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Dim Sum in LA


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#16 Lars

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Posted 17 February 2005 - 05:58 PM

Thanks for that advice, and I will avoid Chin Chin. The restaurant that used to be Oriental Seafood Inn (which was very good) has merged with another restaurant, I believe on Sepulveda near Venice Blvd, and I want to check that one out. Also, there is a Sechzwan restaurant on Washington between Abbot Kinney and Lincoln that is good for dinner but very mediocre for lunch, but very cheap for both. I don't think they have dim sum. I do want to make a trek to SGV - I think it would be worth it. I have to travel pretty far for good Vietnamese also.
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#17 hollywood

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Posted 17 February 2005 - 06:25 PM

It's not dim sum, but you might want to check out JR Seafood. It's pretty good and closer than the SGV. It can get crazy on weekends or holidays (made the mistake once of going on Christmas Eve), but during the week it's fine. Good for groups. http://www.jrrestaurant.com/

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#18 jschyun

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Posted 17 February 2005 - 07:42 PM

I remember going to JR Seafood a couple of years ago. I liked it, good place. Good at lunch and dinner. Hope they have not gone downhill or anything.

If you end up at JR Seafood, can you find out if they still have that "happy hour" special? If I remember correctly, entrees were 50% off when ordered between 5:30 and 6PM. That was a good deal for decent food, but I'm rarely in the area at the time to take advantage of it.

Also, a little off topic, but I used to go to the Hot Dog on a Stick (which I think is in the same mall but in the food court area). It's the only Hot Dog on a Stick where I was able to get vegetarian corn dogs. Yeah, you could get the cheese stick anywhere, and that is vegetarian I guess.

#19 mongo_jones

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Posted 17 February 2005 - 08:02 PM

yes, jr seafood is good. i may be inventing things here but i think the restaurant that opened a branch recently in the marina might be hop li. either way, the main hop li on pico (a little east of sepulveda) is not bad either. there used to be a dim sum place on wilshire somewhere near centinela that was an offshoot of one of the major sgv houses. given its clientele it wasn't as good as the sgv places but certainly plausible. anyone know what i'm talking about or if it still exists? royal harbor or something like that. went there from work a couple of times 3-4 years ago.

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#20 FoodZealot

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Posted 18 February 2005 - 12:44 AM

Royal Star. Still there, but they don't do dim sum there anymore, at least last I heard.

JR is a favorite of mine as well. We usually go for lunch, but haven't seen any promotion of a happy hour deal. Will check on my next visit.

#21 mongo_jones

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Posted 18 February 2005 - 01:08 AM

yes, jr seafood is good. i may be inventing things here but i think the restaurant that opened a branch recently in the marina might be hop li. either way, the main hop li on pico (a little east of sepulveda) is not bad either.

yes, it is hop li. but i must do penance for calling the pico branch the main hop li. apparently the original is in chinatown. read about it.

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#22 Aaron T

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Posted 18 February 2005 - 03:43 PM

My standbys in West LA have been JR Seafood on Santa Monica between Barrington & Bundy, and VIP Harbpr Seafood on Wilshire @ Barrington. I feel that both are not as good as they used to be, but that there isnt anything better on the westside.

Chin Chin is in the same league as PF Changs.....
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#23 Lars

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Posted 18 February 2005 - 09:24 PM

Hop Li in MDR is in a building that used to be a Mandarin restaurant called Lotus Blossom. Then there is the Lotus Chinese Cuisine on Sepulveda, which my brother thinks is the restaurant with which the Oriental Seafood Inn merged, but I haven't been there yet. He works at Sony, and so he sometimes gets takeout from there, and what I've tasted of his leftovers was good. I was a little disappointed with Hop Li in MDR, but I've only been there once. There is an excellent sushi restaurant in the same strip mall called Tsuji No Hana, and so I'm more likely to go there than Hop Li, but I think I'll give Hop Li another try, since it is so close to me, and it's right across from my bank.
I'd rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy. --Tom Waits

#24 Aaron T

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Posted 21 February 2005 - 01:58 AM

I had dim sum on Friday with some friends at CBS Seafood, on the same block as Phillipe the Original, near Union Station. I hadnt been there in years but it was still good.

