Ten Favorite Chinese Restaurants in Greater Phoenix

Categories: Top Lists
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Jackie Mercandetti
Phoenix Palace
China is a nation with a multitude of culinary traditions stretching back thousands of years. In comparison, Phoenix has been around since last Tuesday and we should all be thankful that some of what's good over there can be found over. here. A word of advice: If you want to embark on a true eating adventure, borrow a food savvy and linguistically inclined Chinese friend. Doing so will open up a world of possibilities via "secret" Chinese menus.

10. Tott's Asian Diner

It has been postulated that there exists an inverse relationship between the quality of food at an Asian restaurant and the quality of the service. The staff at Tott's apparently never got that memo because their food is good and their service is phenomenal. Making a weekday take-out order? Let them know when you expect to get there and they'll time their cooking so the food comes out just as you come in to pick it up.

9. Wahsun

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This is a restaurant that is too busy turning out top-notch traditional Chinese food to give a damn about decorating with a tasteful fan collection. Earlier we said you should bring someone to help navigate the Chinese menu? That advice goes double here. Once you're off the safe all-English reservation you'll be in what our food critic described as "choose your own adventure" territory. You'll have eggrolls large enough to kill a man, things with squid, things with their heads still attached, things made with things that your server will have difficulty describing in English. But you know what? That's how Chinese food is supposed to be experienced.

8. Asian Cafe Express

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If you're a regular reader then you'll likely be familiar with some variation of the following phrase, "Located in a non-descript strip mall." Asian Cafe Express surprises no one by fitting that description to the letter. It might not look like much from outside but inside you'll find you can order incredibly cheap Hong Kong-style Chinese off a menu that can only be described as sprawling. Their Chinese only menu is so good it might be worth ordering at random off of it just so you can broaden your horizons a little.

7. George & Son's Asian Cuisine

If you're craving less than traditional Chinese food but would like to avoid dining at certain soulless corporate restaurant chains, head towards Scottsdale. George & Son's features an Asian Fusion menu that nonetheless trends toward takes on classic Chinese dishes. "George's Seafood Pockets" sound like a knockoff hot pocket but taste like a traditional scallion pancake stuffed with the very tastiest seafood. If you'd like to waddle home, be sure to check out their high quality buffet.


Location Info

Wahsun

8056 N. 19th Ave., Phoenix, AZ

Category: Restaurant


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9 comments
Doublen28
Doublen28

I went to China Magic Noodle House the other night for the first time. The food was pretty good, but the service was so slow it was practically non-existant. Therefore, I don't know if I'll be back.

Mikey1969
Mikey1969

Gourmet House is nowhere on the list? Wow, this is about as good as the "Dive Bars" slideshow, is everyone just phoning it in around here?

Ando Muneno 12 hours ago in reply to Mikey1969

It's entirely possible I had an unusual experience though. Is there a particular dish I should have tried?

It definitely wasn't the 'divey' vibe as much as the 'hidden gem' vibe. Unless the quality has plummeted since I was last there, pretty much everything should be good. Personally, I'm a little picky on which dishes I like at a Chinese restaurant, but Gourmet House sets the standard on both Hot and Sour soup and Mongollian Beef. I have still dropped in there when visiting Az, but I have definitely not found anyone who can make either of those anywhere near as good. Everyone else has about a 90% chance of having sweet, unexciting Mongolian beef, and although most in Phoenix have decent Hot and Sour, up here in SLC, it's not the case. For some reason, around here, 'Hot and Sour' translates into 'Thick and syrupy'. I have also have far better luck with such staples as Sweet and Sour Pork and Chicken, the S & S sauce isn't some glow-in-the-dark chemical-tasting nightmare, and the veggies and pineapple are fresh. My wife and kids love Orange Chicken, Broccoli and Beef, etc., still more basic dishes, but done much better than the throw-it-together-from-the-freezer style you get most of the time. Always good portion size for a good price as well.

It didn't used to be the place for atmosphere, that's for sure, but looking at pictures online, it looks like they have made it a little less like eating in a room attached to the kitchen, seems like they actually have a little bit of ambiance, something DEFINITELY missing from before..

All in all, it is the best Chinese food I've found in my life that didn't require us to save money, plan ahead, and dress up for 'dinner'. From what I understand, their Shark Fin Soup is to die for also, but I've always been afraid to risk the money on something I don't end up liking, since Chinese food has a small list of things I don't like(Cabbage and 'mushy' veggies are out, for example).

Sorry about the 'phoning it in' thing, I still am burned that I will never get the time back that I thumbed through the 'Dive Bar' slide show and hardly found anything that actually said 'dive bar', most of it was either hipsters, or just plain 'blah'. Your article is far more thought out, and better presented, and I apologize for jumping on you. My bad.

Azhomes4u
Azhomes4u

Wondering why Great Wall on 35th AVE and Camelback is not on this list..hands down should be #1 pretty apparent you have not been there. You must go for Dim sum  or just a meal...

Hock
Hock


Totts?   It's fastfood.   Not horrible, but top 10?   Magic Noodle house is really good.

Quezo
Quezo

Umm, Great Wall in Phoenix has great dim sum. Very authentic and delicious

Ando Muneno
Ando Muneno

Hey no problem, getting called out by readers is an occupational hazard. 

Ando Muneno
Ando Muneno

Actually, I went to Gourmet House three times (twice in 48 hours) while working on a different story and I did not have a fantastic experience. I know it's won awards in the past and I can see its appeal as a divey Chinese restaurant but I just didn't love it.

It's entirely possible I had an unusual experience though. Is there a particular dish I should have tried?

Anon
Anon

Shhhh.Quezo....let's keep our Westside dim sum a secret... :)

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