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May 31, 2012 04:19 PM

Chinatown Rec'ds

I've lived here for about 12 years and have never ventured down to Chinatown.
I'm ready.
Going with a friend-we are both excited but a little nervous and want to chose a place that we feel comfortable food wise.
We both dont want anything re ally exotic, but also dont want something I can order from down the street. We are looking for a sit down, some apps,some entrees.
We've never done dim sum, and I have heard it can be a little daunting for newbies.
Basically, we are newbies with no chinatown experience and only mildly interested in trying the unknown.
Also, thinking sitting down and taking our time...
help :)

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  1. im thinking gourmet dumpling house? after a little yelp research :)
    any feedback?

    3 Replies
    1. re: cookfood

      What about Q?

      It seems like you are a tiny bit unsure of this expedition, so Q Restaurant could be a gentle introduction. Thoroughly modern and new and spacious, on the edge of Chinatown geographically and perhaps in other ways. Easy as can be for newcomers to the area or the cuisine. You could split a hotpot (which I think is the point of the place) and then, once comfortable in your surroundings, venture further into Chinatown. I'd say then go to a bakery and buy some random things, and/or pop into one of the places with ducks etc. hanging in the window (eg. Hongkong Eatery) and just order pork and/or duck over rice to go and eat it on a bench somewhere.

      1. re: deglazer

        I was also looking into dumpling cafe? I did see best little restaurant on my quick google search.
        Yes, we are a little unsure but open to the experience-a little waiting, small tables, brisk service haha. I def would love to stop by a bakery and walk around. Im open to new tastes, within reason-but not things like tripe, or ox tongue or some of these other things ive seen on the menus. :)
        ive been texting my friend and im hungry already!

      2. re: cookfood

        I would go to Best Little Restaurant - order the garlic spare ribs, shanghai (curried) noodles, pea stems, salt and pepper soft shell crab or three delights XO or perhaps the hu siang eggplant, maybe the beef chow fon? ... lettuce wraps, clams with black bean sauce...even their apps like pan fried dumplings are off the hook...I always ask for hot bean paste and mustard too....'ll need a few more friends with that order.....If you go for dim sum you can really end up with some exotic stuff unless you know what to order.....

      3. Gourmet Dumpling House is a solid choice for food. It's often really busy, though. You won't be rushed out the door, but you probably won't be able to linger.

        2 Replies
        1. re: bear

          the soup dumplings have gotten my attention! i love a good dumpling!

          1. re: cookfood

            The soup dumplings are quite good, as are the vegetarian dumplings, which I don't usually like much. (we've only gotten the pork soup dumplings, not the pork and crab)

        2. also, are the bakeries open at night, we figure we will get down there around would they be open a little later after dinner?

          1 Reply
          1. re: cookfood

            Some of the newer bakeries are open later (after 6-7 pm), but you might want to go in and ask them before dinner if they are going to be closed pick out some egg custards or black bean donuts and eat them after dinner. The one on the corner (beach and Harrison?) seems to be open later.
            Have a great time, I've recently really liked China King for their house made chow mein, and three course peking duck (needs 24 advanced notice). If you like seafood you can't go wrong with peach farm, get the soft shell crabs if they have them fresh.

          2. Hooray for Chinatown. Good for you for branching out.

            I can see how dim sum with carts could seem a bit overwhelming, but my favorite dim sum is at Winsor where you order off a menu. They also have a picture menu so between the two you can get a good idea of what you'll be getting. My favorites there are the steamed spare ribs with black bean sauce, steamed chicken bun, and the sticky rice in lotus leaf. You can find lots more recommendations of what to get at Winsor on the board.

            2 Replies
              1. re: cookfood

                You might enjoy Great Taste, which has a restaurant on one side and a bakery on the other side. So you can eat your meal and then pop over to the bakery side for desert.

            1. I think dim sum is actually a good choice and Winsor has the best in the area. If you have a smartphone, you can find some nice apps to help you figure out what's what, and the portions are small enough that if you don't like something you won't feel too bad about not finishing it. Winsor has a nice picture menu, and at least some of the staff has good enough English to help you navigate (and the entire staff is friendly and welcoming.) In the evenings, they're not crowded and you can probably stay till closing time.