SD chinese food news


According to Kirk K at his food blog mmmyoso, another regional Chinese restaurant with promise has opened. It replaced myungun dumpling (the Anthony bourdain approved place from LA I think). The name of the new place is (I may be spelling it wrong) Shan Xi Magic Kitchen. Looks like it is similar to Xi’an Kitchen. I haven’t been so can’t vouch for the food but Kirk has good taste and kind of liked it I think. Ipse? Deckape? RISD? Anyone try it yet?


damn, i liked that LA dumpling place but it was a bit expensive.


According to Eater SD you’re in luck…dumpling place is still around but moved to Zion food court


I tried going there (Myung In Dumplings in Zion) yesterday but it was super weird… there was a language barrier, but the only “dumpling” item was gyoza, which was unlisted on the menu – we only found out about it because we asked. The menu just had entree items, none of which had dumplings. The lady was telling us “they” hadn’t moved in yet. So no idea what’s going on there.


Very good Hanzhong Liangpi, nice balance of sinus-tingling sesame garlic and clean crisp vinegar chili umami.

And the Biang-Biang “noodles” are so simple, they make you question why the dish is so good.

Not sure I’d get the skewers, overcooked (or grilled) and either too salty (lamb) or tasteless (beef).


Decent reviews of a few SD Chinese restaurants by you now. What a difference a year makes!


We were at a 10-course banquet at China Max the other day. Summary: Underwhelming.

The good news is they can easily handle up to about 140 people upstairs. Service was a bit dour but reasonably responsive, for a large group.

Not a single dish stood out. Very plain, dumbed-down food.

But: If that’s someone wants, and if they have a really big group, this is a place to consider. Good, tasty food. Just not at all superior in any way.


Finally made it to Shan xi magic kitchen and liked it. Had the king meat bowl with tofu and veggies which was big enough for my entire 6 person family and at 12.99 is a great deal. Biang biang noodles were good too. It is a solid if not spectacular place and a welcome addition to the SD Chinese food scene. Similar to Xian kitchen but with a bigger menu.


Pretty much agree with your assessment, RD. +1


Just saw some photos on Yelp from the soft opening of the new 99 Ranch Market, which displayed a food court like found in the Zion Market. One of the occupants of the food court appears to be Shan Xi Magic Kitchen or an offshoot.


I posted my first impressions of the new 99 Ranch Market here.

Store hours are 8 - 10.


Zen Modern Asian
13510 Sabre Spring Pkwy

Tried this place on a rainy Monday night. Expectations were nonexistent as it was simply conveniently located near a kid’s soccer practice. The place is owned and operated by a Taiwanese family and bills itself as asian fusion which is generally a euphemism for awful.

But it wasn’t awful. It wasn’t fantastic either but it had some solid dishes (can you hear the ghost of Honkman shudder?). The menu is somewhat strange and eclectic, at least to me. They have sushi (mostly rolls I think) and some other Japanese dishes as well as Taiwanese dishes and americanized chinese food and I think even had some korean (seafood soup) and fusion (pork belly quesadilla) type dishes. Anyhow, I got the Taiwanese beef noodle soup which was, jaw dropping to the floor, pretty good, especially given the location. The beef was tender with lots of tendon and the broth was appropriately beefy. The noodles were just okay and not homemade but overall it was pretty tasty. It even came with a side of pickled vegetables. The fried rice was nothing special but the bbq pork in the rice was very good. We tried two different types of chicken wings (zen and spicy) and both were good. I did not try any sushi or the americanized chinese food, so can’t comment on those. Place was small and prices may be slightly high for some but seemed more than fair to me. Service was good but I’m not too particular as long as service is efficient. Should you cancel plans for whatever Kearny Mesa restaurant is your current fancy? No, but if in the area. Lastly, I have only been once so I cannot vouch for consistency/quality control. Just wanted to let people know that something like this exists in this area because my other forays in chinese food outside Kearny Mesa have not been very good.


Had the oxtail soup at Tasty Noodle House recently. Received bowl with broth and noodles and separately a plate with 3 oxtails with gravy. The oxtails with gravy were really good. The soup and noodles not so much. Only mention it cause I think it’s a relatively new menu item and haven’t found many/any places in SD that do them well. Next time will just get them over rice.


Steamy piggy on Convoy: went on a Saturday night and was able to be seated immediately (a bad sign?). Decor is very modern and nice. Dumplings were decent. XLB had no soup at all. We were happy to see noodles being made from scratch but the steamy piggy noodles with pork belly and shrimp was awful. Onion pancake was okay at most. Pork bao and fried chicken were the best dishes of the night. Service was pretty bad. Not in a hurry to go back.

Recent downhill alert for Shan Xi Magic kitchen (not one in 99 ranch) by KirkK. I haven’t been in a long while.

A authentic sounding Szechuan type restaurant replaced Golden Seafood in Mira Mesa. Haven’t been yet but will soon. Golden Seafood is not a loss.


Has anybody been to Pearl or Emerald since they reopened under new ownership? The y*** reviews have been positive, but I am always a little skeptical of them.


I didn’t even know that Emerald had re-opened.

You know, I’ve slowed down on going to Convoy restaurants. Why? Because parking is so frequently such a major hassle.

What’s needed is both (a) a parking garage, and (b) a free shuttle bus system (frequent, small busses running both ways on Convoy).


Sorry, haven’t been to either since they reopened. Will have to check out Pearl soon.

What Convoy and the rest of SD county needs is a more extensive Trolley system. The upcoming UTC extension will be nice and maybe KM area should be next.


Why not just Uber (or Lyft)?


In my perfect world, Convoy would have one humongous parking structure somewhere, and free, very frequent (as in 5 min max) small shuttle busses, running up and down both north and south, making stops at every corner on every block.

I think the timeframe for a trolley, even if it were actually on the City’s infrastructure agenda somewhere, would be at least 20 years in the making. And where would a trolley even come from? Up Linda Vista Rd, from the Morena station?



Mass transit is cheaper, more accessible and better for the environment.