Yesterday night was Mid Autumn festival and naturally all the popular Chinese places were backed to the brim and some overflowing.
We expected our dinner at Silver House in San Mateo last night to be a bit sub standard, given the large crowds and the number of people waiting outside. It was a good thing, because the food ended up being even better than I remembered! Hats off to the chef for being able to deliver an above quality bar meal!
We ordered the minced chicken + preserved sausage mix with the crunchy stuff. It comes with lettuce wraps so you eat it together with a dab of hoisin sauce (much like Peking Duck). This was on the English section of the white board menu. I'm not crazy about this, but last night they made it really well that even I gave it the thumbs up.
On the Chinese white board specials menu, we ordered the fish cooked two way, stir fried with yellow chives, and a fish bones clay pot stew with bamboo, char shui/roast pork of some sort, mushrooms, garlic and more. The clay pot was absolutely sublime, with good chunks of fish bones that had really tasty meat still on them. This was $22, but given the effort, the quality and the occasion, it was worth it. Good portion too!
One of my favorites last night was the steamed yellow fur chicken (gwai fey gai). Possibly one of the best ever in the Bay Area. Great flavor, succulent and moist chicken from the dark to the white meat. The ginger/scallion sauce was really well done and makes Cheung Hing's version seem shameful (which sadly it is).
Dad ordered the Sa Cha beef with vermicelli bean thread noodle (fun see) in clay pot. Those who like beef dishes (like oyster sauce beef) will like this one. Had some onions in it as well, and we found a few chunks of pineapple that gave this dish a South East Asian "twang".
Last item was the stir fried potato leaf veggie with big garlic chunks. Fantastic wok breath in this dish, and the heat from the kitchen made this fiberous vegetable very edible (soft and fragrant).
They somehow were able to mess up the free dessert, which was a taro sago. They forgot to add sugar ;-)
Other than this mess up, dinner was just as good, if not better than my last time there, and way better than when I first ate there in the 90s. Hands down one of the best Cantonese restaurants in the San Mateo area.
Having a reservation before you go is crucial, but getting there earlier so that your table is secure is just as important.