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Restaurants on Taraval, Noriega, Judah, and Irving open past 9pm?

Made in China is open till midnight:


about 4 hours ago
hyperbowler in San Francisco Bay Area

SFBA Dish of the Month (Oct 2014) - Nominations/Voting

Hash is the October 2014 dish of the month!

Report thread here:

about 5 hours ago
hyperbowler in San Francisco Bay Area

Hash : SFBA Dish of the Month October 2014

Hash (corned beef, smoked brisket, and other versions) is the October 2014 dish of the month!

Dish of the Month is an activity where we collectively try as many versions of Hash as we can, reporting back with details and photos. We aim to try versions that are new to you.

Never had Hash before? Great! Now's your chance to try it for the first time and tell us what you think!

Report back on the Hashes you eat, how you like them, and what they're like.

Voting thread: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/990303

about 6 hours ago
hyperbowler in San Francisco Bay Area

Regional Chinese roundup 2.0


I edited the typos and clarified for Jai Yun that you can ask the chef to make a vegetarian menu.

about 8 hours ago
hyperbowler in San Francisco Bay Area

Regional Chinese roundup 1.0 (early 2014)

Version 2 is ready! Continue the conversation at:


(I added some new additions too


Shao Mountain (Mountain View)

Sichuan Table (SF Outer Richmond)
Spicy Garden Restaurant (SoMa)

about 15 hours ago
hyperbowler in San Francisco Bay Area

Regional Chinese roundup 2.0

The Bay Area's Chinese food scene is evolving. Sichuan and Hunan cuisine continue to gain in popularity and we're finally getting access to foods from Shaanxi, Guilin, and northwestern China.

To help make sense of the diversity of Chinese cuisine available in the Bay Area, this project aims to document restaurants that specialize in a regional Chinese cuisine, or at least have uncommon regional dishes. All together, the Bay Area has close to 200 Chinese restaurants that deviate from the Bay Area's Cantonese and Chinese-American backbone. That includes about twenty regional/ethnic styles that are not Cantonese and six regional/ethnic Cantonese variations.

Just do a search and you'll find lots of in-depth discussions of what characterizes these regional cuisines and/or what dish(es), ingredients, and techniques make each restaurant special. Regions of course don't live in a vacuum, and a chef's pedigree (or menu) says nothing of their skills at making regional dishes. Treat these categories as rough guidance. Note also that menus are often studded with fool's gold that masks a restaurant's specialties, so a little bit of research about a restaurant goes a long way.

Some Cantonese sub-categories are included, but let's focus on Cantonese (i.e., Guangdong) and Hong Kong in other posts since they form the foundation of the Bay Area's Chinese cuisine, and have lots of specialty shops worthy of their own discussions (e.g., dim sum, desserts, meats, etc.).

As of October 2014, the Bay Area has lots of weak spots, both in terms of quality and diversity. There's only a Yunnan or Fujian/Hokkien dish here or there, and nothing from Anhui and various other places. But we can be hopeful--- 2013 and 2014 saw the opening of some international chains (e.g., Hakkasan), a small Guilin noodle place, and several Shaanxi restaurants. In 2015, high profile Chinese restaurants will open in San Francisco, including an Embarcadero Center outlet of Singapore chain "Crystal Jade Jiangnan," George Chen's mixed use "China Live" in Chinatown, Brandon Jew's seasonally focused "Mister Jiu" in Chinatown, and Joshua Skenes and Adam Fleischman’s upcoming SoMa hand-pulled noodle place "Fat Noodle." Lots to come.

Please add new discoveries and let us know if anything has been mis-characterized, especially if a place's menu doesn't reflect the purported region. I'll incorporate revisions into a 2016 Version 3.0 of this list.

Version 1.0 of this list: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/975114


= Shaanxi / Xi'an (all have hand-pulled noodles, most have liang pi) =
OK Noodle (Newark)
QQ Noodle (Milpitas, Cupertino) (no liang pi)
Shandong Deluxe (SF Parkside)
Terra Cotta Warrior (SF Outer Sunset)
Thousand Tasty (Milpitas)
Xi'an Gourmet (SF Richmond)

= Shaanxi biang biang noodles =
Imperial Tea Court (Berkeley)

=Shaanxi scissor cut noodles=
M.Y. China (SF Union Square)

