Monday, July 28, 2008

Su Hong : Palo Alto

I'm still trying to flesh out whether I trust Yelp or not. I'm also still deciding whether the bay area's food is worth all the chatter. Su Hong was semi-recommended by Yelp and was close to work, so I decided it was worth a shot.

Su Hong seems to be one of those Chinese restaurants that strives to satisfy those looking for Americanized Chinese food as well as those looking for more authentic stuff. Specifically, as I discovered through my struggling Chinese conversation with the hostess, their strength is mainly Shanghainese dishes, as their chef is from Shanghai. With that in mind, I grabbed the following:

Xiao Long Bao (小籠包) - Shanghai soup dumplings This tasted like it was a compromise to the customers looking for more Americanized food. The dumpling skin seemed moderately fresh, but a bit too soft and soggy. The inside meat and broth was my main issue; while it was fairly tasty, it was a bit too mellow and not quite deep and rich enough to make it memorable, almost like canned chicken broth had been used instead of homemade broth.

Shuang Gu Niu Rou (雙冬牛肉) - Beef with Shitake mushrooms & bamboo shoots. I must admit, I'm not sure if I'm qualified to review Shanghainese dishes, as I've never been to Shanghai nor been to a restaurant accepted as truly authentic. According to, Shanghainese dishes tend to be mellower in taste and this dish, like the Xiao Long Bao, was fairly mellow. I will say that this dish had some nice traits. The flank steak was nicely cooked and as tender as my Mom cooks it. Similarly, the mushrooms were juicy and the bamboo shoots soft and not stringy as bad ones can be. My main issue was with the sauce; it was very simplistic and rounded, almost like a combination of light soy sauce and a touch of sugar.

Funnily enough, I was a bit surprised by the fortune cookie, which was noticeably fresh, tasty and crunchy.

Go figure, maybe I should re-evaluate this place for their Americanized Chinese food.

Su Hong Eatery
4101 El Camino Way, Palo Alto, CA (map)
Tel: (650)493-3836
($Chinese, $San Mateo)

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