Insatiable Girl

ROWLAND HEIGHTS: New Capital Seafood Restaurant

Posted in food, los angeles, recommended, restaurants by sue on January 24, 2011

1330 S Fullerton Rd (Diamond Plaza)
Rowland Heights, CA 91748
626 581 9813

Price: Cheap
Rating: Good/Great
Directions: Get off at Fullerton on the 60
Reservations: Not sure.
Must Get: Chicken feet (if your stomach can handle it!)

Tim and I went after a morning of hot yoga. I was starving as usual and my eyes are always bigger than my stomach so we ended up ordering (and finishing!) 7 plates between the two of us. The food here is definitely better than the dishes offered at Hong Kong Palace. I’ve actually been here a few times before with my family, but my dad still prefers Hong Kong Palace for some ungodly reason.

Everything we had here was good except their steamed spareribs (pictured above) and their tofu skin wrapped meat and bamboo shoots (also pictured above, on the left). The shumai was good as well, but too meaty in my opinion. Their chicken feet though was hands down my favorite dish. I’m going to push for this place the next time my family wants to do dim sum again. Haha.

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Posted in food, los angeles, recommended, restaurants by sue on January 23, 2011

1015 S Nogales St
Rowland Heights, CA 91748
626 965 5809

Price: Cheap
Rating: Yummmmmm.
Directions: Get off at Nogales on the 60
Reservations: Not accepted
Must Get: Shaved snow (any flavor)

I’ve been going to this place since it opened a few years back, but I guess in the recent years they added shaved snow (xuehuabing 雪花冰) to their menu. Prior to this trip, I never had shaved snow before, but according to my friend Howard, it was something that was popular in Taiwan 20 years ago. It’s like shaved ice, but BETTER because they use frozen milk as their base, instead of water.

When Ally and I went, they were out of mango, so we just had their red bean shaved snow with rice cake and added chrysanthemum jelly. My stomach is grumbling just thinking about it. It’s the best shaved ice/snow that I’ve ever had, totally worth all the calories! The only downfall was that there weren’t enough toppings. By the time we got through with half the bowl, we were already out of all the red beans, rice cake, and jelly. (Note to self: Get extra rice cake for all future visits. Yum!)

I’m definitely going back again this week for the mango or green tea shaved snow.

(It’s been a while since I had the food here. I remember thinking it was alright, but not particularly noteworthy. I remember I used to get this one dry noodle dish with chicken. If I try the food again, I’ll update this post.)

SAN GABRIEL: Liang’s Kitchen

Posted in food, los angeles, recommended, restaurants by sue on January 21, 2011

227 W Valley Blvd
San Gabriel, CA 91776
(626) 281-1898

Price: Cheap
Rating: Great
Directions: Get off at Del Mar Ave on the 10
Reservations: Not accepted
Must Get: Spicy wontons, beef roll, oxtail, beef noodle soup

This is now my new favorite Taiwanese spot in LA. The food here is pretty amazing. I loved the spicy wontons. The beef roll was delicious, but could have done with more cilantro inside. I got their oxtail noodles (pictured above) which I loved because it was garlicky, but I think I would rather get a side of oxtail and their beef noodle soup next time. I didn’t have their beef noodles this trip, but I had a sip of Ally’s broth and liked it. The only disappointing thing we got was their scallion pancake which lacked scallions! There were barely any in the pancake, so the flavor was just not there. Ally, John, and I went late, so there were plenty of empty tables, but I hear the wait is usually long. And the servers were really nice. I’m bringing my momma here next time!

p.s. They have locations in Rowland Heights, Arcadia, and Irvine too.


Posted in food, los angeles, restaurants by sue on January 17, 2011

19101 Colima Rd
Rowland Heights, CA 91748
(626) 854-9829

Price: Reasonable/Expensive
Rating: Okay
Directions: Get off at Nogales on the 60
Reservations: N/A for dim sum
Must Get: Almond tea with puff pastry, radish cake

For some unknown reason, my dad keeps coming back here despite the crap service and lack of amazing food. We come here often for dim sum and occasionally for dinner, but this post is for their dim sum; it’s been ages since I’ve been here for dinner. The food is not extraordinary; it’s standard dim sum fare, but there’s a couple of notable dishes. Their radish cake (luobogao 蘿蔔糕) is probably the best I’ve had. It’s really moist and just melts in your mouth. And their almond tea with the puff pastry is simply one of the best desserts offered during dim sum. It’s the first place I’ve ever had this dish, so maybe I’m a bit partial, but I think it’s not too sweet and the puff pastry has the right amount of butter so it’s perfectly flaky. Only problem is this almond tea is only offered after 11AM or when the chef arrives, whichever comes later.

