Question: With September here, I could swear the touch of cool in the
evenings has gotten a bit deeper, and some of us have contemplated pulling the
wool sweaters out from that spot in the back of the closet where we stuffed
them in May. I know that hot Santa Ana weather is coming and all of that, but
I am beginning to feel a longing for braised meat that is not going away, and
my boyfriend made fun of me because I ordered the short ribs at Jar twice last
week. Where else should I go?
—Jess, Los Angeles
Answer: Tung Lai Shun, the grand Chinese-Muslim restaurant in San Gabriel
Square, is starting to look a little faded around the edges. Tattered menus
of lunch specials are posted rather aggressively around the perimeter, the famous
flatbread can be a bit flabby if you order it during off-hours, and a few of
the preparations seem crude compared to the unassailable suavity of the kitchen
in its earliest days. But the Beijing-style lamb is truly magnificent, braised
until it approaches the softness of a sigh, saturated with the flavors of soy,
garlic and star anise, an expression of pure, lamby soul. 140 W. Valley Blvd.,
San Gabriel; (626) 288-6588.
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