Sunday Nite, 4/15, 12 Chowhounders celebrated Income Tax Day by having dinner at a favorite local Chinese restaurant for a crab feast in the Richmond district: Lee Hou, 332 Clement, SF. At the height of the crab season, crab prices could be as low as $8, but alas, tonight it was $12, but still worth it. Following regular chowhounders attended: hosts Melanie Wong, Cynthaia Sasaki, Ruth Lafler, Gordon Wing, Eugen Park, Yimster, Malik Kalfane, etc. It was my first time dining with these illustrious critics, so I was drafted to post with others to comment. Following dishes were sampled and my Chinese American thoughts:
1) Soup, Turtle with chicken feet & herb soup, - yes, turtle with bits of shell and some meat attached, nice tendons on chicken feet
2) soup, beef and chinese herb - not bad either, tasted home made like Mom's
3) 2 crabs made Hong Kong Aberdeen Hurrican Harbor style - deep fried, almost like salt and pepper but without the garlic, instead chile and scallion, very tasty and meaty
4) 2 crabs made standard ginger and scallion with sauce, also very good and messy, best eaten with fingers amongst friends
5) Lap Mai (preserved pork belly) with Lap Cheong (chinese sausage) and preserved duck and brocolli in rice clay pot - nicely done with the perfume and aromas of the three different meats in a large clay pot (2 orders) enought to feed the 12 diners
6) Another clay pot: salt fish with minced pork & rice in clay pot, another family classic and as good as it gets!! (if you like salt fish)
7) snow pea pod leaves, simply stir fried but so good, very yummy
8) fan shee (yam) leaves, again stir fry and just as good. We commented that years ago, yam an pea pod leaves were considered only good to feed pigs. Now it is over $2 to $5 a pound for organic foodies!!
9) special boned chicken stuffed with sticky rice - excellent and impossible to fix at home (or labor intensive), very tasty and for a local place, not bad.
10) bitter melon with shrimp in black bean sauce - love the true bitter taste and went well with the black beans, very traditional home cooking
11) simple stir dry fried noodles with chicken, I think, to end the meal.
12) but wait, the standard tong sui (red bean) dessert drink to satisfy dessert
13) fortune cookies
For me, I give it a 9.1 of 10 for this very satisfying meal. The restaurant was over 90% filled with local Chinese Americans, a sign that this is good food and good value.
The whole tab was $16 (includes tip & tax) per person. So, my wife and I enjoyed it with the other ten experienced diners. I will return, a good sign.
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