Newport Tan Cang Seafood | 99 Essential Restaurants 2015

Newport Tan Cang Seafood

photo by Amy Scattergood

The signature house lobster at Newport Tan Cang Seafood is a formidable, wonderful thing, a mass of orange-red shell and glistening meat heaped on a platter and showered liberally with garlic, chilies, pepper and scallions. You and your friends — the lobster usually clocks in at a minimum 5 pounds, so you will need to bring friends — will crack, scoop and poke your way through the crustacean, and it’s safe to say your chopsticks won’t rest until you’ve wrestled out as much meat as you can handle. After that, it might be time to try a few of Newport’s other terrific dishes, some of which, like the excellent bo luc lac (shaking beef) are Vietnamese; some of which, like the salt and pepper pork, are Cantonese; some of which, like the hot and sour soup, are Thai; and some of which, like the lobster, are clearly Southeast Asian but otherwise can’t be conveniently slotted in a more specific category. If ever there was a restaurant that best represented the San Gabriel Valley, this would be it. —Tien Nguyen