[San Francisco] Good Jook/Congee in San Francisco

Does anyone have a recommendation on where to get a good bowl of congee in SF? Particularly interested in bowls of congee with thousand year old egg and shredded pork. Hing Lung was pretty good but they’ve been gone for awhile now. Sam Wo was OK the one time I tried it. I’m looking for something on the level of Gum Kuo in Oakland or even New Gold Medal in Oakland. Good cheong fun would be a bonus too.

Try Wing Lee Bakery, corner of Clement and 6th. Bare-bones place, and the jook’s pretty basic - there’s just two choices: chicken, or pork with mushrooms and thousand year old egg. Great, creamy texture, and clean, simple flavor. Another consistently good place, with more varieties to choose from, is just over the line in Daly City: Porridge King, in the Skyline shopping center just off Skyline Drive. Try their jook with clams and pickled vegetables - just what the doctor ordered on a cold, rainy night…!

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Thanks for the recommendations! I went to Wing Lee Bakery and got some jook. They were out of the pork and thousand year old egg jook at around 2pm, so I got the chicken jook. Only $3.25. Added on a youtiao for 2 dollars more, and some har gow as well. I wanted to try the shrimp cheong fun as well but they were out of that too. The jook was pretty good, nice and creamy consistency as you said. Chunks of chicken with a little ginger and mushroom bits. Will check out the pork jook sometime. The youtiao was fine but may have been sitting around for awhile. Large portion size though. Would not get the har gow again though, the wrappers were way too thick.


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Out of curiosity, what’s the level of Gum Kuo in Oakland?

Separately, are there restaurants in the Bay Area that specialize in congee?

I would characterize the level of Gum Kuo’s jook as “very good” IMHO. It is thick, flavorful, and very creamy. I wonder if they add anything extra to make it that creamy. They also are pretty generous with the fillings.

Sorry, should have warned you about the dumplings. At Wing Lee, it’s all about the jook. As you say, gummy dumplings. Only other thing to recommend is next door on the corner, at their sister take-out restaurant, also Wing Lee: the roast duck. Buy a half, take it home; makes a great dinner…

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Give Good Luck Dim Sum in the Inner Richmond a try. Its lean pork & preserved egg congee is solidly good, the favorite congee in SF of the handful of people I’ve brought there. Go early; they run out.

Alternately, if you’re willing to branch out in your congee explorations, try the roast duck congee at Cheung Hing in the Outer Sunset (beware: there’s a place in the Richmond with the same name; that’s not the same). Cheung Hing is actually a fantastic roasted meats place–the best I’ve found, here or elsewhere–and the roast duck congee must be something like a third of the great duck meat and duck sauce.

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4 posts were split to a new topic: [San Francisco] Good Cantonese roasted meat in San Francisco

There are really two places that I like in SF for congee.

The first one is in outer Richmond on Noriega–Ming Tai (though their Chinese name doesn’t match their English for whatever reason). Service can be on the slower end but I find their Congee to be pretty great. On the weekends they have the ox-tongue pastry and they have a combo too with cheong fun. Note, its pretty tiny and cash only.

The other one I tend to go to is Cafe Broadway in Chinatown, in the old Hing Lung location actually (not sure if owners are related). They have the fried cruellers and ox-tongue pastry fried daily (though their cruellers tend to be a bit dense).

If you venture a bit south, I like Fat Wong’s in San Bruno as well. Their fish congee reminds me more of the congee I had in HK, sliced carp pieces and not chunks of fish.

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Thanks for the recs, went to Good Luck Dim Sum on a Sunday morning and had a container of the shredded pork and thousand year old egg jook, along with a youtiao. Total was under $5. There was a long line at around 11:30AM. The jook was quite good, chunky with the rice grains still kind of distinguishable, with a flavorful broth. Bit of MSG in there too probably. I think I prefer a slightly creamier consistency. Thousand year old egg was cut into small pieces. The youtiao was fresh and crispy.


Wonder if this just opened Hing Lung in San Bruno has anything to do with the Hing Lung in Chinatown.

Yeah I think it should be related. I just went there this weekend.

There are three pictures on the left side that has old pictures of the SF Hing Lung.

One note, if you’re trying to figure out where it is, they didn’t update the outer store front’s name. It stills says Ichi Ramen on the upper store front.

Actually… the English name might just be Ichi Ramen o_O. The to-go menu that someone put on yelp has the regular congee menu.

How’s the jook and the food in general?

Oh right haha.

I thought they did a good job on the congee. Its towards the thicker end, and I wish the rice was a little… mm… creamier? I could still feel a little bit of the rice (I did go right when it opened though, so not sure if that’s how it may affect the initial texture). I grabbed a bowl of just plain wontons in broth, and the wontons were pretty good. Not too large and a bit of pork mixed with shrimp and the broth went well. I can’t comment on the noodles, but overall it is a nice spot. Tried an ox-tongue pastry and the jah leung (rice noodle roll with the fried crueller). The pastry is kept warm in a little cabinet, but overall very nice, more towards a doughy texture. Same with the youtaio, but the rice noodles were pretty smooth.

We stared at some other tables, and the beef briskets looked pretty good as well. I’m more than willing to come back, price wise it seems better than Fat Wong’s and with just about as much seating.

I tried Hing Lung recently. I thought it was a little…too creamy LOL. It almost seems like they cook it for really long and add some starchy additives for that extra creamy and uniform texture. I think whatever you tasted was definitely different from what I ate since I couldn’t feel any of the rice texture at all.

Woah really? Hmmm, I went pretty early, right when it opened. I thought it needed a little more cooking actually lol. I tried the beef brisket with radish and that was pretty tasty. My parents like their dry beef chow fun, but I think you mentioned it was a little oily. My minced beef with egg turned out well. I just miss the one that was done in the Pacific Plaza mall in Richmond, I think it was the Sheng Kee cafe portion eons ago. Alas

Do you mean grand opening? or early as in time during the day? If latter, I went during the evening. I wonder if they just keep cooking it during the day.

I actually don’t know when it officially opened haha. I just saw some report on CH and headed there about … three months ago probably?

In any case, I was talking about the time of eating. I went early at 11 am. I’m thinking the stuff keeps cooking haha.

Maybe they cook it in batches. I don’t know anything about the San Bruno location, but at the original Hing Lung there was an early to mid-morning peak when many of the Chinatown chefs fortified themselves before going to their own work places. If the 11:00 AM batch appeared under-done, it may have been a second batch.

“Food is a pretty good prism through which to view humanity.”

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