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  • Chinese food

    Ok, I've searched around as much as I could on foot. I just want to find regular chinese food ala the mainland. Ya know, pu-pu type chinese food... Chicken fingers, Beef Teriyaki, Crab Rangoon, Fried Shrimp, Chicken Chow Mein. Most importantly Chicken fingers. Please help!

    ps - I also finally got myself a car so no distance is too far on Oahu. Although I would prefer closer to Waikiki. Thanks in advance.

  • #2
    Re: Chinese food

    I don't think anyone would call the Chinese food served across much of the mainland "regular" Chinese food. And actually, local palates have led to most local Chinese restaurants having a distinctly different taste than genuine Chinese food. You know, as in, served in China.

    So to clarify, you're speaking about what passes for Chinese food across much of the continguous 48 states? You actually mean chicken fingers in the Burger King sense, and not as in chicken feet? Hmm. Well, we do have a mainland-based Chinese restaurant chain, P.F. Chang's, at Ala Moana...

    Or do you mean dim sum?

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    • #3
      Re: Chinese food

      I thought teriyaki was Japanese?

      If you want a la the mainland...just go to the mall. Panda Express and Patti's will be more than happy to serve you. People have Panda Express, General Tso's, etc. etc. to thank for thinking that Orange Chicken is actually Chinese Food.

      If you want Chinese restaurants, they're all in the Yellow Pages.
      Tessie, "Nuf Ced" McGreevey shouted
      We're not here to mess around
      Boston, you know we love you madly
      Hear the crowd roar to your sound
      Don't blame us if we ever doubt you
      You know we couldn't live without you
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      • #4
        Re: Chinese food

        Heh. I had no idea Panda Express was a mainland chain. (Here's a Star-Bulletin story on its expansion.) I figured it was another local franchise, like Patti's. That explains a lot.

        Yes, orange chicken is not a Chinese dish. Nor is Hawaiian pizza anything remotely Hawaiian.

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        • #5
          Re: Chinese food

          Originally posted by pzarquon View Post
          Heh. I had no idea Panda Express was a mainland chain. (Here's a Star-Bulletin story on its expansion.) I figured it was another local franchise, like Patti's. That explains a lot.

          Yes, orange chicken is not a Chinese dish. Nor is Hawaiian pizza anything remotely Hawaiian.
          The "Hawaiian Pizza" drives me insane.

          I had no idea that Panda Express was a chain until I saw my first one in a mall on the mainland a few years ago. I don't know how popular it is, as there are many other Chinese "fast food" businesses out there.

          And tell me if I'm making this up or not..but before Makai Market was built, didn't Patti's have a bigger space in that corner? For some reason red columns come to mind. I think I was around 7 or 8 when the food court was completed, and if I'm not mistaken Panda Express has been there from the beginning.
          Tessie, "Nuf Ced" McGreevey shouted
          We're not here to mess around
          Boston, you know we love you madly
          Hear the crowd roar to your sound
          Don't blame us if we ever doubt you
          You know we couldn't live without you
          Tessie, you are the only only only

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          • #6
            Re: Chinese food

            China is such a big country, there are so many different kinds of Chinese Food depending on the area. Chinese food on the mainland differs greatly too...NY Chinese is WAY different from LA Chinese....as I wrote about in my blog (see signature below)

            Maybe people view the Panda Express fare as "mainland chinese" or "Americanized Chinese" but things like Egg Rolls and dumplings are definitely chinese food.
            Then again there are things Chinese people eat that I would NEVER....

            Such a broad food base....
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            • #7
              Re: Chinese food

              Originally posted by pzarquon View Post
              Heh. I had no idea Panda Express was a mainland chain. (Here's a Star-Bulletin story on its expansion.) I figured it was another local franchise, like Patti's. That explains a lot.

              Originally posted by Lei Liko View Post
              I had no idea that Panda Express was a chain until I saw my first one in a mall on the mainland a few years ago. I don't know how popular it is, as there are many other Chinese "fast food" businesses out there.
              Panda Express is allllll over the mall around the East Coast for sure. Every mall has one. Here is the kicker.... everyone behind working behind the counter is ... spanish.... lol.... mall after mall.. that's what you will see... the spanish/mexican/latina people owns every fast food joint in the malls... it seems... I wonder how they learn to cook all these things..... lol... soul food, chinese food, you name it.

              The mainland chinese food is surely not the real stuff.... it has been tailored to fit the american way of eating and taste. Nothing like the chinese food that I had in Hong Kong or anywhere else.
              Tayo

              FINALLY HOME IN HAWAI'I!

              "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover."
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              • #8
                Re: Chinese food

                Originally posted by tikiyaki View Post
                China is such a big country, there are so many different kinds of Chinese Food depending on the area. Chinese food on the mainland differs greatly too...NY Chinese is WAY different from LA Chinese....as I wrote about in my blog (see signature below)

                Maybe people view the Panda Express fare as "mainland chinese" or "Americanized Chinese" but things like Egg Rolls and dumplings are definitely chinese food.
                Then again there are things Chinese people eat that I would NEVER....

                Such a broad food base....
                Chinese mainland is slightly different too. They didnt know what cake noodle was in orange county! I think a good way to tell if the place is fast food or good is to look at the sweet and sour pork/chicken. If its all breading then its fast food...

                "Such a broad food base...." I think all cultures have some weird foods... Are rocky mountain oysters 'american'?
                filipino: balut
                japanse: natto, eating things raw (yummy but weird the first time)
                etc
                Aquaponics in Paradise !

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                • #9
                  Re: Chinese food

                  One of the things I had always knew before moving to Hawaii was to not compare with the mainland, and I still do that. I love it here and so much that is offered here..