= Shanxi knife shaved noodles =
Ancient Szechuan (El Cerrito)
Five Happiness (SF Inner Richmond)
Five Joy (San Mateo)
Sichuan Fusion (Richmond)
Su Hong (Palo Alto, technically an approximation that's hand cut vertically)


Some dishes available at:
OK Noodle (Newark)
Shandong Deluxe (SF Parkside)
Terra Cotta Warrior (SF Outer Sunset)
Xi'an Gourmet (SF Inner Richmond)

= Langzhou hand-pulled noodles =
Ark Chinese Restaurant (Alameda)
M.Y. China (SF Union Square)

= Lagman hand-pulled noodles / Xinjiang Ban Mian =
Shandong Deluxe (SF Parkside)
House of Pancakes (SF Parkside)

== TIBET ==
Cafe Tibet (Berkeley)
Nomad Tibetan (Berkeley)
Tashi Delek (El Cerrito)
Yongewa Kitchen (Cotati, Sonoma County)

Bamboo Garden (Mountain View)
Chef Xiu (Mountain View)
Dongbei Mama (SF Inner Richmond)
Guan Dong House (Cupertino)
Little Shen Yang (Union City)
Michelle's Pancake House (Cupertino, So-Cal chain)
Sungari Dumpling (SF Excelsior, chef from Liaoning)

= Shenyang =
Made in China (SF Parkside)
China North Dumpling (SF Outer Sunset, dumpling maker and/or owner from Shenyang)

== HUNAN ==
Chef Yu / Hunan Gourmet (Sunnyvale)
Chili Garden Restaurant (Milpitas)
Chili Palace (Milpitas)
Henry Hunan (SF chain/institution with a few Hunan dishes/ham, but mostly Chinese American stir-fries)
Hunan House (SF Chinatown) / Grand Hot Pot Lounge (SF Inner Richmond)
Made in China (SF Parkside)
Noodle Shop/Mao Family Cooking (San Mateo)
Shao Mountain (Fremont; Mountain View)
Wonderful (Millbrae)

Guilin Noodles (Oakland, Chinatown)

(Shandong owner and/or food, with no direct nod to Korea)

Ark Chinese Restaurant (Alameda)
China Village (Albany, owner of Shandong heritage, Shandong dishes mainly by special order)
Great China (Berkeley)
Hung’s Kitchen (San Ramon)
Palace Chef (Fremont)
Shandong Deluxe (SF Parkside)
Shandong Restaurant (Oakland, Chinatown)
Tong Dumpling (Cupertino)
Tsing Tao (Campbell)
Xian Gourmet (SF Inner Richmond, dumpling maker is from Shandong)

(Shandong dishes with Hangul on the menu. All have black zha jiang mian)

Chef Wang (Millbrae)
Chef Yu (Oakland, Temescal)
China Way (Santa Clara)
Koryo Jajang (Oakland, Temescal)
Nak Kung (Santa Clara)
San Tung (SF Inner Sunset)
San Wang (SF Japantown)
Tong Soon Garden (Santa Clara)
Yu Yu Restaurant (Dublin)
Zazang Korean Noodle (SF Pacific Heights)

(Geographical usage here, but note that the terms "Mandarin Chinese" and "Northern Chinese" are sometimes used as all-inclusive terms to describe that which is not Cantonese or Cantonese-American. See also Shaanxi.)

= Beijing =
Beijing Duck House (Cupertino)
Beijing Restaurant (SF Excelsior)
Everyday Beijing (San Mateo)
House of Pancakes (SF Parkside)
Taste Good Beijing Cuisine (Milpitas)

= Islamic Chinese =
Chinjin Eastern House (West San Jose)
Darda (Fremont, Milpitas)
Ma's (Cupertino)
Old Mandarin (SF Outer Sunset)
Shinjin (San Jose)

= Inner Mongolia =
Little Sheep Hot Pot (Cupertino, Union City, SF Union Square, San Mateo)

= Tianjin =
Golden Garlic (San Jose)
House of Dumplings (Union City)
Tianjin Dumpling (Oakland, Chinatown, not a full service restaurant, just a window)

= Other Northern and Jiaozi (dumplings) (might actually be Shandong or Dongbei) =
China North Dumpling (SF Outer Sunset)
Dumpling Empire (South San Francisco)
iDumpling (Redwood City, chef from Beijing)
House of Xian Dumpling (SF Chinatown)
King of Noodle (SF Inner Sunset)
Kingdom of Dumpling (SF Parkside)
Michelle's Pancake House (Cupertino)
Panda Dumpling (San Carlos, Redwood City)
Town of Dumpling (San Mateo)
Xian Gourmet (SF Inner Richmond, dumpling maker is from Shandong)
Xiao Long Bao (SF Inner Richmond)

