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All Reader Reviews of...

Chinatown Brasserie

380 Lafayette St., New York, NY, 10003
nr. Great Jones St.
212-533-7000

Avg. Rating

7
Food: 7
Service: 6
Décor: 8
"Recommended"

Average Reader Rating on a Scale of 10.

62% would go back.

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Best Peking Duck Ever

By possumdearie on 12/13/2010

  • Overall Rating: 9
  • Food: 10
  • Service: 8
  • Décor: 9
  • Yes, I would go back!

The kitchen is amazing here, and I've been a few times. Once on a themed dinner and a movie date (the movie was Curse of the Golden Flower), once on the worst blind date of all time where I sat next to John Malkovich at the next table, once for Chinese New Year (tiger) and a couple times for brunch. Excellent dim sum and Peking duck.

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69 out of 120 people found this review helpful.

A Favorite

By DrunknMonkey on 5/27/2010

  • Overall Rating: 8
  • Food: 8
  • Service: 8
  • Décor: 8
  • Yes, I would go back!

I'm at Chinatown Brasserie pretty often, and it's usually very good. Great soup dumplings. Also the BBQ beef and sauteed pea shoots. But, I shouldn't talk it up too much, because I love that it's not that hard to get an outdoor table for a 7:30 dinner.

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85 out of 169 people found this review helpful.

Fabulous

By woolyhat on 4/14/2009

  • Overall Rating: 9
  • Food: 9
  • Service: 9
  • Décor: 9
  • Yes, I would go back!

We ventured to this restaurant not really sure what to expect but all our fears were put to rest by the charming staff who welcomed us. The brasserie is an homage to the fabulous 30s and 40s of Shanghai with a large and spacious room, subtle lighting and a nice beat in the background. Our waiter recommended a few baskets of dim sum, one of which was the har gau (prawn dumpling) which was packed with flavour and came with a tasty dipping sauce. The vegetable dumplings, sui mai and roast pork buns were just delicious, fresh and we wanted more. We also ordered the baby pea-shoots in a garlic sauce which were cooked to perfection. The brasserie is casual but elegant with helpful service and wonderful food. We were pleased we chose against the stale Dim Sum GoGo and opted for a place that we will definitely return to.

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121 out of 259 people found this review helpful.

Best Darn Lunch Prix Fixe

By ivywarbucks on 1/7/2009

  • Overall Rating: 10
  • Food: 10
  • Service: 10
  • Décor: 10
  • Yes, I would go back!

Initially looking at the menu, I thought this restaurant was too expensive. Until I saw the lunch prix fixe. For 14 bucks you choose 4 pieces of dim sum and an entree. And one of the entrees is a duo of orange beef AND general tso's chicken. Delicious.

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123 out of 241 people found this review helpful.

Dim Sum Heaven

By travelbear on 6/29/2008

  • Overall Rating: 10
  • Food: 10
  • Service: 10
  • Décor: 10
  • Yes, I would go back!

We just discovered Chinatown Brasserie and it's going to become a mainstay. No vinyl booths here. The atmosphere is upscale but the overwhelming vibe is comfortable....almost a neighborhood vibe. A good portion of the welcoming atmosphere is due to the friendly and attentive manager Dawn Blake and friendly and attentive wait staff. The dim sum elevates the run of the mill dumpling into fine dining. The dumplings uniformly boasted a thin and well executed wrapper with wonderful surprises like unusual shapes and placements of ingredients to give the dumplings unique colors. But the real treat was inside the dumplings. Many were unique flavor combinations and left you wanting more (which we ordered). Some real standouts were the shrimp and snow pea, lamb with spicy vegetables, mushroom, and the watercress with shrimp dumplings (thanks Dawn for recommending the mushroom). The dumpling sauces were also far from common and showed the same attention to detail and flavor combinations as the dumplings themselves. Also the steamed pork tips may very well have been our favorite on a standout menu and the sauce was also perhaps the best in a dining experience of great sauce accompaniments.

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120 out of 228 people found this review helpful.

We left cranky and hungry - hugely disappointing

By kah on 2/11/2008

  • Overall Rating: 4
  • Food: 6
  • Service: 1
  • Décor: 7
  • No, I would not go back!

