Tim asked in Food & DrinkEthnic Cuisine · 2 months ago

Do you prefer Chinese restaurants with or without English only menus and chopsticks?

Some Chinese restaurants are English only menu, and do not have chopsticks. Do you like these places more than those with bilingual menus and have chopsticks available? Same with vietnamese restaurants.

I myself live an hour from San Francisco and we got this around too. I am also half Chinese American so I have been to China too but nothing beats an English only menu Chinese restaurant!

Update:

DCM5150: I’ve seen them in Santa Rosa, Rohnert Park, Ukiah, etc Maybe they are more like takeout or fusion but still Chinese restaurants. I think more have English only. Keep in mind the Chinese population is only 1% in Sonoma and Mendocino county where I have lived.

10 Answers

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  • Alpha
    Lv 7
    1 month ago

    There is no hard and fast rules when judging whether a Chinese restaurant is good, bad, or indifferent.  Having English-only menu doesn't really mean anything other than the restaurant doesn't want to have to print and pay for 2 sets of menus, and repay for them whenever the price changes. Although, I have yet to encounter a Chinese restaurant that did not provide or have available chopsticks.

    Some Chinese restaurants have 2 sets of menus (English and Chinese) because there are some Chinese dishes that are not popular with non-Chinese. Every culture have their ideas of what tastes good and they are not always in agreement. For example, stir-fried pig uterus is fairly popular in China, but I have yet to meet anyone in the US who thinks it is yummy. There is also a kind of fermented/pickled tofu popular in China (especially with the older Chinese generation), that has been described even by the younger generation of Chinese as "stinky smelly tofu".  I personally think it smelled like dog-vomit mixed with cow manure, and I'm not even trying to be insulting.

  • Ramiro
    Lv 6
    2 months ago

    Chop Sticks, yes. I love using those things. Theres nothing like rolling up your Chow Mein and pounding down homie. Menus i prefer the ones with pictures for every item. Now thats business! 🍜

  • denise
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    Mainly ones with mostly Chinese cuisine and a couple of alternative dishes for diners with there own tastes, but I do like a fork [I'm useless with chopsticks!].

  • 2 months ago

    It doesn't make any difference to me as long as the food is good.

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  • John
    Lv 7
    2 months ago

    Our go-to Chinese place has staff that barely speaks English at times. Pre Covid it was the spot for the Chinese Mah Jong club, Friday nights. It's a nice place, has lobster, crab and fresh fish in tanks, also pre Covid.

    I'm good with chopsticks but I gave them up because I realized it was just a show, as an American white guy. The owner of the Cambodian place down the street from the Chinese I mention said, "Oh, no, we use forks. The chopsticks are just for the tourists". Oakland, BTW.

  • 2 months ago

    I don't really care. It has more to do with the size of the local Chinese population. In areas where they get more Chinese traffic, they tend to have menus in Chinese and chopsticks. But every Chinese restaurant I have been to in the US has had chopsticks if you ask. I still prefer a fork and knife. They are clearly superior technology in my opinion. 

    It depends on what food you like most. My wife is originally from China, so I've been there, and I hate the food there. But American-style Chinese food? Love it! Give me my fried rice and General Tso chicken! My wife always orders something unrecognizable off-the-menu. To each their own... 

  • I don't speak any of the Chinese languages (there are dozens) but chopsticks have never been an issue for me. Happy to use them.

  • Anonymous
    2 months ago

    Well, I don't speak or write Chinese. I'm dependent on the English translation. It really doesn't matter though. Where I live, there are large Asian populations and fabulous Chinese, Vietnamese, etc. restaurants. The staff members have always been most graciously helpful. Dammit! You made me hungry!

  • 2 months ago

    Where are you that you only see English menus? I've been all over the bay area (and well beyond) and have not seen such a thing.

    And I guess I'm not sure why it matters. I think the food quality would be more important which I am 100% sure doesn't depend on the language(s) of the menu.

  • Anonymous
    2 months ago

    Different strokes for different folks, I guess.  My introduction to "Chinese" food was Cantonese mom-style cooking at my best friend's house, and her mom made no allowances for her weird, pale friend's lack tablemanners (from the mom's point of view).  That remains my benchmark.  I look for restaurants where Chinese families go to eat.  When I used to travel a lot for work my colleagues would go to diners and I'd look out the local Chinese restaurant, even if it were only a takeaway and get chatting to whoever was in charge.  If the vibe was good I'd politely ask what they were making themselves for dinner and more often than not I'd be invited to join them for some homecooking.  I never asked what we were eating and always had really good intel on the places I was sent to work at - so I guess I prefer chopsticks, and lots of bowls on the table.

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