When I first moved to San Francisco in 2000, I lived at a weekly hotel in Chinatown while I looked for a place to live. The first nice restaurant we went to (to congratulate ourselves on our fine Chinatown digs, I guess?) was the House of Nanking (on Kearny between Jackson and Columbus).
It was a small affair at the time. If you managed a seat at one of the six or so tables, the owner would greet you, ask what sort of food you were interested in, and order for you.
Well... seven years later they have expanded! Over dinner break yesterday (between rehearsal and our performance of Messiah at Grace Cathedral), a few of my colleagues and I headed over to the House of Nanking. (Thank you Blackberry for the navigation.)
The restaurant has expanded to include the next-door space. Gone was the long line (although it was 5 PM), and the over-eagerness of the owner.
The food was excellent! Of interest was this green tea concoction that they brought. The tea-tritus is a mixture of tea leaves, edible flower buds, and some sort of berry. And a bunch or completely inedible stems :-).
After the owner took our order, I asked him how we were supposed to drink it?
"Just sip it" was his response...
We ended up straining it with our teeth.
I would recommend the food to anyone visiting China town!