House of Nanking

San Francisco, California

Reviews

Image for conde.kedar

rating star

I took my parents here for a vegan meal as we'd heard the chef does special vegan dishes. In fact, the chef/owner came out and took our order personally; I felt like were were in capable hands even though he refused to tell us what he actually planned on making for us. "Leave it to me. Trust me," he said.

We started off with a scallion pancake which was huge and delicious. I love scallion pancakes in general, and this one was practically a meal in itself, covered in a heavy, but tasty, tamarind-based sauce. The sauce especially impressed my picky Indian parents.

For the main course we got a curry tofu dish with a variety of vegetables. My parents were also impressed with this dish. I liked the flavor of the sauce, but the dish was so oily without reason that I couldn't quite fall in love it. Mapo tofu is oily by default, but this dish, on the other hand, was just a curry stir-fry and didn't call for it to be oozing oil.

They don't offer brown rice here, which was both disappointing and surprising.

House of Nanking does offer an unusual experience for vegans and vegetarians looking for a good, non-mockmeat meal in Chinatown. Combined with the friendly service and the "in-the-know" feel that it imparts upon you, House of Nanking is recommended.

Image for Lola

rating star

The House of Nanking makes the best vegan Chinese food I have ever eaten. Instead of offering a panoply of fried mock meats, the House of Nanking makes a variety of flavorful vegetable and tofu dishes. I went with two other people and we just asked the waitress for "vegan for 3" and she brought us 5 wonderful vegan courses:

1) bok choy and red onions, sauteed in a black pepper sauce
2) the best scallion pancakes that I have ever tasted, served with plum sauce
3) fried eggplant, served with white rice
4) tofu stir-fry, served in tortilla shells
5) a plate with many different types of cooked mushrooms and garlic

If your waiter or waitress doesn't know what you mean when you ask for "vegan for three," ask to speak with the owner - his name is Peter and he's very aware of vegan dietary restrictions. He has arranged 5-course vegan meals for friends of mine a number of times and they have always turned out well.

If you do decide to eat here, keep in mind that there is always a line outside. When we arrived, the line went almost to the end of the block, but we managed to wait only 25 minutes before we were seated. Once you do get inside, the service at House of Nanking is very quick.

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