Where to eat in San Gabriel Valley

-- Din Tai Fung -- This dumpling house with two locations in Arcadia has delicious dumplings so it's no wonder they are always busy. But it is definitely worth the wait as the juicy pork dumplings are amazing and the number one item to try from the menu. There's an art to eating them, so as not to make a mess, but it just adds to the experience.

-- Guppy House -- Guppy House is great because they have a large menu, generous portions, and they are open late. Plus in addition to their Hacienda Heights location, they have restaurants in Cerritos, Irvine and Anaheim Hills. A couple favorites from the menu are popcorn chicken, fried rice and be sure to save room for the shaved ice.

-- Hop Li -- For an extensive menu of reasonably priced Chinese food, Hop Li delivers. Though its not quite on par with some of my favorite Chinese restaurants in Oakland Chinatown and San Francisco Chinatown, they don't skimp on the portions and there are a lot of dishes under $10. And its a great place to take people who aren't too familiar with Chinese cuisine, as there's plenty to choose from.