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Dec 24, 2012 09:46 AM

traditional christmas in sgv

my religious affiliation dictates chinese food and a movie on december 25.
order is not a deal breaker, but we'd like to eat just before or after the first showings of the season's cinematic fare.

what is the best joint (indifferent as to style or region of cuisine) in closest proximity to a movie theatre in the san gabriel valley?


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  1. Tasty Garden in the same plaza as AMC in Monterey Park.

    No abbreviations today linus, happy belated hanukkah.

    3 Replies
    1. re: TonyC

      gracias amigo. thanks for the help.
      hope others will chime in with further suggestions.

      1. re: linus

        I'll second the recommendation of the movie/meal combo at Atlantic Times Square in Monterey Park. Good for a stroll around the plaza as well.

        1. re: linus

          Atlantic Times Square has several restaurants to choose from, and is clearly the logical choice for a movie/Chinese meal combo. The restaurants close to the theaters at Garfield and Main are not Chinese.

      2. How about the Puente Hills AMC Theaters in Rowland Heights (on Azusa off the 60 fwy)?

        All within a hop and skip of that mall is Earthen, Lu's Garden and that Mongolian Hot Pot restaurant.

        1. for those desperate to know how things turn out, we went with the santa anita AMC (jammed)/ shaanxi gourmet (also jammed. jtyh was closed) combo.

          traffic was light, although driving in the sgv is always frustrating. and so is parking.

          enjoyed the food, but the table was too small and we ordered poorly. folks there were nice enough, except for the old guy at the next table insistent on coughing towards us.

          4 Replies
          1. re: linus

            You're just lucky that before/after your movie at AMC you didn't head to DTF, where (I am told) the wait for a table stretched to 2 hours.

            The really shrewd Jews, I suppose, put their name down, caught a movie, then had some XLB.

            1. re: ipsedixit

              I tried to go to dtf for lunch...... the "line" was more like a crowd of 60+ people all covering the corner of that plaza

              went to opus sushi instead

              1. re: ipsedixit

                yes, i am lucky, although i avoid DTF, because a) there always seems to be a long wait and b) i don't like the food there all that much.

                wanted to try someplace i hadn't been, so jtyh, shaanxi and sweethome were on the short list.

                demographically, we're in questionable territory here, but i was surprised a 9:15 a.m. movie was so jammed. the crowd was mixed, although there seemed to be more asians than anything.

                at shaanxi, it was an all asian crowd, as far as i could tell.

                1. re: ipsedixit

                  There was a 2 hour wait at Hop Li on Pico, where MOT's like us, didn't want to drive to SGV. Apparently reservations were made a month ago.
                  That's why we ended up at Junior's with a 45 minute wait.

              2. For the record, after a small family lunch (Pasadena) we threw stuff in the dishwasher and went to the Laemmle Playhouse to see "Life of Pi" (wowsie! is all I can say) and then to Fu-Shing on E. Colorado. That hardly qualifies as exploring the SGV, but it worked for us, although the rather bland food was hardly worth the half-hour wait.

                7 Replies
                1. re: Will Owen

                  i was worried, because parking was so difficult, be we strolled right into a table at shaanxi gourmet.
                  although, people after us weren't so lucky. but when we left there wasn't really a line.
                  i was sort of wondering if shaanxi would be a good choice for my 83 year old uncle, because the tables can be tiny and there's not a lot of room to maneuver (he uses a cane and walks very slowly.)
                  i think off hours he'd be o.k., though.

                  1. re: linus

                    Santa Anita Mall is another thought I had with non-DTF options. The lot for the plaza Shaanxi Gourmet is in has to be one of the worst, if not the worst, in the SGV.

                    1. re: JThur01

                      I dunno, I kind of think the Mei Long Village shopping center is the biggest bitch of a parking lot in the SGV.

                      1. re: ipsedixit

                        I've rarely had problems finding parking in the Prospect Plaza underground...then again, I usually or park in back of the 99 Ranch in Focus Plaza or in the Hilton Plaza underground and walk over :-) Trying to navigate the ground level lot at Prospect can be loads of fun though.

                        1. re: ipsedixit

                          ipse, what is the mall on the north side of Valley at Abbot, not quite directly across from the so-called Great Mall of China? A bunch of us went to Liang's Kitchen there one night, and after creeping and stopping and creeping for about fifteen minutes we got down into the parking garage, and were told the place had been pre-empted by some private party. We could pay seven dollars to park for one hour, but then we'd get towed! So we left (much easier!) and parked along the access road from Abbot to the GMoC, from whence we walked.

                          I'm trying to remember if Mei Long Village is in there or in another similar one …

                          1. re: Will Owen

                            I believe that's the one with the Hilton adjacent to it, right?

                            1. re: Will Owen

                              Hilton Plaza.

                              Mei Long's in "Prospect" Plaza

                              SHANO1 is in "Life" Plaza.