Why eat tasteless Chinese food when in China Town? You almost have to work at eating bad food in San Francisco in general and Asian food in specific, but that's exactly what happened to twice in same evening at Brandy Ho??s. My first dish (vegetable lo-mien) was so bland I ordered a second (vegetable fried rice) assuming the noodles were an anomaly and that it would be impossible to screw up fried rice but they I was wrong! Highly not recommended as there is no reason to eat here that I can imagine understanding you are in the middle of Chinatown and not far from North Beach with plenty of places to dine that are notably better!
Went to Brandy Ho's on a recommendation from someone who used to spend a lot of time in San Francisco. They have pretty good Chinese food but it's noisy and the tables are close together. Maybe I'll have to try again to see what the rave reviews were all about, but for now I thought it was only so-so.
As a lover of Chinese food, I had never tried Hunan cuisine. I was surprised by the unusual mix of ingredients, however; was pleasantly surprised by the taste!
The food was fresh and made to order at the open air kitchen right by our table. The food is spicy, so be prepared. They will ask you how spicy you want it so be very clear if you do not want any spice in your dish.
The menu is fun and reads more like a recipe book than a menu. Service was attentive and price was right.
Pros: unique dishes
Cons: very spicy
My favorite was the huge stir fried chicken. Was served with with berries and celery, in sliced lemon and asparagus. Also the dice spring onion was very cool compliment, and the Shark's fin soup was very completing...
Pros: Was served in huge proportions
Cons: Ahh you're sure to get dirty after
We ordered the Onion Cake w/Peanut Sauce, General Chicken(Hot), and the Spicey Beef w/ Green Onions in Wine Sauce(Hot). Everything arrived hot and delicious, and none of things that were supposed to be crispy were soggy, which I think is probably due to their great packaging and lightning fast service. They told us it would be 45 minutes to an hour for delivery but it ended up taking about 20 minutes which was awesome. I'm not usually a huge fan of Chinese food, having had bad experiences in the past, but all the food was great. Plus, everything was spicy, which I'm a fan of. I'll definitely be ordering from them again in the near future.
Pros: Amazingly fresh delicious food delivered fast at a reasonable price.
First, I have to let you know two things. One, I use to love the Brandy H's in FiDi. Second, my food was delivered to my home, so I did not get to experience the quaint decor or the house service.
Now, being a fan of the FiDI/Chinatown location I really happy to hear Brandy H's was coming to the Castro; especially since I moved out f the FiDi delivery zone. As I had in the past I ordered my two Chinese food staples. The two dishes I rate all Chinese restaurants by ... Mongolian Beef and Pork Fried Rice. One word ... disappointed. The quality and taste at the new Castro establishment of this city's old staple was just not there. To say the least I was very sad by this experience. I was so upset by the experience, that I doubt I will give them a second chance.
Oh well, at least we stil have The Big Lantern.
Pros: the reputation
Cons: the food
Not sure why everyone raves about this place? 4 of us went together and shared a variety of meals. The service was fast and the food was ok, it just wasn't great. I've definitely had tastier and cheaper Chinese. I had a good nite as I was in good company but I won't be going back in a hurry.
Cons: food lacked flavour
The food took longer than promised for delivery, and they sent us items we didn't order. AND they made us pay for the extra dishes. The delivery person was unprofessional to put it politely.
We thought we'd make the best of the situation and enjoy the extra food. More food is usually a good thing. Not so with this restaurant. Despite the consistently high ratings, the food bordered inedible. It was prepared with poor-quality ingredients. It also had a foul taste, especially the soup base. We tried it one more time and had a similar experience.
I'm surprised this place could do so well in our world-class restaurant town.
Cons: quality of food
There are many restaurants in Chinatown but this is one of the best. As the name implies this is spicy Hunan food and it's great. Friendly waitress helped me choose my dish. On the outskirts of Chinatown near Broadway.
Pros: Great food
I stopped in for the lunch special, and had been meaning to eat there for a while because I have heard great things about them. I ordered a chicken dish, which was served with bamboo shoots and onions, with the appetizer plate preceding. I loved the crispy noodles with sweet sauce, the noodles with peanutty sause was passable, not remarkable, and there was a fried wonton/pancake item that was nice, but again nothing worth writing much more about. The chicken dish I was very dissapointed in. It seemed to be flavored only with soy sauce and red chilli oil, and basically "missing something" as they say. I don't send food back a lot, but did in this case. Unfortunately, I was told that most of the dishes on the lunch special menu have the same sauce, so opted for a beef soup with noodles. Again, the soup flavor seemed to be missing something, not a full flavor, not rich, just sort of a weak flavored bone broth with chunks of short-rib beef that were tough, dry, and a challenge to chew and swallow. I was very unsatisfied, which is a shame because I have heard great things about the place. I will have to listen to specifically what people recommend to eat there, because what I had I was very disappointed in. The waitress was attentive and satisfactory. The ambience is a place that I would go for lunch, but not for a romantic or professional dinner.