But because of the service, if it was just me, I would probably never step foot in this restaurant again. I’ve been here a number of times where the service was just absolutely horrendous with the exception of one waitress that my parents know and like. Because of her, I know I’ll keep coming back here.

Oh well, I don’t think I’ve ever had mind-blowing dim sum. They all kind of taste standard to me. Any recommendations for places around here?

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ROWLAND HEIGHTS: Newport Seafood 新港海鮮

Posted in food, los angeles, recommended, restaurants by sue on January 14, 2011
18441 Colima Road
Rowland Heights, CA 91748
(626) 839-1239

Price: Very Expensive
Rating: Greatttt
Directions: Get off at Fullerton on the 60
Reservations: They don’t take them
Must Get: House special lobster, boiled shrimp, fried tofu

This is probably hands down the best Chinese/Vietnamese seafood restaurant in the area. I’ve been here years ago, but I wasn’t nearly as impressed with it that time as I was this past trip. They remodeled since I was there last there and it was definitely for the best. This place is surprisingly beautiful. The decor is modern; it reminds me of the restaurants found on the top floors of department buildings in Asia. But the best part is, it’s clean! A huge rarity for Chinese restaurants in this area sadly. But anyway, on to the food…

Everything we ordered here was delicious with the exception of their clams. Stay away from them. They were sauteed well, but not cleaned well. They still had sand! And let me tell you, my parents are in the seafood business and that’s just not normal. (Soak clams in water for about 30 minutes before you decide to cook them and scrub the shells.) Their house specialty is their lobster, you’ll see it at practically every table and it’s worth it. It’s a little bit on the sweet side, but overall really tasty. You can’t really go wrong with boiled shrimp as long as it’s fresh and this particular type of shrimp (in Chinese it’s youshuixia 游水蝦). Their fried tofu was good too, crisp on the outside but the sauce needed some jalapenos with a bit more kick. We also got a plate of sauteed green pea sprouts (Don’t hold me to that English name, it’s what I found via Google. It’s called doumiao 豆苗 in Chinese) which were also good, but once again it’s hard to mess that up.

Anyway, this place is great and definitely worth going to, but early warning, if you want seafood here make sure to bring your parents or someone else who is willing to pay the bill. A small lobster here goes for about $60-70 and a pound of shrimp goes for $25-30… I could probably eat a pound or two alone and still be hungry. Ha! They do have meat dishes here that are cheaper like the bo luc lac (French style beef cubes in black pepper sauce), but this place is famous for their seafood, so how can you come here and not try it?

SAN GABRIEL: Half and Half Tea House 伴伴堂

Posted in food, los angeles, not recommended, restaurants by sue on January 13, 2011

120 N San Gabriel Blvd
San Gabriel, CA 91775
(626) 309-9387

Price: Pricey
Rating: Still overrated
Directions: Get off at San Gabriel Blvd on the 10
Reservations: N/A, but there are seats/tables
Must Get: Nothing

I decided to give Half and Half another shot since I did not have their specialty drinks the first time, so at this trip I had their Taro Honey Boba Milk Tea, half sugar, less ice. Even at half sugar, the drink was still really sweet. The sugar masked all the tea flavor which still was not great tea and I could barely tell the difference between their honey boba and regular boba from other places. The only way I’d come back here again is if someone really wanted to try it, but I would probably stay away from their tea and order their Taiwanese snacks instead.

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CITY OF INDUSTRY: Half and Half Tea House 伴伴堂

Posted in food, los angeles, not recommended, restaurants by sue on January 13, 2011

17575 Colima Rd
Industry, CA 91748
(626) 810-8778

Price: Pricey
Rating: Eh… It’s overrated
Directions: Get off at Fullerton on the 60
Reservations: N/A, there are barely any seats
Must Get: Nothing

After two attempts at trying this place but leaving due to the long, long wait, I decided to give it a shot one day when I was early to meet a friend for dinner down in LA. I went before nightfall, so there was no line here at all. I got my drink and was out of there within 5 minutes, compared to the twenty minutes Debbie and I had attempted to wait one day only to give up because we were in a rush. Anyway, is the line and wait warranted? Heck no. Their green milk tea was horrible. It didn’t even taste like tea. It was worse than my own attempt of making green milk tea by just adding milk and sugar to the green tea I boiled at home. And the cup sizes?? What idiot designed that? If you are going to have to-go cups in LA, please make sure they fit in the cup holders in cars. It’s only the smart thing to do. Instead I had to tilt this cup to the side and worry about it spilling all over my car. Ugh, such stupidity.

