Best Asian Restaurants: Cantonese Fish House

Northwest by Far East: the Insider’s Guide to Asian Food in Seattle

January 25, 2011 Published in the February 2011 issue of Seattle Met

Hing Loon

Not even the cruelly fluorescent lighting in this Chinatown throwback diminishes its affable welcome nor the hold it has on the legions of fans who live for its bubbling hot pots and smoked duck. If Cantonese seafood is Seattle’s largest Chinese restaurant category, Hing Loon delivers its broadest representation—much of it directly out of the live tanks gurgling in the corner.

Who’s here A thousand regulars, who know that the 50-plus sheets of paper taped to the wall list the day’s specials—and know to stick with them.
Don’t miss Seattle’s best squid in black bean sauce.
Pssst The Loon is a big after-the-party haunt, hopping till 2am Fridays and Saturdays.


Sea Garden closed

Get beyond the entry, with its clutter and its crab tanks—the room looks unchanged since the ’40s, which is odd since it opened in 1981—and you’re in for some of the most authentic, tightly executed, and clockwork-consistent Cantonese seafood in town.

Who’s here Everyone, all hours (it’s open till 3am weekends). We prefer it on lazy Sunday afternoons, when tables are as free as the street parking.
Don’t miss The best black bean crab in three states.
Pssst That crab always grabs headlines, but Sea Garden’s squid dishes are its most authentic—particularly the crispy shingles of salt and pepper squid fired with chilies.

T&T Seafood

This solid spot, an overlit sprawler beloved of Chinese expats, serves Szechuan and Cantonese fish dishes with spotty service but consistent execution. Sea bass dishes rock, from the sizzling black bean to the salt and pepper, loaded with garlic. The place is great for groups, many of whom can be seen gathered around huge tureens of shark fin soup.

Who’s here North Enders. This stretch of Highway 99, anchored by the Chinese supermarket Ranch 99 next door, is Edmonds’ international district.
Don’t miss The lobster is the big deal here, but we think the honey walnut prawns—that scourge of many a lesser joint—manage to transcend their mayonnaise-bomb reputation into the realm of crispy, juicy, and expertly balanced.
Pssst They just added weekend dim sum.

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