Sun Sui Wah

America's Best Chinese Restaurants

Best Chinese Restaurants in America

Practically any American city features at least one Chinese restaurant. The popularity of Chinese food is explained by its convenience, rich flavor and affordable price. Despite the fact that Chinese food is actually foreign it is still one of the country's most adopted cuisines. The typical "Chinese-American" restaurant serves surprisingly similar cuisine featuring the same dish names and descriptions, such as sesame chicken, egg foo young, and the like. But that doesn't mean that delicious Chinese food just can't be found in the U.S. For the most spectacular Chinese food the gourmets should head to the coasts (particularly the West Coast), where a large number of Chinese immigrants have settled. Below you will find the best Chinese restaurants in the country worth visiting.

 Not only are all these restaurants extremely popular, but they are renowned for serving astonishingly delicious dishes that are very close to authentic Chinese ones and are prepared with great care and pride.

1. Lao Sze Chuan, Chicago

The first restaurant that tops our list is Lao Sze Chuan located in Chicago. No other city boasts a Chinese restaurant of this caliber. The restaurant run by Tony Hu is so popular that the crowd lines up every night to get in. Lao Sze Chuan serves spicy fare that is intensely flavorful. This restaurant was awarded three forks from the Chicago Tribune and a designated "bib gourmand" in the Michelin Guide. You may expect to get flawless classic dishes like mapo tofu, cumin lamb, dry chili chicken, and twice-cooked pork, but the real treat is the house specialties, including Tony's Three Chili Chicken (sweet, crispy, moist, and not too spicy) will make you come for more.

2. Koi Palace, Daly City, Calif.

The success of this always-crowded Hong Kong-style restaurant can be explained by the fact that their staff  are regularly sent to Asia for the latest dining trends to be incorporated into the menu on returning home. Since its opening in 1996 this spacious Daly City, California restaurant and event place has been one of the area's most popular Chinese spots. During lunchtime the world-class dim sum is played there, and among the specialties of this venue are dinner rolls that have become a seafood destination, as well as dishes with abalone crab, shrimp, and lobster. We recommend trying their legendary Shanghai crab dumplings. 

3. Xi'An Famous Foods, New York

In any of the eight locations around the city, you'll be served the hand-pulled noodle dishes, including the spicy and tingly beef. Also consider trying the spicy cumin lamb or stewed pork "burgers", some sort of chopped spiced meat on buns. Other popular and flavorful dishes worth trying are a soup with diced pork belly and hand-stretched and ripped noodles in a sour and spicy broth; lamb face salad with lamb face meat and tendons, cucumbers, scallions, and cilantro with a spicy dressing; homemade soft tofu in a spicy sauce; and lamb offal soup (with liver, stomach, and heart). Keep in mind that fresh noodles should to be eaten immediately, before they begin to stick together, so don't take your order to go and take your time savoring the food.

4. Grand Sichuan, New York

One of the best destinations for Chinese food in New York City is Grand Sichuan restaurant. As many of the great older chefs who arrived in America during the Cold War have retired, this restaurant run by chef–restaurateur Xiaotu "John" Zhang's is the outstanding dining venue in the local food scene. The Ninth Avenue branch is considered the best.

5. Yank Sing, San Francisco

Opened in 1958 by Alice Chan, Yank Sing is probably the best dim sum restaurant in San Francisco's financial district. In the city there are two locations of this third-generation family-run restaurant, where almost 100 items are cooked a day for diners to choose from. Both locations serve excellent food, including Yank Sing's xiao long bao (soup dumplings) with thin dumpling skin, pursed plump dumplings and a dash of vinegar.