Pros: The server was helpful
Cons: There are plenty of great Chinese restaurants in the neighborhood
I love spicy food, but my kids can't eat it. The waitress told us it was possible to make it not spicy. So now everyone's happy! Their black bean chili sauce is DELICIOUS! I ended up buying four bottles of the chili sauce (I gave away a few bottles to my friends :( BUT they made some really good chicken with it and invited my family over for dinner!) and I got a fifth one for free.
Another bonus about this restaurant is their location. Whenever I'm shopping Downtown or grocery shopping in Chinatown, I always pick up something from Brandys for my kids.
They also have a full bar, so when my husband is playing designated driver, I can have myself a 1 person party.
Pros: Location, buy 4 get 1 free sauce, kids love it, full bar
There's no street parking but I found a parking garage on Vallejo and Powell.
Usually I sit at the counter and watch the chefs cook. Everytime I come here I have a hard time deciding what to order. I love their hot and sour soup and the fact that they serve brown rice (how many other Chinese restaurants does that??) It doesn't take long for the food to arrive, so that's a bonus too. Oh! And I just found out that they have gelato if you want to order dessert.
Pros: Fast seating, everything was fresh, GELATO!!
Cons: Can't think of any
very easy to order online. They have a extensive menu online with pictures and description. I placed my order online and the order taker call me back right away to confirm my order. I received my order promtly and food are HOT AND DELICIOUS. I can even order at work as they deliver to financial districts as well.
Pros: online delivery system, delivery
After reading all the positive reviews, I was a little disappointed after ordering dinner from Brandy's.
The food was ok, pretty average as far as flavors go, but nothing like it was represented in the photos on their website.
I ordered the Gon-Pou chicken and the Brandy's Chow Mein. The pictures
show lots of meat and shrimp. In actually, you had to look for what few pieces there were.
The Picture shows the Gon-Pou as mainly chicken complimented by vegetables.
In the dish I received, chicken amounted to maybe 10% of the dish.
I realize at $7.95 I shouldn't expect too much, but charge me a buck or two more and
give me what you show online.
Pros: Easy online ordering.
Cons: Some misrepresentations online.
My husband and I have ordered from them 3 times now...First time: Tuesday night, fast delivery, good food, discovered "mild" is still pretty spicy. Second time: Saturday night: slow delivery (they said 45-60 mins and it took 90mins to get here and was luke warm at best), still good food, gave them the benefit of the doubt 'cause it was Saturday night. Third time: Sunday afternoon (not exactly prime time), SLOW DELIVERY...AGAIN (we are now noticing a trend), food is still not here and it has been an hour and 15 mins....I'M HUNGRY!!!!
Pros: good food, delivery, SPICY!!!
Cons: SLOW DELIVERY!!!
If you like hot food this is THE place. "Medium is hot." Egg rolls are amazing, gung pao chicken rocks. This place also has a great lunch menu - a lot of food for $6.
Pros: Food, price
Cons: Ambiance is okay, parking is difficult
They have the best website that you can order from and a huuuuge menu. Everything I've had was great and I'll definitely be ordering again on a lazy sunday.
Pros: online ordering, large selection
Cons: cant think of any
I love this place. I have only eaten here once before but when they say spicey... .THEY MEAN SPICEY. The chicken, the pork, you name it, it all taste great.... Can't wait to dine in again!
For a taste of wholesome Mediterranean cuisine, with healthful veggies and a courteous staff, you could do worse than La Mediterranee, at 2210 Fillmore. Wedged in among shops and other restaurants, in a long, rather narrow setting, La Mediterranee provides food for thought in a charming setting.
While the portions could be larger, the combination of delectable morsels provides enough of a sample of the cuisines of Greece, Italy, Israel, etc. to whet one's appetite for a great voyage to the Med.
I have been going to BrandyHo's for 16 years.
It is always a good dining experience.
The dumplings are very good and the smoked ham or chicken is awesome.
The other reviews are correct when they say that the food is hot.
I generally eat very hot food and usually order it mild to mildly hot here.
BrandyHo's is well worth going to.
My first experience with Brandy Ho's was through delivery. It took about 50 minutes for me to receive the food (promised delivery between 45-60 minutes). When I was ordering (fried dumplings, eggplant, sweet and sour chicken), I was told that "medium" was pretty scipy but I ignored the warning. As a started eating I was amazed by how spicy the food was, especially the eggplant. Overall, it was good and I'll probably be a returning customer.
Pros: Reasonably priced, Delivery service
Ive only eaten in the restaurant once, and although the ambiance isn't the greatest, it is nice that you can see them cooking the food. I order from their delivery service, and they always arrive promptly and the food is always excellent. If you don't like spicy chinese food, it is a good thing to let them know when ordering.
Pros: Food, Speed of delivery, Cleanliness
Cons: Parking, Ambiance
I can see why this restaurant is always rated as one of the best Chinese places in the city. I usually have the food delivered but have also eaten in the actual restuarant. Either way, the food and service are excellent. I cannot usually handle very spicy food so it is suprising that I like it so much but I always ask for the dishes to be mild. Prcies are reasonable also.