= House made bing =
(see http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/892914 )
Beijing Restaurant (SF Excelsior)
House of Pancakes (SF Parkside)
Michelle's Pancake House (Cupertino)

Bamboo Garden (Mountain View)
Bund Shanghai (SF Chinatown)
Dumpling Kitchen (SF Parkside)
Five Happiness (SF Inner Richmond)
Happy Cafe (San Mateo)
Jai Yun (SF Chinatown; the chef is from Nanjing and only offers a multi-course menu)
Lily's House (Lafayette)
Liou's House (Milpitas)
Little Shanghai (San Mateo)
Lulu's Kitchen (Concord)
Melin House (Milpitas)
North China (SF Inner Richmond)
Old Shanghai (SF Inner Richmond)
Panda Dumpling (San Carlos, Redwood City, Shanghainese chef with a few items)
Rice Valley (SF Sunnyside)
Sha Bistro (Fremont)
Shanghai Delight (Milpitas)
Shanghai Dim Sum (Cupertino)
Shanghai Ding Sheng Restaurant (Milpitas)
Shanghai Dumpling King (SF Outer Richmond and Sunnyside)
Shanghai Dumpling Shop (Millbrae) / Xiao Long Bao Kitchen (South San Francisco)
Shanghai Dumpling (Cupertino)
Shanghai Family Restaurant (Cupertino)
Shanghai Flavor (Fremont)
Shanghai Flavor Shop (Sunnyvale)
Shanghai Garden (Cupertino)
Shanghai House (SF Outer Richmond)
Shanghai Restaurant (Oakland, Chinatown)
Shanghai Winter Garden (Millbrae)
Su Hong (Palo Alto)
Top Noodle (Milpitas)

Ancient Szechuan (El Cerrito)
CBI Chili BBQ Icedtea (Milpitas)
Chengdu Style Restaurant (Berkeley)
Chef Zhao Bistro (Mountain View)
Chili Pot (Cupertino)
China Lounge (Pleasanton)
China Village (Albany)
Da Sichuan (Palo Alto)
Dongbei Mama (SF Inner Richmond)
Dragon Garden (Cupertino)
Fey Restaurant (Menlo Park)
Grand Hot Pot Lounge (SF Inner Richmond) / Hunan House (SF Chinatown)
Happy Sichuan Restaurant (Millbrae)
Little Sichuan (San Mateo)
Little Sichuan Restaurant (Newark)
Little Szechuan (SF North Beach)
Mandarin Garden (Berkeley)
Mama Ji's (SF Castro, dinner menu)
Mandarin Gourmet (Palo Alto, chef from Chengdu)
Pepper Bros (Newark)
Sichuan Chili (Sichuan, San Jose)
Sichuan Chong Qing Cuisine (San Mateo)
Sichuan Fortune House (Pleasant Hill)
Sichuan Fusion (Richmond)
Sichuan Home (SF Inner Richmond)
Sichuan House (Walnut Creek)
Sichuan Table (SF Outer Richmond)
South Legend Sichuan Restaurant (Milpitas)
Spicy Empire (San Mateo) / Spicy King (SF Chinatown, currently not open) / Szechuan Cuisine
Spicy Garden Restaurant (SoMa)
Uncle Cafe (SF Chinatown) / Newark Cafe (Newark)
Spicy Legend (SF Outer Richmond)
Spicy Town (Fremont)
Yi Ping ( San Ramon)
Yi Yuan (Millbrae)
Z&Y (SF Chinatown) / Chili House (SF Inner Richmond)

(see also bubble tea, shaved ice, and various Taiwanese bakeries and desserts)

Ai Noodle (Cupertino)
China Bee (San Mateo, Taiwanese)
Dragon Gate (Oakland Jack London Square)
Five Happiness (SF Inner Richmond)
Grand Harbor (Fremont)
Joy Restaurant (San Mateo)
Liou's House Chinese Restaurant (Milpitas)
Mama Chef (Santa Clara)
Mama Chen's Kitchen (Cupertino)
Southland Flavor Cafe (Cupertino)
Taste of Formosa (SF Outer Richmond)
Taiwan Bento (Taiwan, Oakland)
Taiwan Café (Milpitas)
Taiwan Restaurant (Berkeley)
Taiwan Restaurant (SF Inner Richmond)

