For 5 years, I have lived here and hesitated to go to the San Gabriel Valley for Chinese food. I think I was intimidated both by the distance and the quantity of Chinese restaurants. I skipped over the chowhound postings on the delicacies of Monterey Park, Rosemead, Alhambra and environs. Recently, I took the plunge, and to my delight, discovered that on a weekend, it takes me not much longer to get to the San Gabriel Valley from my home (Koreatown/Hollywood) than it does to get to Chinatown. So far, I have gone to Sea Harbor and Ocean Star for dim sum and been blown away by how much better these are than Chinatown's offering.
Now that I have awoken from this culinary slumber, my challenge to the group is, what are the 10 best dining experiences (restaurants, bakeries, whatever) in the San Gabriel Valley? I'm looking particularly for Chinese, since I know that is the areas forte, but if there are other things worth the drive, I would be happy to hear about them. I will hungrily await your answers.