I’m curious what kind of noodles they serve. The sign on their window says that they make Shou Han mian 手撖麵 Hand rolled noodles— by that name, I understand these to be made from dough that’s been rolled out with a rolling pin and sliced with a knife Hand cut, knife-shaved, and other Chinese wheat noodles (SFBA/Norcal). However, y*lp pictures show them making what I describe as “lagman” in Hand-pulled and stretched Chinese wheat noodles (SFBA/Norcal) which would be stretched into noodles by hand without tools. It may not be on the menu, but there may be an option to get wide or thin noodles.
I don’t know if that’s a terminology confusion or if they switched how they make noodles— sister restaurants, see below, usually make the lagman style noodles, but there are exceptions (iDumpling uses machine-made noodles).
Here’s what I like at thei sister restaurants-- I like the lotus root appetizer and the boiled dumplings in general (no favorite). Their cold dishes in general are pretty good. If they have some kind of desert that takes 15 minutes to cook, a pastry of some sort, get that— it’s good.
I’m also curious if they make their XLB in house or if they buy them from their SF kitchens devoted to frozen dumpling making. I know that I’ve seen them hand making dumplings at Town of Dumpling, but they also sell frozen ones in bags (I’ve cooked these at home and they’re better than the ones from Ranch 99 that are served at lots of Cantonese restaurants).
If you want too much info …
Souperman pointed out that the owner, Qinghe Li, has had a hand in the following places http://www.chowhound.com/post/skewers-sunset-san-francisco-897484 http://www.corporationwiki.com/p/2l7gez/king-of-dumpling-llc :
House of Dumpling LLC
King of Noodles LLC
Yummy Dumpling LLC
I Dumpling LLC
Town of Dumpling LLC
Dumpling Empire Corporation (perhaps the place in SSF)
Kingdom of Dumpling LLC
According to a Chowhound post that I can’t find, former chefs of Li’s restaurants now own Shan Dong Best / Deluxe. A server at Taste of Shandong - Alice Chinese Bistro in the Sunset told he the chef or owner there worked either at Shandong Deluxe or King of Noodles. At all these restaurants you can find those mutant looking xiao long bao with a bizarre top knot and the lagman style “hand pulled noodles” Hand-pulled and stretched Chinese wheat noodles (SFBA/Norcal). Alice is the newest and does a horrendous job at lagman.b