= Sichuan/Taiwanese "military dependent's village cuisine" =
(See for reference this closed place http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/712585 )
Liang's Village Cuisine (Cupertino)

= Taiwanese Sichuan =
Spices / Spices II (SF Inner Richmond)
Spices Fremont (Fremont)
Spices III (Oakland)
Spices IV (Foster City)

== CANTONESE / GUANGDONG subsets and offshoots ==
See KK's Regional Cantonese primer at: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8102... . Some scattered Shunde and Zhongshan Cantonese dishes in Millbrae at Gourmet Village, The Kitchen, and Champagne restaurant (San Mateo/Millbrae) .

See also dim sum, Cantonese seafood, Chinese bakeries, Chinese BBQ or roast meats, wo choy, clay pot, banquet, congee / jook / porridge, Taishan / Toishan, Cha Chaan Teng, HK Cantonese, Hong Kong café, Hong Kong western cuisine, and restaurants Yum's Bistro and Cooking Papa.

= Teochew / Chiuchow / Chaozhou / Teo Chow / Chinjiew =
Menkee Wonton (SF Outer Sunset)
Teo Chew Noodle Shack (Fremont)
Ying Kee (Oakland Chinatown)

= Teochew etc. / Vietnamese =
Hai Ky Mi Gia (SF Tenderloin)
Lam Hoa Than (SF Outer Sunset)
San Sun (SF Chinatown)
Thai Nghiep Ky Mi Gia (SF Outer Sunset)
Thanh Ky (Oakland Eastlake)
VH Noodle (Richmond)
Vien Huong (Oakland Chinatown)

= Hakka =
Dragon river (SF Outer Richmond)
Hakka Restaurant (SF Outer Richmond)
Ton Kiang (SF Outer Richmond)

= Macanese =
T 28 (SF Parkside)

= Shunde =
Jade Garden (SF Outer Richmond)
Yum's Bistro (Fremont)

= Zhong Shan =
Zhong Shan Restaurant (SF Parkside)

== OTHER ==
(See also the rising availability of skewers & hot pot, and Chinese hybrid cuisines such as Peranakan / Nonya (Singapore / Malaysian Chinese) , Chifa (Peruvian Chinese) , and of course Chinese American (American Chinese, the elusive "NY Cantonese", Kosher Chinese, Chinese fusion) )

== Chinese Vegetarian (notables) ==
Jai Yun (SF Chinatown; the chef is from Nanjing and only offers a multi-course menu; vegetarian menu by special order)
Jyun Kang Vegetarian Restaurant (Ukiah, associated with Buddhist temple)
Sogo Tofu (San Jose, Taiwanese vegetarian, tons of freshly made take out items)

== Chinese Vegetarian ==
Enjoy Vegetarian (SF Chinatown; SF Inner Sunset; SF Outer Richmond)
Garden Fresh (Palo Alto, Mountain View)
Long Life Vegi House (Berkeley)
Loving Hut (Oakland Chinatown; SF Chinatown)
Lucky Creation (SF Chinatown; lots of take out gluten items by the pound-- great for a picnic)
Royal Greens Vegetarian (San Jose)
Shangri-La restaurant (SF Outer Sunset)

== Indian / Desi Chinese =
Chennai Club (San Mateo)
Red Hot Chilli Pepper (San Carlos)
Spice Kitchen (Newark)
Wang's Kitchen (Milpitas)

about 15 hours ago
hyperbowler in San Francisco Bay Area

SFBA Dish of the Month (Oct 2014) - Nominations/Voting


SFBA Dish of the Month (Oct 2014) - Nominations/Voting

HASH (corned beef, smoked brisket and other versions)

SFBA Dish of the Month (Oct 2014) - Nominations/Voting

Dish of the Month is an activity where we collectively try as many versions of a dish as possible, reporting back with details and photos. Now is your opportunity to vote on or nominate the October dish. Feel free to include a sales pitch with any nominations!

Click the recommend button to vote for existing nominees. You can change your mind up until the deadline. You can also nominate a new dish by replying to this message, in UPPER CASE, with its name.

Voting ends Tuesday, September 30th at 8pm.

