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The best Chinese restaurants on Long Island

Find Chinese food options like pork and chive

Find Chinese food options like pork and chive dumplings at Beijing House in Syosset. Credit: Yvonne Albinowski

Long Island's Chinese restaurants serve not just Chinese-American classics but regional food you won't find just anywhere. What's more, the eateries are family friendly, served in a style that's designed to feed the whole table. From weekend dim sum to dumplings to-go, here are Newsday food critics' top picks near you:

Beijing House (170 Jericho Tpke., Syosset): Before 2015, Nassau's North Shore had never seen a Chinese restaurant like Beijing House. The small, L-shaped dining room looked like scores of others, but the bustling kitchen was putting out seaweed and slow-cooked pork spare-rib bone soup, cold sliced oxtail with chilies and cumin, stir-fried pork intestine. Local Chinese families showed up in droves and, gradually, curious and adventurous non-Chinese have joined in. While the menu offers Chinese-American classics, don't miss the opportunity to sample such Northern Chinese winners as green bean jelly (a thick noodle made from bean starch, served cold), sautéed lamb with scallion, spicy dan dan noodles, beef tendon in chili sauce, Chinese thin celery with sliced dried tofu or whole fish in hot chili oil. The kitchen also does a superb job with pan-China classics such as braised beef noodle soup and mapo tofu. More info:516-864-0702, beijinghouseus.com

Chef Wang (1902 Jericho Tpke., New Hyde Park): Chinese restaurants were early victims of COVID-19, but Chef Wang never closed, endearing itself even more to regular customers, and pulling in new ones from all over Nassau County. Opened in 2015 by Ding Gen Wang, the restaurateur behind Manhattan’s Legend Sichuan Cuisine, the sprawling eatery retains the architectural bones of prior tenants—including a fishpond and the vaulted ceiling of a Swiss chalet. You can get sushi here, as well as most Chinese-American standards, but Wang is at his best with classic Sichuan dishes such as braised pork belly with leeks (surprisingly lean), cumin lamb (or beef or ribs), cold rabbit with spice ("cold" refers to the numbing presence of Sichuan peppercorns; it’s a hot dish), and a terrific noodle soup with shredded pork and pickled vegetable, a rib-sticking brew with an unexpected sour kick. The vaunted (and participatory) hot-pots are dine-in only. More info: 516-354-2858, chefwangny.com

Cheng Du (947-949 Hempstead Tpke., Franklin Square): When Cheng Du took over the sprawling old Jani in Franklin Square in 2018, it retained Jani’s opulent décor, ornately carved booths, solicitous service, full bar, sushi menu and even a handful of what its menu calls "Americanized Chinese foods" such as egg rolls, spareribs, wonton soup and chicken with broccoli. But the restaurant’s name makes its intentions clear: Chengdu is the capital of Sichuan province and the kitchen does its signature dishes proud: tea-smoked duck, lush eggplant in garlic sauce, mouth-tingling dry-fried chicken, spicy-complex dan dan noodles, wontons in chili oil. Two Shanghai specialties are also done to a turn: soup dumplings and braised shiitake mushrooms with baby bok choy. From the Cantonese repertoire: salt and pepper shrimp. And, truth be told, the spareribs were terrific too. More info: 516-358-1697

F.A.N. Authentic Chinese Cuisine (534 Commack Rd., Deer Park): A little strip mall across the street from Tanger Outlets is not where you'd expect to find a first-rate regional Chinese but F.A.N. upends most expectations. It's a neat, bright spot whose kitchen is largely Sichuan, with some interlopers from Taiwan, Shanghai and the American suburbs. Don't miss the wontons in chili oil, dry-braised calamari or the shockingly verdant green scallion sauce egg fried rice. The pea sprouts in house special soup is graced by little red goji berries and "golden sand," a silky emulsion of salted duck eggs and sesame and olive oils that, elsewhere on the menu, elevates both shrimp and seafood fried rice. More info:631-586-6888, fanchinesefood.com

LI Pekin (96 E. Main St., Babylon): Over the last few years, almost every exciting new Chinese restaurant on Long Island has specialized in the fiery cuisine of Sichuan. But Long Island Pekin reminds us of the first Chinese foods many of us fell in love with: the roast duck and pork, the lo mein and fried rice, the steamed dumplings and pot stickers. Even better, these specialties of what used to be called Canton (now Guangdong, China's southeasternmost province) bear little resemblance to what you’ll find at your local takeout. Chef-owner Jason Lee’s menu centers on four great Chinese dishes: Peking duck, Hong Kong duck (a slightly simpler preparation), char siu (the red-roasted pork traditionally made with shoulder but here made with pig jowl) and Hainanese chicken (poached chicken with ginger and scallions). The restaurant exhibits many amenities lacking at Long Island’s other top-notch Chinese restaurants: imaginative cocktails (and a separate bar at which to imbibe them), a thoughtful wine list and a manageable menu. More info: 631-587-9889, longislandpekin.com

