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Seattle Chinese

c
cburnsi Jul 15, 2011 09:55 AM

hi all. The owner of my company is visiting for a week from mainland China (near Shanghai). He is very, lets say 'set in his ways' and only eats Chinese food. He is staying with a family on the eastside and they will take care of most of his meals but I would like to host him at least once for dinner and probably lunches in Seattle. Any recommendations? Please help I really want to make a good impression. Thx.

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  1. l
    Leper RE: cburnsi Jul 15, 2011 01:16 PM

    I suggest Seven Stars Szechuan for their dungeness crab. The atmosphere is lacking, but the food is excellent including their homemade noodle dishes.

    1. p
      pusherman RE: cburnsi Jul 15, 2011 01:56 PM

      The most "authentic" Chinese in Seattle area is probably Din Tai Fung in Bellevue -- I say authentic, because it is almost identical to the Din Tai Fung in Xin Tian Di in Shanghai. Other than that, when I have Chinese co-workers in town they always want the crab at 7 Stars Pepper, although it's maybe downmarket for taking the owner of your company...

      1 Reply
      1. re: pusherman
        k
        klyeoh RE: pusherman Jul 18, 2011 01:29 AM

        Foodwise, that's probably the best option - the Shanghainese have pretty conservative tastes & Chinese food is quite regional. The food at Din Tai Fung will definitely suit Shanghainese tastes.

        In Singapore, I once brought a visiting Shanghainese colleague to the best Cantonese restaurant in Singapore, but he didn't really like/enjoy the food there. Then, one day, I brought him to Din Tai Fung (which was relatively "casual" & bistro-like) but he absolutely LOVED the xiao long bao and la mian - said the dishes tasted exactly like what he has back in Shanghai :-D

      2. g
        GreenYoshi RE: cburnsi Jul 17, 2011 11:22 PM

        I think O'Asian might be a good choice for this person.

        1 Reply
        1. re: GreenYoshi
          s
          shaolinLFE RE: GreenYoshi Jul 18, 2011 05:42 PM

          O'Asian is a nice atmosphere, but it is Cantonese and subpar Cantonese as it is, mainly focusing in on the business lunch dimsum crowd. If OP's boss is set in Northern Chinese, then I'd also second the Din Tai Fung or Shanghai Garden. Taiwanese I'd go Facing East. Bamboo Garden for a Sichuan Cuisine with a decent interior.

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          Bamboo Garden
          202 106th Pl NE, Bellevue, WA 98004

          Shanghai Garden Restaurant
          80 Front St N, Issaquah, WA 98027

        2. flylice2x RE: cburnsi Jul 18, 2011 12:56 AM

          Panda Express

          1 Reply
          1. re: flylice2x
            k
            klyeoh RE: flylice2x Jul 18, 2011 01:23 AM

            Oh no - not Panda Express - that won't leave a good impression on a Shanghainese boss!

          2. h
            HungWeiLo RE: cburnsi Jul 19, 2011 07:52 PM

            Your best bet for someone from Shanghai "set in their ways" is DTF and maybe Facing East (which actually contains a noticeable streak of Cantonese influence).

            I've taken many Chinese friends, family, and colleagues to restaurants around Seattle. I do all I can to avoid taking them to Chinese restaurants. It's just the quality here is quite embarrassingly low overall - it's quite obvious when they first dig into their first dishes. Even our DTF is pretty bad in comparison - even the LA one is noticeably better.

            2 Replies
            1. re: HungWeiLo
              p
              pusherman RE: HungWeiLo Jul 22, 2011 01:18 PM

              I'm surprised to read this...our DTF is definitely not as good as those I've been to in China and Taiwan, but I thought it was much better than the branch in LA (admittedly, based on a single visit to each). Maybe it's uneven.

              1. re: pusherman
                h
                HungWeiLo RE: pusherman Jul 22, 2011 10:09 PM

                I've been to both branches several times, but admittedly during their first months of opening. So I've noted a huge variability and inconsistency of quality even within the same week in the same restaurant. The Bellevue one seems to have widely different levels of moisture in the skin of the dumplings on each subsequent visit, whereas the LA one never seemed to have that problem and remained consistent in their workmanship after a short period of time - Bellevue, IMO, has yet to achieve this level of quality and consistency on every single visit. LA does have a much larger mainland Chinese and Taiwanese population, which would have kicked them to the curb very quickly if they did not shape up their act. Maybe it has something to do with the fact that the LA store is run by the original family, and the Bellevue store is their first outside-of-family franchise in the US.

            2. c
              cburnsi RE: cburnsi Jul 21, 2011 08:54 AM

              Thanks, all. I was worried about our DTF as I haven't had any great food there. However, that is where we are headed. I found out that he enjoys spice so We will have Sichuan Dungeness crab on this trip as well (either here in Seattle or in Bellevue). We had a good meal at Shanghai Garden last time he was here.

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              Shanghai Garden Restaurant
              80 Front St N, Issaquah, WA 98027

              5 Replies
              1. re: cburnsi
                h
                HungWeiLo RE: cburnsi Jul 21, 2011 11:49 AM

                If he likes Shanghai Garden, then he's not that picky. (Or he was being polite).

                Maybe Panda Express wouldn't be too shocking then. :-)

                1. re: HungWeiLo
                  j
                  Jeffo405 RE: HungWeiLo Jul 22, 2011 02:50 PM

                  I find that Shanghai Garden is lapsing into italltastesthesameitis. What are your favorite ID Chinese restaurants that you consider to be what a place like SG SHOULD be?

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                  Shanghai Garden Restaurant
                  80 Front St N, Issaquah, WA 98027

                  1. re: Jeffo405
                    h
                    HungWeiLo RE: Jeffo405 Jul 22, 2011 10:04 PM

                    There isn't really another place in the ID that serves straight up Shanghainese/Taiwanese. Maybe Henry's Taiwan in a pinch.

                    SG has only one dish worth getting - the green barley hand-shaven noodles. Everything else - like you said - suffers from italltastesthesameitis - and not done very well at that.

                2. re: cburnsi
                  c
                  christy319 RE: cburnsi Jul 21, 2011 07:12 PM

                  If you need to take him somewhere with decent ambiance, definitely get that crab at Bamboo Garden in Bellevue, rather than 7 Stars, where you have to walk by the dumpsters then up that grubby staircase. (A friend from Queens once said that he would never walk up a stairway like that at home, lol).

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                  Bamboo Garden
                  202 106th Pl NE, Bellevue, WA 98004

                  1. re: christy319
                    h
                    HungWeiLo RE: christy319 Jul 21, 2011 11:04 PM

                    Well, Bamboo Garden is next to a "toy" store. At least the language barrier will make this appear innocent.

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                    Bamboo Garden
                    202 106th Pl NE, Bellevue, WA 98004

                3. k
                  klyeoh RE: cburnsi Jul 22, 2011 06:02 PM

                  Address link for Din Tai Fung:

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                  Din Tai Fung
                  700 Bellevue Way NE #280, Bellevue, WA 98004

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