Imperial Mandarin

3904 Convoy St #102, San Diego
(858) 292-1222

Recent Reviews

L S.

Got the beef with snow peas and black mushrooms and the chicken with green peppers and onions. Both the chicken and beef had this weird texture, chewy and hard, but the beef was so bad I couldn't even eat it. Only ate the plain rice and the cup of egg flower soup. Basically 30 some dollars wasted- will not return.

Justin Fan

Food: 4/5Service and Setting: 3/5Value: 3/5Imperial Mandarin has been a staple in my household in our rotation for Chinese dinners, almost always exclusively take-out. The interior is definitely dated and quite frankly dirty, but that’s part of the charm of eating at a cultural landmark. Service is quick and a bit snippy, but for those of you with speaking anxiety, the workers here speak great English at the front. Like most Chinese restaurants, they can customize basically anything for you and usually will not upcharge. Though I have eaten a lot of their food throughout the years, I recently only get a few items. In general, their food is solid but not mind-blowing, especially their dim sum. I will be sure to update this review as I try more and more dishes from my past.Stuffed Eggplant with Shrimp: 4.25/5One of my favorite dim sum items can be purchased as an entree at a slight discount and a small side of rice. Sometimes they give you some stuffed bell peppers, sometimes they don’t. I love this dish so much and they make it in a way that tastes “homemade” for a lack of better terms. There is this striking inconsistency not only in-between visits, but also in the same plate of food. Some eggplant is mushy, some firm, some sweet, some sour. The eggplant or bell pepper is usually quite bland and the majority of seasoning is inside the minced shrimp filling. The texture is similar to a siu mai but a bit meatier. These parcels are deep fried and then tossed in a light soy sauce. The deep savoriness of the shrimp with the richness and smooth eggplant create a wonderful dish that is hard to recreate at home but manifests the same feelings as an honest dish. Rich, savory, umami, but not overly so embodies the tenants of Cantonese cuisine and warrants a try!

Kelsey Frost

So far, my favorite dim sum in San Diego. Prices are reasonable, portion sizes are reasonable, and flavor is good! Staff seemed like they were running around like crazy, but once we got our order in food came out quickly.

Tim Lowery

This another Chinese restaurant that's been open in the same location for over 40 years. Their dimsum is very good, although it's not served in the Hong Kong style from the little carts. You order from the menu. Their regular Cantonese food is also pretty good, but I typically come for the dimsum.Parking: They're located in a strip mall on Convoy St. They share the center with Original Pancake House, which is very popular for breakfast / brunch, so parking is pretty challenging at mealtimes. Plan accordingly.

Nelson Mar

We fish and bring it to them to cook for a $10 charge per dish. This last time we went they upcharged us $20 for one dish and $25 for the other each dish without telling us, effectively making them charge us full price even though we brought the mahi mahi and rockfish ourselves. The wife of the cook even said that the head chef had to raise prices because "green onions" were more expensive. Sorry guys but you don't jack up prices by $45 when we just did the same thing barely two months ago. Pretty blatant ripoff

Justin F.

Food: 4/5 Service and Setting: 3/5 Value: 3/5 Imperial Mandarin has been a staple in my household in our rotation for Chinese dinners, almost always exclusively take-out. The interior is definitely dated and quite frankly dirty, but that's part of the charm of eating at a cultural landmark. Service is quick and a bit snippy, but for those of you with speaking anxiety, the workers here speak great English at the front. Like most Chinese restaurants, they can customize basically anything for you and usually will not upcharge. Though I have eaten a lot of their food throughout the years, I recently only get a few items. In general, their food is solid but not mind-blowing, especially their dim sum. I will be sure to update this review as I try more and more dishes from my past. Stuffed Eggplant with Shrimp: 4.25/5 One of my favorite dim sum items can be purchased as an entree at a slight discount and a small side of rice. Sometimes they give you some stuffed bell peppers, sometimes they don't. I love this dish so much and they make it in a way that tastes "homemade" for a lack of better terms. There is this striking inconsistency not only in-between visits, but also in the same plate of food. Some eggplant is mushy, some firm, some sweet, some sour. The eggplant or bell pepper is usually quite bland and the majority of seasoning is inside the minced shrimp filling. The texture is similar to a siu mai but a bit meatier. These parcels are deep fried and then tossed in a light soy sauce. The deep savoriness of the shrimp with the richness and smooth eggplant create a wonderful dish that is hard to recreate at home but manifests the same feelings as an honest dish. Rich, savory, umami, but not overly so embodies the tenants of Cantonese cuisine and warrants a try!

Shaun O.

