Thursday, November 25, 2004

Chinese: Northern, Islamic, Mongolian hotpot

Little Sheep
120 S Atlantic Blvd, Monterey Park 626-282-1089
The best hotpot I have eaten, and hordes of Chinese folks agree. It's Mongolian style with milky broth (with or without hot chili) and gazillions of nuts, herbs and flavourings. Fat lamb is thinly sliced and myriad options can be ticked off menu (try egg dumpling!). Sensational.

Lu Din Gee
1039 E Valley Blvd, San Gabriel 626-288-0588
Authentic Beijing/Peking duck from the air compressor/drying/roasting school served "three ways" as phenomenal crispy skin wrapped in pancakes, stir-fry and soup. You won't believe that the skin and moist meat came from the same bird - not to be missed.

China Islamic
7727 E. Garvey Ave., Rosemead, (626) 288-4246
Hard to separate this from the very good Tung Lai Shun within the Islamic category. Order a large sesame bread (dabing) as soon as you arrive, and don't miss the enormous and wonderful lamb hot pot. Lamb with green onions and five spice cold beef also very good.

Tung Lai Shun
140 W Valley Blvd, San Gabriel 626-288-6588
Accessible and excellent Chinese Islamic fare, heavy on the lamb and cumin and served with giant bread in lieu of rice.

Mandarin Deli
727 N Broadway #109, Los Angeles, 213-623-6054 Chinatown
Handmade noodles, a subject that never loses fascination.

Mandarin House
3074 W. Eighth St., Koreatown (213) 386-8976
Jajiang mein (minced pork and sweet soy paste sauce) with hand pulled noodles, what's not to like?

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