Recently I embarked on a quest to find "black Chinese vinegar" as I have a wok and a propane burner that I cook with outside. I am learning how to prepare various Asian dishes and getting closer to the elusive "wok hay" taste. Anyway, I can't find this black Chinese vinegar anywhere! I think one problem may be that in Fresno/Clovis area most Asian markets are more Southeast Asian oriented, meaning Laotian, Thai, Vietnamese, Hmong, etc., rather than Chinese. Does anyone know of an Asian market that is more Chinese influenced? Here is where I have been so far:
R-N Market at Cedar and Herndon: good selection of noodles, Asian candy, different kinds of soy (light, dark, mushroom, etc).
K-C Market at Kings Canyon and Winery: a tad smaller than R-N, but more produce with lots of different kinds of basil, lemongrass, kaffir lime leaves (sometimes), and again lots of jarred sauces.
Central Fish Market: of course they have tons of fish, but also a respectable grocery section, mainly focused on Japanese ingredients, but also some other Asian staples.
Asian Supermarket (or International Supermarket) at Tulare and Chestnut: the biggest of all I visited, with some kitchen implements, pots and pans, as well as the usual jarred sauces, a produce section, as well as a hot deli selling what looks like some Hmong, Laotian, and Vietnamese selections, and of course, lots of shoes!
Asian 1 Grocery at Ashlan and Blythe (West of the 99 past Yosemite Falls Cafe): what looked like a newer store with a very small hot food section selling egg rolls, and what looked like some Hmong and Vietnamese food, a small amount of produce, mainly jarred and canned groceries.
So, all these spots and no black Chinese vinegar! And the recipe said it would be easily obtained at most Asian markets, well I've been to 5 so far and no luck. Right now I've been substituting balsamic vinegar for the black Chinese vinegar, but would prefer to have the black Chinese vinegar on hand for this and other recipes.
So I turn to my fellow hounds for help...