkl RE: Pan Dec 6, 2010 12:32 PM

                                            It's an East Coast phenomenon. Same deal in parts of Florida, where you order lo mein if you want noodles in the dish.

                                      2. re: Pan
                                        b
                                        burton RE: Pan Dec 2, 2010 12:22 PM

                                        I assume the OP is referring to the Szechuan Gourmet location on W 56th Street. It's quite good - really good if you order correctly - and does deliver to at least a portion of the UWS. It's the only Chinese in the area worthy of attention.

                                        -----
                                        Szechuan Gourmet
                                        244 W 56th St, New York, NY 10019

                                        1. re: burton
                                          p
                                          Pan RE: burton Dec 2, 2010 02:22 PM

                                          Oh, I forgot about that location because the meal I had there, shortly after it opened, was so mediocre and totally unworthy of comparison to the 39th St. location.

                                          1. re: Pan
                                            b
                                            burton RE: Pan Dec 2, 2010 02:59 PM

                                            If so they've come a long way. Consider another try. If the steadily growing number of Chinese patrons the past few months is any indication you've clearly been missing out.

                                            1. re: burton
                                              a
                                              AubWah RE: burton Dec 2, 2010 03:10 PM

                                              ive noticed szechuan gourmet on 39th has been slippin

                                              1. re: burton
                                                p
                                                Pan RE: burton Dec 2, 2010 03:18 PM

                                                I have no reason to go there instead of the 39th St. location. Though I have to admit I was disappointed the last couple of times I went to the 39th St. location. The food was actually too spicy and oily for me (which is, of course, authentic), and I've never found their non-spicy items that interesting. (By the way, as I lived in Malaysia for 2 years, my spice tolerance is quite high compared to most mortals, so this isn't a case of a wimp who can't eat some chilis.) On the whole, I really prefer Spicy & Tasty in Flushing and (heresy coming!) Grand Sichuan on either 24th St. or St Marks, whose menus I know better how to negotiate.

                                                1. re: Pan
                                                  b
                                                  burton RE: Pan Dec 3, 2010 08:40 AM

                                                  So true about the value - even necessity - of learning how to navigate the menus. Whether it's Spicy and Tasty, Little Pepper, Chengdu Snacks, Szechuan Gourmet, Grand Sichuan, Wu Liang Ye,...I've had relative successes and disappointments in each and every case and inevitably it fluctuates over time. Places I've all but given up on have gone on to amaze me - and vice versa. You ferret out what works best for you and hope the good fortune lasts a while. Nothing surprises me in terms of varying critical reaction and mostly I'm delighted we have so much to choose from.

                                                  1. re: burton
                                                    p
                                                    Pan RE: burton Dec 3, 2010 09:16 AM

                                                    Boy are you right! Whereas not too long ago, there were no Sichuan restaurants to choose from, now there are a bunch, in at least 3 boroughs (I know of places in Queens, Manhattan, and Brooklyn but don't know whether or not there are places in the Bronx or Staten Island).

                                        2. re: Kashei
                                          a
                                          AubWah RE: Kashei Nov 30, 2010 02:48 AM

                                          Shun Lee is for suckers

                                        3. r
                                          RichardMW RE: coasts Dec 3, 2010 02:01 PM

                                          Once upon a time, a long time ago, the Grand Sichuan restaurants were pretty good. Then they opened many branches. With every new branch the quality seemed to drop down towards being just ordinary. The one at 50th and 9th avenue was good. But they closed.

                                          Maybe this one will be better than the other Grand Sichuan restauarants that I had tried in recent years.

                                          2 Replies
                                          1. re: RichardMW
                                            squid kun RE: RichardMW Dec 4, 2010 11:11 AM

                                            Anyone tried the new Hell's Kitchen location on 46th? Haven't heard much since it opened in summer.

                                            -----
                                            Grand Sichuan
                                            368 W 46th St, New York, NY 10036

                                            1. re: squid kun
                                              buttertart RE: squid kun Dec 5, 2010 06:57 AM

                                              I didn't even know it existed, thanks, great, very convenient!