We had chicken bao, chinese broccoli, a big chicken dish with a lot of bones that I dont know what it is called, the flat noodles with beef, flat noodles with shrimp, and a crab dish. I did not eat the shellfish dishes but enjoyed the others.

We got three different pastries at the chinese bakery across the street for about $1.50.

What is the best place for dim sum in Chinatown/downtown??
There are times when I don't feel like or do not have the time to go all the way to the San Gabriel Valley but am near downtown....
"There just aren't many new "uptight" reservation places opening, especially in the neighborhoods where older, more sophisticated diners are trolling for youngish women." - Stone

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#25 mongo_jones

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Posted 21 February 2005 - 02:10 AM

What is the best place for dim sum in Chinatown/downtown??
There are times when I don't feel like or do not have the time to go all the way to the San Gabriel Valley but am near downtown....

probably empress pavillion. a bear to get into on the weekend though--easier for couples or groups >6

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#26 jschyun

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Posted 23 February 2005 - 04:35 AM

Had a good meal at New Concept on Sunday. My favorites:

Baked BBQ pork buns.
Green Tea mochi balls with black sesame filling (kind of like Sea Harbour's bitter melon ball)
Shark Fin Dumplings
Beef Noodle Claypot
Egg Custard Tart

The egg custard tarts are the best I've had in Monterey Park. That is saying something. On Sunday, they had perfectly flaky crust with sweet but not too sweet egg custard filling. I don't remember them being this good last time. We got seconds.

Definitely get the BBQ pork buns. I usually hate pork buns but these were easily some of the best I've had. Not too sweet filling, very light, tender and pillowy with nicely browned crust.

Shark fin dumplings had zero shark fin I could see, but were still excellent. They are the green dumplings shown in the LA Times article.

Next time will try the abalone siu mai which I had to cancel because people were full.

Prices are not too bad. $15 including tip.

#27 Lars

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Posted 23 February 2005 - 03:52 PM

My favorite was the first course - the shrimp in rice dumplings. Here are some of the pictures my brother took.
I'd rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy. --Tom Waits

#28 jschyun

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Posted 23 February 2005 - 04:35 PM

Weird. I can see the shark fin in the photo but I don't remember seeing that in real life. Of course, it could be because I was blinded by hunger.

#29 vidia

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Posted 07 March 2005 - 06:34 PM

Lars,

great pics - the names of some of the dishes were peculiar though - is that what New Concept calls them? The 'shrimp rolls' should be 'cheong fun (rice noodles) with shrimp', the 'pork rolls' are just regular xiu mai (sometimes transliterated as shiu mai), the 'bird's nests' are taro cakes with minced pork. That last one was the most confusing, since I thought it was a dish with actual bird's nest, which is usually served in a dessert soup since it is slightly sweet.

I agree with others there is no good dim sum on the westside. Empress is OK, but really, SGV is the way to go (unfortunately, as traffic is a bitch).

Mongo - what wormhole to the 10 do you mean? I'll try anything that gets me to the SGV quicker. 40 minutes from MDR is *extremely* optimistic!

#30 mongo_jones

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Posted 07 March 2005 - 07:37 PM

Mongo - what wormhole to the 10 do you mean? I'll try anything that gets me to the SGV quicker. 40 minutes from MDR is *extremely* optimistic!

the key from the marina is to not take lincoln to the 10. (lincoln is one of the pathways the damned have to tread on their way to hell.) this is what you do--take the small street behind the marina mall (glencoe?) to washington (you pop out in front of the costco), turn right, turn left soon thereafter on walgrove. take walgrove north--keep trucking past venice, past rose, past the west edge of santa monica airport. at some point it will stop being walgrove and when it hits ocean park it will be a numbered street (23rd?)--turn right and then left on 26th to hit the 10. depending on traffic this can shave 10-15 minutes off the drive.

there are other kinky ways as well that involve jefferson. but it has been a while for me and i don't want to lead you astray.

the 40 minute estimate is for a weeknight dinner drive leaving after rush hour. when i lived in santa monica i'd done the drive in as little as 35 with the 10 clear.

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