This is my new exploration area and there are several very good potentials for authentic chinese and vietnamese. The area is nestled at the interesection between Alvarado Niles and Decoto Rd in Union City.
China Tofu: It looks authentic with all chinese speaking patrons. This place has many kinds of tofu that I am not even familiar. The stinky tofu smell is very noticeable. I ordered one and found it to be quite good. The tofu is deep fried. It comes with some pickled vegetables.
The concept here is similar to the Hawaian lunch plate but the Chinese version. I ordered the lunch box of chicken fried steak. Other choices are pork chop, grilled chicken, etc. The good part is that it comes with three side dishes that you can choose from the steam tables. All the side dishes are quite different from the usual Chinese American restaurant(lemon chicke, sweet sour pork, etc). That's right THREE side dishes !! They give you a sturdy disposable plastic container with multiple compartments for the side dishes. They put a huge amount of steamed rice. The chicken fried steak was very good. Good seasonings and moist although not crispy as in the American version. The side dishes are very good. The first side dish was twice cooked pork that was cooked perfectly. It has twisted soft tofu skins which is interesting and delicious. The second side dish looks like a sauteed mix of fish cake and sliced dense tofu with some brown sauce. The third side dish is sauteed mix of thin julienned calamari and veggies. For this HUGE amount of food, they only charge $5.00 !!! Amazing. It's enough to feed two person for sure. This is a true find, guys ! Delicious and cheap.
Szechwan Home: I tried this once based on my dad's recommendation several months ago. He claimed it's the best in Bay Area for authentic Szechwan and better than Little Szechwan that received a lot of praises here. I had the "boiled beef" which is quite good although you have to ignore the oiliness which is the way it supposed to be - good. I also had the side pork which is sliced fatty pork marinated in slightly sweet, spicy and salty sauce - very good. Then I ordered the fish which I was not impressed - don't remember the name of the dish, sorry.
There are others to explore:
CRYSTAL PALACE - I am not sure about the name but it offers dim sum and very crowded with chinese customers. Had to wait 20 minutes to get a table - so I left.