From pig-shaped bao to ‘Pac Man’ dumplings, chefs now make dim sum for the Instagram generation

By Lucas Shaw

March 25, 2019

Hong Kong’s 7.5 million inhabitants continually pack more than 1,300 restaurants serving steaming baskets of shrimp dumplings (har gow) and barbecue pork buns (char siu bao). “The dishes haven’t changed in a century,” says Adele Wong, author of the book Hong Kong Food & Culture.

Instagrammable dim sum is spreading quickly around the world. Enthusiasts in the U.S. can find it at places such as RedFarm in New York and Chili House in San Francisco. But Hong Kong is the epicenter of the craze. Read More


TBI’s 5 Best: Chinese Restaurants for Christmas Dinner

By The Bold Italic Editors

December 21, 2018

If we’ve learned anything from A Christmas Story (aside from never to lick a frozen pole) it’s that Chinese restaurants can save Christmas Day—no matter what the dinner debacle is. Perhaps your old San Francisco oven catches on fire, or you’re throwing in your cooking mitts because you’re tired, or you don’t celebrate Christmas, don’t fret because you’ll still eat well.

Ok, if you are looking for an alternative to a traditional Christmas Day roast, Chili House can provide. Indeed, it’s known for its incredible Peking duck that is carved table side. This iconic “Peking duck home” has an interesting historic background: Chef Han served two Chinese Presidents. Read More


At Chili House, a Beijing banquet feast fit for a president

By Jonathan Kauffman

March 14, 2016

In November 2015, Wang became the chef at Chili House, Li Jun Han’s Sichuan restaurant in the Inner Richmond. Han, owner of Z&Y in Chinatown, knew of Wang from their days in Beijing. There, Han’s own culinary master was a peer of Wang’s in a large restaurant organization. Han himself was trained in Sichuan food and cooked for two Chinese presidents before immigrating to California.

With Wang at the helm of Chili House, the two have been plotting a shift in direction, introducing more Beijing fare like hand-pulled noodles, Beijing pot stickers and lamb hot pot. They’ve already brought over a chef who specializes in carving Peking duck, and serve up to 20 crisp-skinned birds a night. Read More


Review: Chili House turns up the heat

Dining Out By Janny Hu

April 4, 2013

With a name like Chili House, you’d expect plenty of heat. And yet, to laud the Clement Street newcomer for its spicy cuisine is almost selling the Sichuan restaurant short.

Yes, Chili House packs plenty of fire, more than I could handle on a few occasions. But Sichuan food is also about balance; spicy chiles with numbing peppercorns; pungent preserved vegetables; bean pastes that lean both salty and sweet.

Chef Li Jun Han has a range of flavors at his disposal, and just as at his popular Z&Y Restaurant in San Francisco’s Chinatown, the best meals at Chili House go beyond the flaming chili oils and explosive chile peppers…Read More


Chili House by Patricia Unterman

January 3, 2013

Paul Kwan, my Clement Street insider, turned me on to Chili House, a new Sichuan/northern Chinese restaurant in the inner Richmond, and a relative of Z & Y, a Sichuan place in San Francisco’s Chinatown. The chef at Chili House worked at Z & Y, and apparently the ownership is the same. However, Chili House does not aspire to the dramatic presentations and banquet service of the mother ship, nor are its dishes as layered and complex. It does turn out unusual and compelling items not previously available on Clement Street. Judicious ordering from the long Chili House menu will net an excellent neighborhood meal, casual and affordable, in a comfortable dining room…Read More