Chinese Take Out on Christmas Eve was sort of a tradition when I was a kid, and I hadn't been back to this place in 4 years. I liked it the first time, and most of the Chinese food around here has gotten really bad.
I was going to pick it up in the evening, but I found myself at the supermarket at 3pm and decided I didn't want to go home and them go back out, so I ordered from my car. I didn't have a menu; I wanted Chicken with Black Bean sauce, but apparently this is the only Chinese restaurant in the universe that doesnt have it. Without a menu, I had to fall back to my other usual; mongolian beef. I had it here the first time and it was quite good.
They told me 15 minutes, and it took me 23 minutes to get here, but the food wasn't out. The place is actually quite annoying; the woman is on the phone constantly, and only occasionally took the time to deal with pickups. At one point she asked me if I was paying with a CC, which apparently made me have to wait longer.
South Sea Chinese Interior
Eventually the food came out; I'm guessing they were getting unusually slammed. It was all packed in a cut off box, so carrying it was easy.
South Sea Chinese Takeout
The sauce from the mongolian beef had spilled into the box, but it was a thick box do it wasn't leaking out. I wasn't going to eat all of this, but I wanted to taste everything. First, the hot and sour soup.
South Sea Chinese Hot and Sour Soup
A good version, a little spicy, just enough stuff. I'll add some white pepper to this and so some crying over the weekend. Next I tried the dumplings.
South Sea Chinese Dumplings
By now, they were cold, which is bad for dumplings. They were too doughy; I re-steamed some of them and they were much better, but the filling wasn't very interesting either way.
I made myself a bowl of fried rice and mongolian beef and put the rest of the food in glass containers so it would keep a few days in the fridge. It was quite a bit of food for $27. 3 meals easily.
South Sea Takeout
The mongolian beef was just as good as the first time; lots of scallions, good quailty meat (which is rare with Chinese food). Good fried rice as well.
When I was a kid the best part of Chinese food was the fortune cookies; you get them here.
South Sea Fortune Cookie
I reluctantly called this the best Chinese food in town at one point, which is difficult to do after only one visit. The biggest issue with food in Fort Lauderdale is consistency; you'll go to a place and think you've found something; and then you go back. The dumplings were't great, but everything else was very good.
Note that the menu we have is old; they didn't put on in the box. Prices are about 15% higher.
It's funny how you usually find things when you're not looking for them, and South Sea Chinese Kitchen is quite a find. I had tried to order a pizza from Bada Bing next door yesterday and they didn't answer their phone, and I needed something today from Target so I swung by on my way home to see what was up. Bada Bing is closed and I was in the mood for some chinese food and there was Seven Sea, so I ordered some dumplings and Mongolian Beef.
Inside, the place is as big a dump as a place could be; out of date and probably not very nice when it was in date. There's a 12" TV on some random station. This place is take out only. Sure there's a table and a bench, but you don't want to eat here.
Something that may be a first for me is that the counterperson, and I think the cook, were Caucasian. Can white people make good Chinese food? I was about to find out.
It took about 10 minutes to make the food and they happily handed over the extra condiments I asked for. The portions weren't enormous; the Mongolian Beef was a "chef's special" so only available in one size; the dumplings where medium size and they give you 6.
I could tell from looking at the beef that it was skillfully made; the meat was nicely seared and the proportions were just right. I tried the dumpling first and they were pretty good; not too doughy and they had an asian taste; sometimes dumplings just taste like balls of nothing. They gave me some sort of chili sauce which I had no use for; I use a mixture of mustard and duck sauce for dumplings. I'm not sure why; just an old habit that sticks with you forever.
The Mongolian Beef was excellent; it was spicy, tender and there were just enough snow peas, scallions and mushrooms to balance it out. As take out goes, I was quite pleased with the food. Its not a cheap place as it was almost $16.00 for the one dish and the dumplings, but it was very well made with quality ingredients.
Just a note: they leave in the chili peppers, and you really don't want to bite into one of those boys or it will light your mouth on fire. So be careful!