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Summer Travels: Tea-Smoked Eel at San Francisco's Mission Chinese Food

What's the best thing about attending a good friend's wedding in Mendocino country, California?

The excuse to fly into San Francisco early and partake of its amazing food offerings. (A close second: wine-tasting in Napa and Sonoma.)

I have been lucky enough to visit San Francisco about a half dozen times, and even though there are literally hundreds of restaurants on my list to try, I usually find myself gravitating to favorites such as Burma Superstar. When I mentioned to a couple friends of mine who had spent significant time in the city, they only recommended one place: Mission Chinese Food.

The name initially confused as me as in the neighborhood of San Francisco known as "The Mission" hosts more than one Chinese restaurant. And once I found the specific establishment, I was further confused by its claim to serve "Americanized Oriental Food." I mean, not that I have any beef with American Chinese food, but did I really have to go all the way to the Bay area to get good chop suey, egg rolls, and lo mein?

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Joanna O'Leary