Previous months:

Pupusas: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9877...
Okononiyaki: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9843...
Biscuits and Gravy: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9809...
Falafel : http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/977511
Zongzi aka Chinese tamales: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/974172
Posole : http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/970865
Fish Tacos : http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/967140
Croissants : http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/962041
Shrimp and grits : http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/929654
Jook : http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/926197
Mapo doufu: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/922472
Pie: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/918844
Hamburgers: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/915164
Southeast Asian Fish in Banana Leaf: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/911479
Hummus: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/907615
Breakfast Sandwiches: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/903924
Banh Xeo: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/900476
Wonton Noodle Soup: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/896524
Corned Beef: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/892399
Chilaquiles: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/888740
Dan Dan Mian: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/884466
Tamales: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/880136
Burmese Tea Leaf Salad: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/875767
Whole Chicken Stuffed w/ Sticky Rice: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/871657
Cucumber Pickles: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/866098
Channa Bhatura: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/861176
Asian Fried Chicken: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/856748

Baltica (San Mateo)

I didn't make that connection at the time, and I can't remember now how similar they would be! Whatever it was, I would buy a jar of it if they sold it that way.

I Dumpling in Redwood City

At first I thought you were making a Charlie McCarthy joke, but then I saw lots of references to this on the web, most using the exact same sentence describing this relationship.

My understanding is that you really shouldn't eat much of any fungus raw, even white mushrooms. Has anyone come across any medical literature on wood ear toxicity? I could not find anything on pub med.

I Dumpling in Redwood City

They've been packed the past few times I tried to come here, but tonight I made it in.

Black fungus with cucumber : this is such a simple dish but it is often marred by soft mushrooms and overpowering garlic. Here, the mushrooms were springy and the garlic dressing strong but balanced. Cup-shaped wood ears mushrooms are harder to come by then the convoluted ones, but they were in equal abundance here.

Tomato sauced noodle (tomato da lu noodles): the funk of over cooked scrambled eggs tainted this bowl of chewy noodles.

Chicken dumpling with green chives : good as ever chewy, rustically shaped dumplings. The filling was a little bland. but condiments helped pick them up.

The chef is from Beijing.

Peking Duck or Tea Smoked Duck in SF or Daly City? For this Friday...

So, Bund Shanghai requires an advanced order and makes the soup?

most varied Vietnamese herb plate

Bodega Bistro give mint, cilantro, culantro, and red perilla. No basil.

Baltica (San Mateo)


Regional Chinese roundup 1.0 (early 2014)

Chef Ma is closed.

Somehow I missed:
The Noodle Shop/Mao Family Cooking http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/6598...

New places:
CBI Chili BBQ Icedtea (Sichuan & Taiwanese, Milpitas)
Chennai Club (Indian Chinese, San Mateo)
Chili Pot (Sichuan, Cupertino)
China Lounge (Sichuan, Pleasanton) http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/982984
Hunan House (Hunan, SF Chinatown) http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/988972
Sichuan Chili (Sichuan, San Jose-- in the former Chef Ma space)
Taiwan Bento (Taiwan, Oakland)

(btw, I'm just gonna keep adding to this post until making a new one in 2015)

Rohnert Park to SF --- what to eat along the way?

Quite a day, thanks for all the pointers!

I got up a few hours earlier than expected, so took people's advice and focussed on shopping for dinner between Santa Rosa and Petaluma, eating some things along the way. I will explore Latino foods on a future trip.

Stony Point Strawberries : open before 9am. As I looked at the Thai chili oil, a woman approached me from the fields carrying a load of strawberries she'd just picked. Strawberries were ripe, red throughout, and sweet. I used the $5/dozen eggs, each egg a different size and/or shell color, to make linguini tonight. Some yolks were more strinkingly golden than others, but all were more golden than supermarket eggs. I served it in a raw sauce made with their (cherry?) tomatoes, which were meaty and not too acidic.

Crane Melon Barn : Melon isn't something I normally gravitate to, but these were so sweet, nectar-like, and ripe that I'll seek these out next year.

Della Fattoria: the blueberry cloud, a pillowy pastry made from croissant dough and filled with blueberries, started off the morning. Lots of breads and pastries to choose from.

Thistle Meats : Hot breakfast sandwich with bacon jam, savory breakfast sausage, fried egg, arugula on a toasted panorama sesame seed bun. Lightly browned patty of white sausage was meaty and flavored with thyme. Delicious and well constructed-- barely any of the fried egg dribbled off the side. They're selling some excellent raw duck breast for $9.99/lb right now. Good lonza too. (I specified not breakfasty in the original post, partly because I don't like waiting. There was no line and they were pretty quick before 10, crowded at noon.)

