Roast Duck (and $10 Lobster Special) at Rice Valley in San Francisco
When I couldn’t get the roast duck I wanted at Ming Kee last week, I walked over to Lam Hoa Thuan, but it was shutting down for the night as well and had nothing left to sell either.
In between the two is a restaurant called Rice Valley with a tri-lingual menu in English, Chinese and Vietnamese. Outside is a big banner with photos of hanging roast ducks as a specialty. None are on display inside but I asked about buying one and indeed there was still one available. The disadvantage of not seeing the duck first is that it was a bit underdone with some pale patches on the skin and not fully cooked near the breast bone. It’s funny how rare duck is fine by me in a French prep but I expect a Cantonese duck to be well-done and pull off the bone easily. Also there was quite a bit of unrendered fat and the seasonings were not as complex as Ming Kee or Cheung Hing. Ming Kee is still tops for this in my opinion, and I’d probably buy a duck from Lam Hoa Thuan before returning here for one.
A hand-written sign in Chinese by the entrance promoted lobster for $10. I noticed that every table had one or more plates of lobster. These appeared to be cooked whole and then cut in half lengthwise. Diners were eating them with fork and knife. Not sure if the $10 is for a whole or half lobster, but maybe a curious chowhound will investigate further and let us know.
2333 Irving St
just some background: a few years ago, this place was boiling crawfish. about 2 years ago, Rice Valley appeared and started selling mooncakes big time. then cheap chinese/vietnamese eats.
am sure lobster is an whole one. many chinese eateries sell them in the 8-9 range. small things, little meat.
Roast duck, lobster, may be the latest cheap eats promo. i don't expect the food to be tasty here, just cheap. for that reason, i haven't ate here (yet).
Yes, and before that this venue was Ha's Seafood. Rice Valley also makes rice noodles. I see the brand at Chinese and Vietnamese grocery stores. There's also a refrigerator case of noodles and some other baked goods at the restaurant.
The roast duck wasn't that cheap, something like $15 or $16. The place was about half-full at 8:30p.
Have you had a good lobster special elsewhere? And do let us know if you try this place, please.
While it was OK, I didn't think Rice Valley was anything to write home about, so I didn't. However, I was taken by how busy the place was. Perhaps their strength is in attracting the value minded crowd.