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Great Chinese Seafood - Rowland Heights

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Great Chinese Seafood - Rowland Heights

Silver Lake Guy | Apr 11, 2005 06:56 PM

The SO and I took Mama and Auntie Hilda out for early-ish, happy 75 b'day dinner (for AH) on Sat eve. AH up from San Diego craved Chinese, and not knowing the available options near Diamond Bar where Mama lives, we fortuitously headed down Colima toward Rowland Heights. Luck was on our side as we happened upon a great place called Hong Kong Palace, anchoring a corner of a medi-mall (not quite a mini). Looked inviting, got an A, so we went in.

We 4 were the only non-Asians in the place which was bustling. Hong-Kong style room, entire wall of sparkling fish tanks, all the specials chalked in Chinese. A look around the tables revealed seafood was the thing, with whole fishes artfully arranged on platters and huge prawns (I mean huge) and lobsters everywhere. I really wanted those prawns ($50 for 2lbs waitress said) but Mama and AH not being so adventurous, we had to edit our choices a bit. Still, what we had was spirited and fun:

House special Won Ton Soup - Fragrant and hot, bursting with shrimp, squid, pork, wontons and veggies, ceremoniously served at the table, each bowl assured to have similar proportions of prizes. Twice as much as the 4 of us needed but we slurped up what we could and took enough for 2 more bowls home.

Appetizer plate of paper thin slices of a dried beef and cured pork, decked out along with thicker slices of bbq pork, a cut up quarter of crispy duck and two mounds of pickled jellyfish sprinkled with sesame. The plate was served with two sauces, one sweet and syrupy for the duck (though I like it without) and the other a thin rose water to be drizzled over everything else. The meats were standout but the chewy, cool jellyfish was a good contrast. While each of the items was unique, the combination of tastes and textures was terrific and a refreshing change of starter. Had some leftovers.

Four entrees for four of us (three woulda been fine):
Rock Cod in Black Bean sauce - Always a crowd pleaser, freshly prepared with onions and green peppers. Very tasty. Ate it all.

Sizzling Shrimp - Poured into a hot plate, smoky with a thick clear sauce and lots of garlic. Great with rice accompaniment. Ate it all.

1/2 Fried Chicken - Reminiscent of the crispy duck appetizer but with juicy white meat too and served with a dish of gray salt that when sprinkled over a bite, really added depth to the taste. Ate it all.

Crab with Ginger and Scallions - This was a highlight, an enormous crab body covered with succulent handle-able cuttings of steamed leg parts; easy to open and eat, every morsel was infused with ginger. Despite all of us trying our best, we had so much crab that there was some to take home.

Dessert was a surprise: individual mango flans brought automatically, light yet rich, a perfect ending to a satisfying meal.

The waitress and all of the staff was so kind and patient with us, even telling us at one point to drop a few dishes, (eliminate the spinach, cut the chicken in half, consider losing the appetizer) or we'd have too much food. During the meal, AH in her enthusiasm tipped over her glass of wine and everyone rushed to her aid, swiftly cleaning and replacing her drink. We felt very welcome and accommodated.

All-in-all a thoroughly serendipitous extremely pleasant find! I'll be back for those prawns. And reviews on the wall indicate they have respected dim sum. Hmmmm.

Tab was roughly $150 for four, including wine, tax, tip

Hong Kong Palace
19101 Colima Road
Rowland Heights
626.854.9829

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