                                          2. coasts RE: coasts Dec 8, 2010 07:39 PM

                                            how much longer are we meant to wait? i suffered China Fun again tonight.

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: coasts
                                              a
                                              AubWah RE: coasts Dec 9, 2010 02:45 AM

                                              my condolences

                                            2. coasts RE: coasts Dec 9, 2010 04:49 PM

                                              i walked by tonight and saw promising progress. opening should be this weekend, i'd guess. menus were already outside and the paper was off the windows. looks like there'll be a decent amount of seating.

                                              1. f
                                                fm1963 RE: coasts Dec 10, 2010 05:49 PM

                                                Woo hoo, the restaurant opened tonight. They are serving food, making deliveries, and planning to be on Seamless Web soon. I didn't get to try it since I had other dinner plans, but am looking forward to doing so in the next few days.

                                                4 Replies
                                                1. re: fm1963
                                                  buttertart RE: fm1963 Dec 12, 2010 08:04 AM

                                                  Great! You just made my husband's week.

                                                  1. re: buttertart
                                                    coasts RE: buttertart Dec 12, 2010 09:10 AM

                                                    Ms. Coasts and I went last night. The interior isn't complete yet, but they are serving. Seeing as we've been stuck with China Fun and Ollie's, we've kept our ordering limited to basics... Lo Mein, General Tso's...real simple. We applied this same tactic to Grand Sichuan and definitely saw an immediate improvement over our previous options.

                                                    We started with soup dumplings, which were mostly good but different in flavor. The broth was "beefier" than usual, but I liked it. Next we ordered a spicy noodle dish that Ms. Coasts likes. I forget the name. It was ok, but very salty. For our entrees, we shared chicken lo mien and general tso's chicken. The lo mien was flavorful and as good as it ever is. I'm never wowed by it anywhere. The general tso's was different fom usual. It was battered and served more like sweet and sour dishes. In any case, it was flavorful and of seemingly high quality.

                                                    We're anxious to go back and get a bit more adventurous.

                                                    1. re: coasts
                                                      p
                                                      Pan RE: coasts Dec 12, 2010 11:12 AM

                                                      I would strongly suggest you order Sichuan-style food next time.

                                                      1. re: Pan
                                                        coasts RE: Pan Dec 12, 2010 11:18 AM

                                                        That's the plan. We just wanted to do a comparison against our usual constants.

                                                2. a
                                                  AubWah RE: coasts Dec 13, 2010 01:11 PM

                                                  I stopped in today around 3:00. They told me they had been open 4 days. At one point very aggressive rap music was playing on their sound system. I remarked to the waiter it was the first time I had heard rap music played in a chinese restaurant. I ordered mapo tofu, figuring it is a fair measuring stick to judge a sichuan place. it was pretty average. the menu seems very focused on american chinese as well, as im sure this type of food will sell much more than the sichuan dishes. i think this place is probly very good for people wanting american chinese food as well as people looking for a safe introduction to more authentic chinese flavors. however for me it is not a place i would return to. the spicy mustard i requested to accompany my egg roll was very amateurish. not tasty. and the egg roll was about 1\4 as good as the one at my fairfield county ct place. Strange place.

                                                  1 Reply
                                                  1. re: AubWah
                                                    CBCebulski RE: AubWah Jan 3, 2011 04:58 AM

                                                    Which Fairfield County, CT place, if you don't mind my asking? (Is this the proper forum to ask?) Grew up there and go back a few times a month, but have only ever found one or two places to get decent Chinese, one joint in Bethel and the other in Shelton. Always curious. Thanks!

                                                  2. coasts RE: coasts Dec 14, 2010 04:50 AM

                                                    we went back last night and tried some more authentic Sichuan style dishes. the Gui Zhou Chicken had a strong pepper flavor without being too hot. it was good dish to share, as the sichuan pepper can become a bit overwhelming after a while. we also shared the Quick Sauteed Pork. i enjoyed it, but wished the pork/vegetable ratio could be more balanced. the dish is so pork-heavy that, by the end, i felt like i was eating a plate full of bacon strips.

