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Dec 21, 2012 09:31 AM

chinese restaurant uws

Any recommendations for great chinese restaurant for December 25, 2012?

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  1. "Great?" Chinese. On the UWS? Not happening.
    Grand Sichuan on 74th/Amsterdam is good. Shun Lee near Lincoln Center can be very good, never great, and always overpriced. Go South!

    1. For "great" there's nothing in UWS unfortunately. For "pretty good" however try Grand Sichuan.

      Further south on 56th and 8th, Szechuan Gourmet is excellent.

      Call to make sure that the restaurants will be open on the 25th.

      1. Legend just opened a UWS location. 109th street.

        There's also a Grand Sichuan on 74th.

        Both will probably be packed though.

        3 Replies
        1. re: kathryn

          Thanks for the tip on Legend. I wasn't aware that had opened. It could be transformative in the neighborhood if it's as good as the downtown branch.

          1. re: kathryn

            E-mailed comment from an anonymous hound with well-calibrated tastes who lives nearby:

            "I think it's [Legend's] B team, and yet that still makes it the best chinese place in the nabe by far. Sichuan pickles outstanding. Cumin lamb oddly lacks punch. Crab (surimi) asp[aragus] soup is packed with loofah, egg white and chicken flavor. Eggplant fish casserole dark, unctuous, tasty."

            1. re: kathryn

              i am surprised that Legend opened a second branch: the one on 7th Ave/15th is so awfully inconsistent -- they seem incapable of running one place properly, let alone two...

              i've had some great meals there, as well as some dishes (the same dishes!) that were so unbelievably bad that i either sent them back, or just left shaking my head...staff there have told me that there are diff chefs on diff days (and when i've had the bad versions, they've winced, as if to say: "Oh no, the substitute chef is at it again")...on my last visit there, i politely told them that this was my last meal there until i here that they fix the kitchen issues, and that i hope they can get things in order...

            2. Legend is probably your best bet. I've never seen Grand Sichuan on Amsterdam full.

              1. Don't go to Grand Sichuan on 74th street. It's a really lame version of the GS/SG style menu with glaring flaws in ingredient quality, seasoning, and through-the-looking-glass terminology, like calling their water-cooked dishes "chong quing style". And the worst dan dan noodles I've ever had.

                SG on 56th is a much better choice.

                5 Replies
                1. re: knucklesandwich

                  They do however have great eggs with bitter melon and chicken loofah soup. And for all their shortcomings, they are next door!
                  It does help to order in Chinese, I have seen some big differences. Shouldn't be so, but there it is.

                  1. re: swannee

                    Swannee, how do I pronounce eggs with bitter melon in chinese, phonetically?

                    1. re: knucklesandwich

                      Ku3 gua1 jian1 dan4. The jian sounds like jyen. It is not a dish one finds often, they do it well with lots of little pieces of pickled chilis mixed with the fluffy scrambled eggs and crunchy bitter melon.
                      I have never had even acceptable food at Shun Lee except for New Years ' banquets. And it is so expensive.

                      1. re: swannee

                        I'm baffled by the Arabic numerals. How does that sound?

                        1. re: knucklesandwich

                          1 means high and flat, 2 goes from low to high, 3 goes down and then comes back up, and 4 goes high to low. That's both too simplified and too complicated.