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Dim Sum in San Francisco


irongut
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Just a note, I enjoy Y. Ben House but the place does have a distinctly funky odor that my one-time-only eating companions found offensive.  If you are in any way squeamish or bothered by say, weird smells, sight of neighboring table's trash, then don't come in here. 

When I bring home stuff, however, it always seems to get eaten.  :hmmm:

Well - to resuscitate an old thread here - I can vouch for Y Ben House. I was there today for lunch. I was one of four white faces in the room, and the only one alone. They sat me at a big round table covered in a faded pink plastic tablecloth with a lazy susan in the center, across from a few folks eating lunch there with their kids. Every now and again a lady with a cart would come by, and pick up a plate and wave it at me, and say really loudly something like YOOO WAHHH POT STICKA!??!? and then everyone around us would laugh. Quite an experience, and a very tasty one too. I did learn quickly to follow instructions though; one person offered me a steamed rice paper dumpling with some seafood in it, and instead I pointed to three fat, opaque disks which she described as "pancake". She was suggesting the dumplings, which I thought were too much food. I got the pancakes, which turned out to be custard filled. Tasty, but not how I wanted to start my meal, and also gave my dining companions a good chuckle.

Anyway, I would agree that the place doesn't have a tremendous amount of foo-foo ambiance, nor does it have an antiseptic aura to it, to put it kindly. But it was a great and tasty experience, and well worth the $10 I spent (leaving absolutely stuffed, so much so it was hard to walk up the hill again afterwards, and leaving a decent amount left over).

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But it was a great and tasty experience, and well worth the $10 I spent

We, on the other hand, went to Yank Sing a few weekends ago (I'd never had dim sum in SF but that sounded like a good choice) and were absolutey shocked when we got the bill-$82 before tip, for 2. Here in Seattle we almost never break $20. There were lots of items I'd never seen before, which was neat, and everything was pretty good, but nothing was truly delicious.

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But it was a great and tasty experience, and well worth the $10 I spent

We, on the other hand, went to Yank Sing a few weekends ago (I'd never had dim sum in SF but that sounded like a good choice) and were absolutey shocked when we got the bill-$82 before tip, for 2. Here in Seattle we almost never break $20. There were lots of items I'd never seen before, which was neat, and everything was pretty good, but nothing was truly delicious.

Wow, 82 bucks? What did you eat?

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We, on the other hand, went to Yank Sing a few weekends ago (I'd never had dim sum in SF but that sounded like a good choice) and were absolutey shocked when we got the bill-$82 before tip, for 2. Here in Seattle we almost never break $20.

[...]

I too feel that Yank Sing is over-rated and over-charging. For that kind of money, I think I can have better tasting dim sum at Koi Palace (Daly City). Very crowded though. I also like May Flower and Parc Hong Kong (along Geary). I only have eaten at May Flower in Milpitas but this one in San Francisco is under the same ownership. In the East Bay, I like Hong Kong East Ocean (Emeryville) and the recently grand-opened Asian Pearl (Richmond).

W.K. Leung ("Ah Leung") aka "hzrt8w"
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Wow, 82 bucks? What did you eat?

My reaction exactly! What did we get that cost so much?? Well, everything cost a lot, even dumplings and vegetable dishes. Instead of plates that were $2, $3, $4, they were ~$10 each.

I'd read here about Koi Palace-it sounds great, but we didn't have a car. Yank Sing was within walking distance of our hotel.

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Wow, 82 bucks? What did you eat?

My reaction exactly! What did we get that cost so much?? Well, everything cost a lot, even dumplings and vegetable dishes. Instead of plates that were $2, $3, $4, they were ~$10 each.

I thought maybe you ordered some of the pricier stuff I've seen at some of the fancy dim sum joints. Things like foie gras wontons, lobster congee, or sharks fin dumplings. But it sounds like Yank Sing is just ridiculously overpriced.

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I have always liked Hang-Ah in chinatown. No ambeince, in a basement, but really fresh good food.

D

My Bay area freinds swear by a place in Oakland but I do not remeber the name. Maybe someone else will know the place. It is huge and crowded. Golden something maybe?

It's the Peony! I've been a very much enjoyed it!

http://sanfrancisco.citysearch.com/profile/1015765/

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I'd read here about Koi Palace-it sounds great, but we didn't have a car. Yank Sing was within walking distance of our hotel.