Petaluma Pie : fig cookies are buttery, with a golden crackle inside. Apple and quince pie wasn't heavy enough in quince flavor, but the crust was good, fruit was tender, and the oatmeal crumble topping tasty.

Yanni's sausage : following this thread, http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/722705 , I got some "Greek chili" to go and sampled a bit. The spice comes from chili flakes and I can see why this ragu/chili would go well on a sausage.

Rosso: according to previous threads, they have three types of burrata. I didn't specify what I wanted and the one they gave me was log shaped, with a thin outer membrane and a rich ricotta like filling instead of the creamy filling which is more common. Great by itself, even better on a thin slice of Della Fattoria's "pane integrale," a hearty whole wheat bread, toasted in duck fat.

Dim sum at City View - report [SF]

No worries--- I was killing time before Hunan House opened and my mission was to get the custard buns, something J. Kauffman recommended a few years ago. They're good, and I like the proportion better than the full sized ones at bakeries.

There was a post somewhere saying that the quality at City View is better on weekdays than weekends. You and me covering Sat and Sunday confirm that those are days to avoid ... and ick, the Peking duck did look awful.

Dim sum at City View - report [SF]

I had a few items there yesterday (Saturday). At about 10:30am, it was pretty empty, so the same "easy" items cycled around-- no spareribs, chicken feet, turnip cakes, or vegetables. Instead, sesame chicken and honey walnut prawns.

The shrimp in the ha gow were crisp and large, but the wrappers were dried out, uneven, and not so much pleated as scrunched.

Shrimp and chive dumpling was okay. Both this and the ha gow left a big MSG aftertaste.

Baked custard buns were good--- I'd recommend these.

$16 for the three items, tea, and tax. I'd have done better at the takeout places elsewhere on Chinatown.

SF: What's Left to Do?

Firefly is a good neighborhood Cal-cuisine place, but it's not so unique that you should prioritize it now.

Yes on smugglers cove of you're into rum.

I'd target toast at the Mill, Saigon Sandwich, La Palma, 20th century cafe. With a car and an appetite, you can do that all as a breakfast and lunch.

Jai Yun if you have someone to go with.

Washington Cafe now Hunan House, and featuring hotpot [Chinatown, San Francisco]

That all adds up – Mr. Kuong is who I spoke to today (he was working the front of the house) and he confirmed that he also owns grand hot pot lounge. He was a good person to talk to and one of the few people to give a thoughtful answer to the question, "what do you guys do that other places don't? "

Ha, their take-out menu gets the translation right "frogs with explosive chili peppers", right under a dish involving sautéed milk that might be interesting.

Washington Cafe now Hunan House, and featuring hotpot [Chinatown, San Francisco]

Following up on soupçon's detective work, http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9860... , I had a meal at Hunan House. The Cantonese owner has been in the restaurant business for decades and used to be affiliated with the Pot Sticker group, but they no longer are related. Regarding the changing face of Chinatown, he mentioned that Chinatown rents make it difficult to sustain a low priced Cantonese place anymore, and its tough to balance the food/price needs of tourists (including mainland Chinese), locals, and new immigrants.

I got two dishes he said would be difficult to find elsewhere and he cooked them himself. The Jalapeño pork neck meat was delicious. Nice char and flavor from the wok, great texture in the meat--- it has a cushiony fatty crisp thing going for it, so it's kind of a mix between sautéed guanciale and a tender stir-fried pork. There's also some pressed bean curd.

I also got pickled peppers calamari, and the pickles included big chunks of pickled mustard stem, mustard greens, and red & green chilies. The calamari could have been more tender, but the pickles were tasty and the giant pieces of stir-fried jalapeño allowed me to amp up the heat when I wanted to (rarely).

The menu, including the takeout menu, has a photograph next to each item so ordering is pretty easy. They must be done by the same company that did the Pot Sticker menu--- same overall layout and many identical pictures.

BTW, I stopped by the Pot Sticker, or whatever its new Hunan name was. It's still closed and has been for over a month.