                  BUT, one thing (and since you asked) I find lacking here is the Chinese food. I came from San Francisco (the city itself, not the burbs) and there you can find a whole range of chinese foods.. From Hunan, to szechuan, Nanking, different ranges of dim sum etc. I've just not found too much chinese that has wowed me. I agree with the above poster that there are many variations of chinese food, and chinese in SF tastes different than that of Vancouver, and Miami etc.

                  Among a few simple things, I love chow fun , but here it seems many use a noodle that is consistent with Italian pasta. I feel like I should be pouring a marinara sauce over the noodles. The chow mein used here is a harder, thinner noodle. The mo pa tofu just doesn't have that kick that I wish it had. :sigh:

                  There doesn't seem to be much in the way of spicy/hot chinese food. I miss the steamed and baked pork buns from that shop on Sacramento & Kearny Sts., Henrys Hunan on Pine St. the dim sum shops on Washington St. Char Siu here is much different than what I had been used to.

                  Obviously I have not tried every chinese rest. here, but I am still in the pursuit of a chinese restaurant I can rave about.

                  But I agree, different places just have different tasting food, and this is not a complaint, but rather a walk down memory lane for me. The Japanese foood here is incredible, and not so in SF however.
                  n'importe

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                  • #10
                    Re: Chinese food

                    Originally posted by Kaukura View Post

                    Among a few simple things, I love chow fun , but here it seems many use a noodle that is consistent with Italian pasta. I feel like I should be pouring a marinara sauce over the noodles.
                    I know what you're talking about, and I noticed that a lot of okazu-yas prepare their chow fun that way. I don't know if it's locally prepared that way only or what.

                    I swear by Kwong On's chow fun, and they're located on Waialae Ave. across First Hawaiian Bank. If you haven't had their chow fun already, I highly recommend it. You can't go wrong with $1.55 a pint...you just gotta go early because they usually run out by 1:30. They got different kinds of dim sum and plate lunch selections, not to mention everything you might need to prepare a Chinese dish.
                    Tessie, "Nuf Ced" McGreevey shouted
                    We're not here to mess around
                    Boston, you know we love you madly
                    Hear the crowd roar to your sound
                    Don't blame us if we ever doubt you
                    You know we couldn't live without you
                    Tessie, you are the only only only

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Chinese food

                      Originally posted by Kaukura View Post
                      hat is offered here..

                      BUT, one thing (and since you asked) I find lacking here is the Chinese food. I came from San Francisco (the city itself, not the burbs) and there you can find a whole range of chinese foods.. From Hunan, to szechuan, Nanking, different ranges of dim sum etc.
                      Have you tried the dim sum at Eastern Garden? The owners have several Eastern Garden restaurants on Oahu (and a very popular auto a/c place, but I digress.) Pretty good dim sum there, as far as I can tell. I'm not an expert, but I find it all to be fresh, tasty and all-around enjoyable.

                      China House was great! (Someone mentioned it a few posts back.) Also had good dim sum. And that was the first place I ever at a chicken foot, which was fine, but nothing to write home about. Except I did write home (e-mail my siblings) just so I could impress them with my culinary diversity. Or gross them out. Either way is fine!

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                      • #12
                        Re: Chinese food

                        Kwong On was the first Chinese place that I picked up BAKED manapua rather than the steamed ones. This was back in the late '60s.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Chinese food

                          i agree. for mainland style chinese go Panda Express. same goes for California Wok.

                          for more traditional, we've been obsessed with Wah Kung restaurant at 99 Ranch. nice servings and price.

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                          • #14
                            Re: Chinese food

                            I love Panda Express the one in Pearlridge not Ala Moana! The Panda Express at Pearlridge gives a ton of food!
                            Aloha Kakou, maluhia a me aloha mau loa (Hello everyone, peace and love forever)

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                            • #15
                              Re: Chinese food

                              Originally posted by Hurricane350 View Post
                              Ok, I've searched around as much as I could on foot. I just want to find regular chinese food ala the mainland. Ya know, pu-pu type chinese food... Chicken fingers, Beef Teriyaki, Crab Rangoon, Fried Shrimp, Chicken Chow Mein. Most importantly Chicken fingers. Please help!

                              ps - I also finally got myself a car so no distance is too far on Oahu. Although I would prefer closer to Waikiki. Thanks in advance.
                              My girlfriend and her daughter went to the mainland within the last couple years and dined from the East Coast to the Bible Belt. Breaded and fried this, to breaded and fried that (and other stuff, I'm sure.) They got ono for something more like home so they went to a Chinese restaurant and were sorely disappointed. No won ton min, the flavors were really "haole," etc. It was very different from eating at good-kine local Chinese places or even at Panda, they said.

                              That said, if you want spicy Szechuan, go to Little Village Noodle House. It offers a range of styles of Chinese cuisine with the hot and spicy stuff marked with hot peppers on the menu. One of my TWO Chinese doctors (first-gen.) LOVES the Hong-Kong-Style fried rice, among other dishes.

                              You might also think about going on a Chinatown tour with Walter Rhee or Tony Chang or Matthew Gray. Google them, or read the Wednesday food sections of the Honolulu Star-Bulletin, the other daily, or the dining info in the Weekly for details.

                              Oh wait, you wanted MAINLAND style "Chinese" food. Never mind.

                              Kaukura, I realize the Little Village Noodle House and Chinatown tour recommendations were for YOU. Of course Chinatown doesn't have a monopoly on wonderful Chinese restaurants ... it's just that there's a high concentration of them there.
                              Last edited by Erika Engle; October 28, 2006, 03:50 PM. Reason: Separating my recommendations.
                              **************************************
                              I know a lot less than what there is to be known.

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