                                                    Found out that the owners of this UWS location are the owners of the Lex. & 33rd restaurant, but not the St. Marks or the now closed Hell's Kitchen spot. neither owner seems to claim the 2nd Ave & 56th restaurant, which is the one i'm most familiar with. has Grand Sichuan become the new Famous Original?

                                                    Photos:

                                                    http://i.imgur.com/l7t1v.jpg
                                                    http://i.imgur.com/AE2Pc.jpg

                                                    14 Replies
                                                    1. re: coasts
                                                      buttertart RE: coasts Dec 14, 2010 05:18 AM

                                                      Lex and 33rd is one of the weaker GS's in town, that's rather too bad.

                                                      1. re: buttertart
                                                        p
                                                        Pan RE: buttertart Dec 14, 2010 02:56 PM

                                                        Agreed, that's a shame. I figure it'll still probably be the best Chinese restaurant on the West Side north of 56th St., though.

                                                        1. re: Pan
                                                          j
                                                          jcooper RE: Pan Dec 30, 2010 04:17 AM

                                                          Did takeout last night. Ordered boneless ribs, beef lo mein, and general tso's. Had to stick to basics 'cause of the family. Ribs were very good, lo mein tasteless, and the general tso's was simply the worst rendition I have ever had -- and being a long suffering UWS chinese food eater, that is really saying something. All soggy fry and bad taste. Two bites and into the garbage it went. I hope I simply ordered badly, but this was a pretty poor start. Delivery was reasonably quick and the staff (telephone order taker and delivery guy) seemed friendly.

                                                          -----
                                                          Grand Sichuan
                                                          307 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10023

                                                          1. re: jcooper
                                                            scoopG RE: jcooper Dec 30, 2010 08:02 AM

                                                            Well, you ordered American-Chinese food so I am not sure what you were expecting.

                                                            1. re: scoopG
                                                              j
                                                              jcooper RE: scoopG Dec 30, 2010 01:05 PM

                                                              I was expecting it to have been well executed and be tasty. Just because it is "American-Chinese" doesn't mean it will be poorly done. But thanks for your, um, helpful comment.

                                                              1. re: jcooper
                                                                coasts RE: jcooper Dec 30, 2010 01:09 PM

                                                                Agreed. If they're going to serve it, it should be good. Just because American-Chinese isn't their specialty, they're not excused for making it poorly.

                                                                1. re: coasts
                                                                  Miss Needle RE: coasts Dec 31, 2010 07:37 AM

                                                                  I'm not sure if you can really compare the two. Szechuan Gourmet, which many believe is the best Szechuan place in Manhattan, is pretty bad at cooking Chinese-American food. And I don't expect good "Hunan chicken" at a place that specializes in old American Chinese classics.

                                                                  -----
                                                                  Szechuan Gourmet
                                                                  21 W 39th St, New York, NY 10018

                                                                  1. re: coasts
                                                                    scoopG RE: coasts Jan 3, 2011 01:52 AM

                                                                    As Chandavkl has noted, all bets are off when American-Chinese dishes are ordered.
                                                                    Off-hand, the only American-Chinese dish I can think of at SG is General Tso's Chicken.

                                                                    1. re: scoopG
                                                                      k
                                                                      kathryn RE: scoopG Jan 8, 2011 08:17 AM

                                                                      http://szechuangourmetnyc.com/food-de...

                                                                      It's there, just tucked into the different chicken, meat, etc. sections.

                                                                  2. re: jcooper
                                                                    scoopG RE: jcooper Dec 30, 2010 01:44 PM

                                                                    Comparing apples to oranges here. Most folks on this thread are commenting on the Chinese food that GS is known for, not American-Chinese fare.

