This week, Jonathan Gold visits the recently reopened Empress Pavilion, the sprawling Chinese restaurant from the ‘80s that closed a few years ago, only to reopen last fall. In its glory days, the restaurant offered some of "the most delicious things [Gold] had ever eaten," but he concludes that it is not 1991 anymore, and better food can certainly be found in the San Gabriel Valley:
Is this the best dim sum you've ever had? If you frequent the better places in the San Gabriel Valley, probably not.
The barbecued pork buns are slightly soggy, the taro cake clumsy, and the wrappers on the shrimp dumplings are simultaneously too stiff and too fragile. The steamed gai lan, Chinese broccoli, comes tepid from the kitchen instead of hot from a boiler-equipped cart. The roast duck is inevitably mushy. And you're not going to see much in the way of exotica here - a bowl of steamed tripe is about as far out as you're going to get. [LAT]
That being said, the LA Times critic has a good enough time, and appreciates the view of Dodger Stadium.
The Elsewhere: Darin Dines loves the shrimp toast at Son of a Gun, The Offalo eats all the tacos at Taco Madness, and Food GPS reveals off-menu dishes around town.