Favorite restaurants in Chinatown?
Stopped by Bubor on Friday and was quite surprised. When they first started serving dim sum about 1 1/2-2 years ago, I went several times and it was virtually empty. On Friday at approx. 11:30 AM, it was hopping and every table was full...good for them. I took home several standbys: shu mai, ribs in black bean sauce, beef meatballs and har gau. Food=Still excellent and still my favorite in Chinatown for dim sum.
In addition to dim sum, Bubor Cha Cha has really stepped it up in overall Cantonese cookery, with good emphasis on fresh seafood.
A slick n saucy ginger-scallion lobster is quite good though not quite rivaling Best Lil' for my peronal prototype, but a recent hit was dungeness crab with XO sauce and sticky rice -- crab jus-soaked rice flecked with subtle hits of XO was as much the point as the sweet crab claw meat. Lotsa cracking, sucking, shucking and jivin.
Hard to get back to PFS these days for much other than nostalgia.
Been spending most of my Chinatown dollars these days at:
Taiwan Cafe and Dumpling Cafe (Taiwanese)
China King (Shandong and Beijing, very fine Peking duck)
Windsor Cafe and Bubor Cha Cha (a la carte, not cart, Cantonese dim sum)
Hong Kong Eatery and Vinh-Sun BBQ (Cantonese roast meats)
Best Little Restaurant (Cantonese)
New Shanghai (Sichuan, though it also does good Beijing cuisine)
Mei Sum Bakery (banh mi)
Shojo (Asian-Western fusion and good cocktails in a pretty setting)
Q Restaurant (Chinese hotpot)
Honorable mentions: Peach Farm (Hong Kong live-tank seafood and Cantonese), My Thai Vegan, Suishaya (Korean), 163 Vietnamese Sandwiches
On the to-try list: Hot Pot Cafe, Potluck Cafe, Fei Fan Eatery
China King has great noodles and the chow mein uses the shanghi noodles that are thick and chewy. The chow foon has the wide rice noodles that are delicious also. Food there is delicious.
60 Beach St
Another new fav or mine since I saw Ming Tsi on tv singing it's praises is the Gourmet Dumpling House. It has some great spicy dishes that are really authentic. It seems to have more spicy items on the extensive menu than other places do.
Gourmet Dumpling House
52 Beach St
I use to like the New Golden Gate but my last few meals left me disappointed.
For great Bahn Mi sandwiches I love, love, love 163 at 68 Harrison Ave. Tiny little (cash only) place that makes the best sandwiches, and other dishes. They also have extensive frozen bubble drinks/teas - love, love, love their Jasmine tea....
The Best Little Restaurant is good. My family used to go there all the time when I was growing up as a kid to eat periwinkles in black bean sauce. The ownership has changed but the food is still pretty good there. I like the ginger scallion beef served in a hotpot.
My favorite restaurant is probably New Golden Gate. The service is pretty bad and the waiters are old men who always oogle my wife, but the food is great. Favorite dishes are satay beef udon, salt and pepper calamari, roast beef with green beans, conch stir fried with bean sprouts.
I have a Chinese friend who has been going to Best Little Restaurant for a very long time (when it was Ho Yien Ting?) and he says one of the reasons it is so good and consistent is that the chefs have not changed in a very long time. He also has taken me to a couple of Chinese family get togethers at the New Golden Gate and the food has been outstanding. Service has never been an issue but maybe that's because they are all Chinese?
Yes, Ho Yuen Ting was the previous Chinese name (may still be?). I'm not sure if the chefs are still the same and would venture to say that they are not. Example - the beef and parsley soup, which was phenomenal, used to be served dark and is now a light broth like at most other Chinese restaurants around Boston. Could just be that particular dish but last time I went, they also didn't have the periwinkles that I ordered there fairly regularly before. Regardless, the food is still pretty good.
I guess it depends on definitions of "good" versus "bad" service, but I think service at most Chinatown restaurants is sub-par. I have no problem saying that - I am Chinese after all. It is what it is. It's a different ethos. But of course you go to Chinatown for the food, not the service.