                                                                    1. re: jcooper
                                                                      p
                                                                      Pan RE: jcooper Dec 30, 2010 10:20 PM

                                                                      Have you had American-Chinese food at any other Grand Sichuan? Was it ever very good? In my experience, no. Sure, Sesame Chicken can be OK, but it's hard to screw that up.

                                                            2. re: coasts
                                                              Bob Martinez RE: coasts Dec 30, 2010 06:30 AM

                                                              "we also shared the Quick Sauteed Pork. i enjoyed it, but wished the pork/vegetable ratio could be more balanced. the dish is so pork-heavy that, by the end, i felt like i was eating a plate full of bacon strips. "

                                                              I have tried hard to think of why this is a bad thing. I have failed.

                                                              1. re: Bob Martinez
                                                                buttertart RE: Bob Martinez Dec 30, 2010 06:46 AM

                                                                Hear, hear.

                                                                1. re: buttertart
                                                                  hungryinmanhattan RE: buttertart Jun 5, 2011 01:48 AM

                                                                  Sounds delish!

                                                            3. s
                                                              Simon RE: coasts Dec 30, 2010 04:54 AM

                                                              Got takeout on Xmas day...all dishes (Guizhou chicken especially) were excellent and comparable to the quality of the (differently owned) St. Marks GS...was happy that they had the bitter melon and black bean (which has actually been taken off the menu at St. Marks)...

                                                              1 Reply
                                                              1. re: Simon
                                                                p
                                                                Pan RE: Simon Dec 30, 2010 12:53 PM

                                                                I'm glad to hear this.

                                                              2. p
                                                                peter j RE: coasts Dec 30, 2010 06:53 AM

                                                                Seconding the guizhou chicken. I also liked the meat dumplings in red chili oil, though Szechuan Gourmet's version is still my favorite.

                                                                I also discovered that the best dessert after a Sichuan meal is the hot chocolate at Jacques Torres next door.

                                                                -----
                                                                Szechuan Gourmet
                                                                21 W 39th St, New York, NY 10018

                                                                1 Reply
                                                                1. re: peter j
                                                                  coasts RE: peter j Dec 31, 2010 04:08 AM

                                                                  we tried the gui zhou beef last night and really enjoyed it. we really like the gui zhou chicken, but the beef might be even better. i took the dumplings in chili oil on your recommendation and thought it was good, but out of value. they should either give more or charge less for that dish. we also had an order of Dan Dan Noodles to round out the meal.

                                                                  we're glad to have them in the neighborhood and will do our part to keep them here.

                                                                2. m
                                                                  Marine Engineer RE: coasts Dec 30, 2010 06:40 PM

                                                                  for now, at least, it's BYOB.

                                                                  1. CBCebulski RE: coasts Jan 3, 2011 05:00 AM

                                                                    Just back from the holidays and am thrilled to hear this news! Szechuan on the UWS?! A happy new year already. My wife and I are planning on checking it out tonight. Thanks for heads up and all the early reviews!

                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                    1. re: CBCebulski
                                                                      CBCebulski RE: CBCebulski Jan 15, 2011 08:04 AM

                                                                      We've eaten here twice now and I'm happy to report both experiences, with different items ordered each time, were rather positive. Both the Chong Qing Spicy Chicken and Gui Zhou Spicy Chicken were excellent; spicy and flavorful but not overly hot and overpowering. Although my wife felt they skimped on the size of the pieces and included a little too much skin the time we had the Gui Zhou. The cellophane noodles with minced pork were cooked perfectly and the dan dan noodles were quite tasty as well. Their scallion pancake was simple and standard, nothing to write home about but perfectly acceptable. The only disappointments at each meal were the dumplings; first the Sichuan wontons in hot oil, and then the pan-fried pork dumplings. Both were gummy and chewy, luke-warm and lacking any real flavor, unfortunately. But all in all, I was happy with the quality of the food and service and will keep going back.

