Hmmm Dim Sum. I only go here for dim sum. There is always a wait during the weekends but we never make reservations (I don't know why). The food are fantastic and come with a great deal of varieties. Service could be lacking especially when they are busy.
Fantastic dim sum!. Went to Imperial Inn for the Chinese New Year. The place was packed: it was apparently THE place to go for dim sum that day. The food was delicious, the service was quick, and the servers did a good job of explaining what was in each item on their carts (knowing full well that we didn't look the type to want chicken feet). I thought I was going to die of happiness when I tried the pork sticky bun. We left completely full?and our party-of-five came out to $49 before tip! Definitely worth going, especially for newcomers to dim sum (which some of our party were).
Worst Chinese restaurant in Philly (possibly in the U.S.). I made the mistake of taking my wife to celebrate Chinese New Year's at probably the worst dine-in chinese restaurant I have ever visited in my life. I am embarrassed to have a chinese restaurant like this to represent my culture. The reason we even set foot in this restaurant was because Tai Lake (restaurant next door) had a long wait and we were hungry. The restaurant had a nice atmosphere to it. There were only 5 tables occupied (not one single asian person, should have been a clue) so it was definitely not busy. The tea had no taste and the crispy noodles were stale. I asked the waitress if the sweet and sour fish filet on the menu was flounder and she quickly answered yes. We then proceeded to order fried dumplings as an appetizer and beef chow fun for our entree along with the fish. Well we received our fried dumplings and they were deep-fried like no tomorrow which made them hard to eat. The waitress then tells us 5 minutes later that they do not have anymore chow fun because, "we were busy earlier," and asked if lo mein would be okay so we said yes. When the fish entree was brought out I was in disbelief. The watress served us a separate bowl with sweet and sour sauce in it and 8 chicken nugget size fried fish. I have never in my "chinaman" life ever seen this entree served like this especially being a $12 dish. Then comes our supposed to be beef chow fun changed to lo mein but was served with mei fun, WTF?? I know I'm an American Born Chinese (ABC) so am I not supposed to know the difference? What even is more unbelieveable is that the table next to us is served a dish with lo mein, talking about rubbing salt into the wound. Needless to say I give this restaurant 2 thumbs down and a heavy NOT RECOMMENDED!
There's better Chinese out there!. The atmosphere was ok, but the food was not exceptional. I would rather go somewhere else where the servings are larger and better tasting. If you want to share your food, you can't here. Everyone in my party had typical Chinese orders, and no one was impressed with the thin sauces. I wouldn't go back.
China comes to Philly!.
My son and I have lived in Philly for two years and have been to the Imperial Inn easily a dozen times. We have not had so much as a mediocre experience in this place, let alone the horrors we read about on this site. Atmosphere is unpretentious, prices are reasonable, and service is uniformly prompt and friendly. One waitress remembers our favorite selections, to the point where she knows enough to leave the scallions out of the wonton soup. The food has consistently been the best Chinese we ever had. The dim sum is the best, and we can't get enough of the steamed dumplings. Sure, we'll try a few other places in the neighborhood and treat ourselves to one of the "big name" Chinese places on the Main Line. But we'll always return to the Imperial Inn where we're treated like kings!
Stellar dim sum, but there are better Chinese restaurants for big dinners..
Szechuan, Mandarin and Cantonese selections are the framework of a menu filled with classic Chinese dishes. Appetizers and dim sum are unquestionably the highlight: The Phoenix roll is a delicate, crisp roll filled with mixed seafood served with a pungent hoisen sauce; tender translucent balls of steamed shrimp dumplings are ample and succulent. A dessert combination of syrupy fried bananas with a scoop of vanilla ice cream cleanses the palate after a sodium-saturated meal.
Awful!!. This was an embarrassment. I took two out of town friends to what I remembered as a really good Chinese retaurant. Everything was overcooked and mushy or hard as rock. The place was almost empty but we were rushed by the waitress. She literally tossed the fortune cookies on the table at the end of the meal.
wish it was the late 80s. The food was terrific back in the late 80s and early 90s. However, as of recent, it's not the same anymore. Some of the food are dried or tasteless (chicken feet, shrimp balls, etc.) However, i want to give them some props for their beef ball with worchester sauce.
Best Dim Sum in Philly!! Not so much for dinner. The editorial review is misleading/mistyped: you don't need a large group to enjoy dim sum.. just an appetite and a sense of adventure (if you're a vegetarian, this is not the place for you). Served every day from 10:30 till 2 or 3, this is among the best dim sum I've ever had (in NY, LA, SF, Boston, Chicago, DC, Seattle, Portland, ... you name it). Go now. you won't regret it. For those who disliked the tea - ask for Jasmine tea, which is great. The menu selections are pretty bad -- I've eaten dinner here only once, and that was enough.
Anywhere but here!.
N.Y. day, 6 of us, 4 our out of town guests. I suggest China Town for dinner. Kinda remembered reading here that Imperial was suggested as a suitable restaurant. We head there. Seated right away, but had to flag down someone to take drink orders.
The tea was most tasteless, noodles on the table with the s&s and mustard all tasted out of a can. Politely everyone tasted the eggroll and laid it back down. Shrimp rolls were slimy inside nicely fried crusts. It was downhill from there. My rating? "F" for total failure. A terrible ending to a GREAT day at the parade with good friends & Philadelphians.
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