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Chinese - Upscale and good

jkpavel Dec 7, 2013 09:39 AM

Looking for a good chinese restaurant in LA that has a nice decor and feels a little more "upscale." I LOVE dingtaifung but it isn't appropriate for the occasion that im trying to arrange. Thanks.

  1. t
    Thor123 Dec 8, 2013 09:57 AM

    Too bad the Mandarin is gone. That would be perfect.

    4 Replies
    1. re: Thor123
      ipsedixit Dec 8, 2013 10:46 AM

      He was just an actor.

      1. re: ipsedixit
        Thor123 Dec 8, 2013 11:44 AM


        1. re: Thor123
          New Trial Dec 8, 2013 03:22 PM


          1. re: Thor123
            Mr Taster Dec 8, 2013 10:47 PM


            I had to Google it, too.

            Mr Taster

      2. a
        AlkieGourmand Dec 7, 2013 07:25 PM

        WP-24 is by far the nicest Chinese restaurant in the LA area. And the food is high quality. I have eaten there twice and enjoyed both experiences.

        I understand why it's not a Chowhound favorite. You can have a tastier, more exciting meal in the SGV for 1/5 the price. But WP-24 blows away all the SGV restaurants on factors such as atmosphere, plating, and wine list. (I can't praise the service, unfortunately; it was memorably bad in my last meal there.)

        1 Reply
        1. re: AlkieGourmand
          ipsedixit Dec 7, 2013 07:32 PM

          I don't really consider WP-24 to be Chinese.

          Don't get me wrong, I like the place (food is good enough and interesting for the most part) and the room and view are outstanding, but the menu is too schizophrenically Asian to be considered just "Chinese".

          To say WP-24 is Chinese would be like describing the Joker as just some guy who uses too much white foundation.

          And, don't get me wrong, I think the Joker is one of best DC villains of all time.

        2. t
          Thor123 Dec 7, 2013 06:23 PM

          Dare I say.....? Mr. Chow.

          12 Replies
          1. re: Thor123
            ipsedixit Dec 7, 2013 06:25 PM

            Upscale? Maybe, probably yes.

            Good? No.

            1 out of 2 ain't bad. If you're playing baseball.

            1. re: ipsedixit
              Thor123 Dec 7, 2013 06:31 PM

              That didn't take long. Have not been for several years. However, on the few past occasions I was there I had a good time (although the food is not memorable).

              1. re: Thor123
                ipsedixit Dec 7, 2013 06:38 PM

                Nowadays, you can go to Chi-Lin, pay about 20% less, get better ambiance and better food.

                Was at Mr. Chow a couple of months ago, I could've sworn our Peking Duck was a Kate Moss stand-in in a former life. So scrawny and small. Ick.

                1. re: ipsedixit
                  Thor123 Dec 7, 2013 06:48 PM

                  Good enough for me ( by that I mean your critique). Only been to Chi Lin once, during the soft opening. It was ok. Chef change since then. Do you endorse?

                  1. re: Thor123
                    ipsedixit Dec 7, 2013 06:53 PM

                    I was there in November. Based on that one experience, if given the choice between Mr. Chow and Chi-Lin, the latter all the way, every day.

                    Plus, much better eye candy at Chi-Lin. Enough to make you want and wish you had gone to Planned Parenthood before entering the room.

                    1. re: ipsedixit
                      Thor123 Dec 7, 2013 06:57 PM

                      How bout Chi Lin vs Hakasan?

                      1. re: Thor123
                        ipsedixit Dec 7, 2013 07:02 PM

                        Hakkasan > Chi-Lin > [insert random restaurant] > Mr. Chow

                        1. re: ipsedixit
                          Mr Taster Dec 7, 2013 08:13 PM

                          >> [insert random restaurant]

                          That restaurant/person's living room that we walked by in Sichuan province which had a window to the street with a tray of meat covered with a thin cloth to keep the flies off the half carved old roasted dog carcass.

                          Mr Taster

                        2. re: Thor123
                          Chandavkl Dec 8, 2013 08:48 PM

                          No comparison. Hakkasan food is quite good. I would rank their dim sum slightly below Lunasia, Sea Harbour, Elite and King Hua, but above Capital Seafood, 888 or NBC. I would rate Tasty Garden higher than Chi Lin.

                        3. re: ipsedixit
                          Kalivs Dec 7, 2013 09:49 PM

                          At least you are being responsible

                2. re: Thor123
                  jessejames Dec 8, 2013 08:23 PM

                  I like mr chows. I don't live in Rosemead.

                  1. re: jessejames
                    wienermobile Dec 8, 2013 08:25 PM

                    I like Sea Harbour and I don't live in Rosemead.

                3. Will Owen Dec 7, 2013 04:43 PM

                  There's upscale and upscale; we tend to be put off by show-offy decor and too damn many mirrors. One of our favorite places, with excellent food and pleasant atmosphere is Chang's Garden, around the corner from DTF on Duarte Road. Mostly Shanghainese, and the staff is welcoming and friendly.

                  Fancier than that is Empress Harbor in Monterey Park, upstairs in the building on the NW corner of Atlantic and Garvey. Pa-in-law used to take us all to dim sum there for years, but then we introduced him to 888 and didn't go back for years, until we went with some Chinese/Taiwanese friends. There had been a change in ownership, the food was hugely improved, and the new owners actually came over, introduced themselves, and asked how everything was. All but unheard-of.

