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Feb 22, 2013 08:41 PM

T&L: "Best Chinese Restaurants in the U.S."

Travel & Leisure Magazine, the obvious expert on the subject, has spoken.

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  1. Conclusion, if an establishment does not offer dim sum, soup dumplings, or fried and/or spicy foods, it won't make any best of lists in the USA. Also shows more results towards Sichuan and Taiwanese run places that offer xlb.

    Kind of a shame that steamed daikon pudding is considered new and exotic, when it tastes more classical in nature.

    1 Reply
    1. re: K K

      Well, things like sweetbreads and organ meats have always been classical peasant food.

      Now? They're seen as the new "it" thing.

      So, it just depends on your audience.

      Lists like this make for good Internet fodder and little else.

    2. I hope this list satisfies all the people who were whining that Chandavkl's list for his best Chinese restaurants in America was dominated by California restaurants.

      This is the type of list you deserve when you try to be geographically correct, where you don't allow one area to dominate.

      By limiting it to only a few San Gabriel Valley Chinese restaurants for a list of the 27 best Chinese restaurants in America, readers won't feel excluded because there will be a Chinese restaurant from their region too on that list. Otherwise, a majority of the restaurants on that list would have been from SGV.

      So, that's why a Chinese restaurant in Salt Lake City, run by a Greek-American Angel Manfredini and her 84-year-old father, can make this list.

      I guess Chandvakl will have to rethink his arguments about the importance of demographics when a Chinese restaurant in Salt Lake City can be regarded as one of the best Chinese restaurants in the country even though the Chinese probably make up less than 1% of the population in Salt Lake City.

      5 Replies
      1. re: hobbess

        The term "geographically correct" pretty much sums it up.

        I mean, seriously, is a Chinese restaurant in Honolulu or KC better than all the ones in the food stalls at Flushing not mentioned on this list?

        And seriously, Chung King? Chung fucking King wouldn't even make my Top 25 list for all of San Gabriel Valley.

        1. re: ipsedixit

          I like Chung King, but I suspect its on the list because that place would be on Jonathan Gold's list for top Chinese restaurants in LA.

          Looking over the list, it struck me as an amalgamation of various other best Chinese restaurants lists- there's Chung King and Sea Harbor from Jonathan Gold, Koi Palace from Chandvakl's list, and Yangming from Chinese Restaurant Association list where you could pay your way onto the list.

          But, a lot of the choices seemed to come firectly from Clarissa Wei's top 50 Chinese restaurants because that list was also trying to be geographically correct and was thus also flawed- San Tung in SF, Gourmet Dumpling House in Boston, Shangdong restaurant in Portland, Single Pebble in Burlington, etc..

          Honestly, I wonder if the writer even actually ate at all 27 Chinese restaurants? Say what you will about Chandvakl's list, but he actually ate at over 6000 Chinese restaurants...

          1. re: hobbess

            There's no denying that the best Chinese in the country is in the SGV if you look at overall quality and number of establishments but lists like these need to make people feel like they know a place or is within driving distance, everybody wants to be able to visit one on the list and if it was SGV-biased then that would exclude most of the country who wouldn't be willing to travel out here.

            1. re: Johnny L

              I agree with you.

              But then why not title the article "Most Notable Chinese Restaurants in the US" or "Chinese Restaurants Not To Be Missed In the US"?

              Oh, I forget, it's to generate web views. My bad.

              1. re: ipsedixit

                We live in an age where sensationalist titles and articles are the only way to be noticed. Unfortunately nobody bothers to read well written articles and list that are carefully curated.

      2. this is silly as almost all of these lists are. as others pointed out if you really wanted to have the best they'd all be concentrated in a few areas

        han dynasty in philly, thats a joke (ate there about a year ago to take my GF's family to chinese food). any of the many sichuan restaurants in NY or LA is way way better (literally i can probably name close to 10 places in NY that better than it by a long shot). han dynasty wouldn't be considered an even good sichuan restaurant in NY (arguably NY's strongest suit when it comes to Chinese)