168 Garden, the restaurant formerly known as Yunnan 168, specializes in Yunnan cuisine. Well, judging by the menu, it’s more of a Yunnan/Szechuan hybrid. We went on a Saturday afternoon a few weeks ago before our basketball game, because Lawrence really likes the place and can’t find any similar restaurants where he lives now (Cupertino).
I’m not too familiar with Yunnan cuisine, so color me surprised at how light the guo qiao mi xian (crossing the bridge noodles) was. It’s just rice noodles in chicken stock with chicken slices, Chinese ham, eggs, and veggies. Raw quail eggs are supposed to be used (according to Wikipedia), but I actually don’t remember any egg in the dish. It was solid, but albeit a bit…boring.
We also got a cold appetizer platter (standard), a fried rice (standard), a stir-fry noodle dish (standard), and a fish and tofu dish that’s very similar to “water boiled” fish (pretty good). It was a solid meal, but nothing that really stands out in an area with a dozen similar restaurants within a mile’s radius (although probably not the Yunnan part). Maybe we should’ve ordered some more Yunnan dishes? I blame Lawrence if that’s the case.
Chris Hei grade: B-
1530 S San Gabriel Blvd
San Gabriel, CA 91776