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Fearless Critic restaurant review
Chinese, Seafood, Dim Sum
Casual restaurant

Mon–Fri 11:00am–3:00pm
Mon–Fri 5:00pm–9:00pm
Sat–Sun 10:00am–3:00pm
Sat–Sun 5:00pm–9:00pm

Features Date-friendly
Bar Beer, wine, liquor
Credit cards Visa, MC, AmEx
Reservations Not accepted


Far North Austin
10901 N. Lamar Blvd.
Austin, TX
(512) 490-1426
Fortune Chinese Seafood
Delicious and elegantly served bounty from the sea and the cart

Fortune Chinese Seafood’s dining room is classically Cantonese, a giant hall with opulent chandeliers, white tablecloths, and drab walls that discourage lounging. But in the bar area is a rare sight for this genre: chic dark-wood furniture; intimate, embroidered red seating; and...happy hour? On a date, dine in here; large groups will noisily populate the back.

Stick to the Cantonese preparations at dinner; the usual Szechuan conceits like ma po tofu are here, but save these for Szechuan kitchens. Instead, cull your meal from the aquariums teeming with eels, geoduck clams, lobster, Alaskan King and Dungeness crabs, giant prawns, and several different fish. Whole fried fish can be overdone, but pan-fried fillets come flaky and tender. Black bean sauce is rich and earthy, but steamed head-on shrimp are so sweet and delicious on their own that we find ourselves scraping them clean. Sea snails, on the other hand, benefit from the sauce, being properly toothsome but otherwise bland.

Although dim sum is also offered on weekdays until 3pm, the weekend selection’s more diverse, and Fortune flaunts showy touches like nice bamboo steamers and shark’s fin (whatever your political stance on the matter). Aside from partly desiccated Shanghai soup dumplings (the best we’ve been able to do with these, sadly) and underseasoned pork ribs, the dim sum is—on most visits—just a notch above Shanghai’s.

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