                  I believe both establishments take reservations; there might be a minimum number at dim sum, but I don't know about dinner.

                  2 Replies
                  1. re: Will Owen
                    ipsedixit Dec 7, 2013 06:23 PM

                    Chang's has taken a precipitous drop in quality recently. Switcheroo in kitchen help. New amigos.

                    1. re: ipsedixit
                      Will Owen Dec 8, 2013 05:13 PM

                      Say it ain't so, Joe! We dropped in for lunch sometime in October and it was as good as ever … on the other hand, we've never managed to get the Posse together to do dinner there, so all we've had has been five or six lunches. And I know those places tend to have a shift change between lunch and dinner.

                  2. b
                    budlit Dec 7, 2013 03:12 PM

                    Has anyone here been to Chi Lin on Sunset? Apparently
                    Yujean Kang is the chef there. His former restaurant in Pasadena was upscale Chinese, and from what I remember, very good

                    Sorry, he's not chef ther anymore

                    6 Replies
                    1. re: budlit
                      J.L. Dec 7, 2013 08:00 PM

                      Let's just say it's still good for a drink at the bar...

                      1. re: J.L.
                        Jack Flash Dec 7, 2013 11:01 PM

                        I assume you're referring to Chi Lin; Yujean Kang's closed its doors more than a year ago.

                        1. re: Jack Flash
                          condiment Dec 8, 2013 12:11 PM

                          Yujean Kang (the man) was the opening chef at Chi Lin. He didn't stay for more than a couple of months.

                          1. re: condiment
                            Jack Flash Dec 8, 2013 04:41 PM


                      2. re: budlit
                        Chandavkl Dec 8, 2013 08:44 PM

                        As Ipse's rating shows, the decor there is very good. However, the food there is borderline--possibly the equal of a San Gabriel Valley lunch special meal.

                        1. re: Chandavkl
                          chewbacca Dec 8, 2013 11:23 PM

                          2nd that's right.

                      3. ipsedixit Dec 7, 2013 10:25 AM

                        Hakkasan (decor > food)

                        Chi-Lin (decor >>> food)

                        Sea Harbour (food >>>>>> decor)

                        Elite (food >>> decor)

                        Lunasia (food > decor)

                        There you go!

                        10 Replies
                        1. re: ipsedixit
                          JAB Dec 7, 2013 10:28 AM

                          Nice job, that's it in a nut shell.

                          1. re: ipsedixit
                            ilysla Dec 7, 2013 01:00 PM

                            So pithy, as usual. ;)

                            1. re: ilysla
                              Servorg Dec 7, 2013 01:07 PM

                              He has a knack for pithing people off, alright...

                              1. re: Servorg
                                ilysla Dec 7, 2013 01:17 PM

                                And how long did it take you to come up w/ that gem??? ;)

                                1. re: ilysla
                                  Mr Taster Dec 7, 2013 04:00 PM

                                  No more than 3 hours.

                                  Mr Taster

                                  1. re: Mr Taster
                                    Servorg Dec 7, 2013 04:22 PM

                                    US math and logic scores continue to slip...news at 11

                                    1. re: Servorg
                                      ilysla Dec 7, 2013 06:25 PM

                                      Whatever. You could've thought it up on some rainy day and been waiting to use it! Wait a minute.... ;)

                                      1. re: Servorg
                                        Porthos Dec 7, 2013 06:39 PM

                                        Mr. T was noting there was a 3 hour difference between ipse's post and yours. Thus "no more than 3 hours." But your response was to ilysla so it should be "no more than 1 hour (or whatever time stamp was between the two)." ;)

                              2. re: ipsedixit
                                Porthos Dec 7, 2013 02:04 PM

                                I agree with the summary but if DTF isn't nice enough decor wise I don't know if Elite or Sea Harbour would cut it.

                                There is gaudy "nice" at Shanghai No. 1 Seafood Village. Otherwise Hakkassan was probably built for the OP's occasion.

                                1. re: Porthos
                                  ipsedixit Dec 7, 2013 02:24 PM

                                  You're right. SNo1 was a glaring omission.



                                  Shanghai No. 1 (food = decor)

                              3. m
                                mc michael Dec 7, 2013 10:07 AM

                                Mission 261?

                                1. blimpbinge Dec 7, 2013 09:59 AM

                                  I think you need to be more specific.

                                  Do you want a place like DTF? are you talking about the type of food? the decor? (DTF is upscale?)

                                  Are you looking for banquet style?

                                  Any specific type of chinese food?

                                  etc etc...

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: blimpbinge
                                    jkpavel Dec 7, 2013 11:55 AM

                                    The type of Chinese food is less relevant. Good anything (canto, Taiwanese, Shanghainese, northeastern, etc) will suffice. Nice atmosphere is key.

                                  2. i
                                    ilysla Dec 7, 2013 09:50 AM

                                    Are you also hoping for food like DTF? If so, I don't think going to a Cantonese place will work for the food (although it'll do nicely for the decor).

                                    1. wienermobile Dec 7, 2013 09:41 AM

                                      Sea Harbour in Rosemead.

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: wienermobile
                                        JAB Dec 7, 2013 09:47 AM

                                        Elite in Monterey Park.

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