Anyway, if you’ve been here before, you’re probably thinking well, she just got the wrong drink. Read my next post. I went to the one in San Gabriel the day after to try their “specialty” drinks with the honey boba too. (Spoiler alert: it still sucked.)

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HACIENDA HEIGHTS: Tasty Noodle House

Posted in food, los angeles, not recommended, restaurants by sue on January 12, 2011

1611 S. Azusa Ave
Hacienda Heights, CA 91745

Price: Cheap
Rating: Horrible
Directions: Get off at Azusa on the 60
Reservations: Unneccessary
Must Get: Nothing

Their spicy wontons were not good. The sauce left a weird after taste in my mouth, but I imagine the wontons themselves would be decent. They’re a pretty decent size and filled with lots of veggies.

The pork chop noodles were a joke. The broth reminded me of used hot pot soup, a bunch of flavors that just didn’t really go together. I had to douse my noodles in soy sauce and chili sauce to give it some edible flavor. The pork chop itself was more breading than meat. Worst part is it really needed that ketchup that came on the side.

My brother said their pan-fried dumplings were decent though, but I doubt I’ll come back to find out.

Do not bother trying this place. Save the $10 and an hour of your life.

ROWLAND HEIGHTS: Phoenix Food Boutique 鳳城

Posted in food, los angeles, recommended, restaurants by sue on January 9, 2011
18166 Colima Rd
Rowland Heights, CA 91748
626 965 8688

Price: Cheap
Rating: Great
Directions: Get off at Fullerton on the 60
Reservations: Not Accepted
Must Get: Salt and Pepper Chicken Wings, Green Milk Tea, Mango and Coconut Mochi Rolls, Coconut and Taro Jello

I am in love with this place. I’ve been a number of times in the past, but I did not appreciate it until I moved back to LA. The stuff here is great. I usually stick to their tea and dessert, but I got their House Special Fried Noodles and their Salt and Pepper Chicken Wings the other day. The noodles were alright, nothing special, but their chicken wings were amazing– not oily, perfectly crisp, and just the right amount of flavor. We finished the first order so quickly, we had to get another even though we had just eaten two hours before.

I’ve had green milk tea from a number of places in the area this past month– Ten Ren, Tea Station, Phoenix, Half and Half, some random restaurants– and I have to say Phoenix is now on the top of my list. The tea flavor is really strong and it’s not too sweet. (I always get half sugar, less ice at every tea shop by the way.) Now that i’ve discovered their tea, I’ll have to stop going to Ten Ren, a shop I’ve been an avid fan of since I was in high school.

But if the tea is great, their desserts are out of this world. I can’t think of another place in SGV (San Gabriel Valley) that makes desserts like this place or in New York or Taiwan for that matter. Everything I’ve had here has been amazing, from their pre-made desserts to their hot made to order ones. They aren’t too sweet, but they’re really flavorful. As mentioned above, their mango coconut mochi rolls and their coconut taro jello are my favorite. They can be found in the glass counter when you walk in.

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ROWLAND HEIGHTS: Ding’s Garden 大合滷味

Posted in food, los angeles, restaurants by sue on January 9, 2011

18922 Gale Ave
Rowland Heights, CA 91748
626 810 0600

Price: Cheap
Rating: Good/Great
Directions: Get off at Nogales on the 60
Reservations: Not accepted
Must Get: Shanghai pan-fried buns

The Shanghai pan-friend buns (shengjianbao 生煎包) here are some of the best ones I’ve had in a while. They weren’t too doughy, had just the right amount of meat, and they were cooked thoroughly. Their spicy wontons (hongyou chaosou 紅油炒手) were pretty decent. The sauce was good despite the lack of peanut-ty taste I’ve grown accustomed to from the ones I’ve had in Taiwan. They were a bit on the small side though, the amount of meat in each wonton was probably the size of a nickel.

I didn’t try their other dishes, so I don’t know if they’re any good, but based off those two dishes, I would come back and try something else. They offer boba (bubble for you New Yorkers) milk tea (and green milk tea!) for $1 if you order a noodle dish. Their boba green milk tea wasn’t bad. I’d definitely get that again for a buck.

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