Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Tu Lan

8 6th Street
(at Stevenson St)
San Francisco, CA 94103
(415) 626-0927
Mon-Sat 11:00 a.m.-9:30 p.m.

I can't remember the first time I heard about Tu Lan, but I remember wanting to try it during my visit to San Francisco. I didn't get the chance until my second trip. All the reviews I read about Tu Lan said Julia Child ate there and to watch out for all the crack addicts outside of the restaurant. That would exlpain the picture of Julia Child on the menu. I'm not sure about the crack addits, but there were quite a few "undesirables" hanging around outside right in front of the fried chicken shack next door. I'm very naive when it comes to such things, I have never seen or tried drugs. My companion pointed out a man along there 'selling' drugs hidden in cigarette boxes. I saw person after person handing this homeless looking man money and he would hand them a box of 'Newports' but there were only a few cigarettes in them.

I ordered our food and sat down at one of the small tables. The carryout service was busy that night. I noticed most of the carryout customers were caucasian and the dine in customers were Asian. While waiting for my food another customer came in to place an order and sat at my table. I struck up a friendly conversation with him. I asked him about the food and he recommended the curry and the grilled pork. I had ordered the grilled pork, chicken fried rice and egg rolls.

Once our food was ready, we paid for it and headed back to the hotel to eat. I wanted to catch the free wine tasting back at the hotel. I wanted to like the food from Tu Lan but it wasn't very good. The fried rice was greasy and had curry or tumeric in it. The egg rolls were very greasy and came with a sweet chili dipping sauce that was very thick. I thought the portions were very large for everything I ordered. My grilled pork was served on jasmine rice with slices of cucumber, shredded lettuce (or was it cabbage), an eggroll, and the same sauce that came with the order of eggrolls. The pork was thin, dry and too sweet. I think it was marinated in fish sauce, sugar, and green onions. I only ate a couple of bites. Overall this was a huge disappointment.