                                                                    2. c
                                                                      Chris loves food RE: coasts Jan 7, 2011 01:01 PM

                                                                      Went this week and I'm not sure I'll go back. Crispy pork dumplings were really gluey and Almond Chicken was very bland and had only carrots & water chestnuts. I guess I should have ordered something spicy. The dish wasn't BAD, just not great. And though my waiter assured me no MSG (although there was a definite language barrier) it was apparent two hours later that this was not the case. Sorry, I'm a fan of the rice noodles and the seafood dumplings with spicy Szechuan oil @ The Cottage .

                                                                      4 Replies
                                                                      1. re: Chris loves food
                                                                        p
                                                                        Pan RE: Chris loves food Jan 7, 2011 01:10 PM

                                                                        Before you make any firm decisions, try something Sichuan-style.

                                                                        1. re: Pan
                                                                          a
                                                                          AdamD RE: Pan Jan 7, 2011 01:30 PM

                                                                          Agreed. Do not order typical chinese food. And no offense, but almond chicken doesnt even sound good.

                                                                          Order chendu spicy dumplings, Pork Rib with cumin sauce, Gui Zhou Spicy Beef, Sliced Fish with red sauce soup, Chong Qing Spicy Chicken-if the menu is anything like some of the other grand Sichuan spots.

                                                                          1. re: AdamD
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                                                                            CatoUWS RE: AdamD Jan 7, 2011 01:45 PM

                                                                            Agreed. We ordered delivery the other night, and our order was at our door 15 minutes after hanging up the phone even though we are some 12 blocks away. That, alone, makes the place worth a second call.

                                                                            We had the Chong Qing Spicy Shrimp -- very good, if not excellent. Tasty and, unlike any other shrimp dish available on the UWS (including the Cottage, which has its place) not at all gloppy. (Chicken would probably be better, but Mrs Cato likes shrimp dishes.)

                                                                            Mapo tofu was good, spicy and not as oily as it can be in other places. Spicy sauteed Chinese broccoli was sharp and peppery (though Cato Junior would have liked more leaves and fewer shoots).

                                                                            Pork soup dumplings were as good as can be expected after traveling -- they arrived hot, but not as soupy as they would be right out of the steamer. Still soooooo much better than those small gummy billiard-balls other places call "dumplings". Dan dan noodles were just what they should have been (we get them without meat, so YMMD).

                                                                            All in all, we are thrilled at the added option in the neighborhood. Good food (OK, maybe not perfect, but -- so?), fast delivery (and they delivered everything we ordered, too -- unfortunately, that's remarkable in itself). Can't wait to try in-house.

                                                                            There's plenty of room for Grand Sichuan *and* The Cottage!

                                                                            1. re: CatoUWS
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                                                                              FattyDumplin RE: CatoUWS Jan 8, 2011 10:13 AM

                                                                              some good news for upper upper west siders... i called yesterday and they deliver up to 95th street... Above 87th there is a $5 surcharge, but that seems reasonable to me.

                                                                              also, even better... wait for it... THEY ARE GOING TO HAVE HOTPOT!!! That's the plan at least once they get things under control. i've had the hotpot at the grand sichuan in chinatown. it's not great... but beggars can't be choosers.

                                                                      2. coasts RE: coasts Jan 15, 2011 08:13 AM

                                                                        it's worth mentioning that Grand Sichuan has a weekend lunch special at $6.95, which includes a soup and an entree w/ rice. we've been a few times now for lunch and dinner, and have had delivery more than we should care to admit. the mapo tofu is my new favorite.

                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                        1. re: coasts
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                                                                          uwsgrazer RE: coasts Feb 26, 2011 11:54 AM

                                                                          We went for the "lunch special" today: $7.75, available daily from 11:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. We did take-out and were generally pleased. We got two wonton soups, one Guizhou spicy chicken and one shredded pork with dry bean curd. The soup broth was tasty and flavorful. Two wontons per serving; three would have been nice, but maybe for the price I'm okay with only two. Guizhou chicken was pretty spicy, but not ridiculously so. We're saving the pork dish for later and so I can't provide feedback, yet.