Buses in San Francisco are very convenient. You can take a bus from downtown SF to along Geary, where there are plenty of Chinese dim sum places (tastes great with reasonable prices). The buses run every 10 to 15 minutes?

I have recently tried "Parc Hong Kong". I think they are pretty good. (Geary + 17th). US$25.00 for 2, about 6-7 items.

Parc Hong Kong Restaurant

Address: 5322 Geary Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94121

Phone: (415) 668-8998

"Mayflower" should be good too. (Geary + 26th/27th)

Mayflower Seafood Restaurant

Address: 6255 Geary Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94121

Phone: (415) 387-8338

There are also a few more "down to earth" Chinese dim sum restaurants along Clement Street between 11th and 6th (e.g. "Lee Hou"). Plenty of Chinese eateries along this stretch.

W.K. Leung ("Ah Leung") aka "hzrt8w"
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i used to love ton kiang on geary. i don't remember it being so expensive but after living in new york for four years and recently moving back to the bay area we ate there one sunday afternoon. wow! it was around $100 for three people. i don't think we've ever broken $100 in New York for five people...

at any rate, the quality is still good, but i'd rather eat at some of the more "down to earth places". does anyone know of any good dim sum places in the south bay/silicon valley?

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i used to love ton kiang on geary.  i don't remember it being so expensive but after living in new york for four years and recently moving back to the bay area we ate there one sunday afternoon.  wow!  it was around $100 for three people.  i don't think we've ever broken $100 in New York for five people...

at any rate, the quality is still good, but i'd rather eat at some of the more "down to earth places".  does anyone know of any good dim sum places in the south bay/silicon valley?

http://www.koipalace.com/

my friend raves about this place

Eliot Wexler aka "Molto E"

MoltoE@restaurantnoca.com

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i used to love ton kiang on geary.  i don't remember it being so expensive but after living in new york for four years and recently moving back to the bay area we ate there one sunday afternoon.  wow!  it was around $100 for three people.  i don't think we've ever broken $100 in New York for five people...

at any rate, the quality is still good, but i'd rather eat at some of the more "down to earth places".  does anyone know of any good dim sum places in the south bay/silicon valley?

Wow! I went a couple of weeks ago and we spent $40/two people. And we were FULL after an hour of eating. Maybe it has to do with what you like best -- I'm pretty basic. Give me any kind of dumpling or bun and I'm happy. I've never been disappointed in the quality so I guess that's why I stick w/ it.

My fantasy? Easy -- the Simpsons versus the Flanders on Hell's Kitchen.

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[...]at any rate, the quality is still good, but i'd rather eat at some of the more "down to earth places".  does anyone know of any good dim sum places in the south bay/silicon valley?

Milpitas: Mayflower. I have eaten there. Quality is top. Price is a bit high, but comparable to Koi Palace in Daly City (perhaps a tad lower). They are comparable I think quality-wise.

I heard that there is an "ABC" just in the next mall from "Mayflower". They said "ABC" is even better. I haven't had the chance to try it. Next time I drop by, I will do an eval.

I have not tried their dim sums (but had their dinners):

Millbrae: Fuk Yuen

Millbrae: Zen Peninsula

Their dinners are top. So I have confidence about their dim sum.

Just a few blocks from there, there is "Flower Lounge" in Millbrae. My last visit was about a year ago and I was greatly disappointed (they used to be better). The dim sum tastes were so-so. Prices were competitive to the neighborhood ones ==> not good value at all. (I don't know why still many people recommend that place.)

Within the San Francisco city proper, I have tried:

Dim Sum King (Skyline). I have to say it's just so-so. The price is reasonably but taste is mediocre.

Hong Kong Restaurant (Noriega and around 34th). I really like this small outfit. Tastes are good (though not top). Prices are quite reasonable.

In the North Bay:

Emeryville: Hong Kong East Ocean. Taste: good (but not top), price: fair to high

Richmond: Pearl Village. Grand opening. Taste: top. price: fair to high

Richmond: Saigon Village. Haven't tried it but saw full house and long lines. Should be good.

W.K. Leung ("Ah Leung") aka "hzrt8w"
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I heard that there is an "ABC" just in the next mall from "Mayflower".  They said "ABC" is even better.  I haven't had the chance to try it.  Next time I drop by, I will do an eval.

