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Restaurants & Bars

Shin Shin in Berkeley

foodnut | Aug 4, 200312:26 PM

Based on a review in an older issue of SF Magazine, we checked out Shin Shin at 1715 Solano Avenue on Saturday night.

The magazine mentions the "aggressively ugly" decor, but given the price points, we found it pretty easy to ignore. As soon as we arrived, the waitress brought a plate of pickled cabbage/carrots that was pretty tasty, and I am not a big cabbage fan, along with a pot of tea which tasted like it had jasmine in it, though the label on the tea bag didn't indicate it was any more than green tea. I took off the tag, and made my husband put it in his wallet for our next trip to 99 Ranch.

We ordered a small War Won Ton soup, which included very fresh won ton, prawns, lap cheoung, chicken, snow peas. The broth had lots of fat floating on top, which is always a good sign for my husband. $5.25 for a small, which was enough for 2 bowls each, plus leftovers for my lunch today.

We had Beef with Broccoli -- the menu offers a choice between Chinese broccoli and "regular". We got the Chinese broccoli, and most of the pieces were tender, though my husband got one of those tough fibrous pieces that just becomes straw in the mouth. He took points off the dish because he didn't really like the sauce -- too sweet, and not enough taste of oyster sauce. The rice that came with the meal was a definite C minus. We arrived later in the evening (around 8:15pm or so), and the rice tasted like it had been made in time for opening.

When they brought the bill, we were served 4 orange quarters -- super sweet, and a small shot glass of plum wine. A rather nice change from fortune cookies, I thought.

Total bill, including tip was $18.50 -- I'd go back, and stick to large bowl of the soup, or get it to go, and make fresh rice at home.

(On a side note, last night I made a Korean barbequed steak recipe from Epicurious (for the second time). Can't vouch for the authenticity of the recipe, but it was tasty. This time we grilled it outside, rather than using the grill pan on the stove top. Yum yum! I made side dishes of sticky rice, mango and apple with chile and lime, pickled cucumbers, and Seoul green beans. Since I grabbed the leftover war won ton for lunch this morning, my husband claimed the leftovers -- next time I'll double the recipe! Link to recipe below)


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