Seldom get to Chinatown in SF and looking for excellent dim sum. Thanks in advance!
Unfortunately excellent dim sum is not found in Chinatown. Although Obama got take out dim sum from Great Eastern last week, I wouldn't particularly trust his judgement on dim sum. Since you already live in SF and if you want excellent dim sum you may try Sunset or Richmond. I suggest South Sea Seafood Village, 1420 Irving St. Otherwise the best dim sum is found south of the city in Daly City and Millbrae.
You won't find excellent dim sum in Chinatown, but I (and my family, and Obama, apparently) have always had a good experience at Great Eastern. It's not terribly fancy like what you'd find at Yank Sing or Koi Palace, but still tasty. City View, on the edge of Chinatown, is usually more than decent too.Edited: 21 February 2012, 08:31
I agree you won't find excellent dim sum in Chinatown. For me, I'd rather have great Chinese food from a place like R&G Lounge or Hong Kong Clay Pot Restaurant, than average dim sum from Great Eastern.
The best dim sum is in the Inner & Outer Richmond these days and Shanghai Dumpling King, Ton Kiang and Hong Kong Lounge are among my favorites. Yank Sing down by the Embarcadero is pretty good too, but we only go there when we don't have time to get out to Richmond.
I like City View off Kearny St. Another place I go regularly is Canton Dim Sum in SOMA. There is nothing fancy. Just regular dependable restaurant for me.
scottca075 writes>>....The best dim sum is in the Inner & Outer Richmond these days and Shanghai Dumpling King, Ton Kiang and Hong Kong Lounge are among my favorites.....<<
Xiaolong Bao (Shanghai-style soup dumplings) are popular enough that they've made it onto the menu of many "traditional" dim sum restaurants in the City (hmmm, I guess that kills somebody's AUTHENTIC.....), but serving Xiaolong Bao doesn't make a place a dim sum restaurant. Shanghai Dumpling King serves very good Xialong Bao (as their tables get stickier I think their quality and attention is slipping, though -- you might want to check out Kingdom of Dumpling in the Sunset) and several other dumplings but they're a Chinese restaurant specializing in Shanghai food, not a dim sum restaurant.
But why bother recommending a place in the outer sunset (or richmond for that matter) if the OP has stated that she's going to be spending the day in Chinatown?Edited: 21 February 2012, 19:54
Sorry, the parenthetical comment was directed to scottca.
For Chinatown, my reasonably-priced full-on ethnic dim sum experience, Gold Mountain folded a couple of months ago, leaving me pretty much with City View, who like Ton Kiang in the Avenues seems to have goosed their prices upward, probably because of their reputation for good dim sum in a more sedate setting. For dim sum and similar items for breakfast rather than brunch/lunch there's also Y Ben House on Pacific, but I fully expect the next major cholera epidemic anywhere in the world to have originated from their bathrooms.
Correction to previous regarding Y Ben House -- where I wrote "....For dim sum and similar items for breakfast rather than brunch/lunch there's also Y Ben House...." I meant to write "for breakfast in addition to brunch/lunch".
For locals to provide you with a frame of reference, think "what Hing Lung is to jook, Y Ben House is to dim sum".....Edited: 21 February 2012, 22:15
Golden Mountain is in the heart of Chinatown and is a perfectly good dim sum experience - give it a try...
Gold Mountain has closed, as has Y Ben House and Hing Lung. Lots of changes in Chinatown lately...