Chang’s in Brentwood closed recently. Need a good similar takeout Chinese suggestion in Santa Monica/Brentwood /West LA area. Loved their sesame shrimp and beef chow fun. Basically old school Cantonese-ish place.
Bummer. Not that I’ve eaten there in a while. But I used to work in Brentwood and went all the time. Sad
I’m amazed at how long that place stayed open! Lived in the area for a long time and it always seemed empty. Although I did like it the one time I went years ago, it seemed like a good version of American Chinese food - maybe PF Chang’s in SM would be a good substitute.
California Wok on Wilshire near Bundy is probably the closest option but I like Moon House on Santa Monica and Sepulveda better (albeit not really Cantonese). There are also Hop Li on SM Blvd. between Barrington and Bundy and Hop Woo on Olympic near Sawtelle…but that might be a bit far for take-out. The Palace on Barrington and Wilshire is also an option, I suppose, but I have never had anything other than dim sum there (and that does not give me great hopes for their entrees).
Dragon Palace on Yale and Santa Monica is pretty good. It is my go-to place for Cantonese food. No dumplings, very good soup and very nice proprietors. Family owned business. Always busy. Changs did a decent lunch business and the food was Ok, but no better than Dragon Palace. The big difference is that the owners were impossibly rude and sometimes very nasty. Dragon Palace IMHO better than Mandarin Kitchen. They have about 4 different kinds of Egg Foo Yung and it is really good.
California Wok and Moon House are the two Chinese places in the area that are in my lunch rotation. Agree that Moon House is a bit stronger – I particularly like the cumin lamb, the shredded pork with garlic sauce, and the chicken with mixed vegetables with spicy garlic sauce subbed in. They also pack very well for to-go orders.
Imo, Chang’s was significantly better than Dragon Palace. But it’s true, the guy at Chang’s (Albert?) could be rather comically rude lol.
BTW, what the heck happened to Mandarin Kitchen? I live right nearby but never go there anymore the food’s so mediocre.
Thanks for the input. Re Chang’s, we were introduced by long-time regulars, and thus never had service problems. Will try Dragon Palace and Moon House next. The neighbor who intro’ed us to Chang’s already tried Hop Li…meh.
A friend, and my wife’s desire to get the pickup of takeout done early, had us try Cheng Du on Pico yesterday. Meh++.
The PF Chang in Samo is a block and a half from us. I wouldn’t eat their food if I were in the Donner Party and they were an alternative.
California Wok would be where to go, but I live near you and have yet to find decent take out Chinese anywhere. BTW, Hu’s delivers, as does ROC (if driving all the way to Sawtelle, go to ROC)
Hu’s is a great suggestion if they deliver to you. Best Americanized Chinese I’ve found since Chang’s. The twice-cooked pork is tasty, as are the wings. I also like how the orange chicken is dry-fried instead of breaded and deep fried.
Hu’s now first. Abbott and Costello rules my decision making process.
I almost feel the same about PF Changs. I think it was voted saltiest restaurant in America. But it was at The Beverly Center for a long time, thus I would end up there with friends/family every now and then. When that happens you can always find that thing on a menu that is tolerable, and stick with that. Mine is the Oolong Sea Bass on spinach w/brown rice. If they don’t over cook it it’s delicious.
Hop Woo (Olympic & Sepulveda).
Similar type food - Jin Jiang Restaurant, 11057 Santa Monica Blvd., 2d floor (across from Moon House). I think the food is roughly equivalent to the other places mentioned.
the Palace on wilshire has gone up and down over the years. but the current chef/kitchen is legit. in fact best in years, IMO
Tried Dragon Palace the other day and was very happy. It’s great for your basic Paper Wrapped Chicken, Vegetable Fried Rice, Kung Pao Chicken kind of mood.- really satisfied.
Nothing was overly saucy (my mother took chinese cooking lessons from Madame Wu for many years and that’s who she quotes when we go for chinese: “Madame always said you can see bad chinese before you taste it!” i.e. when it is overly saucy).
So funny. My husband also took some cooking classes from Madame Wu. As a result, we acquired a lot of Chinese cooking equipment. I recall his making exactly one meal at home. Took him most of the day to do the prep. He enjoyed his lessons but learned that it is best to eat your Chinese food outside of the home. Glad you enjoyed Dragon Palace.
Must chop faster, Grasshopper!
My mother made many chinese meals, and truly, the chopping took all day - but the cooking took just minutes. But oh boy, that Szechwan Shredded Beef was incredible!