I felt like a sucker for making the treck to Chinatown Brasserie after seeing it praised on the Food Network. The food was pretty good (on par with your neighborhood Ollie's) but the prices were three times what you'd pay at a regular Chinese restaurant. No problem though, because the decor was nice enough. The big problem was the service -- our waiter, who was clearly on drugs, arrived at our table complaining of a terrible day and consistently screwed up each order from drinks to dinner citing his "blond moments". Ultimately we waited over an hour between our appetizers and our entrees. We complained and were met with defensive "can't control the kitchen" excuses. Never again!

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188 out of 361 people found this review helpful.

Bygone Era of Chinatown 1930's Holloywood Style

By kathleenspringer on 10/27/2007

  • Overall Rating: 9
  • Food: 9
  • Service: 10
  • Décor: 10
  • Yes, I would go back!

I think some people are missing the point. This is the fancy Chinese restaurant of a bygone era of our parents and the baby boomer crowd. When going to a Chinese restaurant was a big deal for the family. It was thrilling and mysteriously romantic. The decor is fabulous with huge spectacular Red Poppy Murals and Semi Circular Red Leather Booths with an exotic giant fish pond some may be tempted to dive into beneath the winding staircase leading to the private lounge, and a glass enclosed garden enticing you into the chic private diningroom that seats 20 for special occasions. The Food is the unpretentious Chinese American that we know and love with some delightful finishing touches and an amazing assortment of dim sum. Joyful, fun, casual dining at it's best. Loved it. The service was amazing too, swift, sweet and courteous.

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307 out of 588 people found this review helpful.

Cold food, awful service

By pixie_nyc on 8/29/2007

  • Overall Rating: 3
  • Food: 3
  • Service: 1
  • Décor: 5
  • No, I would not go back!

I had high expectations of CB considering what I've read online and seen on several tv shows. I was really disappointed. Our waitress was completely inept and forgot my drink after I reminded her about it three times. I eventually had to get a busboy request the manager so I could have a cocktail with my entree after it never appeared with either my appetizer or dim sum courses. My entree was cold and I had to have the same busboy get the same manager to send it back. To make up for both mistakes, you'd figure he would have offered a free cocktail or desert, but he didn't. Our waitress never came over to see how our meal was or to apologize. I guess she figured her tip was ruined at that point and decided to give up. Also, what restaurant cleans the bathroom at 8:30 on a Friday night with a crowded house? The dim sum was good and but wasn't enough to save this experience. I would recommend skipping CB and continuing downtown to the real Chinatown for good food and better service!

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288 out of 641 people found this review helpful.

simply not a place for chinese food

By jinji1949 on 7/21/2007

  • Overall Rating: 3
  • Food: 3
  • Service: 2
  • Décor: 7
  • No, I would not go back!

The decor is nice and upscale. But the food is plain and untasty. Charging vertiginous prices for very ordinary Chinese food. The dim sum dishes are not too bad. the classic spring roll is unique. unfortunately, the main dishes are quite bad. My scallop in clay pot simplly spicy. My friend's seafood trio was completely under seasoning, no XO sauce's favor. Plus, our waiter's attitude was unacceptable. He came to ask if we want "tap water, bottled water or Pellegrino" before he sent someone to come to pour water into our glass. The water boy came and raised the pitch in he right hand and said " tap water??" . Then waiter came to table to ask if we want any cocktail. When we made the reservation for 7pm. They told us the only availability was 6:30. But the restaurant was almost empty while we dinning there. Still playng the old trick to make customer think they are very busy and fully booked.

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328 out of 653 people found this review helpful.

Great Dim Sum but Pricey!

By ywwan on 5/26/2007

  • Overall Rating: 8
  • Food: 8
  • Service: 7
  • Décor: 9
  • Yes, I would go back!

This is a great place to grab dimsum on a weekend. The gorgeous and peaceful ambiance is a much less stressful place to enjoy all (the real) Chinatown has to offer without the stress. And while the dimsum menu is rather limited, there are more than enough delicious items to satisfy even the most demanding. I grew up eating dimsum and to me, any dumplings that contain shrimp must be large, crunchy and fresh and Chinatown Brasserie pasts the test. The turnip cakes and shrimp and chive dumplings are also divine and I absolutely love the Malaysian eggplant. Some of the dinner items are admittedly misses but there are enough hits to make up for it. I suggest the barbeque duck spring rolls, crispy skin chicken, three chilli chicken, black cod, black pepper scallops and the fried rice. Overall, the dinner menu is good but not exceptional and a bit over priced but I guess you are paying for the ambiance.

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319 out of 639 people found this review helpful.

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