Here in Los Angeles, we’re very fond of flavors from the Far East. We’re not only talking about food, either – while we have an insatiable craving for Thai, Japanese, and Indian cuisines, we’re also lovers of yoga, Eastern medicine, anime, Pocky, and other Asian imports. Angelenos and egg rolls have a storied past; a lasting love for Chinese food has resulted in some truly mouth-watering, delectable restaurants that span our sprawling metropolis. Whether its dim sum on a Sunday morning, wonton soup for a work day lunch, or Szechwan beef for a late dinner, Chinese food in LA is a crave-able commodity… And thus, a list of the haute 5 Chinese restaurants in LA.
Chinois on Main
Wolfgang Puck may not be the first name that springs to mind when you think of Chinese food. Stick with us – his Chinois on Main has been dishing up fusion cuisine with a strong focus on Szechwan, Cantonese, and Chinois styles of cooking since 1983. Small, colorful, and charming on the inside, you’re definitely not at Spago anymore. Puck’s menu at Chinois includes such traditionally delicious items as Spring Rolls with Stir Fried Duck, Barbecued Baby Pork Ribs, Szechwan Beef, and Kurobata Pork Shoulder. (P.S. His restaurant Red Seven, tucked away inside the Pacific Design Center is more proof of his abilities with Chinese cuisine.)
Chinois on Main is located at 2709 Main Street in Santa Monica (310) 392-9025
Anyone who has lived west of the 405 freeway has surely ordered food from Chang’s Restaurant on San Vicente Blvd in Brentwood. Most of their regulars may not be all too familiar with the restaurant’s ambiance, though, because Chang’s is largely considered some of the best takeout in West LA. Authentic Chinese options like Fried Wontons, Steamed Dumplings, and Szechwan Wontons start you off before you tuck into Hot & Sour Soup, Chicken with Black and White Mushrooms, or Stir Fried Scallops satiate your cravings. The menu continues on (and on) to include a host of Chow Mein, Fried Rice, Mu Shu, and other meat and vegetable options. Whether you eat there or take it home, Chang’s is sure to impress any taste bud.
Chang’s Restaurant is located at 11726 San Vicente Blvd in Brentwod (310) 207-2295
Any connoisseur of dim sum (basically, southern Chinese cuisine presented as brunch) has enjoyed the tastes, smells, and teas of Empress Pavilion time and again. A large restaurant that takes you out of LA and into traditional Chinese dim sum, Empress Pavilion is an iconic Chinatown establishment. As with any dim sum experience, rather than ordering only from a menu, you’re presented with roving carts of freshly made small dishes that you choose from as they come around. Think Sautéed Prawns with Honey Glazed Walnuts, Steamed Dungeness Crab with Flat Noodles, Sweet and Sour Pork, and Peking Duck, alongside some more adventurous options like Chicken Feet. I know how it sounds, but they’re actually delicious. No time like the present and no place like Empress Pavilion.
Empress Pavilion is located at 988 N. Hill Street in Chinatown (213) 617-9898
We already lauded their cuisine as on the top of our takeout list last week, but Joss Cuisine has made such an impression, they’re back again today. Truly delicious, authentic, and healthy Chinese cuisine like this just can’t go unnoticed. In their new(ish) Beverly Hills location, Joss is dedicated not only to their food, but to their delicious selection of Chinese teas. To eat, your palate will surely be pleased by their Ginger Fish Broth, Singapore Curried Rice Noodles, Kung Pao Pine Nut Chicken, and the Claypot Alaskan King Crab Aberdeen (seriously delicious). The modern, clean, sleek space will only enhance your dining experience – as will their wine list.
Joss Cuisine is located at 9919 Santa Monica Blvd. in Beverly Hills (310) 277-3888
Since 1974, Mr. Chow’s in Beverly Hills has been the place to find superb Chinese cuisine alongside some serious people watching. Mr. Chow’s is a sleek, modern, invariably chic, black and white haven for not only finding a fabulous crowd, but, more importantly, for authentic and updated delectables like their Scallion Pancakes, Fresh Black Sea Bass, Emperor’s Crab, and their signature Ma Mignon. It’s the kind of place you’re happy to take houseguests and visiting friends – you accomplish so much just by booking that table. In one fell swoop, you introduce them to a veritable Angeleno see-and-be-scene, you’ve fed them very well, and you’ll send them back home with a story to tell.
Mr. Chow’s is located at 344 N. Camden Drive in Beverly Hills (310) 278-9911