HOME > Chowhound > Greater Boston Area >


Best Dishes in Chinatown

Haven't seen a recent thread on this. I'm looking for true all-star dishes and the restaurants that serve them. I would start with:

XLB - Dumpling Cafe
Sliced Fish Szechuan Stlye - GDH
3 Course Peking Duck - China King
Roast Beef with Scallions Roll in Scallion Pancake - Taiwan Cafe

Maybe I'd add some Szechuan dish at New Shanghai, salt and pepper anything at Peach Farm or some particular Dim Sum at Winsor, but would really like to get specific thoughts from CH's. Thanks.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
  1. Off the top of my head I might add the Shanghai Chow Mein from China King; Whole Steamed Fish with Ginger and Scallions from Peach Farm

    2 Replies
    1. re: FoodTruth

      Are the noodles in the chow mein the buckwheat kind?

      1. re: C. Hamster

        No, they're fat wheat noodles. Very tasty.

    2. Roast squab at best little restaurant

      1. Winsor dim sum:
        Baked Pork Bao
        Shrimp and Taro fritters
        Eggplant sandwiches stuffed with shrimp

        1. Now I need to get back to Winsor asap. Anyone think anything at East Ocean City is a must try?

          3 Replies
          1. re: ScotchandSirloin

            I'm a big fan of East Ocean's version of Alaskan King Crab with chilli and salt but it won't come cheap. If you are dining with four or more people it gets more reasonable. They keep the crabs alive in tanks so they are very fresh and sweet when they are served but definitely a special occasion dish

            1. re: ScotchandSirloin

              If you want a similar dish, their salt & pepper Dungeness crab is one of my favorite dishes. Similar taste, without the heft price tag for the Alaskan King crab.

              1. re: kobuta

                Taiwan Cafe has had some excellent salt & pepper soft shelled crabs. Before the renovation it was a special on the wall.

            2. I recently switched it up and got the "Beef in Szechuan Sauce" at GDH, which is essentially "Sliced Fish Szechuan Style" but with beef instead of fish (not sure why they don't call it "Sliced Beef Szechuan Style," but that's besides the point). I have been dreaming about it ever since. Definitely top on my list of favorite Chinatown dishes.

              Some others:

              - Kimchi fried rice w/ quail egg at Shojo
              - Suckling pig bao at Shojo
              - Hot pot w/ Mala broth at Q


              1 Reply
              1. re: OliveJones

                +1 on both the Bao and the Hot Pot

              2. I was just at Peach Farm last Saturday and ordered for the second time, my new favorite dish there, the "Peach Farm Special Flounder". It's a huge flounder that looks like it was deep fried whole, then boned and filleted and cut into chunks, mixed with loads of fresh veggies like broccoli and corn and pea pods, served in a pile on top of the fish carcass. It's outstanding.

                2 Replies
                1. re: mwk

                  The deep fried and crunchy fish carcass that you can eat like potato chips? I've had that. Grace Garden makes a fabulous version of that, well worth driving to Baltimore to eat.

                  1. re: KWagle

                    Oh man, I miss that place. I would drive down just to eat there again.

                2. Anchovies with chili at Taiwan Cafe (appetizer).
                  Taiwan Style Eggplant at Dumpling Cafe.

                  I just discovered XLB a couple weeks ago at Dumpling Cafe by accident and was blown away. I am happy to see so many people like it here on CH.

                  Still a lot more Chinatown to explore!

                  1. Adding spicy salted live shrimp from the tanks at Peach Farm to the list.

                    2 Replies
                    1. re: ScotchandSirloin

                      steamed live shrimp available at other places, too, and it is nice when you get the larger ones.

                    2. While I was at Dumpling Cafe I saw three tables all with some kind of breaded deep fried shellfish, does anyone know what it is? Crabs, lobster, prawns?

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: sekelmaan

                        I solved this mystery yesterday, it is lobster in ginger and scallion sauce. Very tasty. $27 for two chix.

                        1. Anyone got a rec for a great hand-pulled noodle dish?

                          5 Replies
                          1. re: Parsnipity

                            Are there any besides Gene's? I thought he had the first hand-pulled noodles in this area since Noodle Alcove closed in 2006.

                            1. re: Allstonian

                              Don't know. Would you rate any of his specific dishes as worthy of this thread?

                              1. re: Parsnipity

                                I'd definitely say he belongs on this list. You can't go wrong with a #4.

                            2. re: Parsnipity

                              Sichuan Gourmet in Brookline had/has a special for Sichuan style hand pulled noodles with lamb. It was pretty good and had nice numbing spice! The one con was that it felt a little greasy. I eat at Gene's a lot and usually don't find his dishes greasy or too oily (in a bad way).

                              1. re: janehare

                                That store has the best specials out of the four stores in the chain! When did they have these lamb noodles?

                            3. I just had the most amazing dish at Dumpling Cafe:

                              The Spicy Lamb in a Clay Pot under chef's specialties.

                              It was so good, bone-in lamb, lots with marrow to suck out, a ton of garlic and cabbage and dried Szechuan peppers. I added a few tablespoons of waiter supplied Sambal chili paste to kick it up a notch, but still got that zinging pepper heat. My new favorite dish in CT.

                              1. heading to Peach Farm for lunch today - looks like the "Special Flounder" and spicy salted shrimp are recommended here. Any other dishes that I shouldn't miss?