Yeah, it's just down the street on Barber. I recently heard on Chowhound from Melanie Wong that ABC got some new chefs (from the now defunct Harbor Village). However, my friends only seem to like Mayflower and I like it too.

I love cold Dinty Moore beef stew. It is like dog food! And I am like a dog.

--NeroW

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I heard that there is an "ABC" just in the next mall from "Mayflower". ...

Yeah, it's just down the street on Barber.

Yes, Mayflower is part of the Ranch 99 complex that opened in 1997 if I remember, ABC is an upstairs restaurant in the nearby Ufferts Center, south of it, that opened later, about 1999. For the couple of years between, the area that became the Ufferts complex remained open fields (as the whole area used to be). Sometimes driving along Barber Lane you could see a hawk, stationary in the air overhead, riding the breeze gingerly, stalking a mouse hole among in the sagebrush below.

Dining there now is less primal and more genteel. (Who knows where the hawk went.) Several midweek lunches at each of those large dim-sum places left most people that I ate with preferring the ABC, which among other things offers unique specialties. There were other factors too, we had some consistent problem of style about the service at Mayflower, pushy servers or long waits or something. That was some years ago and may not be current. Parking at both complexes at lunch times remains a "challenge," the Mayflower site more so. Both restaurants are big bustling hardworking dim-sum houses.

Silicon Valley is getting a little afield from San Francisco but maybe this will serve as a regional thread. Dim Sum in SF proper has a very old history, predating the Earthquake, and likewise, a long history on food fora too.

Edited by MaxH (log)
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  • 2 years later...

Anything new in dim sum in San Francisco? We'll be there for lunch December 26th.

Or, could be any other interesting ethnic foods that we might not have in Philadelphia.

(staying a week in Santa Rosa, so recommendations up there (not necessarily ethnic)-including Napa, etc. are good too! Years ago went to Jeanty and loved it, maybe Bouchon this time?)

Thanks!

Philly Francophiles

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If you are staying in Santa Rosa, I assume you are heading to Napa if you are considering Jeanty and/or Bouchon as the two cities are an hour drive apart...

If so, discount Bouchon as recent reports have been less than stellar; Keller has been doing some renovations around the property and food quality and waitstaff has been shockingly mediocre.

Instead, the hot restaurant in Napa right now is Ubuntu; vegetarian, yes, but one of the most sought-after tables in the country and one that even die-hard carnivores are impressed by.

For dim-sum in San Francisco, it is generally believed that Koi Palace in Daly City (just outside the city) is still the best and worth the drive, but if you are city-bound, Ton Kiang and Yank Sing are the favorites.

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  • 2 months later...

Turns out we'll be in San Francisco on Christmas Day around 11:00 - or Noon.

Looking for an early lunch in Chinatown, doesn't have to be dim sum.

Any ideas what might be open, not too far off of our route from the airport to Santa Rosa?

(can't remember the road, but it seems like I might have written down route 101, does that sound right?)

Philly Francophiles

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Turns out we'll be in San Francisco on Christmas Day around 11:00 - or Noon.

Looking for an early lunch in Chinatown, doesn't have to be dim sum.

Any ideas what might be open, not too far off of our route from the airport to Santa Rosa?

(can't remember the road, but it seems like I might have written down route 101, does that sound right?)

Route 101 it is. Passes right through the town of San Francisco (Van Ness and Lombard), then on to the Golden Gate Bridge northbound.

Chinatown, on a holiday, at 11:00 - noon... good luck finding parking.

W.K. Leung ("Ah Leung") aka "hzrt8w"
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Turns out we'll be in San Francisco on Christmas Day around 11:00 - or Noon.

Looking for an early lunch in Chinatown, doesn't have to be dim sum.

Any ideas what might be open, not too far off of our route from the airport to Santa Rosa?

(can't remember the road, but it seems like I might have written down route 101, does that sound right?)

If you're flying into SFO, there's Zen Peninsula in Millbrae, about ten to fifteen minutes away from the airport. The dim sum is really good. I enjoyed their jellyfish and seaweed salad. There are other Chinese places near the airport (like Fook Yuen, The Kitchen, et al.), if you don't want to wait until getting to Chinatown.

Enjoy!

Russell J. Wong aka "rjwong"

Food and I, we go way back ...

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