1801 Alemany Blvd
(between Ocean Ave & Ruth St)
San Francisco, CA 94112
First up was the Beef Pancake. I love this dish – crispy layers of fried something on the outside and yummy, flavorful beef in the middle. Served piping hot. Then, they brought out the Zha Jiang Mian – Beijing style noodles. These is a cold noodle dish with fresh, hand-pulled noodles, cucumber, sprouts, and this wonderful hoisin(ish) sauce with bits of meat in it, mixed together. I really loved the cucumber added to the dish, as it made it taste so fresh and perfect for the muggy weather we were having. A word of advice – use the sauce sparingly, as it’s quite salty on its own.
The dishes were coming one at a time, which worked well because it made you enjoy your food (eat slowly!) and there was no way in hell we were gonna fit all the food on our table with drinks and elbows. Our next “course” was the lamb dumplings. I don’t know how to explain it, but when someone does a dumpling correctly, it makes me so happy. Delicate balance of dumpling skin, meat, and sauce. Freshly boiled. Beautiful.
I insisted that we order a vegetable to offset some of the carbs, so the only greens of the evening were the Spinach with Garlic. Then came the Lion's Head meatballs - served in four pieces. So tender, so delicious. And finally…our Flour Balls with Three Flavors. Almost like a cross between a noodle dish and a dumpling dish, I’d had a version of this at Old Mandarin Islamic (another fantastic Chinese restaurant). I don't really know the the "Three Flavors" is, but I'm guessing, Chicken, Pork, and Seafood. Just eat it. It's delicious.
All I can say is, I was so content after our meal. I wasn’t stuffed either, nor did I have that overly-MSG’ed feeling I usually get when I eat Chinese food. I would definitely make the trip out here again – and you should too!