Chinatown: Crab Dinner at New Dragon
Going to Newport Seafood during Christmas reawakened memories of Chinese lobster and crab dinners I had with my family growing up. I never really paid attention to how my dad ordered the lobster or crab — meaning I don’t know if he told them the pounds of the delicious seafood or what but I always knew those things better be fresh. Fortunately, New Dragon in Chinatown grabbed a crab straight out of the tank for us and I opted for the ginger and green onions sauce. Later I saw a whole one simply steamed and thought I should have gotten it that way instead but I rather liked the sauce. You also had other sauce options like black bean.
New Dragon is on Hill Street in Chinatown. While I’ve been to a lot of the restaurants in Chinatown, this one always escaped my notice despite it being right across the street from the hospital I was born at and I often point it out. Walking in, I noticed a lot of bit tables occupied by couples and small families — not quite the boisterous dinners I’m used to with extended family.
The team working at New Dragon was very friendly with its regulars, a good sign. I overheard one man say he was there every week. And his kid seemed to know the menu by heart.
We started out with the thick seafood and tofu soup. It’s essentially an egg drop soup with bits of seafood. I like the octopus tentacles best. My friend had a small bowl but I probably polished off the rest with liberal sprinklings of white pepper.
When I checked into the restaurant, everyone seemed into the wonton soup so we decided to try it. And when I got it with tendon, my friend exclaimed, “that sounds delicious!” I love eating with adventurous people.
The noodles were a shade more al dente than I liked but I liked that it was the traditional egg noodles. The wontons were small but well made. And there was plenty of tendon. This would be a good bowl for lunch.
The spinach was very fresh and there was a ton of it. I was very happy about that. I didn’t quite care that the roots were still on but I suppose that’s more fiber.
So what about this crab? It was very tender and perfectly done. I also think the best part was it was only $25! For realsies. The lobster was $30. None of this “by pound business.” I now know where to go if I want to get seafood and I may have to get my own crab. The two of us demolished it fairly quickly.
We were debating whether we should get another dish halfway through the crab but I’m glad we didn’t because that meant we left room for dessert which we got at The Pie Hole.
New Dragon Seafood Restaurant936 N Hill St., Los Angeles, CA 90012 — (213) 626-6050 © The Minty 2013