Thursday, November 25, 2004

Chinese: Szechwan, Hunan and Yunnan

Crown Cafe
1000 S San Gabriel Blvd, San Gabriel (626) 286-0298
More down-home than the late, lamented Shiang/Charming Garden (let's see what happens after they remodel), but we can be thankful that Crown Cafe has brought stunning Hunan style food back to LA. Excellent dishes whose English menu names escape me now: black lamb meat, Hunan ham with white chillis, fish head casserole, fish with Hunan sauce, "spicy over spicy" (stir fried fresh peppers).

Yungui Garden

301 N Garfield Ave # D, Monterey Park, 626-571-8387
Monterey Park outpost with hard-to-find Yunnan dishes in an otherwise Szechuan menu. I loved this place, the numbing hot stews, mapo tofu and chongqing chicken were splendid.

Best Szechwan
230 N Garfield Ave, Monterey Park, 626-572-4629
Renowned as one of the finest Szechwan places in town and my experience was terrific. Of course you will eat numbing hot dishes and regular chili hot fare but don't forget fuqi feipian (table scraps i.e. tripe, beef and other fine things) from cold station.

Chung King
206 S. Garfield Ave., Monterey Park; (626) 280-7430
Awesome Szechwan stylings, with deep-fried pork ribs and fish-flavour eggplant. All your favourite Szechwan standards too, including cold dish counter with knockout peanut/anchovy mix.

Return to main Chinese menu


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Since it is so hard to find good Chinese on the west side, I have to weigh in with Hu's Szechuan on Motor in Palms. It is good, not great, but their specialty pork is delicious, as is the eggplant (if you close your eyes).

5:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There's a great Szechuan place in Torrance. It think it's on PCH.

12:54 PM  
Blogger Simon said...

I agree with Anonymous #1 that Chinese food is hard to find on the West side, but that's no excuse for the food at Hu's Szechuan. Take the time to drive to San Gabriel and reap the benefits!

6:40 PM  
Anonymous mrmachachi said...

I have some great recommendations for Szechwan food. Having grown up in New York and having a Chinese wife, I am very picky and it took me almost 10 years to find these gems.

First off Best Szechwan in Monterey Park is amazing. One of the two best if not the best Chinese restaurant in Los Angeles. Now if they would just find someone to work there that speaks at least some practical English.

Hu's is the WORST! I got so sick when I ate there upon first moving to L.A. in 1994 that I had "it" coming out both ends. Just horrendous. In my opinion as horrible as Genghis Cohen on Fairfax, if you catch my drift.

My two recommendations are for
1) Fu-Shing Schezwan Restaurant in Pasadena. This is best or second best Chinese restaurant in L.A. Unlike Best Schezwan, it caters to American tastes with white meat chicken and large, large platters of very high quality yet cheap food.


2) for westsiders I recommend the dive-looking and dive-named Schezwan Restaurant in Marina Del Rey. It has been there forever, is cheap, and looks like a dump from outside. But it is constantly crowded and the food is very fresh. Everything but the lobster, which was frozen - but the owner will remember you after a couple of visits and will pick up a fresh lobster if you call in advance; that's how nice Auntie is.


This place is far better than that crap Hop-Li, JR Seafood (which went down in quality years ago), Royal Star (which is thankfully now closed), and any other westsider I ever tried (and I might have tried them all)

Extra prize) I also recommend Yujean Kang's in Pasadena if you want to try expensive but delicious Shanghai-style Chinese. It is very expensive though and caters to the expense account crowd. I heard the south beach area second location is not as good but have not tried it. The Beverly Hills branch used to be great but sadly it closed.

7:07 PM  
Blogger lucilus said...

Is Crown Cafe still open? Could anyone give me an address? The address I went to is "Chung King"

7:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hu's Szechuan Restaurant on Motor in Palms is a fantastic Chinese restaurant. We were introduced to Hu's by friends from China and have never been disappointed, especially when you know to ask for some of the off the meun specials. For all you naysayers out there I have to ask, Have you ever really eaten there?

8:40 PM  
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12:59 AM  

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