Shanghai Cafe Continues to Surprise—Beef with Black Bean Sauce

Shanghai Cafe remains my go-to Chinese restaurant even as new ones open in the Seattle area. My wife and I tend to order the same things every time, menu items that have stood the test of time over the 20 years we’ve been customers. (You can read about our favorites here.) Years ago, one of... Continue Reading →

Northern Chinese Treats at Beijing Restaurant (San Gabriel, CA)

Exasperation sometimes ends up for the better. Along the San Gabriel Valley Asian food mecca of Valley Boulevard, I was looking for a restaurant (whose name I couldn't recall) where several of us had wonderful noodle soups many years ago. (At my age, my memory plays tricks; Kam Hong Garden is in fact in Monterey... Continue Reading →

Biang Biang, the Winning Sounds of Xi’an Noodles

Don't let the modest place fool you. Xi'an Noodles has some of the best noodles in Seattle. It's one of the rare restaurants that specialize in one thing and do it extremely well. In this case, the specialty is the kind of noodles made in the Chinese province of Shaanxi (which touches Sichuan at its southwest corner), hand-made and pulled... Continue Reading →

What’s In a Name? Chinese Seafood Noodle

It won't win any prize for names. Chinese Seafood Noodle recently opened in Lake Hills Village. The former Lake Hills Shopping Center that used to host Paldo World, Liebchen Delicatessen and Wonton City, has been demolished and replaced by a fancier, mixed-use complex of housing, office space, restaurants and the Lake Hills Library. If the Village ever gets completed—it's... Continue Reading →

Dim Sum at Shanghai No. 1 Seafood Village (San Gabriel, CA)

The Mainland corporation that owns Shanghai No. 1 Seafood Village reportedly spent big bucks on possibly the fanciest Chinese restaurant ever to open in the LA basin. Chefs would be brought in directly from Shanghai, the ambience would appeal to the fussiest diners and menu to match. The debut was such a big deal that... Continue Reading →

Radish Cake at The Jade Seafood Restaurant (Richmond, B.C.)

It's simply called Fried Radish Cake, the English shorthand for the more descriptive Chinese ideograms on the menu. Customers of The Jade Seafood Restaurant in Richmond order it as part of a dim sum meal or as a snack. The chefs at Jade don't make the radish cakes in the usual way, which is to steam, then pan-fry a mixture of... Continue Reading →

Dumpling Nirvana: Dough Zone

When Din Tai Fung came into town, the Seattle area suddenly was made aware of how superb xiao long bao can be. There have been versions of it served by restaurants in these parts, but never the billowy, savory, soup-filled dumplings that the great restaurant from Taiwan made. Almost immediately, the crowds descended on Lincoln Square... Continue Reading →

Tasty Noodle House: Dalian Cuisine in the San Gabriel Valley

Friends of mine recently lamented that their dining experience at Dalian House in Bellevue (Washington) was forgettable. They wondered if they'd ordered the right things at a restaurant that presumably serves Dalian food. This got us to exchanging emails about the cuisine of the second largest city in the Chinese northeast province of Liaoning. Dalian's proximity to... Continue Reading →

Mongolian Beef at King’s Chinese Restaurant

I've been a fan of Mongolian beef ever since the first time I had it at Hunan Restaurant (long since shuttered) in Seattle's Rainier Valley neighborhood. Thin slices of beef, green onions and dried red chiles, tossed in a sweet-savory sauce, all scooped on top of fried cellophane noodles (saifun), was a combination I had never... Continue Reading →

Taiwanese Crispy Salted Chicken at Kung-Ho Chinese Cuisine (Bellevue, WA)

Crispy salted chicken (yan su ji) is so popular at Taiwanese night markets that it's doubtful there are stalls that don't serve it. Served as a snack, chicken pieces are cut up into nuggets and normally double-fried. They get their distinctiveness from a subtle five-spice flavor, batter of sweet potato flour and fried Thai basil leaves that accompany them. So, it was with... Continue Reading →

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