Denver's ten best Chinese restaurants

Categories: Best of Denver

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Cassandra Kotnik
Dumplings at Super Star Asian.
Today marks the Chinese New Year, which is a good reason to go forth into one of this city's excellent Chinese joints and feast on meats and vegetables loaded with Szechuan peppers, a vat of soul-warming beef noodle soup, dumplings or something much, much stranger -- duck tongue, pig's blood or shark's fin soup, for example, none of which you'll find in the dollar-a-scoop shops. In celebration of the holiday -- and in the interest of avoiding said dollar-a-scoop joints -- we're updating our list of Denver's five best Chinese restaurants. Here, in no particular order, are our top ten.

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Mark Manger
Spice China, 269 McCaslin Boulevard, Louisville
We spend a lot of hours searching out the most authentic representations of Szechuan, Taiwanese and North Chinese specialties this city has to offer, but there's also a special place in our hearts for the more Americanized dishes. Louisville's Spice China definitely has a decent list of more or less authentic Shanghai-based specialties, and it also serves up some of the best Americanized Chinese food -- including kung pao, mu shu and lo mein -- we've had in the area.

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King's Land Seafood Restaurant, 2200 West Alameda Avenue
Alameda Square is a good bet for Chinese food, not least because it's home to King's Land Seafood restaurant, a joint that's been turning out a worthy array of dim sum for more than a decade. During prime hours, trolleys roll through the massive 300-seat spot, and the women pushing them plunk down dumplings, porridges, stir-fried vegetables and hard-to-identify parts of animals at each table. Just make sure you get there before 3 p.m., which is when the carts stop rolling.

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Lori Midson
Zoe Ma Ma, 2010 10th Street, Boulder
Edwin Zoe noticed a lack of real Chinese food in Boulder, so he imported his Chinese mother from a coastal town in Shandong Province to make her recipes and fill the gap. From a tiny space just off the Pearl Steet Mall, Zoe Ma Ma turns out fantastic noodle dishes that span northern Chinese and Szechuan specialties, delicious dumplings and zong zi, bamboo-wrapped packets of rice, pork, mushrooms and lotus seed. And while the regular menu contains satisfying staples, we're most enamored of the daily specials, one of which is the fiery, rib-sticking Szechuan braised-beef noodle soup.

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14 comments
Inyourface
Inyourface

I'm sorry was this the top ten restaurants where your dog will identify with the food before you do? Get Chinese worth eating Denver.

Ajgooty
Ajgooty

JJ Chinese was my favorite restaurant until recently. I think they have changed owners or management.  Twice I have ordered the two for one lobster special and both times they did not include the tail meat. I have been eating lobster all my life and I know the tail wasn’t there.  The staff has also changed and the service has gone way down hill.

Kimberly
Kimberly

Oh nooooo!!! I loved JJ's Chinese. I haven't had the opportunity to dine there in almost a year, so I'm sad to hear that things have gone south. Bummer.

davebarnes
davebarnes

Why not put the entire article on one page?Do you think we actually see or pay attention to the adverts?Ad impressions are not persuasion.Does Westword even have ads on its website?

Lori Midson
Lori Midson

Well, hello there! I think we've mentioned this before, but if you click on the "Print Article" tab at the bottom of the fist page, the text and photos will all appear on one page. Voila!

Ck
Ck

Thank you that always drove me crazy and I never thought to use the print page feature.

Mantonat
Mantonat

They don't care if you actually look at the ads or not. Click-throughs generate more ad revenue even if you avert your eyes as you click. 

Davelovelace
Davelovelace

This list cannot be taken seriously without Restaurant X being included! And have you been to Restaurant Y lately (that somehow did make the list)? It is horrible.

Robert Chase
Robert Chase

Thanks for this; if I scrape up enough money to eat out, I will consult this list.  I have had dim-sum at King's Land on numerous occasions, and I like it; I think that we have better dim-sum than the nation's capitol.  Denver's Asian cuisine is one of the best, most redeeming aspects of our City, and we hardly deserve it; there are droves of residents who would never dream of eating anything so outlandish and consume ground beef every day of their lives.

Foo-man-chew
Foo-man-chew

Wait til' you try the Bambu' truck..for being some white kids,their food is legit!

Doughboy
Doughboy

Don't necessarily disagree with any on the list, but the order is really off (and I've eaten multiple times at all of them except for Zoe Ma Ma).  Chef Liu's is hit-or-miss.  I would definitely put China Jade on top and, on a good day, Tao Tao is still among my favorites but they have suffered in their move to Aurora.  Lao Wang's, while a small-eats place, is one of the best.    Surprisingly good are some of the restaurants specializing in Northeast Chinese cuisine, He Xing Garden in Lakewood and East China on Broadway are both very good and deserve to be on the list.  And thank you for excluding Imperial Chinese.  They suck.  Here's how I would rank them:  1.  China Jade, 2. Tao Tao Noodle Bar, 3. Star Kitchen, 4. Lao Wang's, 5. East China, 6. Chef Liu's, 7. He Xing Garden,  8. JJ's Seafood, 9.  Spice China, 10. Kingsland 

Claudia
Claudia

If you had looked a little closer you might have noticed, "Here, in no particular order, are our top ten."

Doughboy
Doughboy

Oops my bad.  Chef Liu's had a number 1 next to it, so I assumed they were ordered.

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