Wonderful --- a Hunan restaurant in Millbrae

This is part of a Beijing chain of 15 restaurants. That explains why the Chinese writing above the entrance mentions lots of dishes that Wonderful doesn't have. The owner's mother is from Hunan province. If you read the y*lp reviews of the place, the owner is confrontational with online whiners, but he approached me as a cool guy who takes his restaurant and cuisine seriously, and is happy to chat about their food.

Rou jia mo ("chinese hamburger") : larger and more biscuity than the hockey pucks at the local Shaanxi places. Pork filling isn't ground pork, but instead has lots of delicious fatty pork bits. After chatting with the owner for a while, he gave me a spicy side condiment for this containing some extra heat and black beans.

Pickled long beans and pork: very good

Baltica (San Mateo)

In what must be a first for the Bay Area, Baltica offers a full Russian/Eastern European menu alongside a Filipino menu. The owners are from St. Petersburg and they kept on the chef from the Filipino restaurant that used to be in this location. They all very friendly.

On my first visit, I started with the vareniki, which were quite good. The crescent shaped dumplings were handmade and had the finger indentations along the rim to prove it. The skins were rolled evenly and thin, but not translucent, and some vareniki had more bite along the edges than others. The filling is more sturdy than creamy--- it uses a dry-curd farmers cheese, housemade. It's a good portion size and all vereniki were fully sealed.

The "samosa," the baked beef piroshki, was a turnover made with a flaky (puff?) pastry. Good beef filling. The side of carrot and cabbage slaw was excellent and fresh.

They lagman were described as an Uzbek soup, and interested me because I am familiar with the Chinese dish of the same name . It had a tomato base, thin noodles, and lots of soft vegetables. The flavor was a dead ringer for minestrone soup, but with a bit of dill--- This was a satisfying dish, but next time I would choose a less familiar soup.

Melanie Wong joined me on my second visit, and we had a chance to try the Filipino and the Eastern European sides of the menu. We started with pelmeni, which where large and tortellini shaped. Well constructed and delicious. The first thing that hit me was a salty popcorn butter-like flavor that they achieve by tossing the pelmeni in butter and sour cream, just enough to prevent them from sticking to each other. It was a nice complement to the beef and lamb filling.

The Uzbek pan-fried beef belayshi were sold out on my first visit. The are a puffy bread filled with ground beef. The raised dough reminded me of a piroshki or doughnut fried in clean oil. The fillings are similar, but I preferred these to the piroshki I had on my first visit.

The adobang pusit are baby squid served in a thick and salty stewing liquid (w/ ink). I thought I might be icked out by the squid innards, but the squid was so tender that I wound up appreciating their firmed up gelatinized texture. Enjoyable and hearty.

33 W. 25th Ave,
San Mateo, CA 94403
(650) 525-1488
Tues-Sun, 11am-8:30pm

Best restaurants in SF for 120-person wedding reception dinner and dance party?

Were you able to find a venue in SF that met your criteria?

Rohnert Park to SF --- what to eat along the way?

Yeah, I'll be dining solo and I prefer to split breakfast since my enjoyment of most breakfast foods diminishes after a few bites and they don't do well as leftovers.

Good point though. I should pick up some staples while I'm up there, Maybe McClelland's Dairy:


Rohnert Park to SF --- what to eat along the way?

I'm staying in Rohnert Park Saturday night. I could be lazy and just eat when I get back to SF Sunday morning, but I'm inclined to grab something along the way.

Avatar's is likely my destination, but I thought of some more that interested me:

BBQ N Curry House (Sausalito)
Della Fattoria (Petaluma, will probably grab some baked goods to eat during the week)
Don Julio's Rincon Latin Grill and Pupusas (Rohnert Park)
Real Doner (Petaluma)
Sol Food (San Rafael)
Yongewa Kitchen (dangit, won't be open for lunch)

For future reference, any other suggestions for lunch that (1) isn't something I could get done equally or better in SF and (2) isn't breakfasty?

Real Doner in Petaluma going veggie?

CindiN, even though the buffet is vegetarian, will people still be able to order meat off the menu?

Shishitos at Skool

Same experience here with a mix of padrons from a North Bay farmer's market and some random small peppers a friend got in their (Berkeley) CSA.

What really gets you is that you're eating the flesh and seeds all in one bite.

Korean food OUTSIDE of Seoul

Bump. After a few days in Seoul, we're thinking of taking a trip to Seoraksan national park in Gangwon-do. Any recent experiences in this area? (I'll post a Seoul itinerary in the next few days on another thread)