Berkeley >King Tsin Restaurant
If you enjoy being over-charged for bland food, this is the place for you..
The place had the appearance of a deserted cafeteria and I should probably have walked away right then and there. Having already placed my order for take out though, I did the honorable thing and paid for my food and walked away praying that perhaps the proprietors had put most of their investments in the culinary arts leaving very little for the decor (which would not explain the fact that nobody was there at dinner time). My prayers were not answered and the food was as dull as the place itself. The chow mien consisted of noodles soaked in a bland sauce, sprinkled with a few soggy vegetables. The hot and sour soup was equally unimpressive, and could verily have been poured out of a can minutes before my arrival. If Tsin was a king, I fancy his guards would have gone hungry rather than eat this food.
In spite of the terrible impression King Tsin?s food left on me, I would ordinarily not write such a scathing review as others may enjoy eating bland foods and who am I to rain on their parade. What compelled me to submit the review is the fact that they also had the nerve to over-charge me. I can see a 5 on the tip line of the credit slip being misinterpreted as an 8, but a 1 on the total line is not easily mistaken for a 4. In my judgment there is no doubt that King Tsin?s people intentionally gave themselves an $8 tip when I intended to leave $5 (this is for take out, mind you). So I would highly recommend that this place be avoided at all costs, which should not be difficult as very good Chinese food can be had just a few steps away.
A time-honored Berkeley tradition. After closing for what seemed like a very long time, King Tsin reopened after renovations. They now offer a made to order dim sum menu, which has been lacking outside of downtown Oakland forever. Overall, the food is very good, as it has been for as long as I've been cognisant, and the addition of dim sum just boosts their ratings for me. Pluses: the various soups, potstickers, and anything on the lunch special. I'm dissapointed in a revamp of the traditional Mu Shu Pork as they've replaced the cabbage with spinach which is terribly underwhelming in texture and overpowering in flavor for the dish. Other than that, you really can't go wrong here. The old (now deceased) owners' daughter (the 40ish woman in boots and mini skirt) is a kick; I am so glad she's still around. The service is attentive but not overbearing, they continue a tradition of food arriving in hot and large, tasty quantities, some traditional dishes most Westerners may not try, but are so worth it, especially the soups. They are very tolerant of children making a mess in the dining room and in fact, dote on the tots that show up with their weary parents. Larger parties can be easily accommodated.
Very good -- don't forget to request for NO MSG. Attentive service. Tasty food. BUT ASK FOR NO MSG. My husband, neighbor & I all got knocked out (in a bad way) from too much MSG in the food.
Pot Sticker HEAVEN. We've been going to King Tsin since I was my childrens age (8), and there is no better place for families to hang out and talk over an excellant dinner or a couple to have a great meal after/before a movie than the King! There is no pot sticker that comes close to comparing! The same mother is making the pot stickers after all these years! Sinfully, I sometimes go (all alone) just for the pot stickers.
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