Elite Restaurant Dim Sum, Monterey Park, CA

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Yet another friend leaves Los Angeles for places far away...my heart is sad, but momentarily consoled a bit because this good-bye involves eating a delicious meal.

Jonathan Gold
said Elite Restaurant in Monterey Park is better than The Kitchen, Alhambra (which I visited in April 2008). And, who could doubt a Pulitzer-prize winning journalist? Not me. Mr. Gold, you saved us again.

By the way, Cris, who is leaving Los Angeles to take a job in her native Portland (I'm in denial about the whole thing), is really going to miss the variety of ethnic food in Los Angeles...she recently read a review of a Mexican food place in Portland. It said, no kidding here, "put the cilantro on your taco and squeeze lime juice on it - really, it's good that way." Oh dear. Dear Mr. Jonathan Gold, could you clone yourself for Portland?! Cris needs someone who has reviewed all the taco trucks! If anyone has recommendations for good ethnic food in Portland, pass 'em along!

There were nine of us, so we ordered a bunch of stuff. As the name implies, this is elite dim sum (hee hee) and you order off a menu - no carts. Here's the take:

Round One:
Elite Restaurant, Monterey Park, CA
Shark's Fin & Red Clam Dumpling
Click here for the internal view

Elite Restaurant, Monterey Park, CA
Vermicelli Singapore Style
I could eat this everyday. Every meal in fact.

Elite Restaurant, Monterey Park, CA Elite Restaurant (Monterey Park, CA)
Elite Restaurant, Monterey Park, CA Elite Restaurant, Monterey Park, CA
- Click to enlarge -
1. Deep "Fired" Bean Curd "Warp" (This was our favorite misspelling. Who cares about the spelling? It was delicious. Sorta like a laminated dough/puff pastry of bean curd!)
2. "Fired" (or Fried) Taro Cake
3. Chinese Broccoli with Oyster Sauce
4. Baby Bok Choy with Fish Stock

Elite Restaurant (Monterey Park, CA)
Elite BBQ Pork Bun

The breather between round 1 and round 2. Insert a serious discussion of fire fighters, how the DVR transcends the time-space continuum, and the uncanny ability of pre-schoolers to use the remote.

Round Two:
Elite Restaurant, Monterey Park, CA
Macau Roasted Pork
One word: Suc-cu-lent

Elite Restaurant, Monterey Park, CA
Shredded Pork Rice Noodle

Elite Restaurant, Monterey Park, CA
Baked Durian Pie
The menu said "Duran" so it was the Simon LeBon and Nick Rhodes pie. Here is an internal pic. The durian filling (from the smelliest fruit on the earth) wasn't Cheryl's favorite. I thought it was okay but the crust was too greasy.

Elite Restaurant, Monterey Park, CA
Sesame Balls with White Bean Filling
If there was an election for favorite dim sum dessert, my bumper sticker would read: "Sesame '08"

Elite Restaurant, Monterey Park, CA
Pan Friend Turnip cake with X.O. Sauce (Nikki's favorite!)

Elite Restaurant, Monterey Park, CA Elite Restaurant, Monterey Park, CA
Crystal Sweet Cake (although not what we were expecting when we ordered it, this was a light jello with flowers) and Fresh Mango Pudding (if Mango is on anywhere on the menu, it's in front of me)

Elite Restaurant, Monterey Park, CA
Snow Bun with Almond Flavor
Delightful. In a little cloud of heaven.

Yes, we ate even more food. We also had: Crystal Shrimp Har Gow, Pork Shui-Mai, Bean Curd Wrap (yummy!), Steamed Turnip Cake (get this! get this!), and egg custard tarts (Cris' favorite)

Elite Restaurant
700 S. Atlantic Blvd.
Monterey Park, CA 91754
(626) 282-9998

Eat Drink & Be Merry's blog has a review from 2007. His photos are much, much better! Take a look!
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Gourmetish said... [Reply to comment]

Oh my goodness--you have saved me from another twenty hours of deciphering foodies intense opinions on LA dim sum for my trip to LA this weekend (no dim sum where I live now). I will go to Elite. My favorite "genre" (so to speak) of food is dim sum (second to Sichuan cuisine) and I haven't had it in, sniff, way too long. Your photos rock and you order most of the things I would order! Whew. Thank you.

tdo said... [Reply to comment]

Your photos are fantastic. Do you mind sharing what camera and settings you use to get them to turn out so well?

The Food Librarian said... [Reply to comment]

T, I have...
Canon Rebel XTi, EF 50mm f/1.8, EF-S 60mm f/2.8 Macro and 430EX Speedlite Flash

For these shots at the restaurant, I believe I only used the 50 mm lens, no flash, longer exposure times or higher film speed. The restaurant had some bright lights so that helped! :)

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