Dim sum all day every day. Do I need to say much more? Really clean. Great health code rating. Super friendly. I think will be my go-to Dim Sum with my girlfriend in SD. The food: Shrimp Har Gao - Bomb. Xiolombao - Good. Shiumai - Bomb There was another one, can't remember the name, but it was pork and shrimp and had a egg or tofu yellow wrap and it was REALLY GOOD. Lotus leaf - so so - better some places. Sesame ball - nope. Almost cold and WAY too chewy. Overall I loved it, atmosphere, employees, some of the dishes were on point. Ill be back most likely allot.

Dawn M.

Delicious, authentic food. The dim sum is so yummy! We've enjoyed both dishes off of the menu & dim sum. Great hours of operations. Convenient parking in the adjacent parking lot. Sort of a hole in the wall. Highly recommended. We even took friends from New York who've never tried "such exotic food" & they really enjoyed everything we ordered. Their wor won ton soup is the bomb! Our son can inhale 2 orders of the Shu Mai in mere minutes. Good service. Very sweet staff.

Darcie H.

My favorite Chinese food in San Diego!! Service is great, and the food is amazing! Walnut shrimp, bbq pork, chow fun, ALL OF THE THINGS!! I just love it!! Hot and sour soup is exactly how I want it... fried rice, I could go on and on - I love it all!!

Douglas L.

It is really not good. Business will not last. Prices are high for what you get. Maybe that is the new norm. No air conditioning. Too cheap to turn it on. They expect to fill a restaurant on a 100 degree day in August with no air conditioning. Food is nothing different than what you get at the 99 ranch food court. Char shu baos have no flavor. Dim sum much the same. It is like they buy it pre-made or pre packaged, warm it up, and serve it. Just buy it at supermarket.

Javier Santos

Love that Mushu!Started with the Hot and Sour Soup and Spring Rolls, yum!! The soup was thick and full of flavor. The spring rolls were hot and crispy on the outside and a little mushy on the inside.I ordered the Mushu Pork and Beef Chow Mein to split. The Beef Chow Mein was good; the beef was tender and the noodles had nice crunch veggies in it. The Mushu Pork was delicious! Lots of flavor rolled into those tasty burritos; and the hosin sauce just added to the already great flavors.The service was excellent! Not only in the timing of food delivery but in the amount of 'check-ins' to see if I needed anything else.Definitely coming back for more!!

Russell Weaver

Good Hot and Sour soup. Also had Beef chow mein and Moo Shi Pork which was delicious. First time ever to have server offer to wrap the Moo Shi for us, plus brought extra plum sauce. Was definitely a plus and appreciated. Loved the flavor of their tea as well. Service was fast and efficient.

Javier S.

Love that Mushu! Started with the Hot and Sour Soup and Spring Rolls, yum!! The soup was thick and full of flavor. The spring rolls were hot and crispy on the outside and a little mushy on the inside. I ordered the Mushu Pork and Beef Chow Mein to split. The Beef Chow Mein was good; the beef was tender and the noodles had nice crunch veggies in it. The Mushu Pork was delicious! Lots of flavor rolled into those tasty burritos; and the hosin sauce just added to the already great flavors. The service was excellent! Not only in the timing of food delivery but in the amount of 'check-ins' to see if I needed anything else. Definitely coming back for more!!

Freddie Bustria

This is my mom and dad's "go to" place to treat the whole family, for 15+ years, after Mass on Sunday's. The food is very good and reasonable. They always have lunchtime dim sum on Sunday's, but come early because it gets crowded. You can still order off the menu though. Our kiddos always like the Imperial House Special crispy noodles; Mandarin Special; Chicken, Beef, Pork Fried Rice; Salt And Pepper Chicken Wings; Beef with Broccoli, and Deep Fried Fresh Squid With Salt And Pepper off the menu. Everything is very good on the menu and reasonably priced in comparison to other Convoy St. restaurants offering exactly the same items. After 15+ years we've eaten pretty much everything on and off the menu. If something you like is missing they will try to make it for you if they have the ingredients! The dim sum is great too and we usually order: Beef Tripe With Turnip, Steamed Spareribs With Black Bean Sauce, 3 Beef Meat Ball, 6 Steamed Pork Dumpling, Shrimp & Pork Shiu My, and Egg Plant stuffed with shrimp, and yes, grandma's fave, chicken's feet. It's really convenient that they are open until 12am Sun-Thu, and until 1am Fri-Sat. You can also call in orders to take home too. Service is usually pretty good, however, it does get busy at times and you may have a slightly longer wait. Patience is a virtue, and the food at Imperial Mandarin is worth waiting for.

Alan W.

Out of all the dimsum restaurants in San Diego, this place has the best bang for your buck. The food tastes fresh and the service is great. It's family owned and the family is genuine. It does get busy so you want to get here right when they open.

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