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Midtown South / Chelsea >
Chelsea Chinese (aka Grand Sichuan International)
Posted by CuisineCrazy on 06/03/2011
What used to be my favorite Chinese restaurant in Manhattan, after 15 years, has gone downhill. I can only surmise that it's been sold or they have an entirely new kitchen staff. What used to be the best Shanghail soup dumplings in the city are now forgettable and bland. The Yung Chow fried rice skimped on the various ingredients and the rice was a darker color than ever before, tasting like it was cooked in a dirty wok. We ordered the soft shell crab with ginger and scallion, tasting like it was made in a deep fryer and consisted of one (or less) crab with a lot of scallions and very little ginger. The waitress staff seems to have changed but are as gnarly as their predecessors. I may give Grand Sichuan ome more chance, but in Manhattan, two strikes and you're out.
Posted by Anonymous on 04/25/2011
I live in the area and have been ordering from and dining at this restaurant many times. I keep going back because the food is great at low prices. However, the service is pretty bad. If you call to place an order, they will actually hang up on you without saying thank you or goodbye. They also rush you to leave the restaurant. It's like they're too busy to attend to their customers! It may be popular, but it's not that crowded. Have never written a review before but wanted to share this as I am considering not returning, despite the convenient location.
Posted by Chines "FOODIE" on 01/12/2011
Last night I hosted a dinner for 10 friends all with more than average knowledge of what good Chinese food means....Grand Sechuan was my venue of choice.. I felt more than secure with the food and the menu choices..but terrified regarding the service... Surprise, surprise..I did my homework...planned out the menu..went to the restaurant a few days before..went over the details with the manager..and sat with the waitress who would oversee the service. It was a fabulous evening..everyone had a wonderful time and raved about the food...they did their very best to cater to my every wish...serving in the order requested...not rushing us..changing the plates...clearing the table..serving the drinks..could not have asked for more...and of course the food at this restaurant can't be beat. Thanks Grand Sechuan for a special evening!
Posted by anonymous on 11/03/2010
i've gone to this location several times, and the food is always delicious and affordable. the value and the quality are amazing. the service, though, is pretty subpar. not only does your server disappear whenever you need something, but the manager completely rushes you out, the second you put your fork down. after waiting for a table, they should at least let you sit for a little while - but they pretty much come right over and say "you have to leave, people are waiting." maybe a little bedside manner classes are in order.
Posted by downtown architect on 10/19/2010
i am a longtime fan of this restaurant. occasionally i see people ordering "general tso's chicken", "steamed dumplings", or "chicken with brocolli". if you do you will be disappointed. the many folks who love this place come for (lord knows it isnt the service!) the authentic sichuan and other regional specialties: sichuan cold noodles, dan dan noodles, steamed soup dumplings, au zhou chicken, tea smoked duck, crispy quail, and there are many many more! if you want typical american chinese food don't get it here. if you want an opportunity to try excellent regional cooking without heading to flushing or mott street, this is the place.
Posted by benbenny on 09/21/2010
This is one of those over-hyped New York restaurants in a Magnolia Bakery sort of way. People wait on line to get in and after you've eaten there you leave puzzled as to what all the fuss is about. It's just typical, down-market chinese food, you can tell by the super thick noodles on the wontons and the grease on the chicken and brocolli. I live next door and have tried it on several occasions and it's entirely forgettable.
Posted by Steve on 09/11/2010
This had been my favorite Chinese place in the city after I discovered it 4 or 5 years ago. I often took out-of-towners to Grand Sichuan and recommended it to other city-dwellers. After three disappointing dinners in a row, each one worse than the last, this place is dead to me. They have changed the menu and apparently changed chefs as well, because the food is just not the same. The last time I ordered Kung Pao Chicken, which was my favorite dish, it was littered with so many peppercorns that is was practically inedible. My favorite appetizer, Szechuan Cold Noodle, was a small bowl of high quality pasta with an amazing spicy peanut sauce. Now it's a big bowl of crappy lo mein noodles with a sauce that tastes like cheap mustard with no peanut flavor. The vegetables have been reduced to garnish - extremely low quality and chopped in to huge ugly pieces. These are just some examples of how the quality has gone way downhill. I was always dismayed (but selfishly happy) that this place often got overlooked due to the low reviews for the other "Grand Szechuans" in NYC, but I am sad to report that this location seems to have sunk to their level.