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Why do people go to Shun Lee?

Years ago I would get dim sum at shun lee cafe before Philharmonic concerts. Not bad. And Shun Lee West would have some hong kong or banquet style dishes not seen on other chinese menus. S o when a friend wanted to go there, I agreed. What a rip! 4 mediocre, floury dumplings for $13?? Szechuan peppercorn duck that was just regular peking duck - but bonier. A tiny portion of chinese broccoli, with wonderful mushrooms that were doused in a thick inedible brown sauce.

The one standout dish- stir fried sweetbreads and green peppers. Excellent.

Along with a half bottle of saki, and an order of fruit, the dinner above cot $170 before tip.

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

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  1. Maybe years ago Shun Lee West was good. Today the food is over priced and mediocre. It is a true tourist trap. I won't return.

    4 Replies
    1. re: ellenost

      Omg that sounds scary. Is there a difference between the one on the east side vs. the one on the west side? I have been to neither of them but was going to check it out one of those days.

        1. re: AubWah

          Wow that sounds bad. I guess I will stick with PF Changs here in the suburb at least I can get some shopping done at the mall and the price is much lower.

      1. re: ellenost

        I agree, I loved it as a teen. Nowadays the guys in tuxes are so sweet, but the food, well, let's show some respect, but maybe eat elsewhere. Adam D is right: 30 years ago. But what great memories!

        www.shrinkinthekitchen.com

      2. Because there was a time when that food was new to Americans. And tasty as well.
        About 30 years ago.

        1. Ha! I was at Bouchon this morning and overheard a group say they were on their way. apparently the wait at Landmarc was too long. i had to stop myself from intervening.

          1. I went for years, until I discovered CH and learned better!

            1. Shun Lee was the first place I had upscale Chinese, so it will always have a place in my heart. If not my future dining plans.

              3 Replies
              1. re: small h

                These days I go to Chin Chin instead.

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                Chin Chin
                216 E 49th St, New York, NY 10017

                1. re: MMRuth

                  I have a rather ridiculous bias against Chin Chin based, believe it or not, on my hatred for the defendant in a trial I was on the jury for years ago - he ate there before side-swiping a cab with his Rolls. I should really get over this, especially if you recommend the place.

                  1. re: small h

                    Not as ridiculous as mine; I had a horrible Indian manager several years ago, and, as a result stopped eating in Indian restaurants. (I would always think of him and it would ruin the meal.)

                    When I met my current wife, who loved Indian food I had to get over that hang up. Now I'm "cured" and have Indian food at least once a week.