Went to Chinatown last night and wanted something new. Well, Seafood Gourmet is not exactly "new"; it serves up classic Cantonese seafood and other dishes, but I hadn't been there since the wonderful dim sum at Pacific Garden and wanted to see what was up. There were four of us, and fortunately two were Chinese so could read the "real" menu, which is not translated into English. That's a big shortcoming there, but in any case we had a pretty good idea of what was there since we could see most of the specials swimming in the tanks. Had live shrimp, boiled up quickly and served "peal and eat" style with a spicy soy dipping sauce; can't go wrong with this one if the shrimp are live. Yum. Also had fish maw soup, which was very tasty, though didn't have that deep, rich smokiness I found in the version at East Ocean City a couple of weeks ago. Stir-fried watercress with garlic was appropriately vivid green and very fresh tasting. Roasted half chicken (we need some meat) with salt and lemon was also very good, nice crispy skin and moist meat. Finally had eel, picked out of the tank and deboned and fried "spicy salt" style at their recommendation. They did an excellent job with this, the eel perfectly prepared, no bones at all, fresh tasting, and a wonderful grease-free crispy batter. All in all a pretty good experience. By 7:30 there were still only two other table occupied there so wonder how business is for them.
On a side note, I asked about the dim sum that had been available there when the place was Pacific Garden; the waiter told me that the "talented and skilled" young dim sum chef who had been making those wonderful little bites there earler was now employed at East Manor. Interesting to hear a Cantonese waiter say "I used to like China Pearl, but after I had this guys dim sum I changed my mind"!!