So my single outing out East turned into two, and in the past week I've tried Chung King in Monterey Park, and Sea Harbour Seafood in Rosemead. Totally different cuisines, but they sort of go together in an odd way. Really impressed by both, and figured I'd give a brief rundown (I think this may be my first report, so bear with me). Thanks again to everyone on the board for the recommendations!
Chung King -
Traditional Szechuan, about as good as I've head (although here my experiences are admittedly limited).
There were two of us, and we ordered way too much.
The dry-fried beef was the pick of the place, somewhat similar to jerky, but much, much better.
The dun-dun noodles were very good - the heat was far more balanced than the places I've had it back in Boston.
The fish slices (it was called jin-gui fish back in Boston) were excellent. Very similar to what I had back East, but again the spice was balanced off by something (maybe it was the peppercorns).
The fried chicken with peppers was good, but not to the same standard as the rest (I seem to be in disagreement with other reviews here).
Overall, excellent. However, it was pretty heavy, and I was shot for the afternoon.
Sea harbour seafood, Rosemead.
It's a cantonese chain (30 branches in China, 1 in Vancouver, and 1 here), that at lunch does made-to-order seafood. The place was packed for lunch (it was a thursday).
We had some basics (har gow, pan-fried dumplings, sauteed bok choy), and they were far less greasy than the other dim sum places I've been here and in SF.
The seafood congee was excellent, and reasonably light.
The best dish was (I forget the name - but it's a picture-based menu), some sort of shrimp on rice. Very big fan - there was a lot of fresh ginger that made everything seem much lighter than it could be otherwise.
The big thing was that unlike almost every other dim-sum outing, there wasn't too much oil, and the food didn't sit in my stomach for hours afterwards (I was able to run that afternoon). Definitely worth a return trek from the westside.
Anyway, bit of a randomish post, but oh well.