                                                                          All in all, a very welcome addition to the neighborhood. We definitely plan to return to try more dishes.

                                                                        2. t
                                                                          Tmae RE: coasts Jan 26, 2011 10:22 AM

                                                                          I picked up food here for the first time the other night & a single order of chicken w/brocolli came close to $14 with tax. I have NEVER paid that mach at any regular Chinese restaurant in the city, and I have been here 7yrs. I was really excited to see there was finally a Chinese place in the neighborhood, but unfortunately it is a little pricey for what is offered. The inside does look nice, so if you are palnning an actual dinner outing the prices are understandable, but not for a habitual delivery or pick-up.

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                                                                          Grand Sichuan
                                                                          307 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10023

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                                                                            swannee RE: coasts Jan 26, 2011 10:43 AM

                                                                            Hurray indeed!! With all its limitations, it's still the first real Chinese on the UWS since Shun Sha Fu closed 20 years (if you ordered from the Shanghai menu). I have already been 4 or 5 times--it is not as good as the Canal St. original, but better than some of the others. The menus (and management) are different as well. It is definitely uneven: the spicy tendon, the sour long beans (yummy!!!), the sliced fish with pickled vegetable are wonderful; the mapo tofu, the gungbao chicken, the noodles are only so so. But it's so wonderful to get anything like real Chinese food around here, and the menu is huge, so I am planning on working my way through it. It is rather pricey--and the portions aren't huge. But I am in a very forgiving mood, I'm so happy to have them in the neighborhood.
                                                                            As for Cottage: does ANYONE go there for Chinese food (other than the pot stickers, which are surprisingly good). We go, because of the free wine, and because it's so cheap! And put up with the American glop (which none of the staff would dream of eating--always a sure sign!).

                                                                            -----
                                                                            Grand Sichuan
                                                                            307 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10023

                                                                            1. coasts RE: coasts Feb 26, 2011 04:45 AM

                                                                              Delivery from the Grand Sichuan UWS location has been disappointing, at best. after last night's meal, i remarked how it might not be long before we ordered from Ollie's again. we had thin sliced pork in sweet black bean sauce, dan dan noodles and two vegetable rolls - $30 inc. tax & tip. the pork was a turnoff. the rest of the dish was onion - maybe an entire onion. i didn't finish it and didn't save it. the dan dan noodles are only ever ok, but never great.

                                                                              i've noticed a tremendous difference between their delivery and dine-in. i'm only three blocks away, and the food comes quickly, so it's not as if it's getting cold/old in route. some of our favorite dishes are now reserved for dine-in only after seeing how poorly they travel.

                                                                              also, menu has changed. prices are up. still glad to have them nearby, but the honeymoon is over.

                                                                              4 Replies
                                                                              1. re: coasts
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                                                                                uwsgrazer RE: coasts Feb 26, 2011 05:02 AM

                                                                                Wow, that was a short-lived honeymoon. I'm just getting caught up on the thread, and went from I'm definitely going today for the weekend lunch special, to now reconsidering! In any case, I wonder if they save the better prepared dishes for those dining in. You didn't seem to imply that but a pork dish that is mostly onion isn't the result of having to "travel".

                                                                                1. re: coasts
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                                                                                  gloriousfood RE: coasts Feb 26, 2011 10:16 AM

                                                                                  I've dined in twice and ordered out once, and yes, there is a discernible difference in the quality of the food between the two. Also, the food tends to be a bit greasy. But overall, I've enjoyed it.

                                                                                  So far, we've had:

                                                                                  Sauteed Loofah
                                                                                  Mapo Tofu
                                                                                  House Spicy Beef Noodle Soup
                                                                                  Sichuan Wonton w. Red Oil
                                                                                  Dry Tofu w. Celery in Scallion Sauce
                                                                                  Spicy Chicken with Chinese Broccoli

                                                                                  Have I had better in Chinatown and Flushing? Sure. But this place is a much-needed improvement over the other Chinese food options on the UWS, and let's face it, sometimes you just want something close and this more than does it for me.

