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Jan 25, 2011 11:48 AM

Chinatown: Garden Restaurant reopens. [San Francisco]

Okay, my go-to dive restaurant that served french toast for lunch, or won ton soup, or cheeseburgers, OR fish and chips has opened following a renovation.

I'm not sure if they still have the same menu across the board, but it is now brand new interior, squeaky clean and still cheap.

The food tastes almost fresh and healthy now and they have $3.95 lunch special each day (choice of two different dishes). As well as the regular menu with specials in the 5.95 to 7.95 range.

Nothing cutting edge, but good spot to send visitors worried about going to a run down place...

Breakfast is $4.95 (coffee included). I used to have breakfast for lunch and hope to see soon if it is still up to snuff....

Garden Restaurant
716 Kearny St, San Francisco, CA 94108

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  1. Thanks for the update. I thought they were a goner.

    1. Big question: Is their fabulous beef chow fun still on the menu and still fabulous?? Gotta check it out!

      7 Replies
      1. re: Sarah

        Yes, still on the menu and almost fabulous! The only thing missing is wok hei. Notable is the lack of greasiness and high quality beef (nothing tough or sinewy). I'm going to try it again this week for another sample. The staff I dealt with were friendly and accommodating for English speakers.

        1. re: elise h

          But wok hei is what it's all about. Anxiously awaiting your report!

          1. re: Sarah

            Sadly they lost a lot of customers, by having cheap lunch specials for a couple weeks and then abruptly dropping them. Then they raised prices shrank portions and discontinued breakfast for lunch.

            I now see they are advertising again the cheap specials, but a lot of local workers became disenchanted by the changes.... I really miss the char siu and scrambled egg... I tried to order it again and it was completely different.

            1. re: myst

              They do a good version of scrambled egg with cha sieu with wok hei at B&M Mei Sing.

            2. re: Sarah

              Still not much wok hei in today's beef chow fun. There are just so few places that do wok hei well that The Garden's chow fun earns an 85% score for me. Maybe my standard is somewhat low, but on my home electric stove, I'll never be able to create wok hei.

              Where do you go for chow fun with good wok hei?

              1. re: elise h

                Last week I had excellent chow fun at Harmony in MV -- excellent wok hei -- my only quibble would be the meat-to-fun ratio. Would love a lot more chow fun in the dish. Also excellent were the turnip cakes and a special of stuffed zucchini blossoms.

                1. re: elise h

                  Yuet Lee's dry style beef chow fun is my current favorite.

          2. Last month I gave the refurbished The Garden Restaurant a try for a solo meal. I ordered the seafood chow mein (Hong Kong style), $9.95, which were attractively presented in a miniature wok. Good job with freshly fried, greaseless noodle cake, juicy choy sum, and carefully cooked seafood (squid, prawns and scallops). In the photo the sauce looks excessive because its pooled on the top of the noodles but was turned out to be the right amount. And this was more than I could eat by myself.

            Here's the report from last week's chowdown, ordering the $138 set menu.

            1. If anyone's still shopping for Chinese New Year banquets, here's a link to the report from last year's dinner.

              These are the current banquet menus from The Garden.