New Fu Run (50 Middle Neck Rd., Great Neck): When Fu Run opened in Flushing in 2005, it was one of the first restaurants in New York to serve the cuisine of Dongbei, China's northeastern-most region that used to be called Manchuria. That restaurant closed earlier this year; lucky for Long Island, its elegant offshoot, New Fu Run, has been serving the same menu in Great Neck since 2017. Dongbei cooking tends to be earthier than Cantonese, less incendiary than Sichuan. Treat your tastebuds to a cold starter of country-style beef shank with cucumber, stew cabbage (sauerkraut) with pork and vermicelli served in a gleaming soup tureen, triple delight vegetables (a salty-sweet stir fry of potatoes, eggplant and red and green peppers) and the signature dish, cumin lamb chop, a rack of lamb ribs that hasn't been seasoned so much as overwhelmed by cumin. New to the menu is Peking duck with all the accoutrements. More info: 516-708-1888, furunrestaurant.com

Spice Workshop (2503 Middle Country Rd., Centereach): For a long while, this spot was the venerated Yao’s Diner, and while its closure in 2018 was mourned by many, a worthy successor rose in its place. Opened by former SUNY-Stony Brook student (and Chongqing native) Song Ran, Spice Workshop lives up to the promise of its name, via both a cherry-red dining room and Sichuan cuisine that pulsates with flavor. Though takeout-only at the moment, to-go containers do little to diminish the smolder of these dishes, which manage to be bold but approachable all at once. Peppery, cold chengdu noodles stained with chili oil, oil-braised eggplant and garlicky stir-fried snap-pea greens all excel without a lick of meat, but there’s also plenty of flesh in the form of cumin lamb, pork-filled dumplings or sour, vinegar-doused ground pork tumbled with green beans. The kitchen excels at dry pot — a method by which meat, fish and vegetables are quickly fired with garlic and chiles — and iterations here include cauliflower with pork belly or vegan dry-pot potatoes. More info: 631-709-8855, spiceworkshoptogo.com

The Orient (623 Hicksville Rd., Bethpage): When it opened in 2002, The Orient was one of the first on Long Island to serve authentic Chinese food in addition to the usual egg rolls, spare ribs and moo shu pork. And it introduced such now-standard dishes as Grand Marnier shrimp (deep fried shrimp topped with mayonnaise sauce and garnished with candied walnuts and steamed broccoli) and sauteed snow-pea leaves. But what makes dining a singular experience was the presence of owner Tommy Tan, whose boundless enthusiasm — for the food and for his customers — made any meal there a celebratory banquet. More info: 516-822-1010, theorientny.com

Xiao Si Chuan (736 Route 25A, Setauket): Owner Xiao Fei Nie, who is from Beijing, offers a range of regional dishes from around China, with a focus on Sichuan specialties. Mapo tofu and dandan noodles make appearances, as do dumplings , tofu puddings topped with fish, beef or pig intestines, dry pots and sides such as braised romaine with garlic Fans of Americanized Chinese food can find lo mein and fried rice, and more adventurous eaters can take a chance on more mysterious dishes (at least in translation) like handmade shrimp slip. Nie has also outfitted the tables with inlaid skillets for simmering hot pots of spicy house soup that can be loaded with a la carte meat, seafood, vegetables, mushrooms and noodles. More info: 631-364-9679

Red Tiger Dumpling House (1320 Stony Brook Rd., Stony Brook): Like little purses filled with fragrant broth, handmade soup-dumplings are a go-to, but you won't be disappointed by others listed on the dumpling menu, from the dainty shrimp dumplings to the Kung Fu buns, fat with pork and vegetables. Don't be afraid to branch out among larger dishes from Shanghai, Beijing and Northern China, like the perfectly crisp scallion pancakes, Singapore mei fun or a bold beef noodle soup brightened by bok choy. More info: 631-675-6899, redtigerdumplingny.com

Tao’s Bakery (2460 Nesconset Hwy. Stony Brook): The tiny Stony Brook storefront serves snacks and street foods from all over China — Cantonese dishes familiar from the dim sum repertoire (crystal shrimp dumplings) but also the wheaten meat pies and flatbreads of the North, and Sichuan ma la tang hot pot, whose name derives from the numbing-spicy sensation bestowed by the inclusion of Sichuan peppercorns. More info: 631-675-6492

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