Chef/owner Brandon Jew has brought some of the sparkle back to Chinatown with this contemporary treasure, which puts a modern Californian spin on the Cantonese classics that once made the neighborhood a national dining destination. Impressively, the chef also makes all his Chinese pantry staples in-house, like the oyster sauce that coats a stir-fry of smoked tofu with long beans, tripe, and tendon; or lap cheong (Chinese sausage), which comes stuffed into roasted quail with sticky rice and jujube. The menu is full of these clever touches, from the tomalley that adds depth to a rich Dungeness crab egg custard to the "tentacles" of fried fennel that echo the texture of salt-and-pepper squid. Set in a longtime Chinese banquet hall, Mister Jiu's is bright and airy, with dramatic brass lotus chandeliers overhead. Food is served family-style, making it ideal for groups. But solo diners will also enjoy the sophisticated front bar, which serves up thoughtful, complex cocktails with Asian inflections like lemongrass milk and green tea. Desserts are excellent, equally skillful and may incorporate black sesame, red bean, and osmanthus cream into preparations that will satisfy any sweet tooth.
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