                                                                                  1. re: gloriousfood
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                                                                                    Simon RE: gloriousfood Mar 14, 2011 12:34 PM

                                                                                    i ordered delivery last week around noon, jetlagged and starving: i called them about 2 minutes after i walked into the house, after returning from five weeks in Japan...

                                                                                    it was good, but i'd say a notch below what i'd had there in January and at past meals from 24th St and St. Marks locations...but still the best Chinese in the neighborhood by far...

                                                                                  2. re: coasts
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                                                                                    travel.eats RE: coasts Mar 14, 2011 05:22 PM

                                                                                    I really like having a Chinese restaurant in my neighborhood that actually offers food with FLAVOR. The woman who answers the phone is friendly and super efficient. My only complaint is that the food is -- as many have mentioned -- pricey. And, has anyone else noticed how the food has become much less spicy recently?

                                                                                  3. j
                                                                                    JoLi RE: coasts Apr 21, 2011 10:26 AM

                                                                                    Anyone know if they serve hot pot in this location?

                                                                                    4 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: JoLi
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                                                                                      swannee RE: JoLi Apr 21, 2011 01:40 PM

                                                                                      Yes the Amsterdam Grand Sichuan does serve Hot Pot, though I haven't had it yet. By the way, after a period when the food was getting less consistent and much less authentic (and spicy), it seems to be getting better again! Keep on insisting on real Sichuan taste and always try to order at least one dish that is not not part of the typical generic American ersatz-Sichuan repertoire: there are plenty of them on the menu.

                                                                                      1. re: swannee
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                                                                                        JoLi RE: swannee Apr 22, 2011 06:20 AM

                                                                                        Swannee - Thanks! I'm so excited that they have hot pot. Just sucks the winter is behind us now :)

                                                                                        1. re: swannee
                                                                                          coasts RE: swannee Apr 22, 2011 03:21 PM

                                                                                          agreed. we've even found a few dishes that deliver well.

                                                                                          1. re: swannee
                                                                                            CBCebulski RE: swannee Apr 24, 2011 09:19 AM

                                                                                            Seeing activity on this thread made me hungry so we ordered in from Grand Sichuan last night for the first time in a few months. Came quickly, nice and hot, tasted great! My only complaint is that their Gui Zhou Spicy Chicken was no where near spicy enough. Even compared to past orders if memory serves. Ended up adding extra heat on my own. But still the best Chinese joint in this area, IMO.

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                                                                                          plf515 RE: coasts Sep 16, 2011 03:07 PM

                                                                                          Been here several times. The eel is very good. The hot and sour soup is OK. Most of the Sichuan dishes I've tried were pretty good

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                                                                                          Grand Sichuan
                                                                                          307 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10023

                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                          1. re: plf515
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                                                                                            swannee RE: plf515 Sep 16, 2011 07:37 PM

                                                                                            After nearly a year in business, they have pretty much settled in. It will never be as good Spicy and Tasty or even the Canal St. Grand Sichuan, but some dishes are good and reliable: Chicken soup with loofah (si gua), Egg with bitter melon, sour long beans with pork, Gui Zhou chicken, eel, and also fish with black pepper. Noodles and dumplings are so-so. Cumin lamb ditto. Dofu dishes are mostly good. If you ask for spicy, it will be reasonably hot, but never very hot.
                                                                                            But it's still real Chinese food on the UPS!!!

                                                                                            -----
                                                                                            Grand Sichuan
                                                                                            125 Canal St, New York, NY 10002

                                                                                            Grand Sichuan
                                                                                            307 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10023

                                                                                            1. re: swannee
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                                                                                              RichardMW RE: swannee Sep 17, 2011 08:48 AM

                                                                                              I agree. Good. Best on uws. Not great.

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