Pros: good Chinese, reasonable prices
Cons: tacky decor
I've been going to Brandy Ho's for 18 years! The food is consistently great and the service always efficient. My favorite spot is at the counter watching the frenzy around the woks while enjoying deep fried dumplings w/hunan sauce and their spicy beef with green onions and wine sauce. A haven for lovers of hot and spicy dishes.
Pros: great fresh food, fun atmophere
Cons: no parking
Sure, you have your pick of places to eat in Chinatown, but it seems that either the food is really good and the service sucks or visa versa. I took my father here, and it was one of the best meals of his visit. The hostess welcomed up and seated us immediatly. It's a good sign when you see both the locals and visitors. We shared a soup, duck dish, chicken dish, and beef fried rice. Everything was very very good, not salty or oily at all. Everything was made fresh to our tastes We were regularly checked up on, the waitress helped explain things, and the athmosphere was warm and welcoming. This place really got everything right, no complaints, highly recommend.
Pros: Delicious food, Large selection, Helpful, friendly
I usually order take-out from this restaurant. But now they offer free delivery to thier neighborhood. Great service, friendly driver and delivery their food on-tine. honey walnut shrimp and general chicken are highly recommend. Best chinese delivery and large selections of menu.
Pros: delivery, friendly service, casual
Cons: not romantic
I ordered delivery from Brandy Ho's with high hopes after reading the reviews on CitySearch. The food was said to be there in 45 minutes, but it didn't appear until 1.5 hours later, after several phone calls to Brandy Ho's. The manager did give us 30% off our food, which was a nice gesture. But when the food arrived, it was mediocre, and certainly not of the quality and taste I would expect for the $8-9 that each dish costs. I don't think I'll be ordering from them again.
Ordered takeout and got the onion cake appetizer(they forgot our peanut sauce!), the smoked ham with fresh cloves of garlic, and the Gon-Pou (kung pao) Chicken. Onion cake was decent and the other dishes were good. I was definitely not blown away by the food though, A bit Be careful, Hunan food is very spicy, so unless you are a diehard spicy food masochist, Mild (which is still spicy) might be a better choice. Hard to believe this was voted best chinese food in San Francisco. Definitely disappointed by the hype.
Pros: No msg, relatively cheap
I guess I've been eating in this joint for more than 20 years and it never changes. Okay, they gussied up the menus about 6 years ago. But the food is the thing here and the tastes are authentic Hunanese. This means sour, garlicky, bitter, unbelieveably spicy and altogether memorable. Try the Hunan ham, the deep fried dumplings, the hot & spicy noodles with meat sauce to get some idea of what you're getting into. If they ask you how hot you want your food, believe them when they tell you that "Medium" is very spicy because it is. Order it "Hot" and you might not be able to finish it. Overall, a very "San Francisco" Chinese restaurant that is almost one-of-a-kind anymore. Try a seat at the counter to watch the woks in action.
Pros: Food, Inexpensive
Cons: , Ambience
I've eaten here about a hundred times (no lie) and always have a great meal! If the parking wasn't so bad, I'd eat here every day! The salad with bean sprouts and cukes is awesome!
Pros: great food, fast service
Cons: , parking
It is my most favorite Chinese restuarant since I was a kid. This resturant has been in SF since 1980 and I can't even remember how many times I have been in this restaurant. Great and friendly staff. Large dining room upstair for business parties. Don't miss this restaurant when you're in San francisco
Pros: Large Private Room, Now has Delivery, Friendly Staff
If, like me, you are a NY transplant and miss the good ole days of decent Chinese Food, pizza, bagels, and delis on every corner, check this place out. The food is the best I've had since I've been here - and believe me - I've been looking for a good place. The service, however, is also reminiscent of NY. Not bad, but also not good. However, at these prices, for this kind of food, I'm a fan.
Pros: Food, Value, Food
Cons: Tight seating
Great food, sharp staff, fun to watch them fix your food. Great lunch specials.
Pros: great food, Great value
The Food here is too salty and they all taste the same. This is a major tourist trap!!!
Whenever I'm in SF I always go to Brandy Ho's at least once. Not fancy, but the food is some of the best affordable "wok-fry" Chinese in the U.S. Sit at the counter. Ask for the Brandy Ho Special spicy, and watch 'em cook it. Make sure you have couple of Tsing Taos handy, and enjoy. Whoever gives this place a bad review must have been having a bad day. Enjoy
Pros: reasonably priced, Excellent wok food, North beach rocks
Cons: a little noisy but ..
I just visited San Fran and I couldn't wait to hit chinatown and get some authentic cuisine. The reviews on this site pointed me to this place, and I was very dissappointed. My dish was not edible, and the other dishes we ordered were bland at best. If this is some of the best chinese food in San Fran, then they should just shut down chinatown and open one huge PF Changs.
Pros: Location, Price